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My Life 1967-1973 - Part Five

by

Michael D. Holcomb

1971


January through June was the 2nd half of my Junior year in High School. I don't know in what order the following events took place.

Cynthia ****** was a pretty black girl who hung out with the white kids. She was a light skinned black with smooth black hair and very petite. She didn't talk like a black.

She also had a hangup about white boys. I wasn't the first nor the last to take my turn with Cynthia. During this time the pressure was on with the saying "you're not a man till you've had a black girl." I have no complaints.

Homecoming at the school was going to be just another event. Being in R.O.T.C we were required to wear our dress blues and march on the field at half time. My sister-in-law told me her best friend who was 6 months pregnant wanted to go to the game but needed someone to take her. The father of the baby had long bailed. So I was asked to escort her. Here I was walking around in baggy dress blues with a pregnant gal at the biggest game of the year. I enjoyed her company but it took a while to halt the ripple of the rumor mill days later.

Diane ****** was the type of girl you didn't mind being alone with late at night as long as the people you know didn't see you. From the rear she looked like she had the perfect figure and the prettiest hair, but once she turned around... whoa!

During one of the many dry spells myself along with my buddy Wayne had taken our turns with Diane on occasion. Once it occurred in the back seat of my Chevy at the clay pitts late one night while listening to the pounding sound of Rod Stewart's "Maggie May."

Sometime during my Junior year I started turning on to marijuana. To start I would just smoke it when someone had it available but soon I found myself buying nickel and dime bags. I couldn't smoke very much at a time because of my heart murmur. That stuff really heated up the chest and caused the heart to race. To get caught with the grass had pretty severe penalties so we found the safest way was to take a pair of tweezers and pinch all the tobacco out of a cigarette and stuff it full with mary jane. That way you could smoke it like a cigarette and nobody knew the difference unless of course he had a keen sense of smell.

Some of the others went on to experiment with the harsher stuff but I knew my limits and didn't. One particular day I remember smoking a joint at lunch time and just literally floating to my Typing Class afterwards. We had a words per minute test to take and I failed it miserably. Usually the stuff relaxes the soul but I think this batch had been laced with some hallucinagenic drug. The closest time I came to getting caught was when I had just bought a nickel and stuffed it under the driver's seat when a Leesburg Cop pulled up and asked what we were doing parked in the Cable Vision lot.

Everyone kept their cool and just explained the Security guard at McDonalds across the street ran us off earlier. The cop told us we can't hang out at a closed business either. We were more than happy to just leave and go somewhere else.

The What-A-Burger was a popular hangout for the kids and it also had a reputation for the meeting place for drug trading. The word was out to not do anything there because the Leesburg Cops were on the top floor of Citizens Bank with binoculars staking out the place.

The Crest Drive-In was probably the favorite place to take a date although some girls wouldn't let you take them there. These ladies wanted to be taken to the Tropic Theatre or someplace more public. The drive-in was of course the best place to drink beer. The mistake I made was tossing the bottles out of the car and then running over them when leaving that night. Somehow the left rear tire got punctured and went completely flat by the time I got to the Penn-Dixie store at Picciola and Hwy 27.

I thought I was in good enough shape to change the tire but once I stood up out of the car the blood rushed to my head and I found myself just able to hang. My buddy Tim got out and fell on his face. I didnít know what to do but lady luck struck when some more buddies saw us and stopped and helped... I guess it's not until later on you realize how one stunt could have changed your life.

In the Fall of 1971 I started my Senior Year. This was my 3rd year of R.O.T.C. Myself along with several other guys were thinking of a military career in the Air Force. A delayed entrance program would allow us to sign up now, finish school and then go in later.

A group of us were allowed to miss school and travel by Greyhound Bus to the Jacksonville Induction Center to take the entrance exams and the physicals. I scored ok on the test but failed my physical due to a trick elbow.

During the stay at the hotel a lot of drinking and partying went on. The local girls knew where the action was and were a mainstay at the hotel - need I say more?

Standing in line at the bus depot for the trip home was hard for me - I had drowned my troubles the night before because I was rejected with a 4-F draft card status.

The Air Force didn't want me because I failed the stupid physical. Here I was in my 3rd year of R.O.T.C. and it was all for nothing.

Finally the Atlanta to Orlando Bus arrived but we had to wait for the passengers on the bus to exit and have a quick break. While watching them exit I saw this honey step down off the bus and go into the station. I said to myself what are the chances for me to sit near her for the ride home. Soon the Atlanta passengers climbed back on the bus and then I boarded as quickly as I could looking for where she was sitting. She was at the rear of the bus so I asked to sit next to her and she obliged. As I placed my duffle bag on the top rack it fell down hitting this Spanish lady in the head. She cussed me out over and over even as I was apologizing to her.

Anyway the honey's name is Debbie ***** and she told me her parents thought it would be best for her to live with her aunt and uncle in Orlando for awhile. She had drug and behavior problems at home. We talked all the way home and exchanged phone numbers. She accepted a date with me for the following weekend.

Sure enough on Friday night I travel to Orlando and pick her up at her Aunt's house. She looked great in a Sizzler dress and her makeup was just right. I figured with her being all dressed up she would want to go somewhere nice but told me anywhere would be fine.

I knew from our conversations on the bus that she was to the point and easy going, so I said I was thinking of the Rimar Drive-In. She said okay so off we went. Debbie was into Black Sabbath so I put that 8-track into the player. She was the most fun that night and the next time together was even better. I scored both times but when I tried to go back for more on the third weekend her Aunt told me Debbie had reconciled with her parents in Atlanta.

Part Six

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