Mike & Johnny

I was a bartender in my family’s restaurant for nearly 20 years.

It was probably the best job I’ll ever have. I served thousands of drinks to some of the most unique personalities I’ve ever known. I served lawyers who couldn’t stay sober, served guys who thought they were losers but they weren’t. Some were the best that humanity had to offer.

Lately, I think about sitting at the bar with my friend Mikey. Sitting with our drinks at the end of the night, as I was getting ready to close up. Closing time. Talking to each other through the murky haze of cigarette smoke.

CarsonAnd watching Johnny Carson. The Tonight Show. Remember Johnny? One of the funniest bastards to ever walk the Earth. With his sidekick, Ed McMahon. Hilarious.

I’d lock the front door, and sit back down. Have a drink. Smoke our own cigarettes. Maybe listen to a little Sinatra after Johnny signed off. And talk.

Mikey’s gone now. The memories remain. Thinking about the future is one of my favorite things to do. At times, it seems limitless. In my mind, I’m blessed with the best of everything. Even at my advanced age, my health is still pointed in the right direction.

Yes, there is a future. I have plans. Hopefully, God does not laugh. Even with the future ahead, it’s still fun to roll it all back. Play the movies in my head. The memories retreat occasionally, then come roaring back.

We’re at the bar, sipping a drink. The music of our lives playing in the background. Johnny sits at his Tonight Show desk, laughing. Closing time. Everything has to come to a close.

Image of Johnny Carson courtesy of Wikipedia.

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3 thoughts on “Mike & Johnny

  1. Not sure how many times I fell asleep while watching Johnny Carson 😉 The show certainly wasn’t boring … more comforting, I guess. I still remember one episode when he had Jimmy Stewart on. He read a poem about his dog and how much he missed him … and they both cried. Funny, of all the shows that’s the one I remember most.

    1. Jimmy Stewart was always a great guest on Carson, a real class act. To me, it was worth watching no matter who the guest was. I miss those old shows, will have to start watching them on YouTube… 🙂

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