|From the desk of Don Meyers
New Luncheon Location - Bob Hightower has recently retired so Hightower’s
Restaurant is under new management with a new name. They are temporarily closed
while undergoing renovations. October 28 we’ll meet next door at The Elk’s Club and
Lodge. Lunch will be buffet style and will cost $10 per person. Advance RSVPs are
definitely needed and Betty will collect our $ at the door. We will let you know later
where our future luncheons will be...possibly same location.
July Luncheon - A rowdy bunch of 37 classmates, spouses and friends enjoyed our
summer luncheon. The round table introductions, as usual, was spirited and we
learned many new things about what our ‘55 classmates are up to.
‘55 Website Rebuilt By Your New Webmaster - The new OHS ‘55 website URL address
is http://ohs1955.ussthornback.com. Your new webmaster is an OHS grad most of
you already know. He’s Pat Gurr, Class of 1957, who has already put in untold hours
to get the website up and running with a new look, and to maintain the site for us.....
FOR FREE ! Those classmates who play with the computer have already received this
information via email announcement. Those of you without computer connection, treat
yourselves by visiting a computer friend and take this web address with you. Ask
them to put it up for you to enjoy. At the new site, you’ll find some new stuff being
posted....i.e. Betty’s email news ” WeCare ‘55 “ .... plus from the old website, the
pictures and info of our old school days.....luncheon and reunion pictures . All have a
new look, plus 50’s music too. Pat also maintains another website of pictures from
OHS alums who lunch together each month at Gator Joe’s on Lake Weir (the old
Johnson’s Beach). You can get to this from our ‘55 website by going to ur “Links”
page and clicking on Pat’s OHS Alumni website.
We are really lucky, ‘55 guys, to have Pat. Pat has a great love for Ocala and
OHS. Check out the new website and send any feedback and suggestions you may
Answer to July Class Trivia Question # 1 - We asked which OHS club sold
sandwiches, snacks and drinks at lunch time in the girls’ gym and what was it
named? Mike Finn came in with the right answer...the Key Club.... and also name of
snack bar was The Key Club Canteen. I remember this well as Buddy Martin (OHS
Class of ‘56) and I worked the Key Club Canteen together and got out early from class
to set up. We usually ate and drank what we wanted and that was probably the
reason there were never any profits made with us there.
Class Trivia Question # 2 - We asked which two ‘55 lady classmates attended the
same second grade class in Brunswick, Georgia. And the answer is....June (Link)
Wettstein and Martha Sue (Irby) Hill.
The Late, Great, Orange Fights - The drive-by shootings of today remind me how us
simple OHS guys used to settle our differences in the 50s. We had orange fights at
night that usually took place as rival “gangs” in jalopies, fought each otther on
nocturnal evenings all over sleeping Ocala. Of course, the best were fights that were on
foot too. Several times I was bombarded by heavy artillery, the ripe orange. Getting
hit in the head by one of these caused crazy-ness such as wanting to go to FSU, or a
smelly tee shirt. Some guys, I will not name names, used the smaller caliber, but high
velocity Japanese Plums. I got hit by one of these in a sensitive lower area but still
managed to produce two kids. One night, as I was strolling into my house on old
Silver Springs Road (then), a car raced by and several oranges whizzed by my head
and imploded on my front door. Fortunately, my mom and dad were heavy sleepers.
One of my classmates yelled out, “Hey, Don, sorry...I only tried to hit YOU...” What a
50’s drive-by “sportsman”. Les, Mike, Jack... you jerks. (Oooops) And, if any of you
career-troublemakers want to, please discuss the quaint Ocala custom of burning
palm trees. Never did or participated in this while at OHS, but I know some readers
might want it described. You will remain anonymous and the statute of limitations
Veteran Vet At It in Belleview - Dr. Charleen (Perry) Yarborough was seen out in the
pasture at her mother’s house doctoring a cow that had a hurt hind foot. Dr. C got the
owner of the cows to bring helpers to get ropes on the cow to hold it down so she could
get to the foot. Or is it a hoof ? Charleen said, now she remembers why she quit large
animal practice years ago. All the helper “cowboys” including Charleen, admitted to
being ‘no spring chickens.’ Charleen’s sister Jan Blanchard says the cow is better and
will be harder to catch next time.
Hey ‘55 Guys, I’m Lookin For Class Trivia Questions - The well is just about to run
dry here. What’s in your trivia memory? Let me know and it will appear in the next
‘55 newsletter. I’m depending on you and have confidence in you all. Has to be in
good taste... like most of my stuff (?). On second thought, maybe something way out
will do. Something like what size shoe Mr. Hankinson wears...or...who put all the
sandspurs in my gym shorts. Class stuff, or should I say trivia questions ...like
what OHS class graduated after l954 but before l956. Then again, maybe I’m
asking too much of you.
The Momentous Fifties - While you were in the back seat of a car at the Skylark Drive-
In Theater doing things you would later tell your children never to do...I was studying
and recording history. And there wasn’t even a History Channel then either. You
know, during the 50’s a lot of important events happened. Since you were hormone
challenged then, I’ll take it upon myself to help you remember some of the events in the
50’s you missed.
In 1955, the movie Blackboard Jungle with Glenn Ford and Ann Francis, depicted
a New York teacher battling teenage hoodlums. Also...in l955, the U.S. started aid to
Vietnam and gave the southwest Asian country 516 million dollars. The Vietnam
conflict began in the mid l960s. And, in l956, Elvis Presley’s recording of
“Heartbreak Hotel” got him put on the rock and roll record charts for the first time.
Of course, I remember the Soviets invading Hungary to crush the anti-communist
revolution. Then, way back in l954 the U.S. Supreme Court ruled against racial
segregation in schools and Marilyn Monroe married Joe DiMaggio. And...in l954,
Pres. Eisenhower signed an order adding the words “under God” to the Pledge of
Allegiance. In l958, unidentified soldiers killed in WW2 and the Korean conflict were
buried in the Tomb of the Unknowns in Arlington National Cemetery.
What’s In Your Oven ? - When Betty (Voegtle) Larson starts feeling downhome
Southern, she puts Conk Peas on her menu. Here’s how to do it. Betty sez......
....The peas go in a pot with some kind of meat. Usually either salt pork, bacon,
hog jowl, or maybe ham. Whatever she has on hand. Cover with water, salt to taste,
cover and boil til done, about 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Just have to taste and check
occasionally. Fix’ns with the Conk Peas include rice, cornbread, sliced tomatoes ,
cucumbers plus sweet onions crisped up in ice water with a little vinegar, and....GO TO
IT !! Betty says the best thing about the recipe is that it is really easy, especially
since her mom Eunice does all the shelling of the fresh peas. Nice work, Betty...er...that
What’s In Your Bookcase ? - Sarah (Colvard ) Badger comments on an interesting
book she has read. The title is, “The War on Christmas” written by John Gibson.
Sarah says the book ‘puts light on the changes we are seeing in the schools in
references to Christmas. The ACLU is called into action at the drop of a hat and
teachers and principals are put into positions that aren’t pretty. Sarah goes on to
say...”This book is an easy read. It reminded me, it ain’t the 50’s any longer” The
whole politically correct sickness even occurred in the small town of Crandall, Geogia,
where she and Bob live. She acknowledged that the ACLU was called in for two
incidents at the local high school which resulted in a principal being relieved. Students
who protested the move were forced out of their demonstration. Sarah states that she
could never see her dad ( a former teacher) or mom calling in a lawyer to the school
system. Yes, Sarah, as you say....”times are certainly different !”
Ways You’re Getting Older - Jimmy Weaver says he’s quit trying to hold his stomach
in, no matter who walks into the room. He also says people call him at 9 pm, and
ask, “Did I wake you up ? “
Girls We’ve Had Crushes On - You just gotta love pal Les Sharpe. He’s kidded me a
lot about having a crush on Kim Novak (see January, 2006 ‘55 newsletter). “She’s an
old lady, pal,” says Les, “73 years old.” Then Les confided to me his old crushes too...
Brigette Bardot 71, Sophia Loren 71, Annette Funicello 63, Ann-Margaret 64, Julie
Andrews 70, Jill St. John 65, Liz Taylor 73. Unbelieveable. How in the world did
they get old and we didn’t ? “Hey“ I said, “just look at our ‘55 lady class girls.
They never ever get older. “
Note...Inspiration to write this nut-sy thing came in an email from “forever-young”
Adelle (Hunter) Blauser. Les’ ‘participation’ is of course fictional, but I know him well
enough to know where his ‘55 mind was back then.