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A Romantic Anniversary Dinner In The Turbulent Sixties
Nan E. Fagan
It was the Summer of Love, 1967. The hot and strong Los Angeles sun on this
Saturday afternoon was setting; turning the City of Angels into a
glittering nighttime fairyland, and the L.A. night scene was just beginning.
Throngs of young people were flocking to the hottest nightspots and rock and
roll clubs on the Sunset Strip, while hippies walked up and down the
street, spreading their message of peace and love, with the sweet smell of
marijuana in the air. Car radios were blasting the latest sounds by the
Doors and the Jefferson Airplane. But over in Beverly Hills, it is a different
Richard Green, a tall, dark-haired, and handsome New York City-born
entertainment attorney and his glamorous Austrian-born wife, Eva, were
their twentieth wedding anniversary with a romantic French gourmet dinner. In
the dimly light Le Bourget restaurant at the Century Hotel, Richard,
wearing a dark black tuxedo; and Eva, looking like a queen in her satin,
lemon-yellow, and Paris-designed strapless gown and a matching wrap; a
diamond choker necklace, and her jet black hair swept up in a chignon, held each
other's hands by candlelight with that romantic look on their faces.
"Happy anneeversary to you to, Reechard" Eva cooed back. "I luff you so much,
dolling. I can't believe that ve've been married for tventy years.
As the theme from A Man and A Woman was softly playing, Eva had tears of joy in
her eyes. "Dolling, this is such a beautiful song."
"It is, my love." Richard replied softly. "Every time this song comes on, I feel
like holding you close to me. They just don't make songs like this
anymore. All they make now is that darn psychedelic garbage which I can't stand
I'm so glad that we didn't have kids, darling, ‘cause if we did, I'd
have a nervous breakdown, raise holy hell, and throw that music in the garbage "
"I know what you mean, dolling", Eva cooed once again.
Richard then continued, "Oh, by the way. The other day, when I was driving to
this new starlet's agent's office on Sunset Boulevard, one of those
dirty filthy hippies came up to me, with this funny-looking cigarette in his
mouth, and asked me if I wanted a drag. I wanted to drag him right down
to the police station, but I just got in my car and drove right off. And last
night, as I was driving down Santa Monica Boulevard, I heard that darn
psychedelic music from every single car radio right there on the block, and boy,
it just drove me crazy I had a hard day at the office and the last
thing that I need is to hear is that screeching psychedelic music Oh my God,
Eva, what has happened to this generation? But thank God I married a
classy European lady just like you. You have such grace, style, class, charm,
and culture. Remember when we were in your native Vienna, and we waltzed
the night away at the Vienna Opera Ball."
"Oh, I'll nefer forget it, Reechard."
"And how can I forget how beautiful you looked. You were wearing that bright
lemon-yellow satin sleveless gown, and your hair was styled just the way
it is now. It was your beauty that made me fall in love with you. Oh, here comes
Eva and Richard dined on such classic French fare as escargots, coq a vin, beef
Basque tomato salad, and coffee Bavarian creme. Raising their glasses of bubbly
Dom Perignon champagne, Richard cooed to his lovely Eva."May I offer a
toast to twenty long and happy years there Eva? Even after twenty years darling,
you're still my ladylove. You're just as lovely and beautiful as the
day that I first met you in Paris. Cheers."
"Cheers to you too, dolling," Eva cooed back as she and Richard clicked their
All of a sudden, outside of the hotel, there were shouts of and signs that read:
"Hey! Hey! LBJ! How many kids did you kill today?", "U.S. Out of
Vietnam" , "Make Love, Not War "; ‘Stop the War in Vietnam" , "Stop The War Now"
, "Resist the Draft" , "Burn Your Draft Cards", "Hell No, We Won't
Go;" "Peace", and "Down with U.S. Imperialism!"
The hotel's security manager stormed into the restaurant and shouted out,
"Everybody get out of here right now! Go right to the Angeles ballroom, and
stay there until I tell you to move There's anti-war protestors outside the
hotel Everybody get out of here right now "
As Richard and Eva hurriedly gathered their things, Richard remarked, "Not
another protest by those commie pigs We come here to have a nice romantic
dinner, and we have to deal with those Communist pigs Come on, Eva, let's go.
I'm going to find out what's going on " Putting his arm safely around
Eva, he escorted her out of the restaurant and down to the ballroom.
Richard found one of the assistant managers and asked, "What's this about an
"There's a Democratic fundraiser in here tonight in the Beverly ballroom. The
Angeles ballroom is right in the center of the hotel. That's where
everybody will be safe." replied the manager.
"It's just a mess. Just because they don't like Johnson's war policies, they
don't have to spoil it for everybody." replied Richard.
"Well anyway, we can't let anybody out of the hotel until the police tell us.
One of them threw a firebomb at a third-floor window, and everybody had
to be evacuated."
"Of all the nights " exclaimed Richard. "My wife and I can't even have a nice
quiet romantic dinner to celebrate our anniversary."
"Well Happy Anniversary, sir. But you better get movin to the ballroom. We'll
make sure that everybody's safe." as the manager walked away.
"Thank you, sir." replied Richard.
Inside the ballroom, among hundreds of frightened people. Richard had his arm
securely around a frightened Eva. "Reechard, vy are zees people so mean
I feel like being under zee Nazis again."
"Those Commie pinkos don't appreciate living in a free country!" exclaimed
Richard. "I don't mean you, darling, but those darn protesters! When Uncle
Sam called me up to serve in World
War II, I didn't burn my draft card or show disrespect for my country! I was
proud to go off and fight for it! If we didn't get involved right after
Pearl Harbor, Europe still would have been under the Nazis!"
"Pearl Habah Vat's zat, Reechard."
"Eva, Pearl Harbor is in Hawaii, near Honolulu, on the island of Oahu." replied
Richard. "The Japanese attacked our naval base there on a Sunday
morning; December 7, 1941. The next day, Roosevelt called it the "Day of Infamy,
declared war on Japan, and we got involved inWorld War II."
"Now I see it, Reechard. " cried Eva. "And you're right. Zees people don't
appreciate Ahmereeca! How vould zey like it if zey leeved under Hitlah "
"Perhaps these punks should read the story of Private Eddie Slovik." responded
Richard. "They'll think twice before badmouthing our government. But
any way, honey, we're safe here right in the ballroom."
"You're a real brave man, Reechard., and I'm so proud of you." replied Eva as
she kissed him so sweetly.
"Thank you, my darling." replied Richard. "And if they wanted to me go to
Vietnam, I'd go there in a minute."
"Vaht and vere is Vietnam, Reechard."
"It's a small country in Southeast Asia, my love. Just like in World War II, our
boys are over there right now spilling their blood out for this
"You tell eet like eet ees, Reechard. Eef it vasn't for you, Europe vould still
be under zee Nazis."
"Well anyway, as soon as they tell us to leave, we're going straight home, and
we'll put on some
romantic music. I'm not going to let a bunch of anti-war protesting punks
disrupt and ruin our anniversary."
After three hours of waiting, the demonstration was over, and everybody was
allowed to leave the ballroom. With his arm still securely around her, Eva
and Richard left the hotel, got into their car, and just simply went home.
As they arrived home to their sprawling Beverly Hills mansion, with a
spectacular view of Los Angeles, Richard escorted his lovely Eva out of the car
to their front door. Under the clear, blue, and starlit summer-night sky, they
embraced each other, with that look of love still on their faces.
"Reechard, thank you for a vonderful time." cooed Eva. "Zees is just like ven ve
"You're welcome, my darling." Richard cooed back. "Oh, and you're still so
beautiful. You're my brightest light, my shining star, my sweet little
"I'm just sorry that ve didn't finish our deenah."
"Don't worry about it. I'll call the restaurant tomorrow and pay for it. In the
neamtime, Happy Anniversary, Eva."
"Happy Anniversary too you to, Reechard." cooed Eva as Richard kissed her under
the brightly starlit sky.
Even after twenty years, Eva and Richard were still so very much in love.
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