Beyond Babedom

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Pretty Woman

Forward Into The Past – October 30, 1964

There was a time I actually didn’t care what I looked like because it  didn’t seem to matter. Long, long ago. Maybe we revert back to that as we get really, really old (but, I look at Joan Rivers and doubt that). I began to wonder exactly when “lookism” became an element of my psyche and I can trace it back to my first 7th grade dance.

Now, at KGS we used to have casual dances  during lunch in the gym when it rained out, but I’m talking about a real, honest-to-God dance, where some people came with dates and our mothers drove us to the Magnolia Inn afterward for pizza. I recently found an old diary that I wrote in on that night – it’s painful (for me) to read, but it does give me some insight on why I (and probably most girls) started to worry day and night about how we look.

Actually, to be completely honest, I didn’t really keep a diary. Instead, I wrote letters to Dear _____. with strict instructions on each envelope not to open until the date on the outside – one year after they were written. Of course, there were warnings of PRIVATE!!!! or PRIVATE PROPERTY  scrawled on the front. Of course, I never waited more than a few weeks to open and reread each of them, but my real hope was that sometime in the future I’d be famous and these letters would be read with intense interest by my “public”.

One of the very first of these letters was written on October 30, 1964 at 10:30 PM:

Dear _____,

At the dance every girl danced with a boy except me! The only ones I danced with were Mr. Boudiette, Mr. Miller and Mr. Paich. I’ll never be popular! J.R. didn’t even look at me. He doesn’t like me. Either does Ricky. I’m going to try to get Wayne; it’s my last chance.

Denise danced with 17, Colleen 4.

Lonely Lucille

Ouch.  I remember figuring out that they were popular and got asked to dance because they were pretty. That was when I first learned to worry about how I looked.

This post is the first of a continuing series Forward Into the Past.

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This entry was posted on Tuesday, July 6th, 2010 at 8:19 AM and is filed under Forward Into the Past, men. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

  1. Susan says:

    I’m thinking puberty, attracting the best, procreating the species, the survival of the fittest..all our animal instincts despite our best efforts to state otherwise..

  2. Pat says:

    But just like the “Got Milk” commercials you probably turned out better looking than them down the road by a mile! I’ve seen grown men walk in to walls when you sauntered by. Of course in school the “hot” looking girls always seemed to get the boys, just goes to show how superficial boys can be. I dated guys from other schools because I didn’t want to deal with the drama in-house, so to speak. In the end though we realize that although it was tough to be ignored I think it helped to strengthen our resolve to look back at the pretty girls and say – hey, you might have been “all that” in school, but baby look at ME now!!

  3. Fred says:

    Ah Lucille, I feel your pain. I wasn’t quite an ugly duckling, but never got invited to the grammar school parties, and didn’t dance much either. The consolation has been that most of the cool guys went bald early and got fat. I’m still close to graduation weight, and my hair is still there, but thinner. I’m mostly satisfied with how everything turned out.

  4. Annie says:

    I never thought about my looks in school, and as for being popular Hhhhmmmm not familuar with that concept !! LOL

  5. Barry Jay says:

    Hey was that picture recent?

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