The Longest Day of the Year

Summer Solstice

My Real Memoir

Sixty years ago, Hollywood released The Longest Day, a movie about the D-Day landings in the summer of 1944. For Dad it was a must because he’d been in World War II, sort of. I’d read the book version, sort of (I skimmed a lot), and it gave me a chance to talk with Dad about “The War.”

So, I was looking forward to the movie with great anticipation, because Dad was, and because I loved movies, and because The Longest Day featured pretty much every movie star ever made. It was the film event of the year!

It was also three hours long.

I wanted to love it, I really did. But honestly (did I mention it was three hours long?), it seemed to go on forever! Afterward, I made the mistake of calling it The Longest Movie. Mom pinched me. Dad was steely, but I think he got why it didn’t have the same resonance for me as it did for him.*

So, where am I going with all this?

Today is the longest day of the year (Summer Solstice). See how I’m tying all this together? Clever, huh? (Oh, shut up.) As a kid I reacted to summers a lot like I did that movie: I looked forward to them with great anticipation, but some were stifling and seemed to go on forever! We didn’t have AC, after all, just box fans to push the haze around. But movie theaters had AC, so I saw a lot of movies during the summer (did I mention I loved movies?).

This summer looks to be a scorcher, btw, so we’ll probably see a lot of movies. See how I tied all these strings together? Clever, huh?

(Oh, shut up.)

My Real Memoir is a series. To read the next one, click here.

* I later rewatched The Longest Day as an adult. It’s informative and beautifully filmed, but still a little slow-moving. So my go-to D-Day movie is Saving Private Ryan. Also, I can never watch The Best Years of Our Lives or Schindler’s List without weeping, and I can never see Casablanca too many times because, well, Casablanca!

About mitchteemley

Writer, Filmmaker, Humorist, Thinker-about-stuffer
This entry was posted in Humor, Memoir, Movies, Poetry, Popular Culture & Entertainment and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

24 Responses to The Longest Day of the Year

  1. leendadll says:

    Sure is flaring! Almost the entire country is in extreme heatwave today!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I like your poem very much. Summers when I was a kid were idyllic, I’m happy to say.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. K.L. Hale says:

    Here’s to a hot summer filled with movies about love and sacrifice. I’m in!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. ejstoo says:

    Enjoy the movies! I find them too loud. Generally wait till I get them at home. Not able to have popcorn any more. Kind of my biggest thing for movies. Used to love concession popcorn with extra butter…morphed into topping anyway 😝….specialist said popcorn bad for condition. My reason for movies fled. Loud bugs me. Live in middle of country good 👍 😉

    Liked by 2 people

  5. I enjoyed your fine micro-poem, Mitch. I call anything “micro” that’s interesting enough to not bore me. After all, I am a squirrel 🐿 brain. Stop signs last too long for me.
    Speaking of no AC, I grew up like that too. I vowed to never sweat and sleep at the same time—once I had AC for myself.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Bob Rogers says:

    Great post, and I loved the poem!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. murisopsis says:

    Hehe! Time gives perspective but I still never enjoyed the movie Heaven’s Gate. It was so long that I had to go to the restroom twice! I tried to watch it on DVD and it was still way too long to be enjoyable!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • mitchteemley says:

      You’re not alone. Rotten Tomatoes critical consensus: “Heaven’s Gate contains too many ideas and striking spectacle to be a disaster, but this western buckles under the weight of its own sprawl.” Not to mention the weight of a full bladder, right? ;>)


  8. Nancy Richy says:

    I loved this movie but not as much as The Great Escape (probably because of Steve McQueen) which was almost as long. The best movies are the ones that get your attention at the beginning and never let go, no matter how long they are. Time seems to fly; summer vacations never did when I was a kid. They lasted forever until the day my mom flipped the calendar and the first day of school was circled in red. “Where did summer go? Vacation just started” was the cry heard all around the neighborhood.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Nancy Ruegg says:

    Lovely poem, Mitch. With few words you painted broad-sweeping images of spring and summer. As for flaring summers of childhood, we didn’t have AC either until I was in high school. My brother and I spent the afternoons at the community pool and the evenings in the basement family room, so we managed to survive the heat waves. Our bedrooms on the 2nd floor could get really steamy, so when the window fans weren’t enough to pull the hot air out, J. and I would sleep on the living floor. A bit of an adventure!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Our parents took my brother and me to see Patton in 1970 while we were on vacation. It was unheard of in our lives since “you can go to the movies at home.”

    Both Mom and Dad were WWII veterans. That movie impressed us both. Movies make a difference as you know.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Pingback: Bringing Grandpa Home | Mitch Teemley

  12. I still haven’t been able to watch “Saving Private Ryan,” even though my first book is about WWII. Five brothers served. Only two came home. (My mother’s brothers.) It was the family story. In next year’s book, I’ll share what I learned about what happened to the three–casualty reports, missions reports, correspondence with men who knew them, other research. Just reviewed a book for a man writing for two men who survived the Japanese POW “hellships.” Don’t know whether I could watch the film.

    Liked by 1 person

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