Several places have been started mainly for people’s enjoyment. Many are in or near Atlanta. Can you guess why?
—Georgia, by Elmer D. Williams
Spike's mother caught Spike gazing for a long time at the go-go girl posters on a history web site. Spike is doing a history web site essay project for me. Spike's been real excited about it.
We’re about one week away from the due date of our first-of-five essay assignments for the school year. This first one’s about one of the five real good reasons we study history … about how interesting it is to compare places and things and people and events then and now. Five hundred or more words, please.
I’ve had them explore a web site called Atlanta Time Machine. It’s packed with way-back-then-and-now pictures of commercial buildings, homes, street scenes, and movie and TV shows filmed in Atlanta. Five hundred words or more on your impressions of the site … why would you think someone would put so much work into the site … are these places better or worse … in your opinion.
Atlanta Time Machine is a history lover's incredible compilation of then-and-now photographs is mesmerizing … many hundreds of them—the now photograph taken from the exact same spot as the then photograph.
And that special section … that special in-depth exploration of Atlanta’s world-class 1950’s and 60’s history of being a hell of a hotbed of go-go exotic supper clubs. And the incredible compilation of their promotional posters promoting the exotic women found in such downtown joints. In special outfits. A woman who dances with a little monkey in one of them. I sort of forgot about that section when I assigned essay one of five … until Spike's mother’s e-mail arrived.
Oops. But I respect her sentiments, too. I do.
Seems that Spike's mother didn’t think her son should be learning such things through a school project. Now we’re going to have to supervise him while he’s looking through the web site. She asked for my thoughts.
Fair enough, I said. Point taken. Maybe ask Spike to not look at those sections while he’s on the web site.
Poor Spike. He’s got to be thinking that historical study introduces us to people and events … of all kinds. Right? And that if it isn't nasty ... he should be able to learn something from it?
I’m hoping Spike is remembering how I’ve been teaching and preaching to them this way of thinking and understanding. Even as eighth graders … you can think for yourself. Don’t be cynical, though. Don’t judge adult behavior unless it's clearly warranted. Ask smart questions ... of adults.
In this super go-go section of the site everybody has their clothes on. Poor Spike. In his confinement he’s missing the history of Leb’s Cartwheel Lounge poster from 1965, promoting some disc-a-go-go girls who’ll be doing the swim, frug, and watusi. You can see how much these ladies love their work.
I wonder how far Spike made his way around before his research was supervised.
Kitten’s Korner … with 35 kittens who dance, sing, and purr. Peachtree at Sixth Street. Plenty of parking.
Little Richard and his sensational show at the all new Whisk a Go-Go.
Okay. Point taken, mom. This is sexy-cheesy stuff. But fascinating to know it existed in our fine community.
Anyhow, seems like there will be five ladies at Carl’s Club on Pine Street who won’t have their shirts on … the poster sort of says. Wednesday is ladies’ night, by the way.
Frank Sinatra, Jr. for one week only at the Domino. Looks like a guy named Larry O’Brien will also be playing … a trombone.
Sockit to me!
Discotheque dancing at the Gaslite Lounge. Congenial hour: 5:30 to 7:30
Sherrill is your daytime barmixtress at the Pink Poodle.
Phun! Gurlz! Muzic! At Bill Bentley’s.
Tami Roche will be performing her fascinating dances at the Domino.
Tiny Lou at the Gypsy Room … the girl who refused to dance with Hitler.
Hellzapoppin performed in the Gypsy Room in 1953.
Johnny Morrison … half music … a half wit … at the Gypsy Room.
The Anchorage presents Primativa, featuring her original jungle fantasy … never before seen or heard by an Atlanta audience.
Gawana at the Anchorage. Chicken in the rough for $1.00.
Then maybe Spike clicked around a little more in Atlanta Time Machine in eagerly researching what before-and-after people and places and things and events to describe in his essay … and gazed at a photograph of a former governor of the fine state of Georgia running a black man out of the governor’s fried chicken restaurant … with a pistol. Running a black man out of the restaurant with the kind assistance of another fellow who’s got an axe handle in his moist grip.
A governor, who really didn’t know better. An adult. Just like Primativa and a bunch of purring kittens and a barmixtress and their slick, smiling, shiny-suited go-go-club owners, thoroughly enjoying the Atlanta good times, profitably.
And their loyal customers, some called sex-cats. Enjoying sixteen ounce T-bones … and gyrating girls! Who dance with monkeys! While a man plays a trombone!
Adults, I'm sure Spike was thinking. Adults who do all these things. Not eighth graders.