Thursday, July 13, 2006

Who's Your Buddy?

BJ Class of 68: This is a picture of Dora Flanagin and me one year in downtown Arkadelphia. We had just been to Baptist choir camp at Ouachita Baptist University and my aunt and uncle who lived in Hot Springs at the time had picked us up. You can't tell it from the picture, but Dora and I were feeling sad that day because we had fallen in love with boys at camp and we knew we'd never see them again. This was pretty much an annual thing each summer from about 6th through 8th grade. Just like with church, we spent most days skipping out of the classes we were supposed to be going to. At camp, we hung out at the little hamburger joint on campus drinking cokes and listening to the jukebox. One year, maybe the one this picture was taken, we kept playing "It's my party and I'll cry if I want to," by Leslie Gore over and over. Finally, one of the other patrons got so sick of listening to it he went over and unplugged the jukebox. That ended that. What I can't figure out is what you were doing in the choir, Dora. I don't remember you being in the choir at school. Did you sing in the youth choir at church?

Thursday, July 13, 2006
Busted, Grounded...or almost
I'll tell this anonymously. See if the guys involved can recognize themselves.

My girl-friend and I were just old enough to wear make-up but not to drive. Her house had a little house behind it, a one room guest cottage. We would go out there to play records, talk on the phone, play games. Her mama and daddy usually went to bed early. Her daddy was a big, tall-bear kind of man. Gentle with a deep voice. Friendly, loveable but still an imposing authority figure.

Anyway, while we were doing the girl thing trying on each other's stuff, messing with our hair, trying out make-up, listening to records in the little house...we started talking about boys we liked (I know, you're shocked). I had this long-time crush, puppy-lust for a boy in my class. My friend thought his buddy was cute. So we hatched the idea of waiting until Mama and Daddy had gone to bed and then calling the boys. We giggled and said, maybe they would come over. We'll mention it to them... to see if they were interested in us, too. If they went to the trouble of coming over, then we would know for sure, you see. But we didn't want Mama and Daddy there...that might scare the guys. They would be more likely to actually come over if we said we were alone. Then we would know they really liked us like we liked them-- if they came over. We didn't think past that. Really, we didn't.

My friend talked to my crush's buddy on the phone, hung up calmly and then shouted at me, "They're coming! They're coming over, oh my god!" And we proceeded to freak. At the main house it looked like "lights out," so that was good. We kept watch for them peaking out the window...and in no time, here they come walking up to the door. One thing led to another and here we were all 4 sitting on the couch, visible from the little glass window in the top of the door, not exactly behaving ourselves. Now mind you, my friend and I had experienced pretty much nothing more than a puppy love kiss-- and here were the boys wasting no time getting down to bizness. Particularly my friend's luv interest who had her completely engulfed and was all over her in a wrestle hold.

Just when both of us were to the point of thinking "wow, I'm glad he really likes me but this is going a little fast" -- the door blasted open... Daddy Bear loomed over us, a tall dark shadow in the doorway, and calmly but ohhhh so deep sounding slowly announced: "I... think... it's... TIME... BOYS... to LEAVE... now." All I remember is his voice resounding against the 4 walls of the room like God Himself had appeared, everyone scrambling to unlock and the boys getting up immediately and mumbling "yes, sir" as they scurried out the door past him. Daddy walked back to the house and it was understood that we should follow him obediently and hope for the best. He didn't say a word. Went straight to bed. That was our signal to do the same.

My friend and I immediately went to her bedroom down the short hallway, got in our jammies in a rush, whispering the whole time and jumped in bed. Nothing was on our mind but damage control. How much did her father SEE anyway? WHAT did he see? Was he looking through the window in the door? Maybe not. Maybe he saw it all. Maybe nothing. Maybe something...we didn't know but we quickly decided to devise a cover just in case he saw nothing: we would leave the door open to the bedroom and act like we were talking to ourselves in bed but loud enough that Daddy Bear could hear us in his bed in the next room. "Well, nothing HAPPENED you know..." "Yeah, I KNOW...nothing really HAPPENED" "They were just in the neighborhood and saw the lights on and stopped by." "Yeah, that's right...they had JUST come in the door when your daddy came in..." "And you know, we were just talking..." "yeah, that's all, just talking and they were about to leave." "Yeah." "We didn't really do anything wrong" "Oh no, we were just playing around, just talking, they were only there a second."

The next morning, we sheepishly went to breakfast and Daddy Bear was reading the newspaper. 'Morning! ...we chirpped, like 2 innocent little birds to Mama, Daddy, her sister... still trying to put up the damage control front. But no acknowledgement from her father that we were even in the room...he just kept reading the paper. We looked at each other like "oh, S__ ." Had our cover worked the night before? We chatted mindlessly while taking side glances at each other and then at her father. We tried to act like everything was normal. Still nothing. Dead silence. Still the newspaper and his reading glasses never budged an inch. The chatter subsided, replaced with an awkward quietness. You could hear a pin drop in the room while we picked at our plates, wondering just how much he really saw the night before.

Finally, he slowly put down the newspaper on the table, tilted his head down slightly to make eye contact over his glasses with his daughter. She froze in mid-bite on some bacon, not blinking. So did I. Our eyes must have been as big as his coffee cup. When he saw he had our undivided attention, he then (again, slowly, calmly), asked... "So... who was the... little QUARTERBACK... who came to visit last night?" I can't recall exactly, but I think she dropped the bacon still halfway in her mouth.

40 years ago... it's still one of our favorite stories...and I still have that puppy crush, too.

Your turn: Comment (below), Blog (right), Email:
said... What a HOOT!! You guys must have been a trip! But knowing you as I do now--I don't doubt it a bit!Bogie.
Anonymous said... I love it! Nothing like risky innocence!


Cathy and her family had invited me to go to Philly with them to meet the Philadelphia Rosicas! A trip of a lifetime! This is Cathy and Bogie just after the trip--we had just arrived home and Cathy's mom took this photo. We had one of the best times of our lives!

Dora and Jan (1956-1968)

Last night I was thinking back on childhood memories. Jan, I know you remember this. Jan, and I would sneak around and smoke in high school.. We were in the tenth grade. Her mother (whom I loved with all my heart) would stop us at the door and smell our hair when we would come in to see if she smelled smoke on us. Jan would carry a bottle of perfume in her purse and spray her hair and clothes to fool her mother. One day we walked down the street from Jan's house and we smoked a cigg on the porch with Connie Bassett. We panicked as we walked back as Jan did not have her perfume with her. We thought we would beat her mother home but we were too late. We knew as soon as we walked in the house she would smell smoke. We had a plan. We would blame Connie Bassett! When we walked in, we began to tell her mother how Connie Bassett was smoking and MADE us try a cig and it made us sick! She just looked at us. I often wondered if she believed that story or not. I am sure she knew the truth as much as my mother did when I would smoke in the den and put the cigg in a glass of water if she came in the den. She would turn on the light and I would play innocent. Duh! Never did it occur that when she turned on the light there was smoke all over the room and the smell of ciggs. She would not say anything. She would look at me with a look. I know you remember the "mother look". I use to get a lot of those looks. One of, "Do I go into this with her, ignore it, or where did I go wrong look?"

I can also remember how Jan The Baptist enlightened me as to what the F word meant. We were ten years old and at a church picnic at Stu rat Springs Park. The pavilion at the top of the hill had a poem carved in the table with the F word.Since we didn't have Home Box Office back then, I didn't have a clue as to what the F word meant! Jan told me she did. She said I will tell you if you walk to the bottom of the hill. We walked down to the field behind a tree and Jan in all of her intelligence said, "Dora, not many people know what it means and you have to promise me you will not tell anyone what it means". I promised as I waited on the mystery of what the F word meant.She leaned forward and whispered in my ear, "It means shit". I can remember thinking that was bad but nothing like what I expected to hear. Jan, I am sorry that I kept your secret for 45 years and finally broke and told the world! I just want to thank you for informing me about life at such a young age!

Jan Says... Dora, we were older than 10!!!! I was still playing with dolls at 10 and didn't know either word existed---I don't think you did either!!! We had to be 12 or 13 at least!!!!! Love, Jan The Baptist!!!

Your turn: Comment (below) or Email:


Blogger Administrator said...

Can't let this one get by without telling you guys about Bogie and Cathy. Friends since the fall of 1958 till now and forever! When you saw one - you saw the other. Most fellow students called us the "bookends". Cathy and her parents and pesky little sister Linda invited me to go to Philadelphia with them on one of their family trips back home. The year was 1961 and we were between our junior and senior years in high school. Thanks to Cathy and her family, I met some of the greatest people I have ever known and have always considered them my "second family". I was always Mr. and Mrs. Rosica's "dooawder"--(we say "daughter" in the south). They are Kay and Ernie to me and it was like loosing my dad all over again when we lost Ernie in May. The kids in Philly were typical teens of the day--crazy about "American Bandstand", riding around, going to the movies, and drive-ins. There was one particular great place-where we could get ice cream--the cones were at least the size of your hand and forearm and the ice cream was mounted on top like snow on a mountain! There had to be at least 10 of us cruising that night and it took all of us 30 minutes to eat all that ice cream!!
About smoking and drinking--well, we wanted to, but we were of the mind set that "if we did anything, we would get caught" so we didn't.

Thu Jul 13, 09:57:00 PM 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

there is so such site as listed above. i tried it and nothing there. what gives?

Mon Jul 24, 05:31:00 PM 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jan I always went to church chior camp. I would take two lessons in the harmonia and then we skipped te rest of the ti,me. I coud not sing and could not play te harmonica. I was in Mrs Shacklefords girls glee club in 7th and 8 just because she liked me. In ninth grade, I made chior. I sang alto and stood next to Etta. I quit after three weeks because I had a gneral science test and went to study hall to study. Bless AF's heart he just liked me because he didnt try to get me to not quit. I never could sing. B,, Nanii, Sula, Gin, Eta, BraNT , Paul, Jim and Delbert could. I am sure others could but just wo I remember. Does anyne know where Debert is LIVING?

Wed Aug 23, 05:46:00 PM 2006  

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