Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Funky (a guest post by Sarge)

Was Heaven in the Backseat of My Cadillac? Possibly. I feel that I may have some expertise in this matter, as I once owned a 1970 Cadillac Sedan DeVille. In fact, I am not seriously opposed to the notion that Heaven could very well have been in the front seat of my Cadillac. The front seat was a bench-type seat which is not too remarkable since few sedans had what we called bucket seats in those days. What was remarkable (besides the vastness of it) was that it was a 6 way power bench seat. It went back and forth, tilted, reclined, I swear you could turn the damned thing into a bed-- one with "Magic Fingers" at that, if you were given to constantly jiggling the little toggle controls rapidly back and forth. I was not so given. I was more interested in jiggling... well you can see where juxtaposition and innuendo are taking us. And that car was a great place to juxtapose.

With a front seat of those dimensions the back seat was not even necessary. Of course on a double date (God, how gross were we? Did we have no shame? No? Not even a sense of privacy? Strange I could have sworn I had one, apparently not.) Heaven was often in the front and back seats of my Cadillac, with room for a Coleman cooler full of beers to boot. I'm just getting started so Don't Stop Me Now, You Sexy Thing.

We'd Get Up and Get on Down (Like a Sex Machine).

Yes, we would Partyup and Kiss (actually if I remember right, I saw Purple Rain sitting on the hood of that car at one of the last drive-in movie theaters in New Jersey) and we would probably Do It All Night

We experienced Pain, Pleasure, Ecstasy, and Bliss in that car.

But don't get the idea we were just a bunch of Sexoholics. We'd park and turn up the radio and get out and leave the doors open and we'd Shut Up and Dance (okay those were probably unfair references, they were songs by one of the best bands nobody ever heard of, El Grupo Sexo).

Those were great days, when driving a ten or fifteen year old car meant you were driving a piece of serious Detroit Iron, not just that you were driving an old car. We would do stupid, dangerous things and know that they were stupid and dangerous (let's face it, we lived in pretty much a perpetual state of what the Penal Law defines as Reckless Endangerment) and when we got our boo-boos we laughed at each other instead of crying to someone else. But we knew that What Is Hip was doing your own thang unashamedly. The Caddy was not a trendy car, Porsche 924's and Trans Am T-Tops were all the rage, but it was cool and it had a style of its own, what's more it had substance (472 cubic inches under the hood and 2 and a half tons of GVW worth of substance).

Let Me Take You Higher. We'd go out driving, put on the radio (NOT the stereo) and Sing a Simple Song.

We went everywhere in that car. Can You Get to That was a question that was always answered affirmatively.

That car epitomized funk to me (and not just cause the power windows didn't properly seal and there was a slight mildew issue). In fact you could probably fit a moderate sized band, plus roadies and equipment in the beast. The trunk was roughly the size of the car I currently drive.

Sarge signing off from Theme Thursday guest blogging. Thank you faletme be mice elf.

editor's note: that editor being me, Leah--I must add, I have learned a great deal from reading this post. Now I have to live with it. When Sarge and I were first dating, I made him a special sexy mixed tape (remember those?) that included that Hot Chocolate song, "Heaven's in the Back Seat of My Cadillac," never dreaming of the memories it the time, he was much too circumspect to tell me...Sarge, you motherf!@#$er. And p.s. "Can You Get to That" is my personal bar none funky song, by Funkadelic, and if you've never heard it, please go do so immediately.


Kris said...

I can't believe that James Brown is dead.

Who would have thought that all that cocaine could be doing him harm?!?

Megan said...

Oh, this was great! I hope Sarge guests again sometime. Funktastic!

nick said...

My first cars were nothing like as cool as that, just beaten-up old jalopies that were all I could afford at the time. Though they still saw their fair share of snogging and general malarkey in the back seat (and the front seat).

I hadn't heard "Can You Get to That". Definitely one of the classics.

PI said...

Hot Chocolate are British - quite proud of that.
I took my teenage son and pals to the Rainbow theatre to see James Brown, yonks ago and JB and I were the oldest people there.
Noel Coward said something about how potent cheap music was. He got that right.

Suzanne said...

Every comment is perfection, and so is Sarge. You know I'm having a difficult time getting this house ready for Shara. I'm writing this. Need I say more? Okay, I'm off. Sarge, I love you.

What? Leave me alone.

savannah said...

great post, sarge! i found myself humming the whole way through! xoxo

@leah...y'all have unleashed the genie, sugar! when is sarge starting his blog? ;~D xoxo

Baino said...

Brilliant effort and so much fun. I know all those songs, we must be the same vintage . .only I had a VW Beetle, hardly funky then but pretty cool these days! Play That Funky Music White Boy!

Anonymous said...

Leah, heh, heh...I got most of the references. ANd I miss my old '76LTD. Not as big as the Caddy but still plenty of room to...well you know...great post :)

Brian Miller said...

wow Sarge you have talent! juxtapose...hmmm!! Wish my car was bigger, the weekend is coming. well played and fun! look for your next guest post!

Wings said...

Haha! Great fun! Love the guest post, very cool. Funky, even! heh!

Suzanne said...


I just want you to know the next time I fly home, I'm having the limosine drop me off at your house rather than take me all the way to Woodstock and waste valuable time.

No. I'm not kidding.


1. I need coffee in the morning.
2. I like yogurt.
3. I don't mind good oatmeal.
4. I don't give a damn what the house looks like as long as I have a place to rest my weary ass after a 5+ hour journey and a road trip.
5. I require a good Leah and Hedgie to get me through the day.
6. I don't mind knitting needles.
7. What?
8. I get to use the car after I hose her down. Right?


Suzanne said...

My head hurts, but Shara's coming so I can't sit here and screw around.

You'll never believe what I found for Hedgie and your Wacky Wife! You'll be proud. You'll have to salute it!!!!! No. I'm not kidding.

Okay, so I need the key because I smell road trip with that freakin' gas guzzler.

Stop by more often. It's nice to see you give Leah a run for her money. Hilarious.

Love to all,

reyjr said...

i had i'd have a difficult time with this weeks theme and that the americans would have a easy dandy time. :p haha. may i say, this post is wonderfully nostalgic. even though i can't understand have of what was describe (lol!) i got the tone of reminiscing about the grand ol days. those were the days, really. :D

Dreamhaven said...

Didn't do a lot of "parking"
Sad to say
But loved this post

Mrsupole said...

My parents owned one of those Caddie's when it was new and they were big. We owned an LTD station wagon and it was big. Never used it at the movies for your use, but they were fast to drive and had lots of power.

Thank you Sarge for the guest post, you did a great job, hope you come back to do more.

Thank you Leah for letting him do it.

God bless.

Marianna said...

Is Sarge a writer? Seriously! I loved this post! Oh and I'm going to listen to the song...immediately :)

Happy TT

JGH said...

Dance, Music, Sex, Romance (and danger!) Gotta love it!

Poetikat said...

This resurrected all sorts of memories (none of which I can share, sorry). An Omni is not a sexy car, let's just put that to rest.

A Z-28? Definitely!


Anonymous said...

1) Does Sarge know I was already his biggest fan? This guest post pushed my Sarge fandom over the top. Can he have a spin-off blog?

2) The timing on this is uncanny. I spent the better part of this week procrastinating from writing a grant proposal with the Soul Train channel on YouTube. It's worth watching some of the performances, or course, but what's really getting to me is the line dances to "Love Train" and "Get Down." I want this dance party in my kitchen. Watch it:

3) Do I have to put the handcuffs on you mama?

Anonymous said...


It's Allison.

Do I have to keep you under lock and key?

Jimmy Bastard said...

I got a real dose of the feel good factor reading this post. For some unknown reason I keep seeing Kevin Bacon dancing in Footloose.

Bravo sir.

Suzanne said...

He called you "Sir." That's so respectful. Hey "Buddy" get over here and let me give you a big old bear hug. Now that's more like it. What?! I'm waiting for Shara to arrive. She's late. When I come to your house I'll be on time. Why? Because I'm a woman who doesn't screw around. If I say I'll be there at noon, you bet your ass I'll be there at noon.

Hey baby, would you and Leah mind having a sandwich for me. It's kinda simple. Tomatoes, lettuce, a wee bit of cheese, mayo from the estate above our Piney Point house, a little salt, pepper. You know, nothing too fancy. Maybe some basil.

Of course I'm still sitting here waiting. House guests. I don't think they're a good thing. Oh, and honey, you should drop by more often. You're a hoot. But I noticed you don't respond to comments. That's a bad thing. Leah always responds. She's a gem. You better straighten your ass out because if you don't we're going to give you the boot. NO, of course I'm not kidding. NO, I'M NOT. Of course I hear Leah laughing.

XO :)

Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti said...

Love and miss those old caddies! This was fun to read Sarge. You gotta have soul to live in Brooklyn.

Ronda Laveen said...

What a great Guest Post. A pleasure. Those Caddy's were the ultimate cruisers. Great for a couple or a gang. Thanks for the memories.

otin said...

Which one was the last drive in in NJ? Ledgewood?

books,coffee,etc.... said...

Hi! Leah,
Your husband writing is very interesting!...his Thursday Theme covering of the word "Funk" was great!...and just like some commenter(s), all ready mentioned I hope that your husband (Sarge),is a guest writer again!...In the meantime, I would like to wish you and your families and friends a safe and pleasant Fourth of July weekend.
Take care!
Sarge and Leah,

Madame DeFarge said...

Excellent post. Made me want to get up and dance, which given that I read it at work, was not the best of ideas. Oh well, brightened up my day.

Sarge said...

Kris--It wasn't the cocaine, it was the vitamins! He'd been doing the coke for years, the vitamins were something new. I actually overheard someone ascribing their heart attack to this!

Megan--thanks Megan, Leah tells me you are funkalicious as well.

nick--"jalopy" was an adequate description of the Cadillac; no one quite knew what the original color had been. Was it green? Was it brown?

Pat--I knew that Hot Chocolate were British, although Leah didn't. As far as standing out at a concert, Leah and I were once the only sober people at a Pogues concert!

Suzanne--our whole marriage is based on a mutual run from the money. I mean for the money...or somethin'. I can't make coffee or oatmeal, but I'll lend you the car!

savannah--the djinn is now safely back in the bottle!

Baino--my dad had a '66 Beetle, power nothing, couldn't go over 55 mph with the windows open, but just so much fun. And thanks for reminding me of Wild Cherry!

sub--my mom once rented a '78 LTD 2-door. It was weird that something that big only had two doors.

Brian--smaller car gets you points for a higher degree of difficulty!

Wings--thanks, I tried!

Sarge said...

reyjr--it's funny that something at the time so outrageous and new could provoke something like nostalgia, isn't it?

Dreamhaven--we did actually drive the car occasionally too...

Mrsupole--always wanted a station wagon. I wanted to be able to play board games in the back, on road trips.

Marianna--check out all the songs if you get the chance! That's a lotta funk.

JGH--danger, yes. That's my middle name.

Kat--if I'm not mistaken, Dodge made an Omni with a 2.2 liter turbo engine, 200 horsepower in a 2000 lb car. So Omnis could be cool!

Sarge said...

Allison--Don Cornelius! Don Cornelius could make a three-piece business suit look funky. By the way, I knew it was you the first time!

Jimmy--yes, 20-year-old bacon may certainly be described as funky! p.s. why no Celtic-funk crossovers? Would that be a good thing?

Pat--Brooklyn residence, and therefore soul I suppose, acquired upon marriage to Mrs. Sarge!

Ronda--like Thurber and his dogs, I've probably had more old cars than a person should, and with some exceptions they brought more joy than sorrow.

Otin--I am so sorry, my memory seems to have played me false. I think I saw Purple Rain at a drive-in just across the river in Pennsylvania, somewhere between Newtown and Yardley.

Deedee--happy 4th to you too! And thanks!

Mme DeF--thank you for your kind comments. Please don't ever knit about me, if you're the Mme DeFarge I'm thinking of.

Sarge said...

I thank you all for your kind comments. It was a lot of fun. Hindsight being what it is, I wish I had been able to work in Brick House and Rollercoaster of Love and even Love Shack (the last two strangely played on WCBS as I drove home today). Synchronicity, or do they do Theme Thursday also?

Suzanne said...

Baby, I hosed down the Cadillac and Sarge said I could take it, so it's not like I'm stealing. No really, I'm not stealing it. I have the key and everything. *Backs out of driveway and hits "funk" button.*


Suzanne said...

Sarge...come back soon!!!!!

*Suze wonders how in the hell those two do it? Two smart asses in the same room. That's gotta hurt.*

CSI Seattle said...


Having read that, I feel that as if I have gotten to know you on a personal level. It's as if you've been a guest in my home. It's time for you to leave now.

CSI..."Don't go away mad, just go away"

Suzanne said...

How FUNNY!!! I came back to remind you how we met and look who's here. Leah, that's too damn funny. He hardly ever comes out of the shadows! Sarge dragged his ass out. What's up with that?! That's just funny honey. Baby you should allow Sarge here at least once a month. He's adorable. Oh, and he knows as many big words as you!!!

Okay, I gotta go make the mattress. I'll take photos. No, she isn't here yet, so I still have time. Okay, it's official, I have to look for a new bed and some dressers. And Sarge, Brian may not want you, but you're always welcome here. However, you may have to make your own bed. Yes, I'm serious.


Leah said...

Brian!--It's male bonding at its finest.

Suzy--I will try to get him to come back. Actually, I want to get him to do his own "spinoff blog" as my friend Allison suggested. You ain't heard a rant till you've heard the Sarge rant.

I cannot believe you're still waiting for Shara! Are you? How did noon become 5 p.m.?!!?

Suzanne said...

Baby, she isn't showing up. She's just below Monterey. Gulp! She actually thought she'd be here tonight. SHE'S IN FUCKING MONTEREY!!! No honey, you aren't going to be here tonight.

Suzanne said...

Oh, sorry. Sarge. He rants? Yikes. That's gonna hurt. Okay, so maybe you shouldn't let him vent. I'm serious.


Suzanne said...

Hi baby. Just got off the phone with you know who. She's in beautiful Mon terey and not here. It's almost midnight in NY. Is she going to be here by noon tomorrow? Hell no! I know where Monterey is! No f****** way.

Hubby should do a spin off. You know what? I like him. He's sweeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeet. Don't let him know how sweet I think he is because he'll get all puffy with pride. But honestly, he's just adorable!!!

Baby, I gotta go. Love you.


The Silver Fox said...

Terrific entry! Ummm... perhaps I should say, terrific post?

I had a teeny-tiny Hyundai in the mid-1990s that had bucket seats that could recline all the way down to the back seat, so I too enjoyed the "bed" aspect -- and this was when IO was in my late 30s -- but as you navigated around this little playpen, you had to watch out that nothing important got caught on (or crushed against) the stick shift on the console!!!

As far as my high school days, almost all the "action" that took place in my cars was in the front seat. Climbing into the back seat showed premeditation, while staying in front lent credence to any and all claims that you were carried away by the moment.

The Idle Devil said...

Cool post!

J A Harnett-Hargrove said...

Gosh...I remember I use to drive a 'tuna boat'...when the petal was mashed you could see the gas gauge move down. I had that tank so long I had to add lead to the gas. Thanks for the memories.

Candie Bracci said...


Liza said...

This brought back memories of military man and I back when his 1980 bright red camaro was our funky little retreat. The funky fire is still burning...good for you Leah!

Suzanne said...

Leah, Sarge and Hedgie,

No, she still isn't here. This is bordering on insane! I just heard a car. Looked. It's the post man. Ugh. How unfair.

Looking at Liza's post. My brother owned an orange camaro. He sold it to buy his house. Who knew that thing was worth that much!? Paid for the down payment. I'm serious. I know, sort of stupid/funny, but true.

Happy 4th. Love you guys.


P.S. Sarge, you deserve a spin off. Make an effort. And just so you know, my mom only drives a Caddy. Dear Lord. I'll never look at the back seat the same way.

Suzanne said...

Just got a call from you know who!!! She said "I just passed over the Big Bridge." I thought she was in Sacramento. No, she's just leaving San Francisco!!! This has really been too much fun! She's in a traffic jam. Not moving. I gave her directions for like the 50th time. She informed me "I don't hear you, I'll call when I'm there." That's just too damn funny. JUST DON'T MISS THE EXIT AT MADISON HONEY!!! Yup, I can just see our family reunion...DON'T MISS INDIANA HONEY...IT'S TO THE LEFT, ahhhh, RIGHT!!!! What? No I can't help it.


lettuce said...

6 way power bench seat?

mind boggling

California Girl said...

Leah: Magic Fingers is a great reference for this TT. Hahahaha.

As for driving "a piece of serious Detroit Iron..." my husband and I had a 62 Caddy convertible in 1976. It was the original bronze color with shark fins and a black cloth top. It had white sidewalls and got 9 mpg. No shit! We paid $250 for it and called it the "Bronze Bomber". We loved that car but it was always out of gas.

Marianna said...

Hey Leah!

I tagged you on my blog! Come and wear you crown proudly!


Suzanne said...


Baby, you still here?

Well, she's come and gone. She's on her way up Hwy 1. She's headed to Seattle via the Golden Gate Bridge. What? Don't even get me started! No, really, she went all the way back there to go there. Yes! She knows I think it's stupid funny. But you know what hon? It's a good day to travel. The breeze is coming off the ocean and it's really pretty. She picked the perfect day to make a mistake. Trust me.

So is Leah gonna leave you here forever? What? I'm just asking.

I love you too because you're a good hubby and the father of we-wee. done good. No honey, I don't use the English language properly. Leave me alone. There are only 24 hours in my day and they're all used up.


Suzanne said...

Baby, look, you're at 50. That's better than Leah ever gets!!! Of course I notice stupid stuff and of course it's too funny.

Yes I think she should suffer just a little bit. She busts my ass all the time. She deserves this. No really, she does. Baby you should stay here one more week. I see 100 in your future. Get your damn wife away from me. I'm serious.

Much love to you and the family! What?

Donn said...

Good Gawd Y'all!

Those were the days. I loved those huge cars too. They were like Livng Rooms with Tires.

I seem to remember that double dating was more exciting because the moans & groans added a little je ne sais quoi to the mix...
and let's face it, it became a competition to see who was really doin' it right on the wrong side of town!

Yes sir, the root word of Nostalgia should be YES because we certainly like to cherry pick the best parts don't we?

Leah said...

Donn!--Sarge says to tell you, "well played!"

Fox--we both loved your comment. Hilarious.

I'll be back. My track pad is the devil.

merelyme said...

I "caught on" to this post...started over and just thought how clever! This is totally my era. I think it really is Leah in disguise. If it is Sarge...may I suggest his spin-off blog be called, "The Sound In The Sewer"? Nothing intended other than sounding compatible to what's happening in the streets. ;)