Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Reading the credits

I secured control of the remote while on the treadmill the other day, and to the chagrin of my fellow plodders, I surfed channels until I found an old Gunsmoke episode on TV Land. I was just in time for the opening credits, and was reminded of a silly little weekly ritual we had when I was a child.

We'd wait impatiently as the credits listed Amanda Blake as Miss Kitty, Ken Curtis as Festus, etc. Everybody wanted to be the first to say "And James Arness as Matt!"

I don't know why.

After weeks of this, or perhaps months or even years, somebody came up with the brilliant idea of getting the jump on everybody: "And James Arness as Matt for next week!" Then that became the new ritual. I'd be willing to bet that if today you said "And James Arness as Matt" to each of my brothers or sisters, two or three of them would reply with "for next week."