Preserve Your Memories

Here is the next insertion for The Red Dress Club. The prompt is as follows:

This week, we’d like for you to write about your favorite fresh fruit or vegetable.

Share a memory of when you first tasted it, where it came from, when you last had it, a favorite way to prepare it, and such.

As you write your piece this week, think of it as writing a scene. Be sure to engage our senses, make us feel, see, taste, hear, and smell. Pull us in with your description. Your word limit is 700 words.

Author’s note: This post was written three different times because I didn’t like what I wrote. If I had to grade those posts they were fine, satisfactory, ‘c’ level work. I want these posts to be better than that so I nuked them. I am not thrilled with this one, but sometimes you just let the words go and move on.


The year was 1980 something and the lovely Anne Stacey had chosen to grace me with her presence. I had spent countless hours unsuccessfully wooing the woman. Cards, chocolate, flowers, and a barbershop quartet had all failed to do the trick but I couldn’t tell you why. All I knew was that the girl who had gone to prom with me had chosen to withdraw her favors and spend time with a man I dubbed the scoundrel. I once tried to tell her this and she suggested that my ill feelings towards him had to do with jealously. Now I won’t say that this is true but I admit to suggesting that if she hoped for more than simple companionship she might consider spending time at the produce market.

Apparently this is not advisable nor is suggesting that he would probably die in robbing a drug store for used condoms. Don’t ask me to explain why I said these things or what they mean because I won’t answer nor will I admit to wanting to give him the same treatment a flying clown once received from me. Women make men crazy and love just exacerbates the craziness we feel.

Weeks of rejection turned into months but I refused to give up. I can’t explain why other than to say that every time I saw her I heard music and it made me believe that one day she would dance with me again.

One day I sent her a card with some of the lyrics to Get Down Tonight by K.C. & The Sunshine Band.

“Baby, babe, let’s get together.
Honey, hon, me and you.
And do the things, ah, do the things
That we like to do.

Do a little dance, make a little love,
Get down tonight.
Do a little dance,
make a little love,
Get down tonight.”

P.S. Come over and find out if I really am a better cook than you are. I’ll make it worth your while.

I had been rejected so many times that I was beginning to wonder if maybe I was swimming down the river of denial but was pleasantly surprised to receive a telephone call from her asking why she should come. Needless to say I was nervous because I knew that the wrong words would result in another no. Yet something told me that it was time to be bold so I told her that I was going to pick her up at 10 am so that we could go to the farm to pick fresh fruits and vegetables for dinner. Two days later she walked out of her apartment and into my car.

For a few moments we drove in silence and listened to a mix tape that I had made for the occasion. Good old cassette tape technology, a soft hissing noise in the background accompanied us on our ride. The Beatles, Simon and Garfunkel, Cat Stevens, Joe Cocker and Springsteen serenaded us.

A short time later we arrived at the farm and began picking out the items we wanted for our meal. She made a crack about me making her work for her food and I said that remained to be seen. Every time she bent over to pick something up my eyes were drawn to her. I was completely entranced by her- not just because I thought that she was beautiful but because she was so very smart. I attribute my love for carrots to that day. Somewhere I have a picture of holding one close to her mouth, pretending to be Bugs Bunny.

And had anyone heard the music that played inside my head at the moment they would have heard Bookends.

“Time it was, and what a time it was, it was
A time of innocence, a time of confidences
Long ago, it must be, I have a photograph
Preserve your memories, they’re all that’s left you”

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  1. Frelle March 17, 2011 at 9:42 pm

    i loved this. what a fun page from your story. I loved how you were so descriptive with the nostalgia of the hiss of the cassette tape.

    and this? Just kill me now, ok? *swoon*
    “every time I saw her I heard music and it made me believe that one day she would dance with me again.”

  2. Lizz March 16, 2011 at 2:43 pm

    Aww, this is so sweet, and I love the ending!

  3. Leighann March 16, 2011 at 5:11 am

    Awwww how lovely.
    Young love.
    Was she still with the guy when you went on this date?

  4. MamaRobinJ March 15, 2011 at 7:36 pm

    What a great date! Love the Bugs Bunny image.

  5. Lydia March 15, 2011 at 2:23 pm

    This was an endearing post, and I’m really glad that she said yes. (I’m curious about what you made that night too.)

  6. Nina B March 15, 2011 at 1:52 pm

    Loved this, Jack.

    I think you’ll appreciate something my husband did for me . . . he got the machine (or whatever it is) that allows you to convert tapes to MP3s! He uploaded tons of my old mixes and burned them onto to discs so I could listen to them in my car. It was fantastic!

    • Jack March 15, 2011 at 10:47 pm

      Hey Nina,

      That is cool. I really should do that with my tapes. I have most of the albums on disc now, but it would be kind of nice to just recreate the mixes.,

  7. Jennifer March 15, 2011 at 9:31 am

    What a great date. What did you make for dinner? I really wanted to know!

  8. Kris March 15, 2011 at 7:59 am

    Young love can be all consuming. Love how you didn’t give up. Even though you were kind of stalking her. : ) TRDC

    • Jack March 15, 2011 at 10:46 pm

      Now now, it is only stalking when you are told not to call or contact. Being told that one day you’ll go on a date is just female craziness. 😉

  9. Amy March 15, 2011 at 5:03 am

    I love all the things you said about her new boyfriend. Very funny! With such a sweet ending!

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