GIRLS ARE EXPENSIVE.
Verlee Fritz was her name, and I had such a crush on her. She had dark hair, good build and was as tall as I was. I had her in several of my classes and I could not take my eyes off of her. I so wanted to date her or take her to a School Dance but I was scared. You see, Verlee was a popular girl and belonged to several after School Clubs and was very sociable with a lot of other Guys and Girls, I had a hard time being Sociable with Girls after attending a Catholic School that frown at conversations between Boys and Girls. I found it hard being that way and at times, I sometimes thought I would be beneath her in a Social setting. I would go to the Youth Center every Saturday Night in hopes of seeing her and would work myself up “If I see Verlee there I’m going to ask her to Dance” but I never did. I never did go on a date with her, but she was always, always in the back of my mind. I had the opportunity to see Verlee again at our 50 year Class reunion and I gave her such a big hug and told her that I had such Crush on her and now, some fifty years later, I’ve had my wish come true. She is just as Beautiful now as she was when she was 16.
It was while I was working as a stagehand and artist for an upcoming production of Brigadoon that the Music Dept was going to put on ( I belonged to the Choir in school) That I met Carol Dow. She was in the Play and I watched her perform, sing and act. I offered to be an extra during the play just so I could be around her. We talked and it seemed we both enjoyed each others company. After the the Play was over I asked her out to dance and we had a good time and went out for something to eat afterward and from then on, we became “Steadies”.
Now I found I had to save more of my money as it was customary for the guy to pay the way for his date. I had to fix up my Dads old car and make it presentable each time I picked her up. there is not much you can do to make a 1949 Chevrolet look good as it was my Dads old work car. Occasionally Dad would allow me to use their new car to take Carol out on a special date. It was a 1956 Chevrolet and use to spend hours cleaning and waxing that car. I was going thru the money I made as a Stock Boy at the IGA and found that I had to ask for more hours so I could afford to have a girlfriend. We dated all the way up till I Graduated 1959. We broke up Mutually as I was going to go to College and she had another year to go in High School. We both were ready to move on. I never saw or talked to her again after that.
That Summer after graduation I saw my Mom and Dad get a divorce basically over his Drinking and not being able to hold a job. Mom had gotten a job as a Bookkeeper for the Village of Western Springs and soon was promoted to head bookkeeper for the Village. She was making good money and got me a summer job there working for the tree trimming dept, and I managed to save a good bundle of money toward College. I was ready to tackle College at Northern Illinois University going for a Major as a Commercial Artist. I could Draw and I was good at it as my Counselor told me in High School and that might be the field I should put my endeavors toward. My grades were average to good and I did very good on my SAT tests. Mom and I figured we could make it money wise and with the new job I had at a Hamburger place new in town called McDonald’s and letting me have all the Hours I could handle, it was going to be alright.
Well we were wrong! Later that Summer my Dad died and left my Mom with a bundle of bills, no life insurance, a small funeral, a grave site purchase, we were broke. College was over for me for the time being. I needed a good paying job to help my Mom and to keep the house we had. My Brother Quin suggested I become a Pipe fitter and with my Mechanical skills he could get me into the Pipe fitter Union Quickly. So started my new career as a Pipe fitter
So as quickly as it started as a Freshman in a new school, it ended 4 years later Graduating, foregoing College and becoming an Apprentice in the Pipe fitters Union. Those 4 years went by so fast and saw so many things in my life change as it change in the world around me. I grew up fast, as most kids did to a changing world around them. I adapted!