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The characters in the following story were young adults who were over the age of 18 in the late 1960s. Most of the events are based on things that actually happened in an era of changing attitudes about sex and morality. Please be gentle with your comments. The “Sean” of this story is based on very personal recollections.
By late afternoon, Sean’s cool guy anticipation-imitation turned to a sad song, nerdy-dude disappointment. The idea of a face-to-face visit grew from a barrage of creative and silly letters that had become a daily routine for both Sean and Morgan. Morgan had the means and her own car. Sean was stuck in the deep-South, pine-tree boonies with a bicycle and infrequent access to the family station wagon.
The two moms had spoken by phone as required by the unspoken rules of the day. The visit for two recent high school graduates had been given the all-clear. After years of ‘hovering’, Sean had no idea why two conservative Southern moms went along with the idea.
“Don’t worry,” said Sean’s mom. “We’ll keep an eye on Morgan. Sean will be a good host. Be sure to have Morgan bring a swimsuit. We might get in some waterskiing at the lake if there is time.”
“That sounds perfect,” responded Morgan’s mom. “She is looking forward to spreading her wings on a highway drive. I’ll remind her about waterskiing. She loves the water!”
It was the late 60’s and the edges of the propriety envelope were covered in barbed wire. The Graduate hadn’t been in the theaters for more than a year and for three-day-each-week churchgoers, it was scandalous that young people had been allowed to be exposed to such scandal!
From all outward appearances, Sean was a perfect gentleman, a Boy Scout. Morgan was an academic scholar and a Candy Stripper at the hospital. The ‘perfect angel’ images were untarnished for both Sean and Morgan. Moms and dads were proud. Both sets of parents had chaperoned the group parties. Both were confident that any sexual energy for the teens was burned off doing the Peppermint Twist, the Pony, and the Freddie. Any slow dancing that happened was just a chance for the kiddos to cool off.
For Sean, the very mention of slow dance made him squirm. There was that time when Shirley Taylor rubbed too close. She had a reputation for knowing the mysteries of sex and Sean was embarrassed when the music stopped. His moves to get something to cover his crotch may have been the inspiration for the Loco-Motion. Sean had struggled with a pole to put up a tent…not so much for a pole in his pants. There was no ‘cooling-off’ with Shirley.
The two ‘saintly teens’ met for the first time at a party in Sean’s hometown while Morgan was in town for her cousin’s wedding…or the cousin of her best friend’s cousin…or something like that. Anyway, she was sitting on the floor in front of the fireplace while Sean’s friends were slow dancing in an otherwise darkened living room…probably just cooling off, right?
Sean accidentally tripped over Morgan, paying more attention to the welded-together, slow-dancing couples. Really. An innocent stumble. He thought he was stepping over the edge of the hearth, but tripped…awkwardly, embarrassingly. Perhaps the epitome of 1960’s un-cool.
Something ‘clicked’ among the apologies to the cute, red-headed visitor.
“I am so sorry. Are you OK? I didn’t mean to kick you. Please excuse my clumsiness,” groveled Sean. “Who are you anyway? I’m sure we haven’t met, I am Sean.”
“Apology accepted,” said Morgan. “Would you give me a hand getting up, I think you at least owe me a dance. I love this song!”
Sean reached down for Morgan’s extended hand and said, “It would be my pleasure. You have met my clumsy wingtips. If you’ll dance on the tops, I’ll take care of the bottoms.”
Getting to her feet and looking straight into Sean’s eyes, Morgan snickered, “Nice to meet you, Sean. I’m Morgan. I’m not too comfortable with that top and bottom dancing thing…but I’ll hold onto that thought!”
The gauntlet has been thrown…the torch had been lit for the flirtatious Olympics and Sean and Morgan were gold medal contenders!
Maybe more about the letter-writing might help here. The two had been active high school seniors, heavily involved in every imaginable academic and extra-curricular activity. Both were shy when it came to dating or even conversing with the opposite sex. It may have been a conspiracy by their parents. Keep hormonal teens engaged in so many distracting activities that there was less risk of one male and one female ever exploring the biological implications of “Tab A” entering “Slot B”. All to say, there was much to share about sheltered lives in the South where the unspoken taboos were the taboos that were whispered most frequently between girls on the phone late at night and guys in a locker room just about any time.
There was a mutual level of understanding that Sean and Morgan acquired from reading that made up for their lack of actual experience. Curiosity had both of them slipping into the bahis şirketleri Adults Only section of the library and speed-reading chapters of Human Sexual Respons and Human Sexual Inadequacy. The recently published Masters and Johnson research was based on real-life observation of thousands of coital acts. The book was off-limits to teens once churches found out the juicy parts would tarnish the buckle of the Bible belt.
It was far easier to think through what one wanted to write rather than verbalizing it in front of a member of the opposite sex….and crazy things like writing a complete letter on an inflated balloon, deflating it to fit in an envelope, and putting a testy pinprick in the balloon before sealing things up were somehow normal fun. These sorts of writing challenges became the foreplay of getting to know one another at a deeper level than any parent could anticipate. Many of the taboos that would be whispered between friends of the same sex made it into the carefully crafted juicy parts that found their way onto paper between Sean and Morgan.
Both moms had described the activity as “cute little letter-writing friends.” Sean’s mom had gone as far to say, “they make such sweet pen pals!” All the while, the anticipation of a letter in the mailbox was a semi-orgasmic highlight for the teens during the several weeks that followed.
The visit to Sean’s home was to be the first reunion since the fireplace debacle. From Sean’s view out the picture window of his 1950’s ranch-style home, that empty driveway did not mean good news. By late afternoon, he figured there had been a change of heart and he’d be back to letter writing by sundown. The very idea of a girl driving an hour and a half by herself to see a boy she had only met once was crazy and probably a violation of several hundred unspoken dating taboos of the South. On the other hand, at 18 in the pre-liberated woman’s dark ages, the season was open for seeking out prospective husbands.
The “Look Mom! I made it myself”, Chef-Boy-R-D pizza was coming out of the oven when the wall phone rang. Sean’s mom was closest and answered. It was nearly a full minute before she spoke and by the look on her face, Sean could tell something was wrong. Sean did not hear everything she said, but he did remember how his mom motioned him toward the receiver.
She covered the bottom end of the phone with her hand and whispered, “Morgan had an accident, but she will be OK. She wants to say hello.” I took the phone and listened while Morgan described rolling her Mustang, having her favorite blouse torn, getting scratched up by the seatbelt, and how she rode in the back of a police car to her dad’s office to let him see that she was only nicked-up…and, that she would need a new car right away.
“Maybe I’ll show you my bruises. I look like I have a grade school crossing guard’s shoulder harness imprinted across my boobs…or maybe not”, she laughed, embarrassing herself at what she had said.
Although disappointed that the day did not turn out as expected, Sean graciously expressed concern over Morgan’s injuries and the loss of her car. “The car can be replaced, Morgan. I’m thankful that you were not seriously injured,” said Sean.
By now, Sean’s dad had looked at his watch 3 or 4 times. Long-distance calls were charged by the minute and anything over a 3-minute call meant an expense to someone…even someone else he’d never met.
I’ll talk to mom and dad about maybe coming to see you. Maybe we can all go to the zoo or something,” Sean said, invoking a sweet smile from his mom.
“They can have that crazy zoo…tell me more about the ‘or something’ option,” Morgan said with a giggle.
“Yes, the symphony would be nice,” Sean responded, trying not to laugh.
“They are listening, aren’t they? ” Morgan queried. “I suppose we could make out if we sat in the back, right?”
“That’s right,” Sean responded, playing along. “Great orchestra music is educational.”
“Oh, educational…I’ll keep that in mind…isn’t there sax and violins in the orchestra? She laughed.
“Let’s talk about that later…I look forward to reading that you are all back to normal”, Sean said trying to wrap up the call.
“I hope this happens soon. I may not have evidence of my school crossing guard credentials if this takes too long,” Morgan laughed.
Considering what Sean was hearing from Morgan’s reactions to the impromptu soliloquy delivered for the parents, he deserved a merit badge for not bursting out laughing. “We’ll see you later…Bye,” said Sean.
Sean wasn’t ready to chat with mom and dad about some imaginary road trip, so he excused himself to head to his bedroom. Sean did have a lingering fantasy image of a well-endowed crossing guard with a torn blouse. That would be letter-worthy! That might even be extra hand cream worthy right away.
In the weeks that passed, the letter writing continued. Morgan had a new two-seater sports car equipped with a short leash that meant no highway travels to see bahis firmaları any ‘boy’. A new plan was percolating and both Sean and Morgan were up to a cloak and dagger challenge.
For less than a week’s allowance, Sean could hop a train and be in Morgan’s hometown in a few hours…it was sure faster to drive but the family Ford Fairlane wagon was for grocery store runs and carpooling only. The train would make several short stops at horse-and-wagon watering holes along the way, but it was a bit of an adventure and worth the extra travel time for the chance to see Morgan.
The train ride was only the beginning of the mischievous plan. It would take careful feeding of bits and pieces of other details to make all the parents feel more like this was a great idea. What could go wrong with budding ‘pen pal’ novelists developing their friendship…after all, they hadn’t been going out on dates and had barely reached the hand-holding stage of a relationship. Had Sean and Morgan been “going steady”, that would have been a red flag, improper Southern behavior, gossip-worthy alarm! For the record, some letter writing in the preceding weeks blew past that hand-holding phase and had nearly reached the postal envelope, spontaneous combustion stage.
The perfect opportunity presented itself and the plan evolved quickly. Morgan’s parents were headed out on a weekend business trip and Morgan would be staying with her best friend Cathy…pretty much standard procedure for the trips Morgan’s parents took. Cathy was all ‘in’ to have Sean visit and meet this mystery boy-writer-supreme. However, that meant that somehow Sean’s parents had to be given a reasonable explanation for an overnight trip using the train. Cathy was convincing on the phone to advise Sean’s mom that all the parents were in on the surprise ‘party’ and that a responsible driver would meet Sean at the train station. Cathy’s older brother had a bunk bed and wouldn’t object to sharing his space.
“They’ll have a grand time and Morgan will be so surprised. We’re looking forward to meeting that fine son of yours,” said Cathy in her best matron-imitating voice.
We were all set. The plan had the proverbial parental blessing, the key to any ‘responsible’ teenager’s rendezvous. Again, for the record, Sean had to look up the word ‘rendezvous’…it was so much better than what might come from a Southern Baptist pulpit as a damnable violation of Commandments 1 thru 10.
It is difficult to look cool pulling up to a train station in a station wagon with flowers, a house-warming gift, and a small duffle bag. Sean did his best to project the responsible Boy Scout image. For the sake of his dad, he tried not to display too much excitement but inside he was a three-ring circus of emotions.
“Have fun, son.” said dad. We look forward to hearing about Morgan’s family. ‘See you tomorrow evening.” Sean could not help but smile as the round red taillights of the aging wagon pulled away. There was a sense of nervous freedom that swept over him that wasn’t familiar.
The train ride wasn’t something completely new. On this trip, those brief ‘stops’ along the route seemed painfully long. Sean was anxious, excited, and feeling a tinge of guilt that there was subterfuge involved…he couldn’t help that, he’d not missed a Sunday sermon in years. Guilt is a powerful weapon and Sean’s defenses were feeling it.
From previous (mostly supervised) adventures, an early morning boarding on the Dixie Streamliner with close family friends meant there was time to reach the big city, watch a newly released movie, grab a snack and hop the train to get back home in time for supper. This wasn’t all that different except for the moving parts of an overnight stay plus the addition of a ‘girl’ in the mix. Sean could feel the walls of Southern propriety trembling with every clickety-click-click of the train track.
Sean was met at the curb outside the station with a hand motioning to toss his overnight duffle behind the bucket seats in the MG. The gift box and the flowers provided great cover in the event there was anyone around who might know Sean or Morgan. To the rest of the world, it sure looked like a perfectly innocent curbside pick-up of a family member or friend. There was no welcome hug or peck on the cheek or handshake…just a matter-of-fact transportation connection.
Hardly out of view from the station, there were bursts of laughter, silly looks, and songs on the radio to sing to. The trip to the suburbs wasn’t a completely white-knuckle ride, but close. Sean understood quickly how that first attempt to travel in the Mustang ended in a disaster.
A few blocks from the house, per advanced plan, Sean scrunched down in the seat to give the illusion that there was only the driver and a bouquet in the car.
Cathy met Morgan and the ’empty’ car at the entrance to Morgan’s driveway and then followed the car up the drive as Morgan eased the car into the garage. They made it. The plan was working.
Sean tried his best to ignore kaçak bahis siteleri Cathy’s snide remarks, “So, he does flowers too. Isn’t that priceless! Does he bake?”
“Hi Sean, I am Cathy, and it is nice to see you…all of you,” she snickered as she gave him a once-over look.
Sean did look good although his travel clothes looked more like they had been selected by his mom. Peeking beneath his short-sleeved Madras shirt were well-toned muscles. Atop of his six-foot-plus frame was the beginnings of a mop-top blonde style that would pass for a 60s surfer. And those blue eyes seemed to have a calming effect on Cathy’s commentary.
This was Sean’s first introduction to Cathy, Morgan’s best friend and co-conspirator. She was a tall, dark-haired college freshman who loved to laugh and poke fun at the situation. She was all giggles and snide remarks about having to go to a surprise party by herself. Sean could see how she and Morgan were best friends and that it was important that he get the ‘Cathy Seal of Approval’.
There was a three-way, full blush moment when Cathy mentioned that she was envious that Morgan and Sean would be ‘playing house’ overnight and poor little Cathy would have to wait by the phone to hear the details. By standards of the day, that sort of talk was considered high-level perversion…one did not mention intimate, Graduate-like encounters in mixed company, but Cathy took joy in embarrassing the couple. In her eyes, ‘red’ may have been Sean’s normal facial color.
By now, it was time for the next scene to unfold. Like any responsible teen, Sean needed to call home to let his mom know that he arrived safely. Cathy was on stand-by as a safety net should there be any reason for Sean’s mom to speak with a parent. The long distant call went well.
“Everything is OK. Yes, I did pack my toothbrush. Traffic from the station wasn’t too bad. I feel welcomed here…Cathy’s parents are nice folks; you would like them.” Sean said smiling ear-to-ear. “I don’t know all the plans, someone mentioned a pre-party visit to the zoo, we’ll see.”
At that point, they were almost 2 minutes into the call, so it was best not to run up the phone bill.
Sean wrapped up the call with a polite, “I’ll see you at the station tomorrow night, you have the schedule, right? Great. Bye, mom!” It was an Oscar-worthy performance if not so innocently deceptive.
Cathy picked up on the mention of “zoo” and since it was a pretty afternoon, this sounded like a good idea to squelch any rumormongering. Three teens walking around together at the zoo would look almost academic and innocent. Neither Sean nor Morgan had any idea that Cathy was up to something. The short version of the zoo trip is that it was ‘normal’. Lots of cool animals, the usual stink of animal enclosures, pictures with the Instamatic camera, etc. Then, there was a stop at the monkey exhibit.
These little guys were fun to watch. It was clear that they knew they were entertainers by the way they responded to cheers and applause from onlookers. At some point, an amorous couple of primates decided that it was time to change the ratings from “G” to “X”. There was no mistaking what was going on and to Cathy’s delight, she finally unloaded the one-liner she had waited to deliver all afternoon.
“Are you two taking notes? There may be a quiz!” she exclaimed, followed by laughter and another round of three-way blushing. This did generate a thoughtful reminder to the threesome-colluded-script to make sure ALL the pictures were reviewed before showing them to family members… crazy monkeys!
Parts of that evening were a blur. Cathy and Morgan covered the day’s juicy gossip in a rapid-fire exchange. The zoo adventure entered the silliness several times. They nicknamed the two monkeys, “Frog and Duck” with associated unladylike limericks to match.
“There once was a frog and a duck,
We found at the zoo, just our luck.
In awe we were struck as they performed for a buck
And oh, how the two liked to fuck!”
All this inappropriate narrative went well with an ample supply of snacks and Coke-a-Cola. Meanwhile, Sean took off his shoes and enjoyed shuffling his bare feet through the plush-pile carpet. The house was beautiful with an impressive collection of fine art hanging on the walls.
“These people are rich…truly rich”, Sean murmured to himself.
Cathy finally shut up and left the two partygoers with a parting shot, “Now kids, don’t do anything that I wouldn’t love to do!” We said our goodbyes as she walked out. She had played her role well and was ready to turn the pen-pal pair loose.
The Association entertained the two on the high-fi as Morgan and Sean relished their first chance at a private chat and a lot of making out on the den’s sofa. It was a cozy space with dark wood walls and lit romantically by a single table lamp nearby. Morgan was a great kisser and not shy about lingering lip-locks. There weren’t a lot of words spoken and certainly no protests as the two young people ventured into touching and feeling places, even for that era, which would have been considered inappropriate while fully clothed. There were bare feet and ankles but somehow those were not included in the impropriety scenario
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