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My Garden Of Life – She Made My Brown Eyes Blue


There are some things you just don’t want your significant other to know. I’ve known mine almost four and a half years. I consider myself an open book; however, there are some things I’d hoped would remain buried for eternity. I’d buried it myself. It hadn’t crossed my mind in decades.
That all changed recently on a trip to mama’s house.

When I was a kid, I loved Kiss. They were so cool. They had the awesome face paint and stage outfits, along with elaborate live performances, featuring fire breathing, blood-spitting, smoking guitars, shooting rockets, levitating drum kits, and pyrotechnics. Like I said, they were cool.

They also had the infamous tongue. One year for Halloween, I dressed up as Gene Simmons. They made me want to “Rock and Roll all Nite.” I was only six years old but still. I had several of their albums and often tried to draw them. I was mesmerized by all things Kiss.

That all changed one night. I had a dream. I had an awful dream. I was never able to recall any details of the dream, but I woke up in tears, ripping my Kiss posters off the wall. I hated them. I didn’t listen to them again until 1995 when they appeared on MTV’s Unplugged series. They were awesome!
Had mama told about my Kiss infatuation, I’d be writing on a different subject this week.

Instead, after seeing a performance of an unknown country singer on TV, she casually mentioned my adoration of the one and only Crystal Gayle.
Time stood still. I acted as if I heard nothing. Tumbleweed rolled across the living room. The crickets were even quiet.

Then, without moving my head, I glanced over at Lucy, hoping and praying that her wandering mind had taken her to a land far, far way and she had missed this nugget of information. Could I be so lucky? Of course not. She was all over it. It started as a slow laugh with a dash of confusion that turned into a long, loud, belly-aching laugh with a splash of tears.

In hindsight, I’m surprised Lucy wasn’t impressed. She’s a huge fan of Crystal’s older sister, Loretta Lynn. She even named her 1978 Ford truck “Loretta.” Here’s an interesting fact. The younger sister’s birthname is Brenda but was given her stage name by Loretta after she passed a Krystal hamburger joint. What if she’d passed a Wendy’s or a Jack’s?

Lucy has always loved the Beatles, even as a child. My family tried to talk about how many were against the Beatles when they first came to America due to their “long hair.”

“You know who else had long hair?” Lucy rhetorically asked. “Crystal Gayle.”

Comedy is all about timing. I had to give her credit. That was good.

Mama tried to soften the blow by saying that my brother really liked Boxcar Willie. It just wasn’t the same. Boxcar Willie was cool.

I had a thing for brunettes way back then. My dream girls were Lynda Carter, Jaclyn Smith, and Catherine Bach. Along with Crystal, they were my quartet of cuties. Other than her long, luxurious hair, I don’t think she stood out above all the rest. I never missed episodes of Wonder Woman, Charlie’s Angels or The Dukes of Hazzard. Crystal just happened to be a singer, and boy could she sing. I had one of her albums and used to look at the cover and listen to it often. Perhaps the music did give her a slight advantage. Music is powerful. She made my brown eyes blue.

As always, it could have been worse. Thankfully, I never dressed up as Crystal Gayle for Halloween.