Saturday, October 28, 2006

Stairway to Heaven

My first boyfriend (let's call him "Jeff") is still a close friend of mine, even though he lives in another state. In fact, it's quite likely he's going to read this story about us!

Jeff became my boyfriend when I was a very mature 15. He was 19. I was wild about him. But he was always a gentleman and as cautious as a cat on a hot tin roof. Can we say jail bait? I think we can.

But we had wonderful times! Although we're now older and our own kids are close to that age, we remember everything just as if we were still in our teens. Both of our families were close, and it was very easy to float between households, and no one thought twice about leaving me alone with Jeff.

They were right to trust us. It's funny, because teens were just as over-sexual as they are now, but we had a ball without ever having sex, or anything close to it. There was always something to be done: Walking the dog on a nearby golf course in the moonlight, projects of some sort or another, dinner, movies, hobbies, friends... Jeff had a fish tank, and could often be found with his arms submerged into the fish tank, mucking about. I could be found nearby, chatting with him while he wiped green ooze from the walls of the aquarium. We followed where our whims led us.

Jeff's father (not understanding us and being somewhat psycho) once caught me sitting on Jeff's bed while Jeff was (of course) elbow-deep in fish. Jeff's bedroom door was open, incidentally. He asked me to leave, and then proceeded to chew Jeff out for having a girl in his bedroom. What if something happened, he asked? As Jeff pointed out dryly to him, it's rather hard to be romantically entangled when you're covered in fish gunk.

Neither one of us ever were very thrilled with his father (who was in the process of divorcing his mother at that time). But Jeff's mom was like the favorite aunt that everyone should have. She taught me to drive, to draw (she's a fantastic artist, just as Jeff is) and affected my life in so many positive ways. On the weekends, I'd spend the night at her house (I was very good friends with her daughter) and her home was filled with teens, love, and laughter, a large, loveable dog, and a tankful of fish.

One night we were sitting around when Jeff came bursting through the door waving an old Led Zeppelin record he'd gotten ahold of somehow. "Look what I've got!" he said enthusiastically. "Have you ever heard that when you play this record backwards, you can hear Satanic lyrics in Stairway to Heaven?"

Excitedly, we all went running to the stereo, where he tinkered for a moment with the turntable. With bated breath, we all waited as he lowered the needle onto the disk. Even Jeff's mom hovered behind us, watching. The record started playing backwards. "Snarf sneef reburrr snyok liblieef dreburbli," warbled Led Zeppelin, demonically.

We waited a little longer, but never found anything that was much better than that. Jeff finally had to admit defeat, disgustedly. So much for the evils of rock n' roll. But Stairway to Heaven remains one of my favorite rock anthems of all time.


Edge said...

That's great you had that relationship. Now and then I think of the girlfriends I had that we ended on good terms and that we talk. Not nearly like we used to, but still they are good memories to have. And you are right, you can have a BF/GF without the sex.


Anonymous said...

One of my all-time favorite Rock songs, too.

Some neat stories there about your youth, Saur. How time flies, eh?

Kathleen said...

Sweet momories of your youth and love.

Stairway to Heaven is one of my favorite Zeppelin songs.

Have a nice weekend. :)

The Lazy Iguana said...

I never tried to play Led Zeppelin backwards. At least - not that I can remember. You know....short term memory loss...and what can cause that.

Also it is kind of hard to do that with a CD or cassete tape. LPs were sort of hard to come by, and computers were not to the point that you could simply rip a CD to WMA then have a program play it backwards.

However, here ARE messages in some music! I have heard them myself!

If you can get a Weird Al record, there is a song called "Nature Trail To Hell (In 3-D)". If you play it backwards, you can hear very clearly "satan eats cheese wizz!". There is no mention if satan eats the cheese wizz with crackers, or if he just squirts the can directly into his mouth.

Miss Cellania said...

During high school, my walls were covered with Led Zepplin posters. I have gone through several copies of every one of their albums. I was a serious fan from their first album in '69. Yay Zep!

Miss Cellania said...

Oh yeah, I remember one J. Geils song where someone was supposed to be speaking Russian. You play that part backwards and it says: "Some people don't know the difference between chicken sh*t and chicken salad."

EmmaSometimes said...

That is a sweet story. What were you thinking of sitting on a boys bed. You hussy. ;o) And with the door open while he was across the room. oh, the horror. hehe.

I've been told my teenage days by my high school boyfriend were the 'most colorful days' of his life. I would agree. Wonderfully colorful days.

QUASAR9 said...

lol! Saur
Stairway to Heaven is supposed to be played forward not backwards.
I have a friend who struggled for years to perfect playing the lead guitar (like Jimmy Page).
I thought he was superb, but being the perfectionist that he is, he was never quite satisfied. Not that most people would notice if your record player was running a little slow or even a little fast, but he was a few seconds slow ... on this very long track.

PS - I thought you were going to reveal naughty saucey secrets you know jail bait ... and turns out you were 'genuine' friends who on growing up, simply went your separate ways.

PPS - Glad you haven't been put out by my sometimes radically differing views on politics and the economy. Thanks for stopping by!
Here's looking at ya loving ya and smiling at ya, wishing you a fine florida day at Tampa Bay

BarbaraFromCalifornia said...

Sounds like a fun relationship, to say the least.

I too am a Led Zeppelin fan, and cannot forget Stairway to Heaven.

wthenrest said...

That is a really nice memory... nice post

Senor Caiman said...


What a touching story.

Badoozie said...

i guess i'm not a very good girl, because i can't imagine having a BF without involving some romantic stuff....

Meow said...

What a lovely memory of a beautiful friendship. It's nice to remember such "innocent" times.
*giggle* about Stairway to Heaven backwards ... it is an amazing song.
Have a wonderful week.
Take care, Meow

Debbie said...

Saur I have to tell you it is one of my least favorites! When this album came out my older brother would play it over and over and over again. At about 2am and it was horrible! Drove me crazy.

I did see them in concert at the old Tampa stadium and it was wonderful. But I have never really acquired a full taste for this song!