Girls love Harleys

By Roy Bale
In the late 1940’s, we lived in Northern Nevada. I was in high school, had a job and bought a fine little used car. On my 17th. birthday I got my drivers license. Took mama to town about 20 miles
away to buy groceries, and on the way home we were run over by a drunk driver going ninety. The drunk went to jail, mom went to the hospital, my Chevrolet houpe Coupe went to the wrecking yard, and I went to Houston with my older brother William, who drove out to Nevada to see mom.
Instead of finishing high school, I was one of the wise guys thatquit school to get rich workingin the construction field. I wasa teenager making a man’s wage. Money runningout my ears from that high paying eighty five cents an hour job. I had a new Harley Davidson motorcycle and lots of pocket change. I was stepping in high cotton, and the girls always went
where the money and motorcycles were. I had one of only three Harley’s in the small community of North Houston, and the only one with lots of jinglejangling inside my pockets.
I took my girl to Galveston on my cycle. What a big shot, had a ten spot and gas was twenty nine cents a gallon and burgers were twenty fivecents, milkshakes fifteen cents, cokes a nickle. Big
spender, what.
Lunch time and we went to eat. There was not a drive-in this side of Houston. All the restaurants were fancy, located on the seawall, and I finallyfound the least expensive looking one and parked.I shudda headed back to Houston, but didn’t. Our meal cost nine dollars, and the waiter was irate because he got no tip. I needed that dollar for gasoline to get home.
My friend Dewey asked me to go to the movie located in the small community called North Houston.
At that time it was about the size of Linden. The Saturday afternoon matinée movie was crowded with teen agers. Historically, grownups stayed away from that Saturday matinée and let the kids have their privacy. Dewey said all the boys went alone, all the girls went alone, then they paired up in the balcony. That way the boys didn’t have to pay the admittance price for the girls, and weren’t obligated to buy them a coke after the movie. I told Dewey I would be there.
It was near my mother’s birthday, she was there, and she excitedly asked me if she could go to the movie with me. I did not have the heart to say no
to her. She asked, are you going to take me on your Harley? Man, what a predicament for an eighteen year old dumb kid. I was about as smart as a fence post. No, not that smart. More like the grub worms in the dirt around the fence post.
No mom, I won’t take you on the cycle, but I will borrow William’s Mercury automobile and take you. Remember this, dear reader, I did not
know that the matinée balcony was kids only. I proudly walked up those balcony stairs with my mom on my arm. The gasps and Oh No’s could be heard in Dallas. About thirty pairs of eyes were focused on my mom. I said, mom, you want to go downstairs? She said, no, this is fine thank you. I
love the balcony.
A boy and the girl he was sitting with got into an argument, and she came down and started talking
to my mom. This happened again and again, and before the movie started, about half the girls were
sitting with us. Then after the movie, we all went next door for a five cent coke. Mom and I were a hit with the girls, but the boys wanted to choke me. I was a dumb kid (who thought he knew it
all) but was smart enough to stay away from that movie theater for the rest of my natural born life.
Matter of fact, I didn’t even walk by that theater, much less go in. I’d probably bypass it today. Live longer that way.
My neighbor Durham sez at age 20, we worry about what people think of us. At age 40, we don’t care what they think. At 60, we discover they’re not thinking of us at all. At age 80, don;t even go there!

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