Hot Old Spice & An Orange Crush T-Shirt

Summertime June 1978. About 2pm CST. My friend LA, her next door neighbor NM and I went shopping for  Father’s Day gifts at McCreless mall. My mom dropped us off, LA’s mom was to pick us up.  We had 2 hours to roam the mall.

And roam we did.  Down to Monkey Wards to ride the escalators.  A quick Orange Julius.  Into Neisners, then Hallmark.  Back to the other end to Mr Dunderbachs for free samples. We watched the ladies decorating  cakes through the window of Cox’s bakery.  Our last stop was Woolworth for Old Spice Father’s Day gift sets.

As we walk around the store, LA pulls me down an aisle around a corner and goes “Take this!” As she shoves an Orange Crush t-shirt into my bag.  I’m grabbing my bag, twisting away from her.  “Stop!”   She won’t. “Sssshhh” is all she says.

I panic and run out of the store.  I started to leave the mall but her mom was my ride home.  I’m scared and felt sick.  I sit on a bench in the middle of the mall looking at LA still in the store. Standing at the opening, she keeps motioning to me, mouthing “Jill! Come back in here” waving her hands to “come here!”

Nope!  I sit there in a state of shock.  She eventually disappears back into the store. Time goes by until we go meet her mom at the entrance of the mall.

I slink into the backseat. I’m sure her mom knows.  I say nothing. None of us speak.  The ride home was the longest ever! I’m dropped off with a quick “thank you for the ride, bye”.

I race into my room and hide the T-shirt in the bottom of my pajama drawer underneath everything. Praying no one sees me. Whew!  I’m safe. I know I can’t wear the shirt. Too bad.  I like Orange Crush.  But my mom would ask where I got it.

Around 7 pm, the phone rings.  All I hear is “they did what?  We’ll be right over”. Then “Jill! Get in here”.

I remember the scene like it was yesterday. LA, NM and I with our backs to each other, sitting on an ottoman in the middle of LA’s living room. NM’s mom repeating that she listened on the extension as NM told her friend G everything about us shoplifting.  My thought bubble is “I didn’t take anything!  LA shoved a shirt in my bag. Not my fault.”

LA’s mom was devastated.  “Why would you do that LAB? You had $17 in your wallet. Instead of paying, you were going to give your dad hot Old Spice?  Don’t you think he deserves better than that?”

I didn’t realize while I was sitting on the bench that the two continued to “collect” items.  The next morning right at 10 when the store opened, we were taken back to return everything. NM and I are crying. I said “I’m sorry, I will never do this again” as I handed the store manager the T-shirt.  LA is not even sorry. “Here” as she hands back the Old Spice.

I’ll never forget the store manager. He was nice but firm.  “You girls are brave to come in here and talk to me.  It helps that you returned everything. I hope you learned your lesson. But no matter what, you are banned from the store!”  “Wait! why? For how long?”  Answer “Forever”

Not exactly the case though. When I worked in the mall later on, I went to Woolworth’s all the time.  And I’d just sit there enjoying  a milkshake and an order of french fries.  I felt so grown up sitting at that counter. I have to admit though, I always felt a little uncomfortable.

I’ll always be friends with LA. She and I got into lots of  hijinks together. Our parents encouraged us to be friends.  Her parents liked me. I was the quiet studious one that was LA’s tutor. And my parents were glad that she brought me out of my shell.  I’d like to say we each complemented each other. But in actuality I followed her.  I might even have a few other confessions were she is involved. Lol!  My dear sweet friend LA.  Miss you girl.

As always, more to come.

New Category J-Dub’s Confessions – Testify

In an attempt to organize my posts, I added another new category aptly called J-Dub’s Confessions.

Why?  Well they say “Confession is good for the soul”.  And I need something good for the soul.  Don’t we all?

In this section, I plan to post things I did (or might do in the future) for which I felt (or will feel) a need to confess and/or testify.  <Go back and click the link to listen to Rage Against the Machine.  Done?  Sufficiently pumped up?  Ok now proceed to the next paragraph.

I will do this in a never-ending attempt to exercise the demons from my mind, soul and spirit. Well that and to maybe get a little laugh or two.  I expect much of these posts will read like flash fiction.  Or not, some of this might even be relatable non-fiction.  Well for the over 50 set that is :).

Sit back, relax and I hope you enjoy.

When Asked Is He Home?

From April 6, 2014

Yes he is home FB Friend.  

The first 24-48 hours are just watch and wait … nerve wracking. Once they ruled out brain injury, it was safe for him to come home. They tell us nothing but critical care happens over the weekends. Since he was upgraded from critical, they cut him loose Friday night. He goes back in Monday to finalize the plan for his wrist. Right now it is set and depending on how things are shaping up, he may just continue in the cast for 4-6 weeks. That is what we hope for. Though surgery is still a possibility – worst case scenario. Not to push our luck, but everything is roses and sunshine so far 😉 Right ?!?!?! So cast it is! I have decided!!!

The bruising is still shocking but the handsome ICU nurse prepared us well for what to expect in that regard. His skin tone changes daily – such pretty shades of purples and blues. The watermelon, then peach over his right eye is gone and the remaining swelling has subsided except for at the bridge of his nose. 

 He is not pain free, I can tell … despite him trying to hide it. He wants to do everything for himself and he is already going stir crazy but this time he can get around – not like when he hurt his back last year and he was immobile. These injuries are technically worse but the quality of life is so much better.  

 Who knew that hurting his back last year would be the main reason he is doing so well today? After that happened he got healthy. His attitude about things changed making him better able to deal with what’s happening now. Of course, one could argue if he never hurt his back in the first place that in itself would have changed the trajectory of all the events that followed. When a butterfly flaps his wings in New Mexico, there’s a hurricane in China. Quit flapping your wings Mr. Butterfly; Mr. Billy Bob has reached his quota for injuries in his lifetime!! Now, that’s waxing philosophical to say the least.

He was lucky, very lucky, everyone has said so and given what we witnessed in just 36 hours at SAMMC, we very much agree.