45 Years and 9,000 Miles Later…

A few nights ago, I saw a band and posted an account to Facebook because I discovered that a local celebrity was the lead singer. The post was intended for my friends in town, which are only about 20% of all my Facebook friends since the rest are from my Manila high school and are all over the country. But the story took a strange twist…

Here is the Facebook post:

So last night (Wednesday) I’m at the Sidecar gastropub, a hole in the wall in Market Square next to (as well as connected to and also same owner as) Kitcho (Japanese). Someone in the foodie group sniffed it out and on Wednesdays they offer $3 glasses of wine, half-price on “select” appetizers, and a band.

The “select” appetizers offer is somewhat of a bait and switch…the only ones half price are boiled peanuts, popcorn and roasted beer nuts. But, they have some excellent “made on premises” chicharrones (which are larger than pork rinds but not as “popped.”)

Since it’s a “pub” there’s not a lot of entrees and they are fairly “gastro” (such as duck wings) but you can order from Kitcho, I found out belatedly when I passed a table with plates of sushi.

But the “story” here is when the band started up at 9. I’m about 10 feet from them but the light is somewhat subdued. Still, after about 10 minutes, I realize that the lead singer looks familiar. He looks like long time local TV news anchor Frank Ranicky, who retired many years ago.

I mention the resemblance to someone next to me and he replies: “It is Frank Ranicky.” I wasn’t sure if he was serious or if that was the beer talking but I confirmed it with the flute player. You’ll recognize him in the photo.

The music was excellent…all 60’s and 70’s, from Elvis to Eagles, with a 145 song play list. Songs included a “medium” version of American Pie, Brown-eyed Girl, a bunch of Jimmy Buffet, Simon & Garfunkle, etc. and the small dance floor got packed.

Here’s the photo I posted:


Then, a friend from my Manila school left a comment that began an incredible discovery…

Marian:  But do you not realize that this is Kent H****** on the drums???? Class of 1972????? Steve, are you kidding me???

Me:  What? Are you sure? He says he drums every Wednesday at a nearby park. I will go and find out.

Marian: “””YES!!!! Of course I know it’s him! He and I are in regular contact on here!!! I just sent both of you friends suggestions!!! OMG!!! Now THIS is a small world and you both didn’t even know it!!!! Too funny!!! And I really thought you were going to say, as I’m reading your post, ‘and I bump into fellow AS/IS alum here playing the drums…’ But no, no mention of Kent!! This is too, too funny!!! And yes, he plays regularly at that park!!! He posts pics of all his drum sessions, etc….

After this exchange I go to Kent’s Facebook page and it is obviously him. And so that is how, 47 years after he left Manila and 45 years after I left, we end up in a club almost 9,000 miles away from our high school.

Had I not posted about it, including a photo, and had Marian (who is only one of three mutual friends  Kent and I share) not spotted him, then we would have passed in the night.


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