Paul “Scooter” Silverman, September 17, 1951 – January 30, 2015

scooter swimming

I met him when I was 14 about to turn 15 at a place we all hung out in Roxbury Park called the teen center.  Scooter soon became my personal chauffeur, my best friend and my biggest crush. Scooter was 16, about to turn 17 so on September 17th of that year, I organized a surprise party for him at his house. I don’t remember a thing about it but I imagine I made my signature onion dip, brought a bag of chips and a case of cokes and called it a party.  I put the contents of the Lipton Onion soup mix into the sour cream container and stirred. I didn’t even put it in a bowl to serve. That’s how ghetto this party was. I do however remember the surprise party thrown for me just weeks later on October 12th. I thought I was organizing a surprise party – this one would be for Sol, another friend we shared from the teen center. My friend Diane and I planned a big bash at a rich chicks house on the other side of the tracks and all was going smoothly. All, except Scooter said he couldn’t be there that night. I was crushed. I lived for nights that included Scooter. He was adamant that he couldn’t change his plan.

With Scooter at my 50th birthday party

With Scooter at my 50th birthday party

I walk in the night of the party to finish up decorating, I’m carrying a case of coca cola, bottles no less so they were really heavy and the house was dark. The party for “Sol” was supposed to start in an hour. I’m walking down a long dark hall and suddenly out of each and every room of this big ass house pops a group of my friends and then another door opens and out pops another group yelling SURPRISE to me and suddenly while still managing to hold the case of cokes but sort of in shock I stumble over a bundle lying on the ground and a blanket gets pulled back to reveal Scooter the best surprise of the night. He is holding a box, he hands it to me. It turns out to be the most special gift any boy had ever given me. The only gift a boy had ever given me. A ring. When he handed me the box that contained this gold band, he whispered to me that later I would need to kiss him. Fear set in. This flirtation between us was one thing but actual kissing. OH MY GOD!!!

I’m pretty certain that anyone who knew Scooter in high school remembers his souped up car. So we get into his car, Scooter, my best female friend Susie Lohn who in our late 40s he would reveal that was his real crush — and me. Susie ran in to her house first, giggling and indicating because of course, the world knew that tonight was the night. Our first kiss. I jumped nervously out of the car thinking I would rather do this standing by the car so I could make a run. I could barely reach high enough up because I’m so friggin short and I pecked him so quickly on the lips and then ran in to relive the night even though it was not very rewarding of a kiss for poor Scooter.

Football season started at Beverly High and I made drill team which is sort of a low level cheerleader. Every Friday night I was sporting my orange and white felt uniform and showing off the dance routine we had learned all week. Each week I danced with Scooter sitting in the bleachers in mind. One night at an away game and I mean this was very far away in Santa Rosa – I have no idea how Scooter got there but he asked me to sneak him on the all girls drill team bus, for the long ride home.

Smuggling him on that bus was one of the greatest, mischievous, triumphant moments of my life because I would then have three hours of alone time with my hostage — Scooter. We started teasing each other, well he teasing me and he suddenly said, “Trust me?” And I said “YES” and in that moment with his hand over my very flat chest over that very thick felt uniform I could check off going to second base on my teenage girl to-do list. Sorry is this not appropriate for a funeral? Scooter plays a lead role in my coming of age stories.

Not long after the bus ride, Scooter moved on to dating a close friend of mine that I had introduced him to. Lori Rutenberg. They had a very serious, grown up relationship for years. I’m sure there were some “home runs” for Lori and Scooter. And, I moved on to other crushes.

When I posted the sad news about Scooter the other day on Facebook, I got so many private calls and texts from people I never knew were paying attention telling me they know of Scooter from all my blog stories.

I wrote in my few sentence Facebook eulogy the things I have told you here. He was my first kiss, such as it was. That he gave me that ring but that I lost it quickly but will never forget it. AND, that Scooter never said good bye on the phone without asking me how my kids were doing and how my husband Michael was doing and to make sure I said hello from him. I also wrote, and it’s true as all of you know that he had zero malice and only kindness in his heart. He also ended all his conversations with the words, “I love you”.

Many times over the years we would lose touch for some years and then pick up as if no time had gone by. For the past 15 to 20 years, we pretty consistently stayed in touch. He couldn’t have been happier to have those four beautiful daughters. Thank you to Bonnie for taking such good care of your step-dad. Thank you to Dennis, Scooter’s best and most loyal friend.

To answer a long ago question — yes, I trust you Scooter.  And, I love you.

Scooter doing what he loved best -- catching a big-ass-fish!

Scooter doing what he loved best — catching a big-ass-fish!


Food:  Scooter loved to go out on long boat trips and catch big-ass-fish.  Here are some of the places to eat with the freshest fish.  In Los Angeles.  Blue Plate Oysterette.  Santa Monica Seafood.  Son of a Gun.  My favorite place in New York is Milos a Greek restaurant that flies the fish in daily from all over the world.

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3 Responses to “Paul “Scooter” Silverman, September 17, 1951 – January 30, 2015”

  1. Rob Feldman says:

    You know what is crazy here, is that on our overly busy lives we end up reading FB late at night, and sorry Fredde, we haven’t read your blogs for a while, and when you talked about Scooter, I truly didn’t catch on until I just read your eulogy! He totally helped me refine my butterfly stroke in HS!! We knew each other for years but as you know it has been a long time since I heard anything about him. Great memories, great times! I truly got the chills when reading what you wrote! Life is truly too short, thanks for sharing!, Rob

  2. Linda says:

    Another lovely and, in this case, touching. I’m sorry I didn’t know this kind boy/man. Again, my sincere condolences. XO

  3. I have been trying to find scotter and my other cousins off some years now.when my wife and I were living on Cardiff ave in west L.A my cousin lived on Bagley from dec ,1969 to 74 . This is approx . I have been looking up his name up as Paul Silverman but the whole family and all his friends knew him as Scooter. If only I had just ignored his request at maybe 29 that he was not using this name but now using Paul I would have found him sooner.
    The tale goes south here one day on valentines Day in 1974 my wife and I were living in our new house in g.hills I stopped in W.L.A.@Scotters he had a little white German Shepard -snow she had big brother we named Husky what a beautiful gift Scooter made me take him home to my wife as a gift that day. We’ll two children later that was the best of three dogs I ever had he lived with us and watched over our girls for 14.5 years, all because my cousin Scooter pleaded that I take him to my wife for Valentine day. Husky needed a home and we loved that dog. Every time I looked at that beautiful all Snow White 115lb with a golden heart I thought about Scooter. I had a little electronic phone book and one day it broke there are all my phone numbers on that side of the family so,Nancy,Eddy,Janet and her sisters, yes this is Bill(Billy)Fried, went by levin until Dec of 1969. So sorry I can not use any media like facebook , or any of those the only media I can legally use is
    LinkedIn and I set it up but have not had a page put together yet.Well at least Uncle Dave and Aunt Bess are all together

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