Bill [not the one in Chapter 2] was the first one to spot Gloria, a trim dark-haired brunette in a snug-fitting shift. Like most American females aged 15-30 in 1965-66, her hair was teased up in a pile resembling a hair dryer hood and held in place with high viscosity hair spray. Not my idea of beauty but that’s what they all did. Then again, who was I to be fussy given my nerdy look and lack of dating success or even experience? After taking her for a few spins around the floor, Bill brought her back to meet me,

   “John, this is Gloria." 

   “Hello, Gloria."


   “Why don’t you ask her to dance,” Bill whispered generously in my ear, as Gloria’s head turned toward the music. 

   “So, you want to dance?” I inquired, as manfully as I could.

   “OK,” she replied with a disarming but unreadable smile.  I did my earnest best in faking an ability to dance. Thanks to occasionally watching Dick Clark and Lloyd Thaxton, I wasn’t totally clueless, just not adept. 

   “You’re a good dancer,” she said, over the unintelligible lyrics of “Louie, Louie,” playing loudly in the ballroom. Hah, what a come on, I thought to myself.

   “Oh, thanks; so are you.” No, not really, I lied.


Copyright © 2007 by John Maberry