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Magic moments at Perry’s corner drug store

By Robert Smith
RHS Class of 1957

The corner drug store was the favorite hangout for the teen-agers. There was a soda fountain there where we would drink cherry Cokes and milkshakes, and eat banana splits. The owner was a short, gray-haired man in his sixties.  His name was Perry Settle and for some reason, he did not like for people to make fun of his first name.
When I was in there, he would wander over to where I was sitting and we would strike up a conversation about some mundane thing like the weather. During the conversation, I would always refer to him as Mr. Settle this or Mr. Settle that. Sooner or later I would say something like, “Now, Perry Como, when are you going to come out with a new song?” Or I might say, “Tell me Admiral Perry, it must have been very lonely for you to spend the whole winter by yourself at the South Pole.”
That was his cue to go into action.  He would grab me by the arm and twist it behind my back.  I would yell out in pain and beg him to stop because he was killing me.  Sometimes there would be some ladies in the store shopping and I would yell to them to call the police because he was trying to break my arm.  They would just smile in approval as if to say that Mr. Settle knew how to handle smart-aleck teen-agers. This went on until I graduated and went on to college.
Years later, I went into the store and his son had taken over the business. His son told me that I had always been his dad’s favorite. I guess that we just enjoyed adding a little spice to each others lives.

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