I don’t think I’ve posted this one before… this happened about five years ago, in 2001. I was at this club called the Dance Plex – it’s that fire station at Linden and Third, which had been converted into a club with ’70s, ’80s, and modern dance music rooms. I was upstairs, in the ’80s room (which had the best dance floor I’ve ever seen in a club – I miss that place), and I was sitting at a table talking to a girl, who for some reason thought I was fascinating.
So we were talking for a while, and she looked at me and smiled and said, “Tell me a story, Paul.”
Me: A story?
Her: Yeah. Tell me something funny, or amazing.
(The wheels in my mind started turning, and a mischievous grin flashed across my face)
Me: Well… did you ever watch The Andy Griffith Show when you were little?
Her: Yeah, all the time!
Me: Well, did you hear about the big scandal that was going on backstage?
Her: No… tell me!
Me: Okay. Remember Howard? He was the county clerk… he was on the show for the last couple of years, after they started doing them in color.
Her: Sure, I remember him. He wore a bow tie, didn’t he?
Me: Yeah, I think so. Well, he was involved in a major sex scandal, although they kept it a pretty good secret. He was doing it with one of the female cast members… I mean, they were going at it all the time in the dressing room between scenes!
Her: Who was it? There weren’t that many women on the show… there was Opie’s teacher… and Barney’s girlfriend… but Barney and Howard weren’t on the show at the same time…
(I must admit, I was impressed with her knowledge of Andy Griffith. I need to find her and invite her to come play on our trivia team!)
Me: Nope… it was none of those….
It was Aunt Bee!
Her: OH MY GOD! AUNT BEE???!!!
Me: Aunt Bee.
Her: Oh my God oh my God… Aunt Bee!
Me (imitating Aunt Bee’s voice): “Now, Opie, I want you to eat all your vegetables, and after dinner, I want you to wash your face and do your homework.”
Her: Aunt Bee… oh my God! She was like, somebody’s grandmother!
Me: Well, apparently the guy that played Howard preferred a more… experienced woman. And Aunt Bee… well, she just couldn’t get enough of it. They had a signal they’d give each other and… they’d disappear backstage.
Her: Howard was doing it with Aunt Bee? That’s sick! Ugh… that’s just wrong!
Me: Yeah, they managed to keep it a secret for a long time, even from the rest of the cast. But then one day… who was that guy who hung out with Howard and Andy and Goober all the time?
Her: Floyd, the barber?
Me: No, this was the guy who replaced Floyd. The Mr. Fix-It guy who was on the final season… Emmett!
Her: Oh yeah, I remember him!
Me: Well, one day the guy who played Emmett walked into Howard’s dressing room… and there were Howard and Aunt Bee on the couch, buck naked, going at it like bunnies!
Her: Oh my GOD!!!!!
Me: Yeah. The guy who played Emmett agreed not to tell anyone until after the woman who played Aunt Bee died, which was more than 20 years after the show went off the air. That’s why it has remained one of Hollywood’s best kept secrets.
Her: Oh my God oh my God!!! (She ran off to tell her friends, who were busy drinking and dancing and didn’t care.)
Of course, I totally made the whole thing up. I guess it’s a good thing she didn’t try to sell that to the National Enquirer or some other trashy gossip magazine. Just having a little fun at the expense of some dead actors and actresses!