Bob Mustin commented on yesterday’s theme music. He wrote, “The song favored by my class at the Naval Academy was The Animals’ “We Gotta Get Out of This Place.””
I hear that. His comment summoned a memory. We were in Egypt in nineteen eighty-five as part of Exercise Bright Star. It was July, or maybe August. Living in a tent city in the desert, the ops portion was done. We were awaiting redeployment. There was a lot of down time. While enduring the Sahara heat in our tent’s shade, one of the guys played “Green, Green Grass of Home” on a small cassette player.
One of the other guys said, “Man, turn that off. It’s depressing.”
The player said, “I think it’s nice.”
“It’s about a guy in prison,” one person said.
“Nice,” someone said. “It’s not nice. Makes me remember my wife is suing me for divorce.”
“Yeah, and it makes me remember my home when I was growing up,” the first speaker said. “There wasn’t any green, green grass at our house. It was all cement and asphalt, even the playground. The ball field wasn’t paved, but it didn’t have no grass, either.”
“Yeah, and my folks are dead,” said another guy. “There’s no one going to be there to meet me when I get home.”
An argument arose about the song and its meanings.
Ah, sweet memories. We heard the Tom Jones cover in Egypt, so that’s what I’m playing for you.