Party of Eras

Originally Published 06/01/2011 06:51:49 AM

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Photo Source: Jessica Beebe

One buck got the entire carload a Saturday night double-feature under the stars. It was sundown and the final rays pierced through the trees and the haze of cigarettes as the biggest screens you could imagine came to life and the features started. And the evenings cooled and sweaters came on as dew and fog and the smell of the pines crept in through the open windows.

It was all about looking good. Best shirt and jeans, and spend a little extra time on the hair. Play it smooth, suave as hell, it’s all under control.

Hot dogs, Cokes in paper cups with that perfect soft ice, popcorn, Junior Mints and Chuckles.  And a hand to hold and a sly yawn-and-grab-the-shoulder move to practice. Maybe you’d end up watching the final credits from the back seat.

500 cars in the lot, and always a wise-ass yelling at the screen for the whole movie from the car next door, at least until they got kicked out. Chevys with fins and Olds 88s with Rocket V8s and Impalas with T-Tops and GTOs with 455s parked, speakers attached, watching Night of the Living Dead, Plan 9 from Outer Space, Creature from the Haunted Sea, Rebel Without a Cause, Beach Blanket Bingo.

It was a party of eras, the drive-in: the best of Hollywood and Detroit and America on parade nightly. You should have seen it…

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