At the tender age of eleven whilst completing my last weeks attending Elementary School a curious change came over me. Up until that point in my young life I hated girls, or at least did not like or trusted them. It seemed when I got into trouble at school or at home a girl was always behind it. But now with the first strange feelings of puberty entering my life girls were taking on a new meaning for me. You may say that was a normal progression of growing, and you’d be right except this was at the dawn of the 1950’s. The word SEX was non-existent,certainly in the small world in which I lived. Such things were never mentioned at home by parents or in school by our exalted teachers. Understanding these feelings of arousal every time a girls skirt blow up to reveal her knickers would remain a mystery. In those far off days if I was to ask about sex I’d be told,”you don’t need to know about that until you marry. Wow!!! I wasn’t even going steady back then, would I have to wait until my twenties for such enlightenment. You might laugh but by the time I reached my early twenties my sexual knowledge was still rudimentary at best. But lets get back to the 1950’s school systems. By now I was in secondary school where we shared home room classes with girls. We had separate gym classes, girls went to domestic science (cooking) while boys went to woodwork class. We had separate playgrounds at opposite ends of the school. I qualified to wear long pants on my twelfth birthday and having a girl friend became a requirement if one was to receive respect from male class mates. I had a girl friend in my home room class, her name was Lorna. Calling her a girl friend might be a bit of a stretch in terms of romance. We never dated, never kissed and sex was only in ones imagination. We made eyes at each other and passed notes in class, we sat together whenever the opportunity arose,which wasn’t often. We were daring young lovers eh! One very popular practice in the school was to have an autograph book, and indeed just about every one had one. These books were not for collecting signatures from famous people such as movie stars, footballers or singers. No, the aim was to have girls ask to sign your book, it rarely happen but was very exciting when it did. In those days in English class we had to learn and memorize famous poems by writers such as Keats,Tennyson and Longfellow. I Had trouble memorizing them in school so its no surprise I have retained little memory of the poems now. Today I doubt I could recite more than a line or two of from some of the better known poems. However what Lorna wrote in my autograph book I have never forgotten. When we had the opportunity to sign a girls book we attempted to create an impressive, sweet and dashing poem to go along with our signature. Most of our poems lacked any originality, usually beginning “Rose are Red Violets are Blue” etc etc. But what Lorna wrote in my book was the talk of the boys in my class for weeks. My status as a skilled lover rose to great heights for a day or two. She wrote this very daring and provocative verse.
I love you much I love you mighty
I wish your pajamas were next to my nightie
Now don’t be mistaken and don’t be misled
I mean on the clothesline not in bed.
How strange after more than sixty years later I still recall the unforgettable and daring words of that sweet young girl, Lorna. Of course I have no idea where is might be today but often wonder if she too remembers her poem? ——-No sex please we are too Innocent.
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- Recommended by a Very Important Person (VIP)This is a story told through the eyes of a young sailor who joined the Royal Navy in 1955 as a Boy Seaman 2nd class, the absolute lowest rank in the Navy. Follow his induction at HMS Ganges, the toughest boy’s training establishment in England, if not the world, and his first assignment to HMS Cockade in time to visit Australia for the opening of the 1956 Olympic games. This is a thoroughly amusing tale, tempered with dark moments of despair, as he visits islands in the South Pacific, tours Hong Kong, Korea and Japan, passes through the Suez Canal enroute to Malta and Gibraltar, helps to capture an Icelandic boarding party during the Cod Wars. He dives in a submarine to play cat and mouse with our Cold War adversaries, surfaces through the polar ice at the top of the world, feel the tension in the submarine as it sinks toward crush depth. Laugh at the antics of his fellow sailors and the strange situations they found themselves in. Learn the meaning of the acronym PASAHB, and sympathize with this naive young sailor as he falls for one of the oldest tricks in the book.Whether a sailor or a dreamer of the sea, this is one voyage not to be missed.
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