Sometimes it is fun to imagine fictional characters as real people not just the brainchild of talented writers, and so you wonder what became of those characters? Did they lead a happy life or did they just up and disappear? That is what the next few stories of mine are about, the fictional women of the songs that I grew up with in the 60’s and 70’s and what I imagine became of them.
Brandy (You’re a Fine Girl)
In 1972 the band Looking Glass released this gem of a song written by Elliot Lurie and tells the story of a barmaid in a busy seaport harbour town which serves “a hundred ships a day.” Even though sailors try to flirt with her she has feelings for one sailor only but she knows that she can never have him because as the lyrics state he claimed his life, his love, and his lady, was “the sea.”. So she continued her life even as she wore a locket that he gave to her. And while the story ends there I often have wondered, what became of Brandy and the sailor that brandy loved? Well her is my theory.
In 1972 I imagine that Brandy was a young 20 year old women who had the same hopes and dreams of many young women that lived and worked in harbour towns across North America, get an education, get married and get the heck out of the dreariness of the little town they grew up in. But in Brandy’s case I don’t believe it ever happened, after waiting for her beloved for a few years she finally got the news that she feared as her sailor love’s ship The Edmund Fitzgerald( like the way I tied that one in?) went down and all lives were lost leaving Brandy desolate and finally realizing that she would never have her true love. She would continue working slinging beer in the port town and eventually around 1980 marry a sailor so she wouldn’t be alone for her whole life. She would eventually wind up owning a small tavern and raise 3 children with her husband but would never be truly happy as she thought she could be. She would walk to the shoreline every Sunday morning after church and sit on the rocky shores still hoping to catch a glimpse of her true love in the clouds as they float by, but it has never happened and she walks slowly to her home that is just lived in by she and her husband, as her kids have grown up and moved away. Brandy lives to see her Grandchildren once a month when they drive up the coast to visit and that makes her life bearable. She still keeps that braided chain in a lock box beside her bed and
At night when the bars close down
Brandy walks through a silent town
And loves a man who’s not around
She still can hear him say
Brandy you’re a fine girl
But my life, my love and my lady is the sea