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Dean Martin, Jerry Lewis and Me

Updated on March 27, 2012

This hub's for me. If you're reading it, then I felt compelled to publish it. But really, I just needed to write, to ramble.

Sunday night I finished a book I enjoyed very much. I found it at the Hospice Resale Store in beautiful downtown Lancaster and picked it up for next to nothing. Dean and Me (A Love Story) by Jerry Lewis is Jerry's take on his life and friendship with Dean Martin. If you don't know these guys please get back to listening to Justin Bieber or Lady GaGa now and I won't bother you anymore. Ever.

Martin and Lewis were huge about the year I was born, but I remember them more as single acts when I was a teen and later. The Jerry Lewis movies and the Dean Martin Show on television were great entertainment for me. I wanted to be as cool as Dean and instead was often as silly as Jerry. I was aware that they had been a team and had seen some of the old movies on late night TV or at the drive in. When Frank Sinatra brought them back together at the Muscular Dystrophy Labor Day Telethon in 1977, I was sitting at home, watching.

The book chronicles the good times, the tension and the eventual break up of this pair.

It also demonstrates a bond between two guys that you don't see that often. In the movies the guys were Newman and Redford. In my favorite books they are Robert B. Parker's Spenser and Hawk, Robert Crais' Elvis Cole and Joe Pike. In the real world, its often firefighters, military personnel, and cops.

I've been there; I've had that. I miss it.

Monday, I went to the Lancaster Police Department for the first time in several years to talk to Paul Smith who used to be a dispatcher. He's the Patrol Captain now.

The first person I saw behind the glass at Records didn't know me. The guy standing in front of me was a man I'd arrested for sexually assaulting a little boy with a piece of wood. He remembered me fine, I could see it in his eyes. Ain't life grand?

I gained access to the front hall and Chief Harlean Howard just happened to be walking down my way. She worked undercover buying drugs for me when she was first hired.

"This place gives me the creeps," I said.

She laughed. I laughed. She showed me her remodeled office. I was impressed but still felt odd somehow. She introduced me to a new recruit and then I headed off to find Paul.

I wound my way to the back hall and got locked in by an automatic door that was never locked when I was there. I found Captain Smith, and we went down to his new office which happened to be one of my old ones. I told him why I was there. He told me that he had a couple of guys that would refer needy folks that they met on the job to the Hospice Resale Store. We’re going to drop the already low prices for these folks.

Back on the front hall, Harlean rounded me up a ceramic coffee mug with the LPD logo on it, and I was headed out when she offered me coffee. In the break area and without thinking, I opened a cabinet door and the styrofoam cups were still there along with the powdered creamer, just like when I was working. So much had changed in the building, that I found that oddly comforting.

I've been trying to figure out all day why that place made me feel uneasy. One reason is that I've never really quit feeling like a cop and suddenly I realized I no longer belonged. But it's more than that. I knew that warm November day in 1997 when I eased out of the lot with the last of my stuff in my green Mustang with the top down that it was over. I was fine with that, still am.

I don't miss the job. But I do miss that bond. Some friends from the old days have moved, a few have died, and one is just missing. Ain't life grand?

On the other hand, I'm working on a story where this pedophile thinks he is about to abduct a young girl. I've got other plans for him.........


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    • resspenser profile imageAUTHOR

      Ronnie Sowell 

      6 years ago from South Carolina

      Thanks Winsome, glad you stopped by!

    • Winsome profile image


      6 years ago from Southern California by way of Texas

      There comes a time for all of us when the routine must give way to something or someone who will let us express the bottled up need to be ourselves more fully. "Someone's knocking on the door. Somebody's ringing the bell. Do me a favor, open the door and let 'em in. "

      Whether it is Dean or Lennon getting their space or us finding life beyond work, even though the whole is greater than the sum of its parts, at least the numbers add up in the way we can live with it.

      Really enjoyed the narrative of your old workplace. =: )

    • resspenser profile imageAUTHOR

      Ronnie Sowell 

      7 years ago from South Carolina

      Thanks Will, have a great weekend!

    • WillStarr profile image


      7 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

      This one really brings back memories of my cousins and going to see a Martin and Lewis movie at the local theater! We laughed outselves sick.

      When your life depends on the other guy, it's often a bond for life.

      Voted up!

    • resspenser profile imageAUTHOR

      Ronnie Sowell 

      7 years ago from South Carolina


      These two had quite a time way back when. Glad you enjoyed the hub and thanks for the rating!

    • resspenser profile imageAUTHOR

      Ronnie Sowell 

      7 years ago from South Carolina


      Old, who you calling old? LOL! Thanks for reading and for the comment. I might be contemplative... let me think about it.

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 

      7 years ago from Sunny Florida

      I really enjoyed your writing and the way you expressed the changes that have happened in your life.

      I remember watching all the Dean Martin shows when I was growing up and have enjoyed him and Jerry Lewis is all their funny movies. Rated up and interesting!

    • profile image

      Tammy Lochmann 

      7 years ago

      Hi old friend! I enjoyed reading your thoughts.Your writing is always so contemplative, it really shows what sort of person you are.

    • resspenser profile imageAUTHOR

      Ronnie Sowell 

      7 years ago from South Carolina

      B. Leekley,

      Wow! That is an amazing comment. I appreciate it very much. Thank you!

    • B. Leekley profile image

      Brian Leekley 

      7 years ago from Bainbridge Island, Washington, USA

      This is a well-expressed and touching hub on the emotional pain of the losses brought by the passage of time. Work places change. Neighborhoods change. Households change. Friends move away, grow up, die, change. Babies become toddlers become children become teenagers become young adults and move away. A favorite store after many years in business closes and a completely different store takes its place. A beloved church minister retires or is reassigned. Time brings change which brings losses to mourn, and to let go, to make room in our awareness for the good things in our lives that are happening now. Even so, remembering the good old days is one of the pleasures of life.

      I loved the Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis movies when I was a schoolboy in the early 1950s and was disappointed when they split up as a comedy team.


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