Party Guy

Posted by: Duane Hiatt in Commentaries Add comments

Every person’s life is worthy of a book. I hope you are writing yours, or saving and collecting the material to one day write it.

I am in the midst of mine.

For those of you who just tuned in, this is the next installment of my memoirs currently in production. The previous installments are available on my web pageduanehiatt.com I hope you find it interesting.

The book is titled, Live Long*,  Learn a Little, Laugh a Lot.

“Hey Hiatt, you want to bring your ukulele? We’re taking my boat out on the lake Saturday then hanging out at Millie’s,” said the handsome young camp boss. Or as it translated into my ears, “You want to ascend to teen age heaven for a day, while making points with the boss and meeting who knows how many beautiful girls?”

I replied, “Let me check my social appointment calendar. I was going to climb a pine tree, or maybe do some serious pocket knife whittling that night, but I’ll see if I can work you in.”

Working in Idaho’s Kaniksu national forest was an adventurous summer job; especially compared to thinning sugar beets on my uncle’s farm. But the after work social program in the forest was feeble, mostly playing a game we invented, (a combination of basketball and karate,) and plunking my ukulele. This was before I graduated up two strings to a guitar.

This was my second summer in the Kaniksu and I was assigned to another camp on Lower Priest lake. I was disappointed because it wasn’t so isolated as the year before, and not on the lake shore. Also my brother Gordon was in a different camp.

But there were compensations. If one had a car, which I hadn’t, one could drive a few miles to Priest lake, which I didn’t; maybe even meet members of the opposite sex, and hang out at “Millie’s” the local watering hole. If one had a motor boat, or a friend who did, Priest Lake could make paradise look like boot camp by comparison.

Let this be a motivation to you. Practice your instrument, and/or your voice. The only reason these college guys invited me, the high school kid, was because I could make music.

Priest Lake in the Idaho panhandle was a visitors’ bureau’s dream. Pristine blue water, smooth beaches, cuddled inside pine wrapped peaks. The only things prettier than the lake were the beautiful women who frolicked there. That was the opinion of us tent fevered young men from the mountains who had seen enough pine trees for now, but not enough women.

The boat and the college man camp boss were a babe magnet.  The ukulele and the skinny high school kid playing it were not. But I was still a valuable addition to the festivities.

Late afternoon the party moved to Millie’s tavern where everybody ordered their favorite lubricant. Mine drew comments.

“Come on kid, get a man’s drink.”

“Are you the designated driver?”

“No he’s the designated party pooper.”

“The camp boss surprised me with, “Come on Hiatt, you’re not on your mission yet.”

“Where did this Oklahoma Baptist (I assumed) hear that word?” I thought. Turned out he knew more than a bit about Mormons. He had even attended Brigham Young University for a quarter or two.

I smiled and kept strumming and singing. When they saw me standing my ground, the jokes petered out. They told me how much they admired me for holding to my standards. They realized they didn’t have to drink to have fun. They began to talk about life values, ethics, honorable behavior, healthy lifestyles, and virtuous relationships. We had a great time singing and laughing together. I was invited to parties all the rest of the summer. Partly as a result of that night, several of the party guys have since combined their successful careers with praiseworthy church and community service. The camp boss enrolled at BYU again, and the last I heard was a stake president in Tulsa.

Not.

Sorry to spoil a good story. Actually, they included me out for the rest of the night and the rest of the summer. But it was still the right thing to do.

Everybody I know is busy, including me.  Where are those golden years I was planning on of sitting on the back porch picking my guitar? So I will send just one little part of the book at a time. You can give it a quick read and tell me what you think if you would like.

I’ve slimmed that process down to two questions, and four strokes on the key board (six if you count “Reply” and “Send.”)

The questions are these:“A” How much did you enjoy this?

“B” How much do you think a person who doesn’t know Duane Hiatt would enjoy this?

The rating is:1. Glanced at it, printed it out and lined the bottom of the bird cage with it.

2. Sped-read it and filed it with my tax return receipts

3. Thought it was about as interesting as a well written obituary

4. Could have put it down, but didn’t want to

5. Couldn’t put it down. Put it in a magnetic frame and stuck it onto the fridge door

So your response would perhaps be A-4, B-3, (Or maybe A-5, B-5, I’m expecting a minimum number of those.)

Also feel free to add comments if you like.

Also, also, feel free to forward this material to anyone you want to.

Your next installment is: The principal of the thing

Every person’s life is worthy of a book. I hope you are writing yours, or saving and collecting the material to one day write it.

I am in the midst of mine.

For those of you who just tuned in, this is the next installment of my memoirs currently in production. The previous installments are available on my web pageduanehiatt.com I hope you find it interesting.

The book is titled, Live Long*,  Learn a Little, Laugh a Lot.

“Hey Hiatt, you want to bring your ukulele? We’re taking my boat out on the lake Saturday then hanging out at Millie’s,” said the handsome young camp boss. Or as it translated into my ears, “You want to ascend to teen age heaven for a day, while making points with the boss and meeting who knows how many beautiful girls?”

I replied, “Let me check my social appointment calendar. I was going to climb a pine tree, or maybe do some serious pocket knife whittling that night, but I’ll see if I can work you in.”

Working in Idaho’s Kaniksu national forest was an adventurous summer job; especially compared to thinning sugar beets on my uncle’s farm. But the after work social program in the forest was feeble, mostly playing a game we invented, (a combination of basketball and karate,) and plunking my ukulele. This was before I graduated up two strings to a guitar.

This was my second summer in the Kaniksu and I was assigned to another camp on Lower Priest lake. I was disappointed because it wasn’t so isolated as the year before, and not on the lake shore. Also my brother Gordon was in a different camp.

But there were compensations. If one had a car, which I hadn’t, one could drive a few miles to Priest lake, which I didn’t; maybe even meet members of the opposite sex, and hang out at “Millie’s” the local watering hole. If one had a motor boat, or a friend who did, Priest Lake could make paradise look like boot camp by comparison.

Let this be a motivation to you. Practice your instrument, and/or your voice. The only reason these college guys invited me, the high school kid, was because I could make music.

Priest Lake in the Idaho panhandle was a visitors’ bureau’s dream. Pristine blue water, smooth beaches, cuddled inside pine wrapped peaks. The only things prettier than the lake were the beautiful women who frolicked there. That was the opinion of us tent fevered young men from the mountains who had seen enough pine trees for now, but not enough women.

The boat and the college man camp boss were a babe magnet.  The ukulele and the skinny high school kid playing it were not. But I was still a valuable addition to the festivities.

Late afternoon the party moved to Millie’s tavern where everybody ordered their favorite lubricant. Mine drew comments.

“Come on kid, get a man’s drink.”

“Are you the designated driver?”

“No he’s the designated party pooper.”

“The camp boss surprised me with, “Come on Hiatt, you’re not on your mission yet.”

“Where did this Oklahoma Baptist (I assumed) hear that word?” I thought. Turned out he knew more than a bit about Mormons. He had even attended Brigham Young University for a quarter or two.

I smiled and kept strumming and singing. When they saw me standing my ground, the jokes petered out. They told me how much they admired me for holding to my standards. They realized they didn’t have to drink to have fun. They began to talk about life values, ethics, honorable behavior, healthy lifestyles, and virtuous relationships. We had a great time singing and laughing together. I was invited to parties all the rest of the summer. Partly as a result of that night, several of the party guys have since combined their successful careers with praiseworthy church and community service. The camp boss enrolled at BYU again, and the last I heard was a stake president in Tulsa.

Not.

Sorry to spoil a good story. Actually, they included me out for the rest of the night and the rest of the summer. But it was still the right thing to do.

Everybody I know is busy, including me.  Where are those golden years I was planning on of sitting on the back porch picking my guitar? So I will send just one little part of the book at a time. You can give it a quick read and tell me what you think if you would like.

I’ve slimmed that process down to two questions, and four strokes on the key board (six if you count “Reply” and “Send.”)

The questions are these:“A” How much did you enjoy this?

“B” How much do you think a person who doesn’t know Duane Hiatt would enjoy this?

The rating is:1. Glanced at it, printed it out and lined the bottom of the bird cage with it.

2. Sped-read it and filed it with my tax return receipts

3. Thought it was about as interesting as a well written obituary

4. Could have put it down, but didn’t want to

5. Couldn’t put it down. Put it in a magnetic frame and stuck it onto the fridge door

So your response would perhaps be A-4, B-3, (Or maybe A-5, B-5, I’m expecting a minimum number of those.)

Also feel free to add comments if you like.

Also, also, feel free to forward this material to anyone you want to.

Your next installment is: The principal of the thing

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