Tuesday, November 27, 2012

No. 555 – Owner of a Lonely Heart

Performer: Yes
Songwriters: Jon Anderson, Trevor Horn, Trevor Rabin, Chris Squire
Original Release: single, 90125
Year: 1983
Definitive Version: Union Tour, 1991

This is coming a bit out of order in the scheme of things, but that’s the way the songlist worked out. I suppose I could cheat a bit, but I won’t. This post will make more sense in another week or so when I give you the background.

Anyway, the winter of my sophomore year at Wabash was spent being the voice of Wabash College basketball. Over Christmas break in 1983, Wabash scheduled to play two holiday tournaments, both of which were in Ohio, which was convenient, considering I was home for the holidays. The first one was at Kenyon in Gambier—about an hour’s drive away; the next was the next week at Ohio Wesleyan in Delaware, which, of course, was just up the road a bit.

The team brought over the equipment from the radio station. My plan was to drive up from home—I would be working solo—do the game and drive home each day of the two-day, four-team tournament. This would save the radio station some hotel money and save my sanity a bit, because, well, I had to be home.

This was, as it would turn out, THE vacation when Beth and I finally consummated our relationship. Needless to say, after it happened on the occasion of her 17th birthday, I didn’t want to spend any more time away from her than was absolutely necessary, because, well, it might happen again.

Unfortunately, as bad luck would have it, a big ice storm hit the day of the first games of the two-day, four-team tourney in Gambier and made everything a mess. I left extra early, but the roads were bad by the time I got north of I-270 on I-71. I couldn’t go any faster than 45 mph, and a one-hour drive took two hours. Fortunately, I had just bought 90125, so I had some new music to keep me company during my odyssey.

I arrived at the arena with plenty of time to call in to the radio station, check the connection, which, I was pleasantly surprised to learn, worked, and call the game as scheduled. But as Wabash got pummeled by Northern Kentucky—now a Div I school—the storm continued, and after the game, it was clear that there would be no driving home that night.

The good news is, in keeping with the Scout’s motto, I put together and brought an overnight bag, just in case. The team had extra room for me in with the team doc, so it worked out OK, although, obviously, I wanted to be home.

The team stayed in Mount Vernon, up the road a bit, and we all went to a movie the next day before the game to have something to do aside from playing pingpong or chess at the hotel. I can’t remember now what we saw. I want to say Arthur, but I’m pretty sure that’s wrong.

Anyway, the next night, Dad came up to watch me do my thing in the booth, and Wabash won, so it was a much better day even though I got home too late to see Beth that night. There was always the next night, and when I saw here again, I was like a kid on Christmas morning.

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