After an evening of indulging in large portions of food at Antonio’s, Bubbe’s, or Wu’s Chinese Buffet, Mom and Dad and their friends sometimes go out for a night on the town, or at least a night on the Harbor View grounds. Often this means attending a show at the theatre in the Harbor View clubhouse. I am told that many people actually choose to live in Harbor View over other retirement condominiums in Florida because of the theatre that is in the clubhouse. It is the largest one in the area. And with the vast theatre comes the best acts that come to Florida. During the high season (December to April) there are approximately 20 shows per month – live shows – musicians, comedians, and dancers who are famous – or at least once were.
I never get too excited by the performers that Mom tells me about, mostly because I have never heard of them. In the past few years Mom and Dad have seen shows with the following performers: Freddie Roman, Alan King, Mal Z. Lawrence, Marilyn Michaels, and Sam Butera. Mom informs me that they were all big stars in their day, and that the shows are usually fantastic. She always seems to get annoyed when I tell her I haven’t heard of some of these people.
“What are you doing tonight?” I ask Mom on the phone one day.
“Oh, we’re going to a show with Donna McKechnie,” Mom replies.
“Is that the nice woman who lives downstairs from you?”
“No, we’re going to see Donna McKechnie. You mean to tell me you’ve never heard of her?”
“No, who is she?” I ask.
“She’s a very talented dancer and singer. She danced on Broadway for many years.”
“Oh, sorry, I never heard of her.”
“She’s danced with some of the best of them, honey. I can’t believe you never heard of her,” Mom’s voice rises an octave at the second sentence.
“Sorry, Mom. She must have been before my time,” I say. “If I had heard of her, that would probably make me eligible for residency at Harbor View.”