Friday, May 18, 2012

Donna

For a moment of time in the late 70s I was a wee bit of a disco queen. I was in my early twenties and raising a child alone. I was fighting in the courts with my ex for child support while working two jobs and trying to finish my degree.

Now and then I needed to dance.

I was living in Brooklyn, NY during the height of Disco Mania. My son took gymnastics lessons at the same place where they filmed scenes from Saturday Night Fever. We got pizza at the same pizzeria and walked under the same subway el. I'll never forget seeing Saturday Night Fever the day it opened. As the opening scene scans an serial shot of Bay Ridge, Brooklyn someone in the packed theater shouts out "hey, dat's my fuckin' muddah's house".

So I would don the polyester and go to 3rd Avenue in Bay Ridge. I'd go to 2001 Odyssey and Brown Derby and the place that looked like a giant barn where all the sluts went after the "classy" clubs closed.

I would go with Linda and Maria and Stephanie - the divorced moms club.
I would meet Vinny and Sal and Johnny and Joe.
I would avoid the men I was positive were Russian gangsters. I could handle the Mafia but those Brighton Beach guys were creepy.

I would sip Rum and Diet Coke, no fucking lime please.
My boobs would barely stay in place against the shiny, skimpy material of a disco dress.
The platform shoes killed me but they also made my legs look great.
Plus I would become nearly 6 feet tall. The better to intimidate or stimulate.

And everywhere I went there was Donna ...







The clubs would close with Last Dance and I'd make sure to round up the girls and hit the sober up diner before all the booths were taken.

We'd put tons of quarters into the table side jukebox and play more Donna. One of us would always get maudlin over On The Radio.

Donna Summer was the Queen of Disco. The voice of an era.

For a tired young woman with what felt like the weight of the world on her shoulders Donna was the soundtrack of her fun and flirting.


Thank You Donna


Peaceful Journey

25 comments:

Jay Simser said...

Those were the days! Thanks for the memory.

Daryl Edelstein said...

another real loss ...

Ron said...

I always enjoy your tributes, Dianne!

And this one as well.

You brought back a ton of great memories for me.

"Last Dance" will always be my favorite Donna Summer song.

Peaceful journey, Donna.

X

Reb said...

She was wonderful! My favourite of the era and I would listen to her records while getting ready to go out and dance to her music at the bar (which I was finally old enough to enter legally). Skin tight gold lamé jeans and platforms, loose floaty blouse... I was so thin then and nothing (much) ached. Carefree days for me. RIP Donna.

Sylvia K said...

Another loss indeed! A great tribute to a great and talented lady! Thanks as always, Dianne!!

Hilary said...

You write the most beautiful tributes. Thanks for this.

Kay L. Davies said...

Another beautiful singer lost too soon. What a great tribute, Dianne. I can just imagine you and your friends dancing to Donna's songs.
K

Svejk said...

She will be sorely missed. A great era!

OldLady Of The Hills said...

What a lovely Tribute, my dear Dianne! It brought so many images to mind----you must have been something, my dear---Dancing up a storm...!
Donna Summer was a unique talent---and though I wasn't 'dancin' in the discos', I really appreciated how fabulous her voice was and the songs she sang...! She was 'an original', as they say....I wish her a Peaceful Journey, too....RIP, dear Ms. Summer.

Fireblossom said...

Emmylou Harris does a nice version of "On The Radio", too. Hers is more ballad-y. I was saddened to see the news in this morning's paper about Donna Summer.

DJan said...

She was so young, to me, being only 63. I will miss her. Blue skies, Donna.

Linda Reeder said...

I got a wonderful mind movie of you as a young woman as I read your wonderful description of your time with Donna. You are an amazing writer.

LL Cool Joe said...

I was shocked to here the news. Very sad, another great loss.

The only issue I do have with her was the homophobic comments she made about Aids etc. But she did say she was sorry, and I'm hoping her comments were more through a lack of knowledge at the time about the illness, but even so. It just taints my view of her slightly. But that doesn't take away from the great music she sang and the sadness of her death.

Life As I Know It Now said...

Dancing on up in heaven :)

Linda said...

I couldn't dance and I didn't go to the disco but I turned 18 in 1976 and you can bet your platform shoes that I saw "Saturday Night Fever" in the theaters at least four times and wished I could dance and that it was me out there on the dance floor with John Travolta!

I always loved Donna Summer's music even though I couldn't dance and still can't. But I still love her music.

Rest in peace, Disco Queen, and make sure they hang a glitter ball in the heavens in your honor!

Marg said...

That is such a great tribute to Donna. Well done. Sounds like a happy time in your life. Take care.

Ivanhoe said...

Wish I could be there! I still love disco :) And today, I got the news that Robin Gibb died. What a sad week for a disco maniac :(
Hugs from Ohio,
I.

HermanTurnip said...

Again, what's with the rash of celebrity deaths recently? And why did Donna have to leave us at such a young age? RIP, disco queen...

Akelamalu said...

Even now we often put on a Donna Summer CD and relive the disco era. Great music, great artiste.

TexWisGirl said...

this was a wonderful write. congrats on your POTW.

~JarieLyn~ said...

Great post and great imagery. RIP Donna Summer.

Congrats on POTW

ladyfi said...

Oh Donna was joy and summer, wasn't she?

Sallie (FullTime-Life.com said...

You do know how to write a tribute! It was fun seeing this little glimpse into your past too. (Donna's death was local news here -- she owned two houses in this area (but not in the low-rent district where we live).

Halcyon said...

She will be missed.

ПриватБанк said...

Хорошо!!!