My dad's work day started very early, around 3:00 a.m. By the time the shop opened at 7:00, he had to have a showcase full of fresh pastries and donuts, an oven full of browning breads, and a shop full of heavenly aromas. Benjamin Franklin, himself, would have been proud of my Dad's early-to-bed-early-to-rise habits.
Back in those days - the early 1960s - Juneau's little radio station, which was across the street from the bakery, signed off every night, playing "Alaska's Flag," the State song; and then at 5:00 a.m. came back on. Dad was in the habit of turning on his old flour-dusted radio at precisely 5:00, happy to know that the rest of the city was finally waking and joining him for another new day. Now and then the morning disc jockey would oversleep, and the radio just hissed and popped with static. Dad would pick up the phone, call the sleepy-headed DJ at his apartment and tell him to rise and shine and get the station on the air. Usually the DJ would respond, groggily, with something like, "I owe you one, Bob."
Juneau's DJs were usually young fellows with very little, if any, radio experience, looking for an Alaskan adventure. So, along came this new fellow, Tony, and every morning, without fail, he played this saccharine-sweet, corny "Good Morning" song. I don't know where he got this record, but by the end of the first week, it was getting under everyone's skin, and especially my Dad's. Despite numerous complaints, Tony just wouldn't stop playing it. Day after day, week after week, that irritating song rudely started everyone's morning.
One day one of the other young DJs was in our bakery, sitting at the counter and having coffee. My dad went out front and sat down beside him. "Chuck," he said, "What would it cost me to buy that sappy 'Good Morning' record that Tony plays every day?" Chuck grinned, thought a minute, and said, "It'd cost you a cup of coffee and a donut every morning, for a year!" "SOLD!" said my dad, without hesitation. Within minutes Chuck delivered the offending 45 into the hands of my Dad who, smiling, broke it in half and tossed it into the trash can, along with yesterday's leftover pastries.
So at long last, Juneauites, the truth has been revealed, the mystery explained! It was my Dad, an unsung hero, who spared the town's early-risers the daily vexation of Tony's "Good Morning" song. (I know you've all been wondering.)
Dad, decorating cakes in the afternoon. Looks pretty tired, doesn't he? Remember, he started at 3 a.m. that morning.And here's my Mom, working at the counter. Notice the sign - "electric baked donuts - 48 cents/dozen"!