Thursday, May 30, 2013

Notes Read in Front of the World

I think how Face book is the note writing of today. We loved writing notes, or little letters to each other, that grew in junior high and high school. My one friend, Amy, who's birthday was May 28, along with Sherry, wrote copious pages during study halls.
We didn't limit writing to study hall, though. I wrote in boring algebra classes or Mrs. Collins' history class to keep from falling asleep. Mrs. Collins droned on in a flat, nasal voice. I couldn't help liking her as a person, but she was pathetic as a teacher. Poor thing. Our morning class quietly kept our disinterest. But the afternoon history class, unfortunately, did not. One boy set off an M-80 resulting in giving the poor woman a heart attack or so the story goes. The weather, hot, made the non- air conditioned rooms an oven breeding discontent by seventh period at the end of the school year.
Amy wrote poetry, too. She grew up to be an English teacher. Later as young adults, she gave me several books to enhance my reading, like Grapes of Wrath, and Sophie's Choice. I've seen the movies. Sometimes it is hard to read the important books. Last year when I read To Kill a Mockingbird, I kicked myself for not reading it before then. Mom raved about it, too. As has everyone else, with good reason.
As we sat in high school, thinking we were smart, the sentences flew across the page. I still to this day, love those plain lined tablets, but give me a great pen. My boyfriend in ninth and tenth grade would draw a cartoon picture with the character saying our names with the plus symbol for every new tablet I got. He drew them in pencil on that gray cardboard. I traced very carefully over them with ink, so they would endure. I have lost them.
We seldom passed notes in class, so I did not suffer embarrassment often from the notes being read in front of the class. I got more than passing grades, so the writing didn't hinder. In fact, I bet it helped our writing skills.
We laughed with "Ha, ha." I thought writing BR for Baskin Robbins, hilarious. For awhile, my friends made fun of my Worthy Adviser aspirations and we used Grand Poo Bahs and Doo Doo Butts and variations of that theme. I didn't mind they made fun of it because I was secure in our friendship. The pomp didn't appeal to everyone.
I started reading a memoir Then Again by Diane Keaton and she, too, was impressed by the sister organization, Job's Daughters, a Masonic-sponsored secret club where girls in a pagentlike (Diane's word) atmosphere paraded around in long gowns. I'll write more on this book, a surprise that may have me reading into the night. Anyways, when I read that line today in the introduction, I felt validated with my love for Rainbow Girls when I was fourteen to twenty.
We abbreviated, but I do think we watched our grammar and spelling to a point. Along with writing diaries, note writing occurred every day. Over the summer, we had fancy stationery while we were imprisoned on family vacations. Or we bought funny cards and filled every inch with our hand writing.
Along with the poetry, we wrote stories as well. Descriptions of the teachers in study hall or the bored kids sleeping in various positions filled these notes, too. We saw, we wrote, we did, we wrote. Only when we shared did it seem to happen.
We were no Lewis and Tolkien, no space trilogy or hobbits. High school shenanigans, angst and fun filled the pages. One boy, who didn't go to our school, but his cousin did, did not appreciate my letter I sent via Tom. I guess he wanted that day's version of sexting. I never wrote to him again. So what, if we had made out in McDonald's parking lot. I never did that again with him, either.
My boyfriend and I exchanged notes regularly. He wrote in slanted printing. I could read it, a definite plus with letter writing. We expressed our love, our dreams and hopes for the future. He was frustrated, though, one time I painfully scribed the words to the Everly Brothers' All I Have to Do is Dream, stopping the record to get the words, then listening some more.  I think he expected a love poem written by me. I could be wrong, but I hold to that feeling.
I had forgotten how important expressing myself was, till I thought how I love Face book. My passing notes the fifty two year old's way. Just don't do it at work or you'll be punished. The notes are all ready being read in front of the world.
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