Priorities. We all have them. And for many (if not most) people, priorities change over the course of their lives. When I was 17 years old, my priorities were very different then what my priorities are now.
My top priority at the time was love. I was in love with the idea of being in love. I had a boyfriend who was a couple of years older then me. He was a man of the world, or so I thought. I was sure he knew everything. And of course, he could do no wrong, proven by the fact that he could walk on water. Yes that’s right. I said he could walk on water. Or at least that’s what I thought when he bought me a car. Not only did he buy me a car, but he bought me my first car. It was a 1969 Pontiac Tempest.
Now Billy was a man of the world. He had a car. He had a job. He accepted me for me. He knew everything. As such, when he presented me with the car, I fell even more madly in love with him. (I know now I was just mad.) He promised that before he’d spent his hard-earned $250 on a car for me that he’d checked the car out thoroughly, using all of his years of mechanical expertise. It’s paint wasn’t bad at all, it was a blueish gray. The first thing the car needed was a stereo. If I was going to drive around I had to have a good stereo to listen to. So, I went to the store and spent my own money on a kick-ass car stereo with a cassette player. I think back then it cost me like $100. It had hundreds of knobs and buttons.
My boyfriend installed the stereo and I was good to go. I was one step closer to being an independent woman now that I had a car that my boyfriend had bought for me. I grabbed my favorite cassettes and put them into the car. The first one to go in was my favorite cassette at the time – the soundtrack from the movie Purple Rain. I actually bought a second copy of the cassette, so that I wouldn’t have to take the one I already had out of my bedroom. I kept it there because as all parents and teenage girls know, that is the room where teenage girls sing and dance.
Now, Purple Rain was my favorite for a couple of reasons. First of all, my boyfriend had taken me to see it in the theater a couple of weeks before. That alone made it the best soundtrack ever. Second of all, I just liked most of the music. Don’t judge. I was far from being the only person to like the Purple Rain soundtrack. A look at the chart of Billboard Top 100 Songs from 1984 will reveal that a number of the songs from the Purple Rain soundtrack wound up on that chart.
On the third day that I had my car I was driving home from work. The car broke down. I couldn’t reach my boyfriend, being as there were no cell phones back then. So I had the car towed to a nearby garage. As it turned out, the car was done. To have it fixed would have cost a lot of money – money that I didn’t have, and money that the car wasn’t worth spending for. The towing and storage bill alone for a couple of days was a couple hundred dollars, which I didn’t have. So, heartbroken, I had to let the car go. The guy at the tow truck place told me he’d waive the towing and storage bill if I signed over the title to him. I checked with my Dad, a real working mechanic who did and still does know everything. He assured me letting go of the car was the only option. I wanted to take the stereo out but the tow truck guy said he’d only do the exchange if I left the stereo in it. I went to clear out my things, and found that my Purple Rain cassette, along with both AC/DC cassettes, were mysteriously missing. The only cassette I got back was a cassette by Shannon.
Let The Music Play. A song about a boy and a girl, and music.
Ironic, isn’t it?
No compensation was received for this post, I’m just sharing some memories. As always, any personal opinions stated are my own.