1950 Memories of Suburban Adventures

Am I Amazing Yet?

I was not beyond copying a few male-impressing pointers from an expert. And who could be a better expert than a femme fatale on the big screen? Much to the amusement of the male population, my attention getting techniques didn’t tend to translate well from the movies to moi.

Damn Yankees was the second feature at the Dix drive-in during the summer of 1959, when I turned nine. Gwen Verdon became my first movie star idol.

Lola’s sexy song and dance of seduction impressed me as a sure boyfriend-getter. It’s amazing how much can be retained after one viewing.

For weeks I sang, “Whatever Lola wants, Lola gets, and little man, little Lola wants you …” I repeated many of her come-hither dance steps, becoming especially skilled at hunching over with arms hung straight down and sashaying over to my target. For extra measure, I substituted ‘Mary’ for ‘Lola’.

No boys followed me like the Pied Piper. They didn’t want to find out what Mary wanted.

Other temptresses came and went without improving my marketability; Gidget, Annette, Morticia, etc. But the actress with the best idea for knocking the socks off some unsuspecting guy was Elizabeth Taylor in 1963.

www.tipsimages.it.com Open your eyes for a big surprise!

Open your eyes for a big surprise!

I wanted to be Cleopatra from the moment I saw her get rolled out of a carpet. What a great idea. It surpassed Gwen’s sexy dance. What could be a more romantic surprise for a future beau than having me rolled out of a rug at his feet?

www.peplumtv.com Which way is up?

Which way is up?

I never did make my grand rolling entrance, but I did continue trying to snag boys with my impressive tricks and stunts.

Lesson learned: Various sexy scenes on television and the movies should come with a “Don’t try this at home” warning.

Related posts: Chapter Five: Impressing Boys; Tale of Two Lennys

Now it’s your turn: What actions did you emulate from the screen?

© Mary Norton-Miller and 1950s Suburban Adventures, 2012 forward. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Mary Norton-Miller and 1950s Suburban Adventures with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.


  1. I have heard about these films from my mom. Now I want to find download & watch them
    Sent on my BlackBerry® from Vodafone

  2. kbroby2444 says:

    The movie was Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. Butch and Sundance had been chased by the posse to a cliff above a raging river gorge with no where else to go, out gunned, and out of options. Butch looks over the cliff and says let’s jump, Sundance says no, Butch says why not? Sundance says because I don’t know how to swim. Butch laughs and says one of my favorite movie lines – (I paraphrase) – Hell, why worry about that, the fall alone will kill you. They jumped and made their escape. Later that summer, I friend and me made a jump off a cliff too high for us to be messing with into the lake, the fall didn’t kill us but it left us with a trip to the emergency room while on family vacation and ear aches from the sudden pressure.

    Still, many years later, I learned a lesson that day that has never been forgotten. When faced with no easy options, pick one and jump into it.

  3. God Skinny, you have no idea how much I LOVED Gwen Verdon.

  4. C. Suresh says:

    Hahaha, Mary! You have the male equivalent here in moi 🙂

  5. Maddy says:

    That would have to be singing and acting out some scenes from the movie Grease.
    (This was after seeing both the Play on Broadway and later on at the movies)
    My group of friends and I each took turns playing Olivia Newton John and John Travolta. Summer Lovin’ had me a blast -that was a good one.
    Great story Mary-as always!

    • skinnyuz2b says:

      Thanks, Maddy.
      Olivia is still smok’n in those tight black pants at the end, when she lets loose. I thought John Travolta was pretty hot in ‘Welcome Back Kotter’. My youngest daughter loved Grease and had posters of John in her room. Her older sister teased her because he was soooo old (to them at least).

  6. Mary, you must have gotten into lots of trouble trying those tricks learned from movies. I was born in ’51, one year ahead of you, brought up by nuns and would have been burnt at the stake if I tried any of those. They tried to make me into a prude, but they never succeeded. When I heard the Beatles for the first time, at 12, I practised singing Love, Love me Do to the boy I liked, and got great results. I did not need to dance the steps, just sing the tune and the words, and they worked, and how. It is good to reminisce about those days, and to forgive yourself for the silly and naive things we thought were so cute then.

    • skinnyuz2b says:

      Theresa, singing would work less than dancing for me. I’m completely tone deaf!
      I had no idea, at the time, that Gwen’s dance was meant to me funny. I thought it was the perfect way to ensnare a boy!
      You should check out my encounter with nuns in ‘Nun Cake’, found in chapter four. It might bring back more memories.

  7. Glynis Jolly says:

    Elizabeth Taylor was in a class of her own. No doubt about it. The only movie I was disappointed in that she had a leading role was her first, National Velvet. It just couldn’t hold my interest

  8. mylifebutfunny says:

    Very funny! Just discovered your blog but will def be reading more.

  9. parrillaturi says:

    Another gripping, funny post. You have a nag for turning disappointment, into victory. As a child, I wanted to be like john Wayne, and beat up the bad guys. I had my trusty cap shooters holstered, but at the ready. Good read.

    • skinnyuz2b says:

      Thanks, Parrillaturi. I bet you were wishing some not-really-bad, but sort-of-bad guys would come along so you could do your John Wayne thing.
      A few years later, when Kung Fu became popular, I dreamed of whipping a much larger bully-girl around and impressing all the guys that would surely be watching. In truth, my Mighty Mouse impersonation probably would have scared them.
      A kid’s imagination is a great thing.

      • parrillaturi says:

        You are so right. I did wait, but no one showed up. As a former Martial Artist myself, I never went after anyone, just the opposite. One thing, an adult’s imagination is even greater. Blessings.

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