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Clods: Mike Parker and Joe Christensen 1961

Submitted by: Mike Parker (ACS)

Mike Parker and Joe Christensen summer of 1961 Panama City, FL.

Mike Parker and Joe Christensen summer of 1961 Panama City, FL. Circa 1961. Mike Parker Collection.

I ran across this old picture of Joe and myself recently and wanted to add it to the Saigon Kids archives.

The year was 1961. I had returned from Saigon to finish my senior year of high school in Panama City, FL., before going off to Auburn (War Eagle!) for college.

Joe was stationed there in the Coast Guard. We *hooked up* and lived together in an apartment before parting ways.

We *picked* and sang for food, beer and tips at several places the summer of 1961.

Those were great times and Joe was like a brother to me.

I miss him.


This is a beautiful photograph!

It is so quintessentially American – the car, jeans, sneakers, guitar – and at the same time, with the water and the boats in the background, it looks like it might have been taken in Saigon.

Even more interesting to me is how isolated the two of you are from your surroundings. Knowing that the photo was taken shortly after you both had returned from Saigon, the image is visually emblematic of the disorientation and estrangement from “stateside” life that many of us felt on our return.

Its also interesting that your “home” in the photo, the thing that brings the two of you together, is the car that you’re seated on. The car, of course, means mobility. At the time you both were nomads, people on the move, on the way from one place to another and from being teenagers to becoming adults.

Thanks for posting this.


2 comments to Clods: Mike Parker and Joe Christensen 1961

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