by Madame Curio
Interview with self at 14 Contest
|CORNERS OF YOUR MIND
I sat myself down and asked what were you doing at fourteen years of age and found myself touching history like another Forest Gump .
Did you ever see President Kennedy?
President Kennedy drove slowly past our Volunteer Fire Department where I patiently stood waiting in August of 1963. I remember he was standing up in a shinny steel grey convertible waving at the crowds and brushing his hair from his face. He was to give a speech in a small town just across the river.to the steelworkers as I recall.. A few months later sitting in my Junior High school Math class the intercom announced he was shot dead while riding in another convertible in Dallas, Texas. After Kennedy’s assassination I remembered thinking everything would never be the same. This kind of thing happened in other countries with dictators or emperors and only a few months later we lived through the assassination of Martin Luther King and Bobby Kennedy.Assassination became a household word and nothing was ever the same.
Do you remember the Vietnam War?
The nightly television news detailed the daily battles of the Vietnam War, a country oceans away. I remember thinking about the war and feeling afraid that it would devour the future, my future. Over dinner I watched teary eyed mothers and wives greet caskets covered by American flags neatly lined up at Dover Air Force base in Delaware..News commentator Walter Cronkite describing the battles and giving the numbers of dead and missing. Detailing the torture of the men found in POW camps and the number of men still held by the enemy. It was a memory that came back to haunt me several years later when my fiancee went missing during the final days of the US participation in that war. I received a phone call one evening several months later explaining that the helicopter he was piloting was shot down and that he had been killed.
What was the social life like at 14 years old?
Music was changing from Rock and Roll and Folk Music to a sound out of Liverpool, England. A group with an unusual name was filling the radio waves, the Beatles. They were different in their looks with longer hair, sort of the style that my Mom cut my hair at 4 years of age. I remember wearing a pin I bought in the shape of a guitar with Paul McCartney's face in a little window in the center. Wish I knew where that went, it would probably be worth something today. I saw the Beatles in concert in Pittsburgh at the Arena the following year. A birthday gift from my father. He not only drove me to the concert ....he went with me. He smuggled in his 8 millimeter movie camera and took a 7 min. film. Sadly the lighting was not suitable for the camera but you could make them out on stage. Change was coming and now when I look back maybe not all of it was for the best. Dating was a lot of house parties, school and fire hall dances and drive in movies. That is if the guy you were seeing had a driver's licence and a car. The telephone was the main line of communication and I mean the one attached to the wall with a dial.and a long phone cord. We still hung out at our friends and had slumber parties where you painted each others toenails and talked until dawn about who you were going to marry and life in general.
What were the style of dress at 14 years old?
School clothes were skirts and dresses with nylons. I got my first pair of pantyhose that Easter to wear to church and a pair of white short pump heels..Dress slacks and no jeans for play were permitted by my mother. Jeans were worn by those who did not have much she said. So I wore dress pants to parties or skirts I would roll up at the waist to make shorter once I left the house. It was that year that I made my statement that my mother was not going to continue to choose my wardrobe. That worked to a point but at least she was a bit more reasonable. I loved color and soft materials and bold and bright outfits. It was the sixties and everything challenged the "way it has always been". Make up and hairstyles were different. Eye shadows, eyeliner and hairspray were in.
Avon books were passed around at lunch time and Teen magazine. It was the Hippie generation with love beads and flowers in your hair.
Did you know what you wanted to be at 14 years old when you became an adult?
I knew that I wanted to be more than only a mother. I knew that the road I was choosing was not heavily traveled yet and the risks I would take could be life altering. The political situation in our country was rapidly changing and the social element as well. I was a nonconformist, a dangerous title but what I did not know is the price expected for this choice. I have no regrets but now as I look back I would have made some changes. At fourteen life was just beginning and there was plenty of time to fill in all the blanks. Time was the factor that gobbles up dreams and plans. You take your crayons out of the box and begin there. I wanted a career outside of the home. I had grown up playing on drafting boards and with lead pencils, my father was an mechanical engineer and an inventor. So I announced I wanted to go to technical school and art school. Girls were not permitted in shop classes so my only other option was to wait until I was in the high school. In the meantime my mother was not fond at all of my decision and so I carried a double major through the following years just so she would agree to my decision. She had looked in the crib and said this one will be a secretary if she needs a job but she will marry a hometown guy and have kids, animals and make casseroles. She will live nearby and my mother would come to visit often. NONE of that happened at least as she had planned.
What advice would you give to this 14 year old young lady?
First I would say that if you choose to live outside the box then do not expect in the box results. That being a MOM is a Great job and one of most rewarding positions you will ever experience. I would suggest letting go of past hurts and mistakes sooner than later.and God is your best friend. I would tell her that time passes quickly and disappointments are temporary and learning to cook a good meal is important. I would remind her that love is not passion, love is a journey two people unselfishly experience together in good times and not so good times. Recognize the red flags and don't overlook them thinking things will get better or change with time. Hold dear the ones you love because death is permanent. Bad habits can be broken in six weeks or less, accept what you can not change and miracles do happen. Last I would tell her to enjoy her accomplishments no matter the importance and that history does not repeat itself. Social norms and values will become vague.and communication will be king but not face to face. That the sixties open a door that will become a super highway.without limits so wisdom and truth must be valued.