Music Memories: I Could Never Take The Place Of Your Man

In response to the Daily Post prompt Always Something There To Remind Me:

1987 was an important year for me. The first months of the year, I was completing a tumultuous junior year at Washington College. Coming off a fall semester that was good, but not without some disappointment, the spring semester was almost a complete disaster. The grades weren’t where they should have been, the focus was lacking, and my mind was distracted by a woman who did not feel the same way as I did about our relationship. And needless to say, I did not handle being rejected well.

I spent the summer going over that spring semester, looking over the issues I faced and how I reacted to them. I vowed that senior year I would be more determined than ever to finish my college career on a high note; or at least higher than how the junior year ended. It was in college that I had my first counseling session with a therapist, just to deal with how things were going. One good thing to come out of the throes of the spring, I did meet another girl who would play an important role in my world throughout senior year. I was fond of her, but it didn’t manifest itself right away. Soon, we found ourselves talking to each other about all kinds of things; and while there were times we would get on each other’s nerves, we would apologize soon after and pick up just as if we had been friends for years.

One of the things we had in common is that we both loved to dance. Naturally, being in college, we discovered this at parties. One of the most memorable dances we did was to Prince’s “I Could Never Take The Place Of Your Man,” a single from his Sign ‘O’ The Times album in the spring of 1988. With graduation looming for both of us, we became closer to each other, even as we sometimes drove each other crazy. I sucked it up and asked her to be my date at the formal ball; amazingly to my surprise, she accepted. After the ball was over, we both went to her room, and since neither one of us was completely exhausted, we decided to listen to some music and dance some more.

[Sadly, I cannot feature the song for fear that Prince might wipe out my whole entire blog. Since he’s taken his whole catalog off Spotify, and I don’t dare upload my copy so I don’t get a ‘cease and desist’ letter from him or his minions, you’ll just have to find or purchase a copy].

If I remember correctly, we played it twice and worked it out-we’d move in close and I’d slip my arm around her waist, then pull back and swing for all it was worth. She would grab my hand and I’d twirl her around, then we’d separate and go for it. All the while, we both kept our eyes on each other, she looking amazing in her ball gown and I in my tuxedo, neither one of us wanting to stop until finally we had both reached our physical limits. It helped that the song in it’s original form was over six minutes; somehow they have truncated it in the download version of the album (a crime that may be the focus of another post). To this day, when I hear that song, I think of us in that dorm room at 3 in the morning, dancing to Prince and celebrating our friendship.

Sadly, the story does not have a happy ending; after several years of being good friends, we split apart; a decision that I still do not understand. I wonder sometimes why it happened, but am glad that she was around when she was. Even as we were never romantically involved (at least that either of us would admit), it was a relationship that I will always remember, even if I don’t like how it ended.

5 Replies to “Music Memories: I Could Never Take The Place Of Your Man”

  1. What an incredible memory! Songs that take you back to an exact moment is what I love about music and memories. I feel your pain as I had male friends that I never had a romantic involvement with – but miss them so now that they are no longer a major part of my life. Maybe some day you will meet up with her and be able to rekindle your friendship. Thank you for sharing your memory! And I don’t blame you about being cautious about Prince. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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