|Ryan Gosling and Steve Carell in the infamous scene from their movie "Crazy, Stupid Love."|
A long time ago, a young Ron Tipton joined a stamp club.
The year was 1953.
I was an innocent (yes, at one time I was "innocent") 12 years of age.
It was my first year in high school. Junior High to be exact. I think in these politically correct days "Junior High" is called "Middle School", lest we traumatize young 12 year old minds that they are "less" than their senior high school classmates.
Oh how well I remember my traumatization of entering high school. My biggest fears were gym and taking showers NAKED. Yes folks, I was scared shitless. But I'll always remember what my gym teacher, Mr. White, told us during our first gym class (before the showers). He said (and I am paraphrasing here):
"I know a lot of you are afraid to take showers with the other boys. Well, I'll tell you right now they all LOOK ALIKE."
And of course we all knew what he meant by "they." He's talking about that male anatomy appendage, the penis.
Folks, going from elementary school (grades one through six) to high school was a major life change for me and many other 12 year old boys. Not only were we on the threshold of our teenage years, we were literally losing a major part of our innocence.
Check out the photo in the header of this blog. I am on the far right (with my name over my head), the boy with the rolled up jeans. Back in those days I was growing in leaps and bounds, thus my Mother brought me "expandable" jeans. By the way, the photo I took from my former classmate and long time friend Larry ("Lar") Meredith. "War" is third from the left in the back with a circle over his head "Lem".
|1953-54 Stamp Club Downingtown High School|
So back to my first big "exposure." After Mr. White had his "talk" with his bunch of Nellie Boys, we had our gym period class. Don't ask me what we did, I was too preoccupied about the Big Moment. That "Big Moment" was after our physical activity and we all ran back to the funky smelling gym to take our showers.
Nervously, I went to my gym basket where we had stashed our school clothes after we changed into gym shorts. By the way, those white gym shorts were very cute. I guess the kids these days wear the ultra silky and baggy NBA type "shorts." Not sexy at all.
I pulled off my white T-shirt and white shorts (all white in those days folks) and my white socks, not daring to look around at me. Then I shakily walked towards the sounds of the rushing shower water pounding on the funky tiles of the HUGE shower room. No individual stalls here folks like I heard they had in the girls showers.
Well, my first impression was that I was overwhelmed by all the nakedness. With two younger brothers and a father who like to lounge around the house in his sweaty tank top and greasy gray (formerly white) jockey short (no "tightie whitie for Pop here folks), I was no stranger to seeing a penis other than mine. But to see so many all at once. OVERWHELMING.
And you know something folks? Mr. White was wrong. They don't all look alike. In fact, everyone was different. No two were the same. Penises and fingerprints, all different. Mr. White lied. I know, I looked. And looked. In fact, for the next six years I looked.
Shocked? Well, don't be. Just imagine if you were a young heterosexual 12 year old and you were taking showers with the opposite sex, wouldn't you do some ogling too? Sure you would. I'm telling you folks, this was one time being a homosexual where I had an advantage. Nice.
By the way, I started this blog posting about my stamp club membership. I was reminded of that occasion by the picture my friend Lar had posted on his blog of our stamp club membership. Maybe I'll do a posting about that subject next time.