My high school grades weren’t the best. I did all right in reading, writing, music, and art. But while almost failing in science, math, civics, history, in 1949 I still managed to graduate from Northeast High School at the tender age of sixteen. For some reason I don’t recall, I’d been allowed to skip eighth grade and become a Northeast “Viking.”
Northeast High School
Kansas City, Missouri
I wanted to go to the proms and Teen Town, our chaperoned Friday night hangout, but was never allowed to. I had a new dad who insisted boys come to the house and ask HIS permission before asking me out. As a result I never dated until I was out of school and on my own.
Dorothy (my new mom) made me a satin graduation gown in one of the school colors: purple. (My school colors were purple and white.) But alas, I was driven to the graduation in Kansas City in the back of a pickup truck, sitting on a milk carton with the wind blowing my hair. The gray graduation gown covered my beautiful purple dress, and I never got to show it off. After the ceremony, it was right back home again in the bed of the pickup, while carloads of kids drove by honking and yelling wisecracks.
I still can’t believe it, a wasted graduation dress, and except for my diploma, a wasted trip downtown.