How "I" Became The "Fourth Grade 'Love god'"
Janet, one of the girls who was my friend
Other girls who loved my "candy charms"
WRITER'S NOTE: This hub DOES NOT contain any adult content, and is "family-friendly," suitable to be read while eating dinner. (KENNETH).
At age nine, fourth grade, I was considered a true, blue, grade-school, “love god.”
But not for the obvious reasons.
To understand my title, you will have to go back to my grades first through third, or what I call, “the dark ages,” of my school days. Sad times.
To set the stage, my days in the first through third grade were really trying. I had no friends to speak of. No social training from my parents. And if God were to hand-out rewards for shyness, I would surely have an armful.
Girls would just look at me and I would melt like the wicked witch on the Wizard of Oz when Dorothy threw the bucket of water on her.
So with first and third grade behind me, I made up my mind that fourth grade was not going to be a repetitive-cycle of shyness, never talking to girls, sweating through my shirt when my girl classmates would walk by me and dreading each day of school like I was walking up the steps to the guillotine.
I needed friends. Girls, to be exact. And fast. Not the girls, but a plan of action.
For days I walked around “with my head in a fog,” trying to figure out “the”perfect plan to not only attract the prettiest girls in my room, but keep in my life for the rest of my natural life.
Then one night my parents and I were watching “The Alfred Hitchcock Hour,” and in one of those “uptown, blue-blood,”-based commercials with an Englishman narrating for some chocolate, it hit me. The plan that I was praying for.
When the English narrator said, “the way to a girl’s heart is through a box of chocolates,” a General Electric lightbulb fired-up over my head.
I now wish that my dad and mom would have noticed, for that would have settled their fears that “I” wasn’t that much of a thinker.
Now to put my newly-found plan into motion. The school year was slowly passing by and I knew that I had to make my move. Regardless of what my fellow classmates said or thought of me.
Now the most-important part of the plan was already in-place: the money to finance my idea to attract my pretty girl classmates. My dad would always give me a dollar, sometimes two, (big bucks for a kid in 1964), to as he said, “buy me something at recess.”
I never told my dad that in 1964, my fourth-grade year, it was called “break time.”
I wasn’t a fool. I had a friend, Ann Rayburn, a pretty redhead who was in the eighth-grade who with her friends, got to go into a building called “the annex,” a place we grade-school kids referred to as “Heaven,” for inside this “forbidden area,” were any and all types of candy and cold drink machines, potato chips, bubble gum, and honestly, anything that a kid my age dreamed of during class.
But my plan was not necessarily all about “me,” in the fact that goods that I had my friend, Ann, to buy for me at morning break time, and give to me that evening on our school bus, were not for my eating pleasure, but to charm the “it” girls in my class.
And friends, these “it” girls were actually the prototype of today’s Parris Hilton, Lindsay Lohan and Brooke Burke. Girls, even at age nine, could shatter my concentration (what little I had) for Math and lure my eyes into following them when they would slowly walk toward the front of the room to sharpen their pencils.
I learned later, was one of their female ploys to get attention from us guys.
I can name them today as it were yesterday. There was Janet; Jeanne; Teresa; Denise; Barbara and Joan. All “hotties,” and all were “sights to behold.”
Allow me to elaborate. These six girls were so pretty that “they,” were the “only” part of fourth-grade that I liked.
My plan started slow. I was not that stupid to know that if I tried to make friends with these six girls all at once, then I would fall on my face. Not cool.
Slow, easy and suave. Just like the fancy gentleman in the chocolate commercial. That’s how I was going to “play this hand” and see where it led to.
The first day of my plan wasn’t hard. I viewed Janet, her real name, bopping out of the school building, heading toward the playground.
“uhh, hey, Janet! Got something for you,” I said in a moderate-yell.
Janet was like a cautious jungle cat in how she came toward me and had “that” look on her face. Distrustful.
That was until I held out a pack of Atomic Fireballs, a candy that was sweet, but would fry the roof of any kid’s mouth. Tasty stuff. Good times.
Soon, Janet was coming to see me every morning at our 10 a.m. break time and there I’d be with her Atomic Fireballs. A solid friendship was struck.
Soon, and thanks to Janet, word spread to the other five “it” girls and one-by-one, they came. They ate. They became “victims” of my “love charms.”
Jeanne loved orange Popsicles like a mother cat with a new litter of kittens loves fresh milk from the refrigerator.
Teresa had a thing for bubble gum. Any flavor of bubble gum. And her pretty eyes would sparkle at me as she blew bubbles as she walked away happy.
Denise was a “Red Hots,” candy girl. “Red Hots,” were a first-cousin to Atomic Fireballs, but with a milder, sweeter taste of cinnamon. She was my instant friend when she had her first mouthful of “Red Hots.”
Then there was Barbara who loved a candy named, “Sour Balls,” with a passion. When she was devouring Sour Balls, nothing or no one else mattered.
And finally, Joan, who was soon addicted to Tootsie Pops and I had to keep her “in pops,” as I did the rest of my “girlfriends” with their candy “fixes.”
These six girls and I went through grade-school and graduated from high school together.
And from those “warm and fuzzy” mornings at 10 a.m., our break time in fourth grade, until now, this day, we are all still good friends.
None of these girls ever had a clue what was really happening.
Help for Shy Guys
Jeanne, another girl who was my friend
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