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Remembering Rosie

lee geiser

Posted on February 19, 2019 15:43

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This is a segment from my book "Red Rosie," a love story which follows the adventures of two vibrant and intelligent children: a vivacious red-haired, green-eyed Catholic Irish lass and a mixed Jewish / Protestant boy.

One of my earliest memories of school that is worth repeating, other than gluing my teacher's book together (which caused her to tell the principal, who called my mother, who told my dad and which cost me a whipping), is of my first girl friend, Rosie.

I saw Rosie for the first time in the school yard. She was playing hop scotch with another girl. Each time she jumped from one square to another she would twirl around, her red ponytail flying. As she twirled she’d hum a tune in some strange language. Richie, my best friend said it was Irish.

Boys my age didn't like girls. They were always fixing their hair, didn’t play baseball, and were of no use. Rosie was different. The next time I saw her she was coming out of Murfys Bar, a place that was popular with my dad, who’d sometimes stop for a beer as he came home. She was wearing a White Sox jacket. A girl in a baseball jacket -- a good start.

Rosie walked to the street crossing where the guard made you wait until the street cars and automobiles stopped. I don’t know where I got the courage, but I ran up to the crossing and asked her, “you’re a White Sox fan? I’m a Cub fan, but my Uncle Jake likes the White Sox.” Rosie turned and looked at me, saying that her brother had said that she shouldn’t talk to boys, but she added that she secretly liked the Cubs also.

We crossed the street together, and walked to school, where she went in the girl’s entrance. To my surprise, she was in my homeroom class. The teacher said to the class, “Everybody welcome Ms. Rosalind Murphy who is new to the school.

Montrose, the street on which Red Rosie lived was a wonderful place for a young person. There were two candy stores where you could buy candy or ice cream in either round scoops or square packages that you had to open and put into the square cone. There was also sodas, milk shakes, little pies, pop, little dots of candy stuck to a colored sheet of paper, licorice sticks in red and black, and most importantly bubble gum in small rectangular flat red packages, the kind with baseball trading cards; and if you were lucky it would include a valuable Cubs or White Sox card.

There was Black's drug store, which had a soda fountain and a counter with six seats. Some of the older guys at school met there after school. I thought that when I was older and had more money I’d like to take Rosie there for an ice cream soda.

From the instant Rosie said, "I'd love to have a soda with you,” I was hooked. I really, really liked Rose. From that moment on, we were never to part.

lee geiser

Posted on February 19, 2019 15:43

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