Thank you Mr. Faith
by Kathleen M. Brosius
Alyce Meyer lived on a farm a few miles from
town. Her mom, God bless her, opened her doors to
all and we all flooded in, usually for slumber
parties. One spring evening in 1960, we ninth
grade girls, found ourselves, once again, packed in
Fritz Meyer’s (Alyce’s big brother) car and on our
way to the farm. Tucked in behind rolling hills of
Allamakee County, in Northeast Iowa, their little
white farm house stood. We crowded in with our
duffle bags, grocery bags, and maybe an actual suit
case, stuffed with pajamas, toothbrushes, hair
brushes, books, 45 RPM records, and make up.
I wore a dress that Mama had just bought for
me. Aqua thread intertwined throughout the cotton
bodice of the same color. White lace accented the
neck and waste line. The full skirt hung to just
below my knees. Mama had helped me pull my hair
back into a pony tail. A white scarf held it in place.
A scatter of bobbie pins secured escaping strands.
In those days, it wasn’t fashionable for strands of
hair to hang loose. Some of my pals wore slacks
and white blouses; some wore tight skirts and
sweaters. We all wore bobby socks.
Card tables were waiting in Alyce’s basement.
Potato chips, and popcorn filled big bowls. We
drank Coke and Root Beer. Large platters of Pizza
were served, as we laughed, gossiped and did the
twist, as Chubby Checker filled the room with his
number one hit. We sat with our eyes closed, as we
listened to It’s Now or Never by Elvis, and held
back tears when Mark Dinning sang Teen Angel.
The number one song of 1960 was A Summer
Place by Percy Faith. Someone had the record and
we played it over and over. I remember descending
the basement steps of the Meyer home. I was
feeling a little shy, as I was terribly insecure in my
teenage years. The melody of this song floated up
and met me. For a moment I became Sandra Dee.
The girls behind me giggled and pushed through.
They loved my dress and pulled me into the room.
We all felt like the little blond movie star so
popular with the teenage girls.
I loved that song. Still on the top of my list of
favorites, I have to pause and close my eyes,
whenever I hear it. Dreams float around in my
head and for a little while, I am a teenager from
1960, innocent and protected from the years that
lay ahead. With my pals from the little town of New
Albin, Iowa, we enjoyed our slumber parties and
the songs that etched a permanent place in our
hearts. Each of us had a favorite song; mine was
Theme from A Summer Place.
Copyright-Kathleen M. Brosius-March 19, 2010