Summer In Stereo #47

HERC loved the song from the moment he first heard it and he had a difficult yet fun time acquiring the single. In July 1976, HERC lived with his family on the now defunct Chanute Air Force Base in Rantoul, Illinois. Our next door neighbors had a daughter who was a year older than HERC was. Her name was Rachel. Her moms was British by birth and Rachel still had a wee bit of that proper accent. HERC and Rachel shared similar tastes in the pop music of the day and used to listen to records in her basement. One fateful day, HERC noticed she had "Don't Go Breaking My Heart" in her collection. He had been looking for it for almost a month but it was sold out every Saturday when his family went to the BX. HERC asked her if he could borrow it. She said she'd trade him for it. He asked her what he had that she wanted. She said she'd have to see what he had. So HERC ran across their shared double-wide driveway and grabbed the handful of singles he had managed to accumulate over the last two years. Rachel leafed through the stack and picked a record that had a similar label to the Elton John one: Neil Sedaka's "Bad Blood". (It had a similar label because both records were released on Elton's vanity label.)  

Rachel wanted to make a straight-up trade. HERC can't remember why but he asked for a caveat: a kiss. To his ten-year-old boy brain astonishment, Rachel agreed to the terms. They went outside and walked way out in their shared backyard, behind one of two huge trees. Just like you see in the movies when the boy gets his first kiss, HERC closed his eyes tight and puckered up. Rachel (though older, she was still shorter than HERC) reached up and gave him a little peck ON THE LIPS and then said she'd race him back to the house. They swapped records. Her family moved away shortly thereafter. HERC and Rachel never made out again but most of the women HERC did make out with in the years since have been older than he is. Even MRS. HERC is seven months older than HERC and you'll have to take his word on this but she is probably the greatest kisser ever.


  1. Gonna show my age here. Do you remember when Barbie and Julie (Valerie Bertinelli and Mackenize Philips) performed this on an episode of One Day At A Time for a New Year's Party at a retirement home? Classic stuff. I had a huge crush on Valerie back in the day.

  2. Show your age? HA!

    I remember the episode well. But what I don't remember is anyone calling Bertinelli's character "Barbie" - she was just "Barb". I seem to recall that the Julie character was obsessed with Elton John - you remember that? Haven't seen the show since it was originally aired.

    My crush on Bertinelli took a brief (however long she was married to Eddie Van Halen) hiatus but is still going strong thanks to her appearance on the otherwise horrible Hot In Cleveland. She has aged phenomenally well.

  3. Ah, you need to watch season 1 (on DVD) again - I really wish they would put more on DVD as I loved the show. She was called Barbie quite a bit, along with Barbara and Barb. Or, Julie used to call her "Kid".

    And, I am right there with you about her still looking fab.

  4. I love those romantic moment stories. My most similar one was a neighbor who I was crazy about at about the same age as HERC in the story. Her name was Dina (pronounced “DE – NUH“)… I thought that the Frankie Avalon “Venus” sounded enough like “Dina” that I decided to go sing it to her. “Deena oh Deeena, goddess of love that you are…“ She was not that impressed. And as far as I can remember she never kissed me and they moved away shortly there after. Thanks for that SAD memory HERC :-)