Al Dark - forever young
Recently I saw somebody that looked similar to an old school chum Al Dart.
Al had his own drummer. He was one of the few at Marietta High School that dressed in a black leather jacket, boots, and, of course, his hair was duck tailed style.
I think Al wore taps on his boots and he took big giant steps. You could hear him coming.
Al had his own sense of humor packaged and had good delivery. For a while his delivery was no punch line at all. He would say something like, “I got a new one. This man walks into a bar and…” (at this point, he would smile like he is ready to hit you with the punch line) “pulls a frog out of his shirt pocket!” then he would laugh and maybe say, “Get it!?” and walk away laughing shaking his head.
Another verbal delivery Al would like to pull was say something with a word dangling with for no reason, like he might say, “Rock! What are you (long pause) doing?”
“Did you see the movie at the Strand about….” And walk off.
The next day he would come up to you and say “China?” (or whatever the movie was about playing at the Strand then).
He was good as Andy Kaufman was delivering jokes, in a warped way. I think Al would plan them out – and plan a sequence to follow.
I think Al lived on Cascade Drive or one of the streets parallel to Cascade. Sometimes on Sunday morning I would drop by there to visit – a lot of times friend spent the night with him in his parents basement where he had a miniature pool table set up. He was pretty good playing pool on it.
After I got out of the Navy I worked three years for Sinclair Refining Company. I haven’t Al in about 5 or 6 years.
Then one day I was walking down the loading platform of the warehouse and up walked Al Dart in a suit. He worked at the Sinclair Building on the other side of Atlanta. We recalled some of the great times we had we parted with smiles, thinking of old times.
He dropped dead shortly after that. I forgot why he died. But I do know he took his own blueprint with him when he went.