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Thursday, December 12, 2013

The Saga Of "Ticky Tock".

Woody Guthrie once wrote an recorded a song called "Ticky Tock".
That's not what I am referring to here.
I mentioned after seeing the preview to "The Sound of Music" that there were charlatans in the Metropolitan area of New York who took advantage of kids in our neighborhood, convincing their starstruck mothers that their kids had the talent to send them into the stratosphere, if only they had a little coaching, which these crooks would provide.
This led to the mass auditions and rejections of these moppets for the original production of "The Sound of Music", which starred Mary Martin.
But there were other charlatans out there.
Those who took advantage of very young little "composers and lyricists", convincing them that for a fairly hefty fee, they could get their compositions published and recorded by major artists of the time.
Two such "composers and lyricists", actually I don't know who contributed what, were these two ten-year-olds named Debbie and Diane.
Their composition, which we in the neighborhood heard incessantly, was a little ditty called "Ticky Tock".
As I'm sure they had never heard of Woody Guthrie, and since I have heard his "Ticky Tock", I can assure you that they were not the same song.
I will attempt to recreate Debbie and Diane's "Ticky Tock" as best I can, considering that you can't hear the music on paper:
"When my baby left me,
I didn't know what to                                                                                        
When my baby left me, I was sad and                                                                             
So I looked at the clock, said "Ticky Tock"
 Ticky  Tah
When my baby left me.....(and then the whole thing was repeated.  Over and over.)
It never ended.
It was a song without end.
It's like it was on a loop.
Now you might think that the lyrics to "Ticky Tock" were inherently stupid.
And maybe they were.
But so were many hit records at the time.
What was more inherently stupid than "Ooh ee, ooh ah ah, ting tang, walla walla bing bang"?
Not much, but at least it had an ending.
Ticky Tock's lack of one did not stop at least one shifty entrepreneur from getting Debbie and Diane's mothers to part with a significant amount of cash to see their budding geniuses handiwork wind up on the hit parade.
It never did.
But it has lived on in our memories.
Whenever my wife, or my sister, or I say a sentence that ends in the word "clock"
One of the others can be counted on saying "...said 'Ticky Tock'?"
My sister, when she was eight, actually came up with an absolutely appropriate ending to "Ticky Tock"
She sang "So I looked at the clock, said 'Ticky Tock", and started all over again."
This was to the tune of "Pick myself up, dust myself off..."
Pretty hip for an eight year old.

Next time I'll offer up my two cents plain on the actual production of NBC's "The Sound of Music",
which I saw a few days ago
Be on the lookout for it. 


My books, "Show Runner" and it's sequel, "Show Runner Two", can be found at the Amazon Kindle Store.
Along with the newer ones, "The Man Is Dead", and "Report Cards".
You can search by typing in my name, Cindy Williams, Laverne and Shirley, The Odd Couple, or Happy Days.
Check them out.
You don't need a Kindle machine to download them.
Just get the free app from Kindle, and they can be downloaded to an IPhone, IPad, or Blackberry.
The paperbacks, "Mark Rothman's Essays", and my new novel, "I'm Not Garbo" are available for people without Kindle.
I have many readings and signings remaining, and the thing about Kindle is you can't sign one.
If you'd like one, contact me at
And now, we've got my reading of my "Laverne & Shirley Movie" screenplay on YouTube.



  1. You should get your own TOCK show.

  2. There is a chance you're qualified for a free $1,000 Amazon Gift Card.

  3. You might be eligible for a free Apple iPhone 7.



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About Me

Hi. I am, according to my Wikipedia entry,(which I did not create) a noted television writer, playwright, screenwriter, and occasional actor. You can Google me or go to the IMDB to get my credits, and you can come here to get my opinions on things, which I'll try to express eloquently. Hopefully I'll succeed. You can also e-mail me at Perhaps my biggest claim to fame is being responsible, for about six months in 1975, while Head Writer for the "Happy Days" TV series, for Americans saying to each other "Sit on it."