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Tales to Tell

Tales, part 2
Tales, part 3
Tales about the site

It was a pleasure to see the The Joy Boys in the color video footage. I'm a big fan of Ed Walker and I have worked with him a couple of times at WAMU radio for their fund raisers. What a gift he is. -- Darren Hannabass

Sean Lynch in McDonalds commercial,
and today Wow! McDonald's TV Spot #2 from 1963... I am the kid in this TV commercial! Imagine my surprise to find the Joy Boys website, and see my 2nd grade self in the commercial. I remember filming the commercial very well. I was a second grader at Congressional Elementary School in Rockville, MD. The shoot was right up the street from where I lived, I believe it was a McDonalds on the Rockville Pike. I was able to eat as many hamburgers as possible, and got to hang out with Ronald McDonald. What more could a 2nd grader ask for!

My early experience in that TV commercial, (which was my first), led to other TV and radio commercials as a child. I eventually got a job at a local radio station and went on to enjoy a wonderful career on the air and behind the scenes. I did not realize until I saw your site that Willard had also been on the radio, and wonder if that encounter with him might have influenced my later career choice. I am now a broadcast executive managing radio stations in Honolulu, Hawaii. Aloha to you and Ed, and if you are ever in Honolulu, please look me up! -- Sean Lynch

I was hired by the State Department Foreign Service in 1960 and lived in DC while in training. I remember the Joy Boys: their skits, characters, and songs. Robin Hood of Rock Creek Park comes to mind. I really did miss listening to you guys when I was sent overseas. But Paris did have its own attractions. Thanks for the memories of radio's last golden days, before it became permanently tarnished. -- Richard Downey

Dear Willard: I'm Senior Vice President of WAY-FM Media Group, which is on 102 signals nationwide serving 17 million population and 600,000 listeners daily. But I got my start, as I see it, from you in 1973 when you took time to visit with me at WRC-TV one late night while I was in high school. You advised me on how best to get into radio, and followed your advice almost to the letter. (This was after sitting on your lap as Bozo when I was a child, and growing up with the Joy Boys on my radio!!) In 1992 you were on my morning show (by phone) to help me celebrate my 10th anniversary as a morning show host in Pittsburgh. So glad I found this website! -- Dusty Rhodes (Colorado Springs, CO)

In the late '50s I was in second grade, and got the measles, chicken pox and mumps all in a row. I missed over two months of school. During my illness my mother let me use a little blue portable radio (it was either a Motorola or Zenith, can't remember, but very solid... and comforting). One night as I was experiencing the magical airwaves I chanced upon a show on WRC: "We are the Joyboys of radio, we chase electrons to and fro..." Their shows were, at first, very short. Nevertheless, after enduring the fatigue and scabs of my various infections, I made sure I was in my bed for the next broadcast of The Joyboys.

One routine I still remember was a Mr. Fixit episode. This was during another Washington DC winter of snow, and Mr. Fixit had a solution to melting the ice on the streets. He fired up the barbeque grill, attached it to the back of his car and drove around melting the ice on the street. Good idea. Then he put on the brakes and the grill slid under his car and BOOM! I still remember the sound of the grill sliding and then my laughter. I didn't have a recorder when I listened to the Joyboys. Thank goodness there were people out there who documented their broadcasts. I love Bob and Ray, but Ed and Willard were easily their equals. Thank you for taking the time and energy to ensure that their delightful, and might I add, sweet legacy is preserved. -- Maybin Baker (Seattle WA)

Just want to say thanks for all the years of fun and believe it or not comfort you guys provided when I was a kid in South East D.C. I use to listen to you guys from 7 to ll and I'd make a point to stay awake 'til the end of your show just so I could hear just how you guys would sign off. Many nights of great fun. Thanks Uncle Willard and Eddie Scott. You two were and are one the the best parts of my life. And my life is workin' pretty good so that's meant as a compliment. Many more years to the two of you and your kin. --Najee Mukasa

Fantastic site, that I'll be revisiting! Also would be interested in getting hold of all 3 of the Joy Boys CD's - my parents & I always had them on when there was nothing good on TV (which was very often!) Regarding Eddie Leonard's - 5 other guys & I rented a house in downtown Silver Spring in 1970 during our senior year at UMD. Eddie's was a favorite "midnight run" spot, as it was only a 2-block walk to their Cameron St shop (which died many moons ago). At one time or another, all of us got locked out on the return walk, only to have water dumped on us from the bedroom window above the front porch. --Mark Kornmann

I grew up in DC in the '50s and '60s. I listened to the Joy Boys every day (and night when they were on in the evenings and I should have been doing my homework!) and am still a HUGE fan. I sometimes listen to Ed Walker's show on the internet, as I live in San Francisco now. -- Peter Ornstein

I'd like ordering information for all the CDs. I was a 12 year old listener with my dad in Springfield VA in 1966. I wrote WRC and they sent me some blank stationary (!) and a copy of that blue sales booklet, which I still have. I'm 53 now, and my dad's passed away, but I'd it would be great to hear the shows again. -- Nick Archer (Franklin, TN)

Born and raised in the Washington area in the 1960s and 70s, I returned home in the late 1990s to finish up a military career largely spent outside of this area. I have fond memories of listening to the Joy Boys radio shows while in grade school in the mid-late 60s. I still remember the Eddie Leonard Sandwich Shop jingle, and hearing it again on the Joy Boys web site for the first time in probably 40 years brings back some amazing memories. I recall silly songs including I Like Onions and Spike Jones' Man on the Flying Trapeze from the show as well. Thank you for the fond memories and being an important part of the history of this wonderful city. -- Bill Kobren

My brother Alex Sass is turning 50 on December 10th and as a young man he was absolutely crazy about the "Joy Boys." We could see the WRC tower lights from our parents bedroom as we listened to your show. Whenever you made an appearance my brother and his friends would be there; in fact I have a cassette from a radio show in which he gave you a foam rubber sandwich with a fake whiskey flask. I guess you could say he was a bit of a clown himself. Thank you for giving our family a lot of warm memories. -- Louise Sass

I don't remember how old I was when I listened to the Joy Boys, but I used to sing along with them all the time. It was so upbeat and such good fun: "We are the Joy Boys of Radio...." Now I sing with the Washington National Opera Chorus at the Kennedy Center in D.C. --- HEY! My early training singing along with you guys paid off! I'm not sure of the year (late 50s, early 60s?), my mom (Patricia Strong) won 1st place in a WRC sponsored art contest. She was so thrilled, because she got to go down to the WRC station and pick up her 1st place award---from Willard Scott, IN PERSON. When she came back home, she was telling everyone, "I met Williard Scott! He gave me a hug and shook my hand! He loved my painting!" (I think, at that point, my dad was getting a little jealous). I think that day was one of the highlights of her life. As soon as I found your website, I started singing the Joy Boys song. The song is so full of fun... in all these years, I still remember like it was yesterday. -- Mary Strong Spaid

Thanks for the great Joy Boys web site. I found it because I was looking for some information about "the coveted Hugh Fasenbaker Award". I began listening to The Joy Boys when they had the afternoon half hour (or maybe it was 15 minutes) when I was in junior high school in Suitland, 1959 or 1960, I think. I also want to thank all the others who made the Joy Boys possible. You all were an important and valued part of my life for many years. -- Bob Cartwright

I've known Ed since 1951 and first met Willard in the mid 50's. Ed is still a good friend and I've seen Willard a time or two over the years. This web site is terrific and an obvious labor of love. It's great that you've taken the time to build a monument to their careers, talents, and friendship. Two really decent human beings who gave a lot of people a lot of smiles. I am also blind and Ed was my role model as I grew up. I have one of those voices and thought that I would go into broadcasting. I attended AU and worked at the campus radio station for five years. I quickly discovered that I had neither the talent or ambition to enter the industry, but got a good education and a real love of communications and public speaking. -- Bud Keith

I used to live in SE and worked in G'town in the 60s. I think of one of those Eddie Leonard sandwiches now and then and today I thought I'd see if there was anything on the net. I've been trying for years to remember what was on them. If I remember correctly one was almost like a Philly Cheese, on a hero bun, but also had fried onions, tomatoes, maybe green pepper strips and a special sauce? I can't remember but they beat anything I can find nowadays. Can you help with this recipe, or with what was on them? My mouth is watering.

Hey, even better, does an Eddie Leonard menu exist? -- Wayne Hays

Eddie Leonard aka Bernard Simon was a boxer who had 24 professional bouts. He is an inductee of the Maryland Boxing Hall of Fame. On 08/15/51 he was the ring referee for Joe Louis vs. Jimmy Bivens held in Baltimore, Joe Louis' last win before his defeat to Rocky Marciano. -- Marshall Schultz

Eddie Leonard has quite a following here! We've compiled this story about the Eddie Leonard sandwich shops, and we're hoping for some more info and pictures soon. -BB

In case you or Ed have forgotten, "What we have dies with us, what we give, lives forever". What you have given us here is a bit of your immortality in each listeners mind & heart. I am trying to persuade the activities folk at my local nursing home in Annandale, to buy some of your recordings for my friends there. I know that 'Laughter is the Best Medicine', so I figure they will have a salubrious effect, and even medical value. I thank you all. -- John Birch, Sleepy Hollow Family Council

How cool, to find a place that remembers GOOD radio. I grew up in the DC area, and was spoiled listening to Harden and Weaver in the morning, (big paper route, dad drove me) and the Joy Boys in the afternoon. Thanks for the memories. -- Jim Lawrence

Wow, what memories! I first heard of the Joy Boys many (too many?) years ago on a record commemorating old-time radio. Those were truly the "golden days" of broadcasting! I was fortunate enough to be involved in radio and television as an engineer and announcer in the 50s and 60s. What fun it was! Talent and creativity had not yet been replaced by the bottom-line in the minds of management. If we could imagine it, we were allowed to try it. I especially enjoyed your pictures of the old studio equipment. Every day was an adventure -- never knowing what would break. But that was part of the fun. I worked at a number of stations in Michigan, Alabama and Thule, Greenland and always looked forward to going to work. Keep up the good work of reminding people what fun we had in the "old days". - Ron Altman

My mother, who just turned 82, listened to you both faithfully for years, as did my father and I. We listened and laughed so much at your gentle and zany humor. I would love to give her your CDs for the holidays. Please send me information on how to order them. - Roxanne Edwards (Fairfax, VA)

In listening to the Joy Boys on WRC, I recall you preparing for a 12am nationwide broadcast of world news from WRC. Around this broadcast was a late-nite music programme. My question concerns its theme song, whose lyrics were: "listen to the quiet/the moment of midnight is near/these hurried sounds in the night disappear/from the rush comes to hush..." Do you have any details about this song: title, composer, etc? I cannot find it on Google... any clues would help. Cheers! - Bill Wrigley

The song was "Listen to the Quiet" by Joe Bushkin. The Joy Boys show ended at 11 PM, and Willard would go upstairs to do the TV weather. Ed stayed in the radio studio from 11-12 and did a music show called "Listen to the Quiet," and they used a song by that same name as their theme. -BB

I am interested in ordering the Joy Boys, Volume III, CD for my husband's collection. I can pay via Pay Pal. Please send payment instructions. Thanks! - Sharon Holmes (Fredericksburg, TX)

Our three "Remember the Joy Boys" collections are $25 each. We have over 100 other CDs with Joy Boys airchecks, priced at $11 each plus shipping. Anyone who would like to order, just send me a note and I'll respond with an invoice that you can pay through the web, using a credit card or your PayPal account. It's that simple! -BB

George Brewington in 1998 I'm the oldest son of the late George W. Brewington, a former WRC engineer. I go by Dave, my middle name, even though my first name is George. When I went to work with my dad, he was known as Big George and me, Little George. That's where I met both Ed & Willard. I was wondering if I could get a complete list of CDs that mention my dad. I would like to give these to my mother as a present. She knows just about everyone mentioned on this website. Thanks for your help. - Dave Brewington (Monmouth, Maine)

Dave, thanks for writing! George Brewington was mentioned at the end of many shows, as the Joy Boys thanked their engineers. He also "appears" (with Ed's voice) on several CDs and I'll get a list to you. It was great to hear from you, and I hope other members of the extended WRC family will be in touch too. We've compiled a story about George Brewington on this page. -BB

I recently found a fragment of a tape I made from WWDC. The cut was a spoof (what wasn't?) for station "WWVO, Seagrams West Virginia." If you have any of that on CD, I'd love to find some of the WWVO stuff among many of the other skits.

As a kid, I always tried to sneak on a radio when I went to sleep, and was always told to turn it off. Once, on a family vacation, I found a tiny transistor radio. I turned it in at the desk, but no one claimed it. When it was time to leave, the desk clerk gave me the radio. It was the first radio I had that was small enough to hide under my pillow. One night, while tuning it in the dark, I came across WRC and the Joy Boys. From then on, going to sleep was the best part of the day! - Maury Freedman

We have lots of WWVO and WWPU on our Audio page as well as scattered across our CD collection. It was one of the Joy Boys' most popular skits. Glad you found us on the web! -BB

I was stationed in Berlin from 1962-1964 and AFN Berlin would play the Joy Boys at 3:00 in the morning. This was long after the normal AFN Europe had signed off. I was on duty from midnight to 8:00 about once every four weeks and we were always listening to the radio and that was the only English Radio Station on at that hour. I especially remember Helen Trump, "A lot of woman in a lot of places," and the "Sod Buster." Several years later I was in the DC area for a few months and the series then was "Robin Hood of Rock Creek Park." When I finally settled here in the area in the early 70's the series was "As the Worm Turns." - Bill Neubacher

Lord, do I remember the first time I ran across the "Joy Boys." I was a brand new 2nd Lt in the USAF, just assigned to Andrews AFB, and after I found a place to live, I spent some time spinning the dial on my rusty, trusty AM radio. Knowing that I was in "the big city," the capital of the free world, etc, I was astonished to run across "The Joy Boys." Wow, what fun you guys were!

So which came first, your use of your theme song or its appearance in a Burl Ives movie where Ives played a Navy officer in charge of some old rust-bucket, and in need of some surgery - since there was no anesthesia on the ship, the crew members who were going to operate got the Ives character roaring drunk - and he went under the knife singing "We are the Joy Boys of radio, we chase electrons to and fro!!!!!" Of course, as a lifelong trombone player, I know your theme also as the trio of that great old Circus march, "The Billboard."

Reminds me of my youth on the prarie in Illinois, listening to radio station WGN from Chicago - one of the last of the "old time" stations - they still had the "WGN Barndance" each Saturday night, along with the "5th Army Band" concert - and they carried (and still do) all the Cubbies games and Bears games. Ah, the magic of a summer night, twisting the tuning dial on the AM radio, searching for baseball games from far-away cities - MAGIC!! Your fan forever - Dudley "Slide" Schwartz

I just stumbled across your Joy Boys website and enjoyed spending some time with it. I lived in the DC area in the late '60s and early '70s. I've been in radio for sixteen years myself, but have never had as much fun as you guys. - Rich Upton

I was born in 1952 in Washington, grew up listening to the Joy Boys and was overjoyed to find this web page. I remember as a kid listening to my Mom's old radio (it had tubes!) and staring at the warm yellow-orange glow of its face, always tuned to WRC. I did my homework while listening to the Joy Boys and undoubtedly owe my interest in broadcasting to them. I remember Ed Walker had a one hour show each night after the Joy Boys. I often listened to it after going to bed. I would put my first transistor radio under my pillow so I could continue listening secretly. WRC in those years was like an extended family to me.

I still think of the Joy Boys and their absolutely wonderful show. I work for CNN in San Francisco now. I'm currently forcing my office mates to listen to some of your bits, but no one seems to be complaining. Your timing was every bit as good as I remember it. Prairie Home Companion comes close, but oh, for a show like yours again... You should be proud of the work you've done. It's unmatched. - Peter Ornstein (San Francisco, CA)

I was probably in 7th or 8th grade in Silver Spring when WRC was playing the "Have a Happy Day Contest". The coveted prize for me was a Polaroid camera. I instructed my parents to answer the phone with "Hello, have a happy day" each time it rang. But no call came and the days were running short. I had not gotten the camera. All but given up, I went to babysit at the neighbors house... I was doing homework and not listening to the radio when the phone rang at their house and I answered it. It was my mother next door. She had just won a trip to the Virgin Islands with the Happy Day contest! It was unbelievable... since it was a trip for 2 we purchased an extra ticket and the three of us flew down the following summer. It was my first airplane trip and probably my parents' first real vacation, not to mention our first time outside of the US.

When ever I enter a raffle or contest I always think of the Joy Boys and know I can never win as big a prize as the one we got by listening to them. - Ella Smith (Riva, MD)

What a great song! The "Happy Day" tune started as a typical radio jingle, but caught on so well that WRC turned it into a full-length (2 minute plus) recording, put it on a 45 RPM record, and gave away copies of it. They also used it as the basis for a contest and a Doll House charity drive. You can hear the song and read more about it in our Happy Day feature and also on our Audio page this month. -BB

The Joy Boys were kind enough to let me come down to the famous couch to watch them work, from the time I was 12. When I was 16 I went on the air myself at WOHN in Herndon. My first air name was Scott Walker (in honor of my heroes). When I made the move a few months later to WINX the PD changed my name to Big Don O'Brien. I have had that name ever since. After WINX I went to WPGC (thanks to another hero, Harv Moore) then WWDC, WMZQ, WASH, WEAM and WEEL. Willard taught me how to do weather, and I did that for 20 years starting at WHAG in Hagerstown, then WTTG, WJZ and WMAR. I returned to Washington to do weather and feature reporting at WJLA. I owe my whole career to Willard and Eddie. Oh, I forgot to mention that I was also Ronald McDonald for 3 years! - Big Don O'Brien

I heard the Joy Boys on one of Paul Shanklin's political humor CDs. I now can see where Willard got his gift of gab for being an interesting weatherman. I was stationed at Andrew AFB in 1982-85, and listened to the Greaseman in the morning and WAMU in the afternoon and evening. I am so glad I found your web site. - Robert Carlisle (Brunswick, GA)

I grew up in the DC area, and my parents had Walker & Scott on the radio all the time. We even attended a live broadcast at Christmas time one year (if I knew what year, I would definitely pick that one up, but was way too long ago). So I would like to get two of the Remember the Joy Boys CDs for my parents for Christmas. I am a Paypal pro (WAY too much time on eBay!). - Betsy Nickless (Irvine, CA)

New Year's Eve of either 1964 or 1965, when I was in high school, my friend Frank and I drove to the rooftop parking lot of Sears on Wisconsin Avenue in Washington. The lot was packed with shoppers returning Christmas items and picking up post-Christmas sale items. Someone left an item on the ground and evidently went elsewhere to get something else. Frank and I looked at each other and impulsively committed a crime. We drove over to the item in question, hoisted it up, put it in the back of his car and drove off. It was a brand spanking new, gleaming white toilet bowl.

We drove the few blocks over to the WRC studio on Nebraska Avenue and carried our trophy downstairs to the Joy Boys New Year's Eve open house where, being loyal listeners, we had intended to go anyway. Everyone saw what we had and made room for us to carry out gift over to the JBs themselves. Willard Scott laughed his head off - a normal condition, but even moreso on seeing our gift - and walked Ed Walker over to the table where it rested. Walker felt it with his hand and instantly recognized it and joined in the laughter. It was the season of year end bowl games, and the JBs, without telling their audience exactly what our gift was, alluded to it sufficiently that listeners could tell. We left it there and never knew what happened to it when the show ended.

I suppose the statute of limitations has expired on this one, so I can sign my name. But I won't. - Long ago listener (now in Arizona)

How delighted I am to have found this site. For the past hour I have been laughing while listening to excerpts of some of their programs. I had forgotten how the "boys" made my daily commute much more tolerable. Sixteen years ago we moved from the Washington area to Tallahassee. Although I love this city, radio leaves a lot to be desired. Thank you! - Barbara Duke (Tallahassee, FL)

Please send me ordering information. When I was 4 years old, in Springfield VA, I used to sing along with Willard and Ed (and my mom) when their show came on. They were on during drive time. I'll always remember listening to the Santa reports on Christmas Eve. - Rick Flowe

During the 60s while living in the DC area, I always listened to the Joy Boys while doing my homework. That may explain a lot of things. Back then, my cousin Alan Levin worked as a cameraman at WRC-TV. He took my brothers and me into the studio to watch Ed Walker and Willard Scott live and on the air, doing their evening shtick. Wow! They were hilarious in person, too! This was the first time I noticed that radio people never look like their voices.

During the commercials, they took off their headphones and spent some time talking and joking with us, as if we were very important people. Ed Walker was suave and sophisiticated and Willard Scott was a teddy bear. He gave me a great big hug that lifted me off the floor! I'll never forget it! That was so cool for a radio-struck little girl! And so was meeting Art Semmig, the talent behind the talent. - Syril Levin-Kline (South Bend, IN)

I grew up in D.C. and would like to purchase the 3 CDs of the Joy Boys. I came across this web site by accident. It is great. - Anna Brown (Newark, DE)

I grew up in Silver Spring and haven't lived in the DC area for many years, but the Eddie Leonard jingle is still in my head. That and the old Citizen's Bank of Maryland song ("conveniently yours"). Sorry to hear the ELs are gone now. They were a real DC institution. For the kind of food I could afford as a kid they were open later than anything but Little Taverns until Booeymonger came along.

I had heard that Eddie was a champion boxer, and that the jingle was written and recorded by Les Paul & Mary Ford. Any truth to that? Also, I was in a band that played at Willard's going away party when he moved up to NY. Thanks for the stroll thru the olden days. DC was a great place to grow up back then. - John Akin (Moravian Falls, NC)

I worked with Art Semmig at WRC from 1962 until I retired. I ran across the story about Art, and it certainly brought back memories. Although I was an engineer on the television side, in the early days, we used to work both radio and television... and, on occasion, I filled in working "The Joy Boys." For your information, the sound of the tuba on the Joy Boys' theme was vocally made by an engineer named Donald (Smokey) Stover. - Fred Risher (retired in Arizona)

My first memories of childhood are of listening to the Joy Boys during dinner. The TV was turned off and we reveled in the antics of Ed and Willard. I was crushed when WRC took them off, and even skipped school the day they finished their week at WWDC, and drove over to the station to wish them well. Willard then told me to keep listening, as they were coming back. I was so excited I gave them each a kiss on the cheek!

Recently, Ed Walker spoke to a group of seniors at Sibley Hospital, where I work. I was thrilled to attend and listen. Afterwards, I told him about the crazy 18-year-old girl and he asked for another kiss! He told me about the web site... I immediately raced home to put it on the computer. I even sat my 13-year-old down to listen to the comedy clips, so he could learn that radio was once a "theater of the mind" and not endless rap and gangsta music. He especially liked WWPU! Thanks again for bringing back all these fond memories. - Vicki Hamilton Smink (Gaithersburg, MD)

Just wanted to drop a line to say that I enjoyed looking at those old photos of Glenn Rinker... I have similar memories of my days in Miami with my old co-workers from the National Hurricane Center - we were all very blessed to have those great memories. I think we even had Willard Scott do a live remote from our office a couple of times (during hurricane season)...

Glenn Rinker and Willard Scott That last photo with Glenn "cutting" that hogie sandwich says it all - having a good laugh with good friends - it's really hard to ask for anything better in life! - Frank Marques (Davie, FL)

You can read more about Glenn Rinker on this web site. -BB

Ed and I worked together back in the '70s both at NPR producing Big Band programs for Options and also providing dance music at the Key Bridge Marriott on Sunday nights. I have since moved to Seattle but Ed and I remain friends and talk on the phone occasionally. Please let me know how to get copies of the Joy Boys material. Thanks so much. - Allan Freedman (Seattle, WA)

All of our CDs are available for purchase. Send an email for details. And we now take credit card payments through PayPal!

True Value Hardware CD I like your website! I remember watching Willard Scott when I lived up in the Washington, D.C. area years ago after graduation. He was the first of the "entertaining" weatherman. Glad you liked the CD... thanks for the offer of a free CD in exchange. I like off-beat Christmas comedy related material, so something like that would be great. (or Crabs for Christmas!) Have a great year. - George Hample (Conyers, GA)

George shared with us a True Value Hardware Christmas CD with Willard Scott narrating "The Night Before Christmas." In return, he gets a free CD from our collection.

I remember listening to the Joy Boys as a child. And of course, always enjoying Ed and Willard as they moved through their respective careers. In fact, Willard spoke at my high school graduation. I must confess, however, that the way I ended up at the web site was not with respect to being a JB fan. I was doing a search for the song Crabs for Christmas and could not seem to find it in the form I first heard it, performed on the radio by "Baltimore Benny". Since the first time I heard the song, I have made it an annual Christmas tradition to unexpectedly serenade my family with this song in my best effort Baltimorean accent. This year, 10 years later, I plan on letting them hear the song properly. - Philip Benedicto (Centreville, VA)

"Crabs for Christmas" is one of the clips on our CD #JB115.

My friend David Klein and I worshipped the ground the Joy Boys walked on. Every morning, as we walked to Eastern Junior High School, we'd laugh ourselves silly about their latest commercial or serial episode. But they got me in hot water with my parents. You see, the Joy Boys radio show extended way past my bedtime. This was generally only a minor inconvenience, as my miniaturized, state-of-the-art transistor radio, with its earpiece enabled me to set up a clandestine listening station from my bed.

One evening late into the show, the Joy Boys put on one of their fake commercials. This one poked fun at Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurants. At "Kentucky Fried Liver," they said, the liver was "perforated," allowing the gravy to run directly onto the underlying bread.

While I recognized that the slightest noise might give away my illegal activity, I could not hold back my laughter. This exposed my covert activity, which was immediately and mercilessly shut down, and my radio was confiscated. The termination was merely temporary, though, as I procured a replacement radio shortly thereafter. And I set up a new listening post to hear the sweet hilarity that remains a treasured childhood memory. - Eugene H. Cantor (Bethesda, MD)

Eugene's letter originally appeared in the Washington Post, as a letter to the editor, on October 2 1999.

Tales, part 2
Tales, part 3
Tales about the site

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