Friday, February 10, 2023

Memories of High School - My Friend Arlene

Memories – High School – Arlene Davis and the New, Handsome Young Teacher

I was sitting next to Arlene Davis. Arlene was kind of frizzy haired, as I remember, maybe off-blond, with facial zits she had to use makeup to cover. I felt bad for her about that. She wasn't unattractive, just not so attractive as she wanted to be, I think. She also wanted to be sophisticated, but I think she was just trying to fake it. She wanted to be mature. She wore blouses that an older woman could wear. Of course in those times a lot of girls wanted older guys. With good reason. People like me were eager for something we couldn't name easily, naive, we couldn't keep up with the girls. That's the way it's supposed to be.

Anyway, I can't remember what class it was; maybe something that wasn't a regular class. We were sitting side by side. We really weren't friends, as far as I knew, but I was friendly, a friendly sort was I, I guess you could say. I think I've always been friendly, that's me, pretty much. Anyway, Arlene was looking up at the teacher as he stood talking in the front of the class. He was a young guy, a new teacher I think. Fresh-faced, kind of on the short side, probably with a tie, could even be a bow tie, white shirt, and as he talked, he was the opposite of jaded. He was eager to be accepted, I think he was perky. Very clean shaven, and perky. Trying to make eye contact with the class, trying to charm them.

Me, I thought he was a little dorky, not cool, but engaging, that was a plus. But when I looked over at Arlene, she looked enraptured. Ardent, that would describe her. Ardent Arlene. I was surprised. She looked at me and she said, “I want him.”

That was surprising. But I'm a nice, friendly somewhat naive guy, so I said, “You want him? How do you want him?” I was sincere. I really didn't know. A girl wants the teacher? (Don't forget, these were the days way, way before Porn Hub.)

So she answered my question. She said, “In every way.”

I had stumbled on the fact of female desire. Which I wasn't ready to believe, despite the obvious, even protuberant fact right beside me. I was just amazed. I also didn't think that this new teacher guy deserved that kind of ardent attention from Arlene. I mean, he was actually a little wimpy. OK, kind of good looking, maybe, but definitely not cool, and definitely not sexy.

So that's it, just one of those scenes from the past that gets lodged in the brain. Arlene Davis and feminine desire, directed in a surprising direction. And my inability to confront the obvious, that girls want sex, too. Sometimes ardently.

Years later, when I was a pediatrician doing an adolescent yearly physical with a maybe 14 year old boy, and we were talking about his sexual desire, and I told him that the girls wanted it as much as he did. “They do???” he said, amazed. I guess he could take it from me, I was always truthful with him. I finished the visit and told him I would see him next year. He looked so disappointed. “So long?” he said.

I should have told him about Arlene.

Budd Shenkin

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