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Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Time it was and what a time it was it was...

I went to the Captain America flick with my friend Joe. We met, nearly 30 years ago, when we both worked at a Back Bay print shop. Joe ran a Heidelberg GTO and I was, essentially, a preflighter.

Elvin O was another pressman. He’d been the stock guy – receiving paper and supplies, reloading the shelves, keeping track of what we were low on – before being promoted to AB Dick 360-hood. The press was old as hell but it ran. This was back in the pre-digital press days when having 1,000 flyers printed always meant offset versus Xerox.

Time, a lot of it, passed, the company we worked for changed hands. The new owner made some truly bozonian, shortsighted decisions including the complete elimination of the ink on paper department, which put all my old chums out on the street. I’d been in the HR department, also kicked to the curb, and got plugged into a secretarial position.
Curious – If the pressmen had boobies would they have gotten secretarial gigs too?
I fell out of touch with both Joe and Elvin but heard, happily, they'd got new press gigs pretty quick. Yea them!
The company? A couple of years after ixnaying the offset department, the owner bought all new presses (having sold the Heidelbergs and Dicks), hired new, different pressmen and started a brand new print department (with a lot of the same types of equipment). Dude was from ferociously big money – the wasted dosh and time were no more than ticks on a spreadsheet to him.

Back to the present though – Joe and I, (reconnected a few years ago), went to see the Captain America movie at the theater on the Boston Common. HUUUUUGE movie palace! Joe went off to the little boys room while I cooled my heels at a table near the popcorn stand overlooking the Common.
Curious again – why is my memory of movie theater popcorn SO much better than the reality of it? Buttered popcorn used to be one of the big thrills of going to the picture shows. Now? Tastes kind of cardboard-y, the ‘butter’ is just oily gick and I can’t deal with the hulls getting stuck in my teeth. Either popcorn’s changed or I’ve gotten rilly old. Maybe a little of both.
And then, then I saw a very handsome man coming up the escalator. I was all WHO is that? He looks so familiar! I def suspected that I thought I knew him precisely because he was so easy on the eyes (wishful people watching?) and went back to gazing out the window. Then it hit me…ELVIN! Damn, he’d already passed by. I should’ve tripped him! *sigh*

Moments later, Joe comes walking back to the table WITH Elvin! Too awesome. The three of us sat and schmoozed until it was time to head into our respective screening rooms. He was there for X-Men: Apocalypse.

Sitting with them both — I felt like I was 30 again but, at the very same time, I was mega aware of time's passages. Elvin's twin brother has died – cancer. I'm deaf. Joe's marriage hit an iceberg. BUT we're still here. Alive, thriving and going to big Marvel movies.

Old Friends – Simon and Garfunkle

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