Thursday, April 18, 2013


Remembering Margie Black - Ken Linville

I met Margie Black at Highline in 1953 when she and the other sophomores came over to us from Puget Sound Jr. High. From the first time I met her, we never ran out of things to say to each other, more often than not, both of us talking at once if we could stop laughing long enough to say something. She was so full of life, so much fun to be with, had such a great sense of humor and, not really at all that bad looking.

We didn't have many classes together but we both had Mr. Betz for first-year Spanish. Spanish was Margie’s first period class every day but she never quite seemed to be able to get her homework done the night before. Margie knew I got good grades and she came up with a great idea. She’d get me to do her Spanish homework for her in the morning before class while we were all down in the lunch room eating butter horns. Being the social butterfly she was, she’d flit around talking to everybody while I was quickly writing out her homework. Of course the pastries were gooey with butter and frosting. While scratching out gerunds, genders and conjugations on her papers, I’d be dripping butter and smearing frosting onto her assignments while catching up on all the latest gossip, as well. One day I told her I’d accidentally ruined her papers with butter & goo so she couldn’t turn this work in because the papers were so greasy you could almost see through them and we didn't have time for me to redo them. She said, “Oh, hell,” (well she usually used a little stronger expletive than ‘hell’), “Betz won’t even notice the difference!” She once later told me that Mr. Betz was quite impressed with her work but suggested she do her homework either before or after she ate to avoid the food stains or whatever it was all over her assignments.

Lake Wilderness was one of our favorite party places. I finally had a car that could get through an intersection from a dead stop before the light turned red again and one afternoon we were headed for the lake. I don’t remember if anybody was with us in the back seat but Margie and I were in front high-tailing it out to the lake for another party. Life WAS a party then , wasn't it? There wasn't much traffic out to Maple Valley in those days and I was probably a few miles over the speed limit with my left hand on the wheel, my right arm around Margie, a Marlboro in my teeth, a warm bottle of Oly between my legs, four totally bald tires and the pedal to the metal. We were laughing and joking as usual. The needle was headed through about ninety when, an old rusty pick-up truck pulled out ahead of us onto the road from a corn field. It wasn't dark yet but I figured I’d better get serious, got both hands on the wheel, got softly on the brakes to avoid spinning out and swerved out into the oncoming lane since fortunately no oncoming traffic appeared to be heading our way. How lucky were we to get through this one alive? I looked over at her and said, “Geez, you know brakes just aren't worth a damn when you’re going a hundred miles an hour.” Any other girl would have told me to pull over and let her out before I killed us all. Not Margie. She thought it was hilarious. The only misfortune that occurred through the whole ordeal was that I spilled my beer all over the crotch of my Levis. Of course, this was more grist for the comedy mill and for the first hour at the lake, everybody was asking if I had peed my pants. “Hey, Linus, couldn’t hold it, huh? Too much beer?” How embarrassing! As always, the night was spent in fun and camaraderie and ended all too soon. When we graduated, I think some of us thought that life, as we knew it, was over. 

Later on, after graduation, Margie had various jobs. She and Donna and Marilyn hung out together a lot through those first years. Then Marilyn went to college for a couple of years at Oregon State. I was up at the U of W. There was a drive-in in those days on Rainier Avenue called the Rodeo where I’d heard Margie was working. The car-hops traveled around to and from the cars with their trays balanced precariously as they went back and forth on roller skates, of all things. One night some of my buddies and I pulled in there in my car, (we had “That’ll Be The Day” by Buddy Holly blaring on the car radio as loud as it would go). I pulled into an open spot and, lo and behold, out glides Margie on her skates wearing a skimpy cow-girl outfit and a ten gallon hat balancing a huge tray above her head piled high with hamburgers, French fries and milk shakes. I couldn't believe my eyes. She was a good skater. After she delivered the tray to the car across from us, she came over for our order and I told her to cool it before she took a spill and busted her ass. I think her boss had to come out and tell her to quit spending so much time at my car and start taking care of some of the other customers.

She worked for Preservative Paints for a number of years and they had annual picnics at one of the lakes, I don’t recall for sure which one, probably Wilderness, but I went with her to a couple of those always-entertaining events. On one of them she and I were in a canoe out in the middle of the lake and I told her to toss me a beer. I was paddling the boat in the back and she didn’t want to throw it so she decided to bring it back to me. I yelled for her to sit down before she tipped us over and, naturally, over we went, fully clothed, into the lake holding on to an upside down canoe that we couldn’t right and laughing so hard we could barely swim to shore. Finding some dry clothes was another trick which I won’t go in to.

After almost a year at the U, I finally did learn to dance and Margie and I spent lots of Saturday nights dancing and drinking at a place called The Flame up in Lake City. They had live music and Margie was a good dancer. We both had fake ID’s so, no problem. What fun! And then I hardly ever saw her again for over 30 years until we were finally able to get to Jan and Larry Parkers’ Friends’ picnics at their beautiful home on the river. We’d been trying to make this affair for years but I don’t think we ever made until I retired. I just mention this because Marilyn and I feel so fortunate to have had our personal association with Margie, this beautiful, exuberant, fun-to-be-with girl, back when life was a happy, care-free adventure; back before we all got involved with house payments, car payments, raising kids, and making a living, dealing with the ups and downs life presents to us, which we've all had to face, and finding out that life wasn't really always as easy or as much fun as we thought it would be.

Wow, incredible blog structure! How lengthy have you been blogging for?
you make blogging glance easy. The total look of your web site is excellent, as smartly as the content material!

My web page: buy electronic cigarette online
These are in fact great ideas in concerning blogging.
You have touched some nice things here. Any way keep up

Also visit my blog breville juice fountain
First off I ωoulԁ like to say great blog! I had а quick question that I'd like to ask if you do not mind. I was curious to find out how you center yourself and clear your head prior to writing. I have had a difficult time clearing my thoughts in getting my ideas out. I truly do take pleasure in writing however it just seems like the first 10 to 15 minutes are generally wasted simply just trying to figure out how to begin. Any recommendations or hints? Appreciate it!

My blog post; crear facebook gratis
Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?