It’s My Party.
When the good woman Lesley Gore died this week, her hit It’s My Party, hit a chord with me.
We’ve probably all been there; anticipating a happy event celebrating the most important person in the world – us. Then along comes some son of a bitch who doesn’t read the script and sneaks off into the dark with, of all people, your arch nemesis Judy. (Although I question, was Lesley reading too much into Johnny’s eager, slavering acceptance to go to the party? Did he ask if Judy would be there? Was the ring off a ring-pull can? Actually no, they weren’t used then. And why did the tramp Judy even get a gig?)
But I digress. Apart from the song having special pertinence to say, Tony Abbott or Julia Gillard, it is a life lesson. Watch it. Not everybody is your friend.
It was around the age of five when I first heard the song and the harsh realities it revealed. Before that there was Bill Haley having a great time Rocking Around the Clock, while teaching little tackers to count (which I recited in twelve bar blues format. Strange kid.) Then there was Frank Ifield crooning I Remember You about the love of his life, and in the unhappy event of him carking it regaling the angels with the “thrill of it all.” Then along came Lesley with her dire song.
It made an impression on a young child, more so than parents’ cautions or bible lessons which featured Cain the first murderer. He had nothing on the duplicitous monster who fronts up to an innocent girl’s party with seductive thoughts on his mind, and not with the hopeful but hapless host.
I love the way that Lesley is not going to put on a brave face, pretend it didn’t happen and comfort herself with excessive amounts of sweet party treats, “fizzy lifting drinks”* or a little or a lot of illicit alcohol.
She’s been ditched, humiliated in front of her own friends. She is taking it head on and she’s damn well going to show it. She’s going to cry, cry her heart out and become a picture of dishevelled wretchedness; red eyed, blotchy faced, mangle haired. Of course this line of action will galvanise solid party support for her. So God help Judy when she shows up, and as for Johnny! Good for you Lesley.
When I sing the song, Jack cocks his head as though trying to interpret what the heck I am doing and when I cry he puts a consoling paw on my leg. He would have been good at Lesley’s party.
*Hey Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory