“Why? Because we like you!”

The morning is a bit chillier than yesterday’s but is just as pretty. The sun makes all the difference. Every morning now seems to take me a bit longer to retrieve the papers because I stop to admire my front garden. I forgot how many bulbs were planted last fall so the garden is a gift, a present, filled with color and all sorts of spring flowers which delight me. The pink and the purple hyacinths are in bloom and the yellow daffodils are by the front steps.

I had an early meeting this morning, my library board. I actually woke up before the alarm, set for 8, because I was cold. I had left the window open all night, and it got chilly. Gracie was huddled beside me on one side and Fern on the other. I grabbed the blankets to try to go back to sleep but decided I might as well get up. It was close anyway. To think I used to get up at 5 or 5:15 and here I am complaining about 8.

Annette died. I read it first on Facebook and today there was a huge obituary in the paper. She was 70 and had been suffering from MS for years. I can still see Annette in her tutu and ballet slippers dancing on the Mouseketeer stage. She was, for many boys, their first crush. For us, she was the girl we wanted as a friend because we knew she’d never let us down. She was too good for that. Annette was perfect. She was quiet, polite and wholesome, even on the beach with Frankie Avalon.

Every afternoon I had the same ritual. Come home from school, change into play clothes, go out for a bit then come in and watch Superman and The Mickey Mouse Club. I sang along with the opening Mickey Mouse Club March and with the songs for the days of the week. I never missed Spin and Marty or the Hardy Boys. I thought Cubby and Karen were cute. No boys had the same reaction on me that Annette had on every prepubescent boy watching the show. Even now, after all these years, I remember most of the songs and MICKEY MOUSE comes easily and I always remember to add Donald Duck. I used to love it when he’d put the cymbals on his ears. The end theme was a heart tugger. We were family saying good-bye but happily we’d see each other real soon.

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36 Comments on ““Why? Because we like you!””

  1. Hedley Says:

    Complicated, polarizing, Margaret Thatcher’s legacy will be debated and remain somewhat opaque, however only a fool would cast aside her period as Prime Minister in an ignorant flurry of generalisms. Next week will bring a funeral which will bear comparison to Churchill.

    The New York Times ran a lengthy and throughful Obituary this morning

    http://www.nytimes.com/2013/04/09/world/europe/former-prime-minister-margaret-thatcher-of-britain-has-died.html?ref=obituaries&_r=0

    • Kat Says:

      My Dear Hedley,
      I was going to speak about the Iron Lady tomorrow. She was easy to dislike but just as easy to admire. I may steal much of this obituary. I hope BBC American will carry the funeral.

      Thank you!!

      • Hedley Says:

        Kat
        Hopefully it brings forth an interesting and thoughtful debate amongst the KTCC faithful.

        Pages could be written alone on her response to the murder of Arie Neave immediately prior to becoming Prime Minister in 1979 and the failed attempt on her life in Brighton in 1984. As one might expect, the comments yesterday from Gerry Adams reflected his culpability and disdain for Mrs Thatcher.

        In the Heath administration she faced the constant cry of “Maggie Thatcher, Milk Snatcher” , However it was Thatcher who battled to rebuild schools in the poverty areas.

        Heck she really like Gorbachev and hated the Soviet Union.

        Maybe the constant references to the fact that she was a Green grocers daughter underlines the challenges and obstacles that she had to overcome, greater even than gender

        Oh, and the Meryl Streep movie sucked !

      • Kat Says:

        My Dear Hedley,
        She was a controversy walking. Nothing was easy with her. No one was on the fence about Maggie. She was either admired or hated, no in-between.

        A least Meryl got her hair right!

  2. Caryn Says:

    Hi Kat,
    I remember Mickey Mouse Club but I don’t remember it as an important part of my day. Mostly I remember Annette from the movies and her records.
    I heard thunder this morning when I awoke. I was not pleased because the jeep had to go into the shop and I would have to walk home. Glad I didn’t have to walk in rain and lightening.
    Why is it that I can think of dozens of places I have to go right now on the day when I don’t have a car but when I do have a car I think of dozens of reasons not to go anywhere? 🙂
    Cher has announced that she is not dead. I wondered why she had to say that. Something on Twitter was misread, I think. @nowthatcherisdead. 😉
    Enjoy the day.

    • im6 Says:

      Caryn, you must be a couple or three years younger than Kat and me or you’d surely remember the Mickey Mouse Club as being a VERY important part of the after-school day. Annette’s music and movies didn’t begin until after she’d grown up a bit (and by that I mean grown OUT a bit!), probably around 1959. The movies she’s most famous for (the beach movies) were released 1963-1965 and by then she’d REALLY grown out. I’d really gotten over Annette by then, but she really was quite the object of many a 10-12 year-old’s eye when she was on the MMClub and doing those Spin and Marty serials. I think every TV in every home with a child under 12 was tuned in each weekday afternoon.

      • Caryn Says:

        im6, I was 9 in 1959 and I remember the show but didn’t watch it that much. I think I remember it more from the Disney show that was on Sunday nights. I don’t remember Spin and Marty serials but I do remember Cubby and Karen. I hung out with an older female cousin back then so I was probably watching American Bandstand and listening to Johnny Mathis or someone like him. 🙂

      • im6 Says:

        Caryn, I watched Bandstand, too. I even remember watching it the first day it went national and being mesmerized. Instead of an older cousin, I watched with the high school age daughter of the woman who looked after several kids after school. I thought I was so sophisticated and grown-up… Look! there’s Justine & Bob… there’s Kenny & Arlene… I’ll give it a 90… come on let’s stroll. And, yes, chances are you probably WERE listening to Johnny Mathis!

      • Kat Says:

        im6,
        I agree totally. Everyone I knew watched the Mickey Mouse Club. Ears for Christmas were a hot item. She was a girl of 13 when MMC started and she was ogled by most boys I knew who had no problem discussing the MMC because of Annette and her gifts.

        Those beach movies in retrospect are just so bad, but we flocked to see them. We had Frankie and the boys had Annette.

    • Kat Says:

      Hi Caryn,
      It was THE afternoon. The Mickey Mouse Club was what we all watched every single day. We’d race inside so as not to miss a single minute.

      This morning it had rained before I woke up as the deck was wet, but I wouldn’t have known except for that. That’s Murphy’s Law, and I’m surprised it didn’t rain. You are lucky!!

      I’m laughing at your last paragraph. I totally see how people could have read what you’d written as Cher bit the dust.

      • Kat Says:

        im6 and Caryn,
        American Bandstand became the must see TV when I got older. We had to watch to keep track of all the new dances, the songs and the couples on the show. I remember the stroll and all of us watching so we’d know how to do it.

        Here is a good site for some memories:
        http://www.pophistorydig.com/?tag=johnny-mathis-american-bandstand

      • Jay BIrd Says:

        Mickey Mouse Club was a daily event. I thought Mickey was creepy (still do), but the series were great – Spin & Marty (which you mentioned), Hardy Boys and the Boys of the Western Sea. We (boys) didn’t understand why Anita was getting so “fat” in the chest! Sigh… We rarely watched Bandstand, but all the girls did, and somebody’s little sister would teach us the new dances.

      • Kat Says:

        Jay Bird,
        I loved Spin and Marty and envied their summer on the ranch. I also remember Corky and White Shadow another series with Darlene as the star instead of Annette who seemed to be in most of them.

        I didn’t even notice the pubescent Annette: I was a little too young.

        Bandstand came much later for me.

  3. Hedley Says:

    Birgit – Borussia Dortmund should roll tonight against Malaga. Get it done and only one more stop before London.
    Good luck to our friend in Bochum

    • Birgit Says:

      Thanks, Hedley! London is worth a visit 🙂
      Why is this game not on TV??? Good old radio has to do.
      BTW, I couldn’t get Fullers or any other english beer in my local store for the Tottenham game last week. I hope the Guinness wasn’t an offence.

      • Hedley Says:

        Birgit, just saw that Malaga scored. Guinness is perfectly good. You should see Tottenham on Thursday on their travels to St Jakobs Park in Basel. Not sure if my cousin and her family are going to the game or watching on TV.

      • Hedley Says:

        BIRGIT – OMG !!!!!!
        Two goals in injury time to win 3-2 , incredible..Congratulations, surely this must be the year for Dortmund 🙂

      • Birgit Says:

        Hedley, yes, incredible, only one more stop before London 🙂
        Good luck for Tottenham on Thursday! The game is on our TV, but I can’t watch it. I’m leaving town, TV and internet for a funeral. No, not Maggie’s funeral.

      • Hedley Says:

        Birgit, this must be the year of Dortmund. I will be in London at the time of the Final but do not hold tickets. I will be at Tottenham for the last game of the season on May 19.
        I am pulling for Dortmund to make it for you

  4. olof1 Says:

    14F here in the mornings, so noflowers beside snowdrops yet. But I have seen some green grass 🙂

    It’s strange that we never had a Mickey Mouse club here in this country since we more or less see Disney movies as something religious 🙂 🙂 🙂

    Childrens programs weren’t showed unti later in the afternoon, I think they wanted us to do our home work before watching tv, of course we didn’t 🙂 The only time we got too se any kind of caryoons (mostly eastern European, high quality but not Disney though 🙂 ) was just before bed time, The Sand Man (or as we call him John Blund) had a small part in a popular family program.

    Have a great day!
    Christer.

    • Kat Says:

      Christer,
      Too cold, far too cold!!

      Maybe because it was kids instead of characters it didn’t make it to your TV. They did show a Disney cartoon periodically, but mostly it was singing and dancing and one segment of a serial like Spin and Marty.

      TV didn’t start until the afternoon when I was really young. It was just that way, no reason that I know for it. Nothing beats the afternoon of Superman and The Mickey Mouse Club and nothig beats all those great Saturday show for kids.

  5. Birgit Says:

    I thought the name of the poor boy in the front row is Curry until I read Cubby in your post. I hadn’t heard of Annette Funicello before. It’s funny how many old anti-Thatcher songs pop up. Do I have to thank her posthumously for inpiring the British music scene?

    • Kat Says:

      Birgit,
      Cubby was a drummer and later played for Welk, Carol Burnett, Ann-Margret and The Carpenters. Now he mostly plays for Broadway productions.

      I think you might have to thank her!

  6. Bob Says:

    The Mickey Mouse Club was the program that helped define the entire baby boom generation in the US. Like you I can still remember all the words to the march.

    I don’t understand all the hoopla about Thatcher’s funeral or Reagan’s a few years ago. They are ex leaders and private citizens. In a democracy the leaders temporarily hold office and then return to private life. They are just like us and even put their pants on one leg at a time. If they die in office then they deserve a state funeral because the country is showing respect for the office. Of course the British have a monarchy which lasts a lifetime and a state funeral is the cheapest part of their life. Maybe they. Don’t put their pants on one leg at a time 🙂

    Why not just embalm her and put her under glass like Lennin, Mao and Eva in Argentina. Maybe dig up old Ronnie and put them together under glass and call it “The Cold Warriers Triumph”. The government could charge an admission fee, capitalism at its best.

    • Kat Says:

      Bob,
      Thatcher was the first woman Prime Minister and the first to lead a major Western power in modern times. She was in office longer than any other British politician in the 20th century.

      Read her obit and be amazed at her political successes and her economic revival of England. She was certainly a lady of opinion and prediction, many of which were fulfilled as time went on. I think the English recognize her contributions to a country which was in economic crisis when she came to power.

      She died a private citizen but her contributions were valuable to an England in crisis. Reagan did not deserve the same accolades. The country is showing respect for her contributions which should be applauded.

  7. Ted Says:

    Kat, I used to run home to watch the very same shows, especially Superman (can still recite the opening monologue). These shows were in re-run by that time, though, mid-sixties.

    I didn’t have a crush on Annette, but I know what you mean. I had a Peanuts book back then, and in one of the cartoons Charlie Brown asks Linus why he is so glum, sitting there moping, sucking his thumb and holding his blanket.

    Linus finally hollers, “I’ve just discovered that Annette Funicello has grown up!!!”

    • Kat Says:

      Ted,
      I too know that whole opening monologue. I can still see Superman standing there with his hands on his hips and the flag waving behind him. It never seemed hokey.

      That Peanuts cartoon is wonderful. I totally understand poor Linus!

  8. Vintage Spins Says:

    Hi Kat,

    From what I’ve heard, Annette was a very classy and brave lady, but her records and those of Frankie Avalon, at least five or six Bobbys, Fabian, Paul Anka, etc. didn’t hold much interest for me. I was just a kid, but they weren’t rock ‘n’ roll and the sound just didn’t move me. It was the girl group sound, R ‘n’ B groups and early Motown and a few other songs here and there, that kept me turning the radio on from about 1959-1962.

    I think it was Caryn who said that they were more interested in American Bandstand than the Mickey Mouse Club. It was the same with me. While I must have seen the program because I remember parts of the Mickey Mouse song, I don’t remember watching it on a regular basis.

    Marie

    • Kat Says:

      Marie,
      Those were also the beach party days so the tunes fit right in, think Beach Boys. I was never a big fan of those movies, but I liked both Annette and Frankie in the 50’s.The sound was so different then.

      I was 8 when the Mickey Mouse Club first appeared on TV and American bandstand would not have held my interest when I was that young. I needed more than couples dancing to the latest music when I was a little kid.

      Ask people my age and they’ll tell you they watched the MMC every afternoon.

    • Kat Says:

      Marie,
      I don’t know if you’ll read this, but I’m hoping you do. I can’t get into your blog. I went yesterday and was denied entry, same thing today. Is something wrong?

  9. Beto Says:

    We didn’t get Mickey Mouse in Austin but we got something more important. Red Sox baseball and the Celtics basketball.

    • Kat Says:

      Beto,
      I don’t remember when I first started watching baseball on TV, but I do remember listening to Johnny Most and the Celts on radio. I saw my first game at Boston Garden when I was 11 and already a fan. I used to listen to the west coast games while hiding under the covers so I wouldn’t get caught. My big old transistor radio didn’t have ear phones.

      I will never forget my first night game at Fenway!

      • Beto Says:

        One of the reasons I like a well kept lawn is baseball. We had a AAA team here in Austin and I went to the games all summer to chase foul balls for our sandlot crew. I was known to the pitchers as “Mr Joker” because I was always wisecracking to the guys in the bullpen.

      • Kat Says:

        Beto,
        I love the Triple and Double AA teams. They have fun stuff happening all the time. Last year I got a Jack Kerouac bobble head from the Lowell Spinners, a double A Sox team.


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