by Dave Williams
April 30, 2020
Willie Nelson turned 87 yesterday. I’ll turn 69 in August.
I’m too old for heroes, I suppose.
I’ve met a lot of very famous and admirable people but aside from my dad I’ve only had two heroes, Willie Mays was my first. That was 60 years ago.
“It’s been so long now, but it seems now it was only yesterday.”
Heroes are always bigger in persona than in person. Their legend precedes them. When you meet them in real life they can be disappointingly ordinary.
“Gee ain’t funny, how time just slips away.”
I was starstruck, literally speechless. Carolann had to do my talking for me. I said not a word.
“How’m I doin’? Oh, I guess that I’m doin’ fine.”
My wife asked Willie if he’d be willing to talk with me on the phone the next morning on my radio show.
(“Radio show?” I heard Willie think. “This guy can’t even talk.”)
Willie bailed us both out. He told her he’d be sleeping in the back of his bus headed for Colorado when I was on the air. He was so nice. He smiled at me like Willie Nelson.
“I gotta go now. I guess I’ll see you around.”
Willie seems immortal but every year at the end of April I get worried. I don’t want to lose him.
And I don’t want to go, either.
“And it’s surprisin’, how time just slips away.”
© Dave Williams 2020
Funny How Time Slips Away © Willie Nelson 1961