I have been retired for 21 years now, and as a result, I have developed a routine that I adhere to daily when I am at home. It concerns a daily ritual of getting up, showering, shaving getting dressed etc., Having my first cup of coffee in the morning while checking the e-mail and the CBA website, and reading the Mold man’s column for tasty tidbits of music news, and usually some arcane unnecessary information thrown in just for the heck of it. I honestly think that this is his way of pulling a mental practical joke on all of us. Once in a great while, they will be funny, but usually I find such information totally useless. But, that idea helped remind me of a practical joke, I pulled on a dear friend of mine when I was attending the IBMA convention in Louisville, Kentucky back around 2001.
One of my highlights of the day after I get to read my e-mail and check the CBA website out, is driving to the post office in uptown, downtown West Point, California, population about 600. [According to who is in or out of jail.] Yesterday when I went to the post office I had an envelope from my buddy Les Leverett in Nashville, Tennessee and inside was two pictures of me that he took in the green room backstage. [Les was the official photographer for the Opry for 32 years]. I had been thinking all morning of some arcane information that Mold man had foisted off on us that morning, and the possibility of that being a mental practical joke was in the back of my mind when I looked at those two photographs that Les sent me, and it triggered a memory the practical joke I pulled on Wayne Rice there in Louisville, Kentucky.
If I remember right it was a Friday morning and I slept in that day till around 10:30 AM. I got up and got dressed and got to the hotel dining room around 11:45 AM. There was only about eight or nine people in the whole dining room, and since I was by myself, the hostess set me at a small table for two. The waitress took my order and I was enjoying my first cuppa coffee, when my good friend Wayne Rice and another gentleman that I didn’t know was seated right across the aisle from me. We said good morning to each other, and shortly the waitress came back to take their order, and when they had placed their order, Wayne pointed at me and said to the waitress; and give him the bill. We all laughed and had a good laugh over it, about 20 min. later I finished my meal and got up to leave.
As luck would have it the waitress was the cashier as well, so I told her; look, the guy that told you to give me the bill is a good friend of mine so I want to pay for their meal, but don’t say a word about it until he gets ready to leave. She laughed and promised she wouldn’t say a word. I laughed under my breath all the way back to my room.
Fast forward to about 6:30 that evening. I was waiting in the hotel lobby to meet a friend of mine so we could go have supper together, when who should walk by but Wayne Rice. He looked me in the face, his eyes got real big, and pointed at me and said; YOU!! You dirty guy!! JD, you made me feel like a Bum! We were both laughing our heads off, and I said I know Wayne that’s why I did it! Wayne said, when that waitress told him that I had paid for their meal he felt about 2 inches tall and could’ve walked underneath the door. We both had a good laugh over it and I told Wayne not to feel one bit guilty because at the end of the year I deducted his dinner from my taxes, because it was a music related expense. So he felt a little bit better, but he did say he wished he had ordered a big rib steak instead that hamburger he had. I told him the next time he sees me in a restaurant to go ahead and order a big rib steak. I may pay for it, then again I might not. But there’s one thing that we both agreed on. That was the tastiest practical joke that was ever pulled on him.
Good memories of good times at the Galt House Hotel in Louisville, Kentucky. I would love to be able to do them all again.