I was fifteen, and in the happiest place I knew: Sag Harbor, Long Island, where my family spent a long vacation every summer. At Sag Harbor I lived in and on the water, went everywhere in our boat, and slept with sand in my bed every night. My dad and I caught something to eat every day: flounder, blue-claw crabs, clams we dug with our hands.
On this particular day our vacation was about to come to a close. My parents were at the cottage, packing to go home to the city. I was seated on a long white sofa in a spacious, glass-walled beach house, where I had been invited by several rather adorable guys. This was the fifties. I had no fear that the guys had brought me there to drop a date-rape drug into my Pepsi, or involve me in some satanic ritual. And I was right. We were there because they wanted me to hear some music they had recently discovered. The record was by The Kingston Trio, and I was enchanted.
It was my first exposure to what we called folk music. I've always loved harmony, plus the three guys on the album cover were so cute! I don't know what they look like now (hey, I'm not cute either), and I hardly ever hear their songs anymore, but when I do I still appreciate the harmonies. And "Scotch and Soda" always always takes me back to a time when I felt, rightly or wrongly, on the verge of something wonderful every day.