Green snot

Handwritten page of a diary dated May 2, 1963

told me it was embarrassing enough to cry like baby in front of everybody and I shouldn’ta made one of my drawings about it and I said – Grandpa, I gotta draw, I’m an artist, the drawings just come outta me all the time (the way that green snot came out of your nose). Ha ha, nope I didn’t say that last part about the snot but it woulda been funny and he usually laughs at my jokes and my drawings. He once said that when the guy who draws the Beetle Bailey comics retires, they oughta call me up and give me the job.
All yesterday after school I couldn’t get him to laugh at anything if my life depended on it, and I decided the only thing that might cheer him up would be if I offered to go bowling with him tomorrow because no one will go with him any more and he should appreciate my sacrifice because bowling is not my A-number-one choice of a good way to spend a perfectly good Saturday afternoon. Especially when I had plans to go again to see BYE BYE BIRDIE again. If I’m about to give up an afternoon with Ann Margaret today that old man better give me a big smile.


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Published in: on September 24, 2012 at 10:41 pm  Comments (1)  

Pretend you’re dancing

Handwritten page of a diary dated April 2, 1966

boy-girl birthday party was kind of a success EXCEPT two things that went horribly terrible.

1. Jill showed up wearing slacks when I TOLD her about a million times that we were all going to wear skirts. She didn’t even seem too concerned about it, but I was kind of embarrassed for her.

2. My mom went into a happy tizzy because it was the first time she met Tommy. He wanted to make a good impression on her, so he wore a sport jacket and tie (which was above and beyond the call of duty). Right in front of him she said we were “a cute couple in SPITE of me wearing enough eyeliner for about ten normal girls and Cher — of Sonny and Cher fame.” That was bad enough but then later she sent my Uncle Harry in to the rec room to take pictures and he made us all stand still in a pose, including some of us pretending to dance when there wasn’t even a record on at the time! The other five didn’t seem to mind it too much — except me. I was only pretending to smile when actually I felt crawling under the couch!


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Published in: on August 3, 2012 at 8:22 am  Comments (1)  

School supplies

Handwritten page of a diary dated August 29, 2004

…  my niece says “this is retro, so it probably looks like a pencil bag you used in junior high, right?”

Actually it does kind of remind me of the TV show “Laugh In” but I had to explain to her that my pencil bag came with a plastic strip attached, with three holes punched into it. She asked why and I had to explain that we hadn’t thought of taking backpacks to school, so we had to make sure everything could be fastened into our three-ring binders … UNTIL the glorious ZIPPERED binder came along and then nothing would fall out — not pencils and not notes filled with gossip about the people sitting near you in study hall or the teacher who had the power to make you stay late.


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Published in: on May 7, 2012 at 9:36 am  Leave a Comment  

Slept like a baby in the Airstream

Handwritten page of a diary dated June 19, 1964

having a world of trouble sleeping again. Makes me look back on my night in Duane’s Airstream trailer coupla weeks ago. Now THAT dear diary was the only good night of sleep I’ve managed to get in the last ten or so years.

I think when Duane offered me the chance to camp out in it, he thought maybe he was about to be getting lucky inside there with me, but he shoulda known me better than that by now. Yes I always liked his truck and yes I like his new trailer no doubt. But you think that means I’m going to marry him? No it does not. And did I make him sleep in the front seat of his truck that night? Yes I assuredly did.

It wasn’t the bed in that trailer that was so comfortable. Heaven knows my own bed here in my place is bigger. And it wasn’t altogether that quiet out there. The campers over behind were playing the radio so long that I heard songs come back up on the rotation and I swear I heard “Dang Me Dang Me ought take a rope and hang me” by Roger Miller at least a coupla three times. But still and all, I felt restful.

What I need is to find a way to get me one of those trailers for myself without marrying Duane and get a little piece of land on the outskirts of town with trees (but no loud-radio-playing country&western-loving neighbors). Then I’ll settle into a world of good sleep.


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Published in: on March 31, 2012 at 1:52 am  Comments (1)  

‘I’m Looking Through You’


Handwritten page of a diary dated March 27, 1966

… doesn’t even come in my room that often, so I was suspicious. Then he picks up my Rubber Soul album and starts looking at it very closely. He was clutching it in his hands and acting funny, like he was about to make a run for it. But what would he want with a Beatles album? The only record player in this house is in my room, and he listens to a radio station that plays Perry Como.

He said “this guy at work gave me a book to read about the Beatles” so I said “good, let me look at it.” But he just kept walking around nervously. Then he said “Have you ever wished you lived in Russia?” I said no and tried not to look at him like he’s flipped. He said “how do you FEEL when you hear this band?” I just shrugged because I don’t know what he’s trying to get at.

I’m glad to say he put the album down before he left the room. He’s so weird.


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Published in: on March 23, 2012 at 5:27 pm  Leave a Comment  

Chicken pot pie

Handwritten page of a diary dated April 5, 1965

that’s the reason I like the Andy Griffith Show so much. Oapie is in the same kind of boat I am with only a father and an old gramma type lady raising me. Actually unlike Sheriff Taylor my dad seems like he wants to get married. BUT he has a problem and he said maybe I was getting about old enough that he could discuss it with me.

He said OK now let’s take this for example, think of the chicken pot pie Shirley made us for dinner tonight. And I did think of it because it tasted very good and also she rolled out thin layers and made it look almost like roses around the circle. Then he said ok, now think of what kind of pot pie we would have if we went over for dinner to Kathy’s house? (behind his back I call Kathy’s house Dullsville) And right away I said Swanson because that’s all she ever makes is their frozen dinners, and that’s about worse than lunch at school.

I always wondered why he didn’t just pick Kathy because she’s much more beauteous, but it’s true that Shirley is a better cook. And now that I think of it, Shirley’s a lot more fun too, and she knows a lot about a lot of things.

I now wish he hadn’t asked for my advice because it’s all too hard for my brain to figure out.


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Published in: on February 14, 2012 at 12:45 pm  Leave a Comment  

‘I want to paint it black’

Handwritten page of a diary dated June 15, 1966

… said I could use the big hi fi in the living room, but I’ve listened to my new 45 so many times I know all the words now.

“I see a red door and I want it painted black.”

I told mom if anyone called me she should give them the phone number over here — but if Grandma keeps talking all day and all night then I’m not going to get the call I’ve been waiting for the most, am I?

“I could not foresee this thing happening to you.”

I saw Mick Jagger’s picture in a magazine once. He really does look like he’s thinking impure thoughts, like I’ve been warned about getting from rock and roll music. But sometimes I listen to the Mamas and the Papas and John Phillips looks like he is living a pretty clean life.

Oh I just looked over and noticed Grandma’s back door is red, and I really do want to paint it black. Maybe rock and roll music does influence teenagers.


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Published in: on February 6, 2012 at 2:29 pm  Leave a Comment  

Polka dot boxers

Handwritten page of a diary dated August 4, 1961

said “who knew the picture would end up in the local newspaper?”

Good gracious, I feel terrible. We all been swimming all morning. Then we heard a rumor that a photographer was driving around the campground so I rushed around trying to get Larry and the kids to put on whatever clothes I could quickly get my hands on. I threw Larry a T-shirt and some shoes and socks and got the kids dressed as best I could. They were hungry and fussy though, so I was just getting them a little snack and a bottle of Coca Cola before I ran in to put some clothes on myself. That’s when the photographer drove by.

Now Larry is mad at me. He said “it would’ve looked more natural if I’d been wearing just my swimming trunks. Now it looks like I was walking around in my boxer shorts.” I said, “hey Bub, I’m wearing my bathing suit too you know” and he said “But you look good, like you’re ready to go swimming. In fact, I look a pervert wandering around without my dungarees to different camps and just staring from afar at pretty young mothers in their revealing swimming suits.”


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Published in: on January 18, 2012 at 12:42 pm  Comments (3)  

The Jetsons could land their car here

Handwritten page of a diary dated August 4, 1964

because if I sit around at home Mom will say I oughta do something useful — like fix supper and wash dishes. So every day I take a bus and find somewhere good to walk around.

But today was the best of all because I found a neat building that looks like it could be on the Jetsons TV show. I mean it. George Jetson could land his flying car on the roof.

I wish I coulda been born in the future. When Mrs. Jetson wants to make supper she just chooses between a bunch of food listed on the machine. She punches a button and out comes something like Beef Sroganoff all steaming hot. I don’t even know why she needs a robot maid because there’s already a machine for everything.

I can’t wait for my future when I won’t have to wash dishes any more.


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Published in: on January 5, 2012 at 1:08 pm  Leave a Comment  

OK, I’ll run for president

Handwritten page of a diary dated August 16, 1964

used to wonder for all those years about what it would be like to take a train trip. Yesterday I finally got my wish because the car broke down right before we were going to grandma’s house so we can swim there for a few weeks before they send us back to prison which is how I refer to Washington Junior High.

Eating in the dining car was fun, trying to see whether the waiters would spill something when we hit a bump. And the food was delicious, I’m not kidding. But then we were back in our seats and there was a baby who wouldn’t stop crying in the seat behind us. Mom said “Maybe you should run for president some day so we could have our private car with no screaming children.” She said once she saw in the encyclopedia a picture of Abraham Lincoln’s fancy car he got to ride in for his train trips.

I said OK, I’d run for president and then she said “Wait you have to think things through more than that. You know what happened to Abraham Lincoln?” I said “He freed the slaves.” She said “Yes but a crazy person shot him just like a crazy person shot John F. Kennedy last year.”

I am sure starting to learn that a lot of times when you get something good then something bad comes right along with it.


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Published in: on December 5, 2011 at 1:39 pm  Leave a Comment