Who was cooler in the hippie-era, (and into the 70's) than, "SONNY AND CHER." I say, "Nobody."
The ultimate power couple, Sonny (Salvatore Bono) and Cher (Cherilyn Sarkisian), were an oddball pairing. While entertaining, they went on to represent love, peace and harmony. In their professional run from 1964-1977, these pop-rockers sold more than 80 million records and starred in two, musical/comedy variety TV shows. Their meteoric and unlikely bliss epitomized togetherness, free-love and the sexual revolution. They captured these ideas with two hit songs in 1965, "BABY DON'T GO" and "I GOT YOU BABE."
YOUNG AND BRIGHT-EYED, SONNY AND CHER, AROUND THE TIME, "I GOT YOU BABE" DEBUTED. CLICK ON THE LINK BELOW TO SEE A RARE VIDEO OF IT.
In the eyes of my generation, Sonny and Cher were destined to live happily ever after. But their career hit a rough spot and in 1975, they divorced, (but performed together until 1977). Cher went on to become a solo superstar and Sonny entered politics. He died in 1998, in a highly publicized skiing accident. Some conspiracy theorists still believe that Sonny Bono's political enemies hired a hit-man to assassin him.
Unbeknownst to Cher, CNN broadcast Sonny's funeral which included her tearful eulogy and a chorus singing, "THE BEAT GOES ON."
LATER IN 1998, SONNY AND CHER WERE ETERNALLY REUNITED WHEN THEY WERE ENSHRINED ONTO THE HOLLYWOOD WALK OF FAME.
I know another couple that has surpassed the longevity that we all expected from Sonny and Cher. Coincidentally, it's a different Sonny, Sonny and Vicki. Yes my cousin Vicki and her hubby Sonny have been an exclusive couple since 1970. They visited Atlantic City last week, so my wife Sue and I helped them celebrate their 34th wedding anniversary.
When my big family was still intact, Sonny and Vicki got married on September 16, 1978. Their reception was held at the Leonard's of Great Neck (New York). I went to many affairs there but Sonny and Vicki's wedding stands out for two reasons; it was my last, big family get-together before I moved to Las Vegas and during the ceremony, one of Sonny's friends passed out from all the excitement, (well that was their story and 34 years later, they're sticking with it).
(9-16-2912) LUNCH WITH SONNY (RED SHIRT) AND VICKI (BEHIND HIM), AT "SCALES" IN THE GARDNER'S BASIN SECTION OF ATLANTIC CITY.
Sonny and Vicki stayed the whole weekend at Harrah's, (casino). Among other things, they gambled, went to shows and got pampered. They came so very close to REALLY celebrating their anniversary on the "WHEEL OF FORTUNE" slot machine, (below). Sonny and Vicki also loved the celebrity impersonator show which was highlighted by meeting the actor playing Steven Tyler. Also, they rented a cabana at the pool and got massages.
MEMORIES TO LAST A LIFE TIME, THEY MISSED HITTING NEARLY TWO-MILLION SCHMACKERS BY AN EYELASH. ONE MORE THIRD OF A TURN ON THAT LAST REEL AND THEY WOULD HAVE REALLY, REALLY, REALLY BEEN GLAD THEY CAME TO VISIT US.
Sonny and Vicki have other interests too. Vicki is the ultimate dog lover. She recently lost her Spanky but he lives on with her loving stories. As for Sonny (a.k.a. Rustyoldnuts), his second greatest love after Vicki is, being a car enthusiast.
HERE THE LOVEBIRDS ARE SINGING A DUET OF SONNY AND CHER'S, "ALL I EVER WANT IS YOU."
In addition to their uncinditional devotion to each other, Sonny and Vicki were always generous with their time, energy and other resources. When my mom was ailing, they visited her during the good times and the not so good times.
MY MOM'S 78th BIRTHDAY PARTY AT LENNY'S CLAM BAR IN HOWARD BEACH. THAT'S VICKI (far left) AND SONNY TOOK THE PICTURE.
At my mom's 79th birthday party at "THE OUTBACK" in Bensonhurst, Sonny played hero when my mom couldn't maneuver herself to get out of my car. When all else failed, Sonny amazingly used a fireman's grip and lifted her safely out.
This past July, Sonny and Vicki came the furthest distance to attend my son Andrew's high school graduation party.
JULY 1, 2012. TWO DAYS AFTER THE DEVASTATING WINDSTORM, WE MANAGED TO PUT THE PIECES TOGETHER AND HAVE THE PARTY ON SCHEDULE, (SEE MY "ICEMAN COMETH" BLOG FROM JULY 9th).
The husband and wife team of Sonny and Cher was a million-to-one shot. Yes it's true, they went their own ways long ago, but the great joy of their vibe, music, comedy and effect on our culture, will live forever.
But far better, Sonny and Vicki are a gazillion-to-one couple. Their lasting, exclusive love and lust for life is a pleasure to be around and is an inspirational beacon for other couples to appreciate.
IN SOUTH OZONE PARK QUEENS, THE HONEYMOONERS IN 1971. SHE'S 13 AND HE'S 16...AND THEY WERE ALREADY TOGETHER FOR A YEAR...AND TOGETHER EVER SINCE. TRY THAT, SONNY AND CHER!
I must have been out of my mind! My original blog idea for today was my history at Gardner's Basin.
HOW COULD I COMPARE HANGIN' WITH THE KING AND QUEEN OF COMPANIONSHIP WITH THE ACTUAL DOLPHIN WATCHING BOAT THAT ANDREW PUKED IN, SIX YEARS AGO.
Way before I realized that with all my wisdom, wit and wherewithal, there was little chance I could make a Gardner's Basin story anything but dull, I realized how much of a star attraction I had to write about.
So to my wonderful cousins, Sonny and Vicki, HAPPY 34th ANNIVERSARY.
I wish you both continued happiness and countless more beautiful sunrises and sunsets together as you sing, "I STILL GOT YOU BABE."
VICKI'S FAVORITE SUNRISE PICTURE, AT JONES BEACH ON "LONG-GUY-LIN."
And I hope Sonny and Vicki believe that NOBODY is more fun to hang-out with...than us!
"THE MORE CLEARLY WE CAN FOCUS OUR ATTENTION ON THE WONDERS AND REALITIES OF THE UNIVERSE ABOUT US, THE LESS TASTE WE SHALL HAVE FOR DESTRUCTION."
PETER O'TOOLE (1932-2013) ACTOR
(proposed headstone) "IT DISTRESSES US TO RETURN WORK WHICH IS NOT PERFECT."
JIMI HENDRIX (1942-1970) MUSICIAN
"I'VE BEEN IMITATED SO WELL, I'VE HEARD PEOPLE COPY MY MISTAKES."
PHIL McGRAW (1950-PRESENT) TV PERSONALITY
"A YEAR FROM NOW, YOU'RE GONNA WEIGH MORE OR LESS WHAT YOU DO RIGHT NOW."
CHARLES LAUGHTON AS QUASIMODO (1939) "THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME."
"IF ONLY I COULD HAVE BEEN MADE OF STONE LIKE THEE."
ANATOLE FRANCE (1844-1924) NOVELIST
"UNTIL ONE HAS LOVED AN ANIMAL, PART OF ONE'S SOUL REMAINS UNAWAKENED."
FRANKLIN D. ROOSEVELT (1882-1945) 32nd AMERICAN PRESIDENT
"I THINK WE CONSIDER TOO MUCH THE GOOD LUCK OF THE EARLY BIRD AND NOT ENOUGH THE BAD LUCK OF THE EARLY WORM."
WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE (1564-1616) - PLAYWRIGHT, POET
"THE FAULT DEAR BRUTUS, IS NOT IN OUR STARS BUT IN OURSELVES."
GRACE SLICK (1939-PRESENT) - SINGER
"IF YOU REMEMBER THE SIXTIES...YOU WEREN'T THERE."
ROBIN WILLIAMS (1951-2014) COMEDIAN AND ACTOR
"I USED TO THINK THAT THE WORST THING IN LIFE WAS TO END UP ALL ALONE, IT'S NOT. THE WORST THING IN LIFE IS TO END UP WITH THE PEOPLE THAT MAKE YOU FEEL ALONE.
JANE FONDA (1937-PRESENT) - ACTRESS, ACTIVIST
"IT'S NEVER TOO LATE - NEVER TOO LATE TO START OVER, NEVER TOO LATE TO BE HAPPY."
WAYNE DYER (1940-PRESENT) AUTHOR, MOTIVATIONAL SPEAKER
"WORRYING DOESN'T TAKE AWAY TOMORROW'S TROUBLE...IT TAKES AWAY TODAY'S PEACE."
ANTOINE DE SAINT-EXUPERY (1900-1944) AUTHOR, AVIATOR
"GROWN-UPS NEVER UNDERSTAND ANYTHING FOR THEMSELVES, AND IT IS TIRESOME FOR CHILDREN TO BE ALWAYS AND FOREVER EXPLAINING THINGS FOR THEM."
ELLEN DEGENERES (1958-PRESENT) ENTERTAINER
"LIFE IS LIKE ONE BIG MARDI GRAS. BUT INSTEAD OF SHOWING YOUR BOOBS, SHOW PEOPLE YOUR BRAIN AND IF THEY LIKE WHAT THEY SEE, YOU'LL HAVE MORE BEADS THAN YOU KNOW WHAT TO DO WITH."
MIKE TYSON (1966-Present) HEAVYWEIGHT BOXER
"EVERYONE HAS A PLAN...UNTIL THEY GET HIT."
"CAPTAIN" JACK McCARTHY - TV HOST, SPOKESPERSON (1915-1996)
"HUT TO PEEN AND SMOOTH SAILING."
BILL COSBY - ENTERTAINER, ACTIVIST (1937-PRESENT).
"A WORD TO THE WISE AIN'T NECESSARY - IT'S THE STUPID ONES THAT NEED ADVICE."
VOLTAIRE - (1694-1778) - WRITER - PHILOSOPHER
"THE SECRET OF BEING BORING IS TO SAY EVERYTHING."
JUDY GARLAND (1922-1969) - SINGER, ACTRESS
ALWAYS BE A FIRST-RATE VERSION OF YOURSELF, INSTEAD OF A SECOND-RATE VERSION OF SOMEONE ELSE."
STEVEN TYLER (1948-PRESENT) SINGER, MUSICIAN
"SEX, DRUGS AND ROCK-N-ROLL! TAKE OUT THE DRUGS AND YOU'VE GOT MORE TIME FOR THE OTHERS."
OAIL ANDREW O. A. "BUM" PHILLIPS (1923-Present) NFL Football Coach
"DON SHULA (HALL-OF-FAME FOOTBALL COACH) COULD TAKE HIS'N AND BEAT YOUR'N OR HE COULD TAKE YOUR'N AND BEAT HIS'N."
ALFRED HITCHCOCK (1899-1980) FILM DIRECTOR AND PRODUCER
"DISNEY (WALT) HAS THE BEST CASTING, IF HE DOESN'T LIKE A CHARACTER, HE TEARS HIM UP."
BRUCE LEE (1940-1973) MARTIAL ARTIST - ACTOR
"A TEACHER IS NEVER A GIVER OF TRUTH; HE IS A GUIDE, A POINTER TO THE TRUTH THAT EACH STUDENT MUST FIND FOR HIMSELF."
MAE WEST (1893-1980) - ENTERTAINER
"A GOOD MAN IS HARD TO FIND...AND A HARD MAN IS GOOD TO FIND."
HARRY HOUDINI (1874-1926) MAGICIAN, STUNT PERFORMER
"THE GREATEST ESCAPE I EVER MADE WAS WHEN I LEFT APPLETON, (WISCONSIN)."
CHARLIE CHAPLIN (1889-1977) COMEDIAN, FILM MAKER
"NOTHING IS PERMANENT IN THIS WICKED WORLD, NOT EVEN OUR TROUBLES."
SAMMY DAVIS Jr. - ENTERTAINER (1925-1990)
"MOST ORGIES ARE SAD. ALL THAT WILDNESS AND ALL THOSE LAUGHS WERE LIKE THE SHINING SILVER AND GOLD PAPER ON PACKAGES, BUT THERE WAS NOTHING INSIDE."
SOPHIE TUCKER - COMEDIENNE (1886-1966)
"I ASKED MY HUSBAND ERNIE TO KISS ME WHERE IT SMELLS, SO HE MOVED US TO NEW JERSEY."
FRANCIS P. CHURCH - NEWSPAPER PUBLISHER, EDITOR (1839-1906)
"YES VIRGINIA, THERE IS A SANTA CLAUS."
GEORGE McGOVERN - POLITICIAN, WAR HERO (1922-2012)
I'M FED UP TO THE EARS WITH OLD MEN DREAMING UP WARS FOR YOUNG MEN TO DIE IN.
JULIUS HENRY "GROUCHO" MARX - COMEDIAN (1890-1977)
"I WOULDN'T WANT TO BELONG TO ANY CLUB THAT WOULD HAVE ME AS A MEMBER."
NEIL ARMSTRONG - ASTRONAUNT (1930-2012)
"THIS IS ONE STEP FOR MAN, ONE GIANT LEAP FOR MANKIND."
MARCEL MARCEAU - MIME, ACTOR (1923-2007)
"IT'S GOOD TO SHUT UP SOMETIMES."
MARTIN LUTHER KING, Jr. - CLERGYMAN, CIVIL RIGHTS ACTIVIST (1929-1968)
"FREE AT LAST, FREE AT LAST, FREE AT LAST, THANK GOD ALL MIGHTY, I'M FREE AT LAST." and "DARKNESS CANNOT DRIVE OUT DARKNESS. ONLY LIGHT CAN DO THAT. HATE CANNOT DRIVE OUT HATE. ONLY LOVE CAN DO THAT." and "I HAVE A DREAM THAT MY FOUR LITTLE CHILDREN WILL ONE DAY LIVE IN A NATION WHERE THEY WILL NOT BE JUDGED BY THE COLOR OF THEIR SKIN, BUT BY THE CONTENT OF THEIR CHARACTER."
LINDSAY NELSON - SPORTSCASTER - (1919-1995)
"THEY, (THE 1962, NEW YORK METS), PLAYED FOR FUN, BECAUSE THEY COULDN'T PLAY ANY OTHER WAY."
SAM LEVENSON - HUMORIST-JOURNALIST (1911-1980)
IF YOU DIE IN AN ELEVATOR, BE SURE TO PRESS THE "UP" BUTTON.
BUDDHA (SIDDHARTHA GAUTAMA) - SPIRITUAL TEACHER (c. 563 BC - 483 BC)
"THOUSANDS OF CANDLES CAN BE LIT FROM A SINGLE CANDLE, AND THE LIFE OF THE CANDLE WILL NOT BE SHORTENED. HAPPINESS NEVER DECREASES BY BEING SHARED." and "YOU CAN SEARCH THROUGHOUT THE ENTIRE UNIVERSE FOR SOMEONE MORE DESERVING OF YOUR LOVE AND AFFECTION THAN YOU ARE YOURSELF AND THAT PERSON IS NOT TO BE FOUND ANYWHERE. YOU YOURSELF, AS MUCH AS ANYBODY IN THE UNIVERSE, DESERVE YOUR LOVE AND AFFECTION."
MOTHER TERESA - NUN & MISSIONARY (1910-1997)
"I KNOW GOD WILL NOT GIVE ME ANYTHING I CAN'T HANDLE, I JUST WISH HE DIDN'T TRUST ME SO MUCH."
SHIRLEY JACKSON - AUTHOR (1916-1965)
"I HAVE OFTEN NOTICED THAT ONE CAN OBSERVE WITH DETATCHMENT, SIGHTS THAT WHEN PUT INTO WORDS BECOME DISGUSTING."
MALCOLM X. - CIVIL RIGHTS ACTIVIST, CLERGYMAN (1925-1965)
"YOU'RE NOT SUPPOSED TO BE SO BLIND WITH PATRIOTISM THAT YOU CAN'T FACE REALITY. WRONG IS WRONG NO MATTER WHO SAYS IT OR DOES IT."
MEL BLANC - VOICE ACTOR, COMEDIAN (1908-1989)
"THAT'S ALL FOLKS!"
MUHAMMAD ALI - BOXER, SOCIAL ACTIVIST (1942-Present)
"I AM THE GREATEST."
JACKIE GLEASON - ACTOR, COMEDIAN (1916-1987)
"THE WORST THING YOU CAN DO WITH MONEY... IS SAVE IT."
JAWAHARLAL NEHRU - 1st PRIME MINISTER OF INDIA - 1889-1964
"LIFE IS LIKE A GAME OF CARDS, THE HAND YOU ARE DEALT IS DETERMINISM. THE WAY YOU PLAY IT, IS FREE WILL."
HARRY TRUMAN - 33RD U.S. PRESIDENT - (1884-1972)
"IT'S A RECESSION WHEN YOUR NEIGHBOR LOSES HIS JOB; IT'S A DEPRESSION WHEN YOU LOSE YOURS."
EDGAR ALLAN POE - AUTHOR (1809-1849)
"I HAVE NO FAITH IN HUMAN PERFECTABILITY. I THINK THAT HUMAN EXERTION WILL HAVE NO APPRECIABLE EFFECT UPON HUMANITY. MAN IS NOW ONLY MORE ACTIVE-NOT MORE HAPPY-NOR WISE, THAN HE WAS 6000 YEARS AGO."
CONFUCIUS - SOCIAL PHILOSOPHER - (551 BC - 479 BC)
"NEVER IMPOSE ONTO OTHERS WHAT YOU WOULD NOT CHOOSE FOR YOURSELF."
RODNEY DANGERFIELD - ACTOR - COMEDIAN - (1921-2004)
MY LUCK IS SO BAD, IF I INVESTED IN A CEMETERY, PEOPLE WOULD STOP DYING....Dangerfield's Tombstone, "THERE GOES THE NEIGHBORHOOD."
ZSA ZSA GABOR - ACTRESS - (1917-PRESENT)
"I NEVER HATED A MAN ENOUGH TO GIVE BACK HIS DIAMONDS."
RONALD REAGAN - 40th U.S. PRESIDENT - ACTOR (1911-2004)
"IT HAS BEEN SAID THAT POLITICS IS THE SECOND OLDEST PROFESSION. I HAVE LEARNED THAT IT BEARS A STRIKING RESEMBLENCE TO THE FIRST.'
HASKEL "HY" EDELBLUM - FATHER, ROLE MODEL, ARTIST (1928-1995)
"IF SOMEONE IS TALKING TO THEM SELF AND YOU ANSWER, THEN THEY AREN'T TALKING TO THEM SELF."
OPRAH WINFREY TV Host, Producer, Philantropist (1954 to Present)
"CHEERS TO A NEW YEAR AND ANOTHER CHANCE TO GET IT RIGHT." and "YOU CAN HAVE IT ALL. YOU JUST CAN'T HAVE IT ALL AT ONCE."
ERMA BOMBECK - AUTHOR, HUMORIST (1927-1996)
SHOPPING IS A WOMAN THING. IT'S A CONTACT SPORT LIKE FOOTBALL. WOMEN ENJOY THE SCRIMMAGE, THE NOISY CROWDS, THE DANGER OF BEING TRAMPLED TO DEATH AND THE ECSTASY OF THE PURCHASE.
TRUMAN CAPOTE - AUTHOR, HUMORIST (1924-1984)
LIFE IS A MODERATELY GOOD PLAY WITH A BADLY WRITTEN THIRD ACT.
CLARENCE DARROW - LAWYER (1857-1938)
AS LONG AS THE WORLD SHALL LAST THERE WILL ALWAYS BE WRONGS AND IF NO MAN OBJECTED AND NO MAN REBELLED, THESE WRONGS WOULD LAST FOREVER.
BOB MARLEY - JAMAICAN MUSICIAN (1945-1981)
TRUTH IS, EVERYONE IS GOING TO HURT YOU; YOU JUST GOTTA FIND THE ONES WORTH SUFFERING FOR.
TOM HANKS - ACTOR - AUTHOR (1956-PRESENT)
I'M GALD I DIDN'T HAVE TO FIGHT IN A WAR. I'M GLAD I DIDN'T HAVE TO PICK UP A GUN. I'M GLAD I DIDN'T GET KILLED OR KILL SOMEBODY. I HOPE MY KIDS ENJOY THE SAME LACK OF MANHOOD.
NICCOLO MACHIAVELLI - ITALIAN PHILOSOPHER, WRITER AND DIPLOMAT (1469-1527)
IT IS DOUBLE PLEASURE TO DECEIVE THE DECEIVER.
WILLIAM HENRY "BILL" GATES III Businessman, Inventor, Philantropist (1955-Present)
YOUR MOST UNHAPPY CUSTOMERS ARE YOUR GREATEST SOURCE OF LEARNING
NELSON MANDELA - FORMER PRESIDENT OF SOUTH AFRICA - CIVIL RIGHTS ADVOCATE (1918-Present)
IN MY COUNTRY, WE GO TO JAIL FIRST AND THEN BECOME PRESIDENT.
ABRAHAM LINCOLN - 16th U.S. PRESIDENT (1809-1865)
"NEARLY ALL MEN CAN STAND ADVERSITY, BUT IF YOU WANT TO TEST A MAN'S CHARACTER, GIVE HIM POWER."
JOHN WOODEN - College Basketball Coach (1910-2010)
NEVER CONFUSE ACTIVITY FOR PRODUCTIVITY.
WILLIAM "BILLY" CARTER BUSINESSMAN (1937-1988)
BEER IS NOT A GOOD COCKTAIL PARTY DRINK ESPECIALLY IN A HOUSE WHERE YOU DON'T KNOW WHERE THE BATHROOM IS.
SALVADOR DALI - SURREALIST PAINTER - (1904-1989)
"THERE ARE DAYS THAT I THINK I'M GOING TO DIE FROM AN OVER-DOSE OF SATISFACTION."
JESSE "The Body" VENTURA POLITICIAN, PRO WRESTLER, NAVAL OFFICER, AUTHOR (1951-Present)
"IF YOU DON'T LIE...YOU DON'T NEED A GREAT MEMORY."
OLIVER WENDEL HOLMES Jr. ASSOCIATE SUPREME COURT JUSTICE (1841-1935)
"THE MIND OF A BIGOT IS LIKE THE PUPIL OF THE EYE. THE MORE LIGHT YOU SHINE ON IT, THE MORE IT WILL CONTRACT."
BENJAMIN FRANKLIN Founding Father, Inventor, Satirist (1706-1790)
"NEVER TRUST YOUNG DOCTORS OR OLD BARBERS."
THOMAS ALVA EDISON Inventor, Scientist, Businessman (1847-1931)
"GENIUS IS 1% INSPIRATION AND 99% PERSPIRATION" and "WE NOW KNOW A THOUSAND WAYS NOT TO BUILD A LIGHTBULB."
RAY KROC - BUSINESSMAN - (1902-1984)
"ITS EASY TO HAVE PRINCIPLES WHEN YOU ARE RICH. THE IMPORTANT THING IS TO HAVE PRINCIPLES WHEN YOU ARE POOR."
WINSTON CHURCHILL - BRITISH STATESMAN (1874-1965)
"RUSSIA IS A RIDDLE WRAPPED IN A MYSTERY INSIDE AN ENIGMA."...&..."NEVER IN THE FIELD OF HUMAN CONFLICT HAS SO MUCH BEEN OWED BY SO MANY TO SO FEW."
VINCE LOMBARDI - FOOTBALL COACH - (1913-1968)
"FATIGUE MAKES COWARDS OF US ALL."
GEORGE M. COHAN - MUSICAL COMPOSER - PERFORMER - (1878-1942)
"MY MOTHER THANKS YOU, MY FATHER THANKS YOU, MY SISTER THANKS YOU...AND I THANK YOU."