“I Took Daisy Duke to Prom”

Posted: June 12, 2011 in humor, storytelling, Writing
Tags: , , , , ,

My friend Tony is a master storyteller. He doesn’t do it for a living or even a hobby; it’s just something he does. He’s always ready to share and his audience is usually willing to listen. That’s because Tony’s stories are the perfect balance between fact and fiction and he knows just how to tell them. My grandpa would have plainly said that Tony is full of crap and he may be but that’s the thing right there – when Tony tells a story, you just don’t know whether to believe him or not.

On the night Daisy Duke strolled into the spotlight on Tony’s stage, everyone was perched on their usual stools and “The Dukes of Hazzard” was on the T.V. behind the bar. Background noise, that’s all it was; nobody really cared what those old Dukes were up to this week. But they did take notice when Tony put down the beer he was sipping and announced, “I took Daisy Duke to prom, you know.”

The reactions were predictable – eye-rolling, head-shaking and a skeptical “Oh, really?” from the end of the bar. Then we waited because there was a story coming.

“Yeah, junior year,” Tony continued. “Faith High School.”

Here are the facts: Catherine Bach, the actress who played Daisy Duke, lived in Faith, South Dakota after her parents got divorced. Tony is from the Faith area. She graduated from high school there in 1971; Tony would have gone there about the same time. Odds are she went to prom and well, somebody had to take her, right?

Tony grew the tale from there, adding whatever details he deemed necessary. This could be the fiction: what the decorations looked like, was there a dinner, what the prom’s theme song was and whether they danced to it. Just enough to keep you wondering. And although Tony’s story sounded plausible, the crowd wasn’t entirely buying it.

The next chapter in the Daisy Duke saga came about a week later in the form of a photograph of a young Tony in a suit with a skinny dark-haired girl in a floor-length Gunne Sax dress and a wrist corsage. The Polaroid was passed up the bar and back for inspection and the general consensus was that the young man was undoubtedly Tony. His date? MAYBE Catherine Bach, pre-Hollywood sex symbol.

It was never resolved whether Tony took Daisy Duke to prom or not but that wasn’t really the point. It was a good story worth hearing, true or not.

Tony and I joke about me compiling a book of his stories and shopping it around to publishers. There’s more than enough material there and we’ve even got a title and the cover art: a faded Polaroid of a young prom couple from Faith, South Dakota. It may not be a future bestseller but it will be one worth reading. And whether you believe the stories or not? That’s up to you.

 

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