Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Ten For Ten

Me, 3rd from the right, age 10

My oldest grandchild just turned ten. She's tall and beautiful with new holes in her ears. She has her own e-mail and is a computer genius. I'm amazed at how grown up she is.

I remember being that age. I was short with goofy teeth and did my hair in pin-curls with bobby pins. We had to wear dresses to school every day, and my mom made me wear thick wool leggings under my skirt when it was cold. (They weren't cute, or stylish, so neither was I.)

I was in Mrs. Ludwig's class, and I had to stay in for recess because I didn't finish my long subtraction problems. My sports were Double Dutch (jump rope,) Hopscotch, Four-Square and Tetherball. My best friend was Patty Sheffield, and my boyfriend was Kent Spencer. He was Patty's boyfriend, too. I guess we were learning to share.

I discovered Nancy Drew that year, and my mom gave me a special booklet called Now You Are Ten, explaining all the new womanly changes that were coming up. The Weekly Reader told us that someday there would be television telephones, and all our school papers were printed on the mimeograph machine because copiers hadn't been invented yet.

Here are ten more facts about 1959:
  1. Alaska and Hawaii became states. All the flags had to be re-made to have 50 stars instead of 48.
  2. The war in Viet Nam started.
  3. Castro came into power in Cuba.
  4. Sleeping Beauty by Walt Disney was released.
  5. The song Edelweiss was sung on Broadway for the first time in Sound of Music.
  6. Annette Funicello and Frankie Avalon were the teen idols.
  7. Black people in the south were still treated terribly. They were made to ride in the back of buses, and drink from drinking fountains labeled "Coloreds" while white people drank from fountains for "Whites Only."
  8. John F. Kennedy was just getting ready to run for president.
  9. Cowboy shows on TV were everybody's favorites. (Bonanza and Rawhide were mine.)
  10. The hit song wasn't a song at all. A very cool guy stood and just combed his hair, while some girls knelt at his feet and said, "Kookie, Kookie, lend me your comb" over and over, and then he snapped his fingers. We loved it.
Looking at my class picture, I can still name most of the kids. I remember where they lived, and a few details (one boy's dad died in an explosion; one girl had four Dobermans that barked from behind a fence as I walked to school; another girl had leukemia and a boy's big brother had been crippled by polio.)

The most exciting thing about being ten was that I was finally in double digits. That changes a girl.

What happened when you were ten?


9 comments:

Stie: My Favorite Things said...

When I was ten, I had the first of six surgeries on my arm. I was the tallest in my class (even taller than the boys) and felt like a giant ogre. I had a very mean teacher named Mrs. Yergensen who told my parents that I was too easily influenced by friends. And my mom had my youngest brother that year, whom I had to share a room with. Ten was not necessarily my best year. Loved your remembrances.

gab said...

It's amazing that you've only been an Oma for 10 years...you have sure packed a lot of grandkids (and adventures) into one little decade!

kenju said...

It was 9 years earlier than you - 1950. Not much was different, except the songs. I was tall, with goofy teeth. We had to wear dresses too, and I wore leggings when it was cold. I seldom finished math problems, and the only sport I like was riding my bicycle. I read all the time, except when I was playing dolls and dress up. We went to the movies every Sat., and saw Gene Autry and Hopalong Cassidy. I read the same booklet you did, but it was after the fact....LOL

kenju said...

It was 9 years earlier than you - 1950. Not much was different, except the songs. I was tall, with goofy teeth. We had to wear dresses too, and I wore leggings when it was cold. I seldom finished math problems, and the only sport I like was riding my bicycle. I read all the time, except when I was playing dolls and dress up. We went to the movies every Sat., and saw Gene Autry and Hopalong Cassidy. I read the same booklet you did, but it was after the fact....LOL

mama jo said...

i have a hard time remembering myself at 10...i was at crestview elementary..i think that was the year we would lay on the grass in the shape of a "T" for tony, the 6th grader we all loved..i loved hopscotch, playing in the fields...playing with kathy, suzy, mare and robyn...riding bikes...i wore glasses, had short hair...loved to jump rope..liked tommy mack...i liked him forever...all through elementary, until high school...

Nancy said...

I was 10 years old in 1938 and a lot was happening in the World...

FDR establishes The March Of Dimes..

Benny Goodman is the first jazz musician to play Carnegie hall..

Thornton Wilder's "Our Town" performed for first time...

Adolph Hitler creates the Wehrmacht, giving him complete control of German military....

Oil discovered in Saudi Arabia...

Action Comics introduces Superman..

Seabiscuit defeats War Admiral at
Pimlico.

Kate Smith sings Irving Berlin's "God Bless America" for the first time.....

Adolph Hitler is Time Magazine's Man of The Year...

Bugs Bunny Cartoon first appears...

Spanish Civil War still rages (1936-1939)

Joe Louis knocks out Max Schmeling at Yankee Stadium...

Minimum wage established by law..

Orson Welles radio adaption of "The War of The Worlds" causes mass panic in U.S.A.

And that is what was happening when I was 10 years old.... I was tall, skinny, and usually trying to be funny. To my great regret, I was seldom funny but always tall and skinny......

Joy Des Jardins said...

Well, in 1959 I was twelve...and I sure remember everything on your list Marty. Kookie, Annette....all of it. BTW...You were a cutie.

Polly said...

Ten was fun for me. I remember having Mrs. Ludgwig too! I think we all did. She told the best stories. When it was storytime she read Tom Sawyer, Mrs. Pigglewiggle and Pippie Longstockings. She did different voices for each character. Marty, you were kind of dumb. The minute I left the house..off came those Susie long legs...my legs were cold, but I we in style!

Polly said...

I didn't remember that Mrs Ludwig was when I was 9, so I started looking for things that happened when I was 10: "I Left My Heart in San Fransisco" won a grammy, and in that same year Kathy and Dave Wing and I went to San Fransisco and who do you think we ran into! Tony Bennett at the Top of the Mark hotel. Of course Dave made him hug and kiss him. At the time I didn't know who he was, but I sure love him now! Another 1953 event was the March on Washington and Martin Luther King's talk "I have a Dream" that was March of 1953. Another person I share a birthday with is Nickita Kruschev, which is interesting because April 20 of another year Adolf Hitler was born. Jim shares that birthday! (I wonder if that means anything)? Mick Mantle goes 1 for 4 565 HR. Beatles 1st Album released Feb 11, 1953, they didn't come to America til the next year. And finally in September of 1953 President John F Kennedy came to SLC. He spoke in the tabernacal. Again Joyce Wing and my mom took Kathy and Me to hear him. We couldn't get in so we stood just outside the west door of the Hotel Utah (Joseph SMith Building) and listened to his speech over the loud speaker. Then he walked across the street and walked into the building- probably 5 or 10 feet away from us. We (He and I) had eye contact and he had beautiful blue eyes. and of course we all know that just two months later he was shot in Dallas, I was in the lunch room at Holladay Elementary when we started hearing the news. The rest of the day our teacher had us put our heads on our desks and listen to the radio..She was crying.