I was a ten year old lad who thought he knew a thing or two about love. So I wrote a letter to a girl, because that’s what us kids did back in the age before Facebook. We wrote letters. And I dedicated this song to her in a letter. I left out the part about her being my second love. Barbara Streisand was actually my first.
When I was 17, I was lucky enough to understand what Sinatra was talking about. She was older, and living a life beyond the mall. She inspired me to read poetry and purchase a fake ID so’s I could take her into Manhattan. I whispered this song into a DJ’s ear just for her and then we danced on top of that island as if we’d just been informed the world had five minutes to live.
A lot of guys have that Engagement ring in the glove compartment time in their lives. I called into a radio station and made this dedication because the song had convinced me to pop the question that very night. Here’s a heads up to any guys with the same bright idea. Tell her to tune in to the station first.
This is the only song I ever dedicated to a girl after the fact. We danced to it in my living room after the handwriting had made its way across the wall. And we promised a different kind of pact. So if it happens that we make it to eighty without a spouse . . well . . .
I made this dedication only a few short years ago. I was truly-madly-unfortunately in love. I have no regrets, at least not as far as the song is concerned. It’s as dorky and beautiful now as it has been every time since I first heard it, just like Toni Tenille and her magical bangs. (And a side note . . at 3:16 you will catch the words “Sedaka is back”. An ode to the songwriter Neil Sedaka.)
I’ll finish with this little ditty from a younger and cheekier Paul. He’s the sage of song I should be blaming all of my lovelorn on, if I had the nerve to blame such a thing on anyone at all.
Love is the sweetest four letter word you’ll ever wanna know.