High School Memories
None of my anecdotes concern high school achievement. Although I do recall having my photo taken with the Chess Club. Unfortunately, I was not in the Chess Club.
TAP DANCING ON THE TABLE OF THE PHYSICS LAB
Mrs. Lowry, the 11th grade physics teacher, called me aside one day and said, "You're not going to believe this Harvey, but one of the girls told me you were tap dancing on top of the marble lab table in the lecture room when I went out of the room." I confess. Yes, I was tap dancing atop the lab table on what I considered a slow day. However, I only did my routine, learned at age 8, once.
I was in Alvin Roder's home room. The theme was products for class day. Four off us decided to go as Peter's Wiener. Peter Goodman, Bruce Brady, Brian Anderson and myself. I constructed the frame out of a room divider, formed the top of the wiener out of coat hangers and dyed one of my grandmother's sheets pink. On class day Ted Glaros was supposed to take our photo inside the wiener, but he didn't show. Peter was in the head of the wiener, which had an opening for his tommy gun spirit gun. Brian and Bruce held the wiener horizontal. I was in the back with a basketball taped to each hand. Once in the halls we would go up to girls, I would work the basketballs back and forth and Pete would squirt them. Our wiener was left in the halls during home room. On the way to first hour, we squirted girls, then left it outside the class in the hall Half way through first period I saw someone motioning me toward the door. I got permission to go to the bathroom. I was told someone had put it in the girl's john. I got it out and returned to class. We were all looking forward to going across the stage with our "costume" at the end of the day. But after I left my second period class someone said, "Janes got a janitor to take it out of the hallway and had it smashed up." That was the end of Peter's wiener.
BILL BENAJMIN HAS CHEAT NOTES SIGN:
As a mature senior, nearing graduation, I realized that Fred Curtis' room was directly under the library. On the day that he was giving his last exam I talked Bruce Brady into lowering a sign with me that stated "Bill Benjamin has cheat notes." I remember we did an excellent job on the black lettering on the white sign. We lowered it on a warm June day. I said to Bruce: Do you think anyone has seen it yet." Bruce said, "Let's pull it up before Fred comes charging in." We did. Moments later, Mr. Curtis, breathing hard, raced into the library and said, "OK, Hagman. Who did it with you?" I said "What?" Bruce and I spent the day that our classmates signed yearbooks in Mr. Janes office.
SNEAKING INTO A DRIVE-INI have a couple of sneaking into drive-in stories. Ask Brian Anderson about another one. In this one I was doubling with Bodo, our classmate Duane Johnson, in 1954. James Dean was alive, Ike was president and we were sex-crazed teen-agers. We had met older nurses -- a long-legged brunette with a big nose and a short blonde with acne -- who we presumed were experts on sex. They wrote directions to their place on a bar napkin. We were doubling in my chartreuse 1950 Ford two-door which I paid to have lowered so if you hit even the smallest bump it would scrape against the frame. Brilliant. I worked one afternoon removing the divider between the backseat and the truck. The plan was simple: Bodo and I would pick up the nurses and drive to nearby the drive-in. Then the girls would drive in as we adjourned to the trunk. We gave them $1.50 for two tickets. The girls drove into the drive in. I yelled, "Let out the clutch slowly for Pete's sake. " as we were thrown against the trunk lid. Then two attendants jumped in thinking our dates were alone and tried to hustle them. It was stifling hot and dusty. Finally, one of the girls said, "Fellows, you will have to leave." Bodo ripped his pink cords, I was sweaty and covered with dust. Bodo's date got angry and sat alone in the back seat. Each time I turned to kiss my date her friend would say, "C'mon, get serious." I have since forgotten the name of the girls.
SENIOR TRAIN RIDE
I took orders and my grandmother ordered booze for my buddies for the Senior Train ride. It came to eight cases of beer and liquor. Grams took her cut, two six-packs of 3.2 beer. The man said, "Lady, you must love to drink." Grams said, "It's healthy. Here's a dollar tip, young man. Now go about your business."
I often wonder what I was thinking about in high school. I now have the answer: "Very little." I was always waiting for something to happen. Finally it did. By some miracle I graduated.
As you my know, I met my wife at the 25th Washburn Reunion. So they have brought me luck and love.