American Bandstand

Somebody HAD to know someone!  Our little class only had 27 students in it.  The entire school had 150.  (And I think they  counted a couple of dogs and a cat or two)  🙂  But here we were at a ‘sock hop’ after a ball game.  I was just there for the food.  The disc jockey was a representative from the popular American Bandstand TV show.

At one point during the evening, he announced that they would be conducting a drawing to find a boy and girl to represent our school at a regional taping of the show.  Now I’m about as coordinated on the dance floor as a hog on ice, so I had no intention of putting MY name in the drawing.  Yet, to my astonishment, my name was called as the winning boy.  I whirled around to look at one of my friends only to realize by seeing the expressing on his face that he had entered my name.  ‘Just a joke’, he said apologetically, with a shrug and a grin.  Terror gripped me.  I stood in a daze of disbelief as the name of the girl was announced.  She was an area farmer’s daughter.  Her brother played basketball with me sometimes.  ‘At least’, I thought, ‘I won’t be teamed up with the prom queen or something.’

When I got home, the reality of what had happened began to set in.  Mother began to go through a litany of choices that must be made if I was to represent our school and family with honor on the TV show.  After all, ‘tens of thousands’ of people would be watching on television.  ‘Television’, I thought.  We hadn’t even had ours long enough to have developed a habit of watching it.  We only purchased it so we could watch the Illinois State High School Basketball tournament that our little High School was playing in.  Now I was going to be on it?  Wow!  My head was swimming.

The next few days were a blur of activity.  I had to find a suit, talk with Gloria (how do I tell her I don’t know how to dance), dancing lessons :), travel arrangements and the remedial work of learning how to properly sit, walk, talk and dance on television.

Alrighty then!  Can we just find somebody else to go? I just want to take care of the cows, pigs, sheep, geese, corn and beans and put up hay.  I don’t want to go on TV.  ‘But how would Gloria feel’ and ‘Wouldn’t she think that you didn’t want to go with her’, Mom gently chided.  ‘Fine, I’ll go’, I finally relented.

When we arrived at the taping studio, it was hard to take it all in.  There were seating arrangements, lessons on appearance, timing of the dance numbers, when to go out on the floor, when to sit down, when we would be taking a restroom break, etc.  Those types of instructions seemed so exhaustive, I was afraid to even go into the studio.  Yet, here we were.

Needless to say, I survived and was none the worse for wear from the whole experience.  And several impressions stuck with me.  First, all the people there seemed to be so ‘old’.  (They sure look young to me now)  Second, everyone was so nice.  (Even the ‘important’ people)  Next, it was sort of fun even though I did have a moment or two of embarrassment.  When we got up to do the ‘twist’, though I was moving, my suit seemed to be standing still.  (It was borrowed and a little big)  Finally, looking back on the event, it seems like such an insignificant moment in my life, compared to an event that is forthcoming.

God has said that ‘eye has not seen nor ear heard and it has not entered the mind of man– all that God has prepared for those who love Him’.  I Corinthians 2:9.  As one of our songs share, ‘What a day that will be when my Jesus I shall see.  When I look upon the face of the One who saved me by His grace.  When He takes me by the hand and leads me through the promise land.  What a day, glorious day that will be’!  INDEED!

Let’s be a people who love and long for His appearing.  II Timothy 4:8.

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