Pluff Mud Chronicles

By David Farrow and Charles W. Waring III

David

It was the end of the Endless Summer. On a lazy late summer early afternoon in September of 1968, I was seated at a friend’s downtown dinner table right before returning to Christ School.

It was precisely 1 p.m. that torrid September afternoon weekday. We sat at the formal dining room table surrounded on the north wall by portraits of Charleston ancestors who had shaped the city 150 years before and open outsized French doors on the south. My friend and I sat on one side, his sister and their stepbrother sat on the other. Their father, who could well have been the funniest man I ever met, sat on one end, a perfect foil to his more formal wife who had a bit of a patrician air and sat on the other side of the long table and closest to the kitchen.

Pluff Mud Chronicles

By David Farrow and Charles W. Waring III

David

The morning sun rising over Fort Sumter was shining like a red rubber ball as I stepped from my parents’ home on South Battery, surfboard in hand at 6:20 a.m. that early June morning. I was 15 years old going on 25 as I marched into the dawn. I turned left on Legare Street. I knew everyone in every house. The sun peeked over centuries-old brick walls, early rays spilled through tended lawns, then onto me as I walked past ancient live oaks that spread their roots and limbs and defined the street; I am secure that this day will be a fine one indeed.

By David Farrow and Charles W. Waring III

Forty years ago when Gerald Ford was president, it was time to head back to start the fall semester at George Washington University. It was time to pack up my things to head for Bev-er-ly. Problem was, unlike the, Clampetts, I had nothing with which to move my stuff.

Back in those days, the “Automile” was up on Morrison Drive. I ventured up to — I think it was Hoover the Mover — where I bought a 1963 Plymouth Satellite for $400. It was great. The automatic transmission was controlled by push buttons for the gears. It rolled upon massive mag wheels. It had no back seats; they had been replaced with red swivel chairs. I’m not making this up. Oh … someone had painted the exterior with a paintbrush — black streaks of oil paint brushstrokes glinting in the hot September sun.

Pluff Mud Chronicles

By David Farrow and Charles W. Waring III

Well, here we are: May, magnolias, gardenias and graduation; the latter has taken a personal turn this year at Chez Farrow on the Ashley. My girlfriend’s best friend’s daughter is graduating from the College O’Knowledge in mere days. I bring this up not because I am eager to hear the speaker (Couldn’t tell you who it is if you put a gun to my head), but because I have been charged to find an extra ticket for that blessed event. They are rare as hen’s teeth. Apparently, I am on a very short list. If that fails, then it’s off to Craig’s List where they are flying off the shelves at $250 a clip.

Pluff Mud Chronicles

By David Farrow and Charles W. Waring III

David

If you follow me on Facebook, you know I take a lot of those little quizzes like what rock and roll star would you be (John Lennon), what Greek deity are you (Eros), what Gone With The Wind character are you (Rhett Butler) and so on. This very morning I took a quiz that asked, “When Will You Die?” The answer? At a whopping 57 years old. Thing is, Charles, on the 28th of this month on the birthday you and I share (happy 50th), I will be 62.

Pluff Mud Chronicles

By David Farrow and Charles W. Waring III 

David

“This will be the best year ever!” he whispers into her ear, year after year, over the spectacular fireworks.

By David Farrow and Charles W. Waring III

David

Charles, I would love to tell you that my memories of back to school were idyllic, part of the panoply of memories that color the halcyon days of youth. Thinking back on my almost 18 years of matriculation from the perspective of 35 years later, though, with the exception of one the Simons boys almost putting my eye out while acting out a scene from the Three Stooges, I don’t really remember a heck of a lot … except for early football at Christ School. That I remember as if it were yesterday.

Mercury newspaper racks are located at the following locations:

The Meeting Street Inn

Clair's Service Station at 334 Folly Rd.

Harris Teeter on Houston-Northcutt Blvd.

The Square Onion in I'On

Mt. Pleasant Library on Mathis Ferry Rd.