Downtown Chicago, 1973 and the only movies playing are Kung Fu movies and Blacula. My oldest sister Lovie takes me to see Five Fingers of Death. Martial Arts films are all the rage and the audience cannot sit still. Brothers are jumping up during the fight scenes, and kicking at the screen. Somebody brought a gun and shoots into the air. Suddenly all kinds of Hell breaks loose. Grown folks running this way and that. Somewhere along the way me and my sister become separated.
I call out to her, “Missy!” She doesn’t hear me.
An adult with a Herman Munster sized foot squashes my little toes, and I hobble to the exit and out to the fresh air.
Luckily I was taught which bus would take me home to Ingleside Street in Hyde Park. I get on, explain that I’m lost and the bus driver gives me a free ride. This is a feat in itself because the drivers of the Chicago Transit Authority are generally a surly bunch. But, I think my guardian angel whispered in the driver’s ear, appealing to his fatherly instincts.
When I arrive home, I turn on the radio to hear Paul McCartney and Wings. The song is Live and Let Die and I jump up in the air in front of the living room mirror. Like the brothers from the movie theater, I try out my martial arts moves, totally looking like a fool. I take off running down the hallway and jump/leap right into a glass door. Ouch! I look around to see if anyone saw me, and my guardian angel is standing there shaking his head, as if to say, “God and everybody saw you.”
I shrug, as if to say, “Yeah well, live and let die.”
Copyright © 2011 Kimberly Yarbrough Carpenter
Music suggestion: Kung Fu Fighting, by Cee Lo Green and Jack Black,
Live and Let Die, Paul McCartney and Wings