I think they were words of wisdom …
When I was a sophomore in high school in 1964, we had an assembly for girls only.
The Viet Nam War was in full swing. Beautiful young woman dressed in uniforms representing WACs and WAVES paraded up and down the stage in various poses in their beautiful secretarial style glamour. They wore Army green pencil skirts, highly starched lighter green blouses and an interesting Chevron type bow at the neck. Different hats depicted what branch of the military they were representing. The pièce de résistance were the seams up the back of their hosiery. The high-heeled shoes were the shiniest black I had ever seen.
Their makeup was applied to perfection with all wearing bright red lipstick. They paraded around the stage showing off different talents from pretending to be taking shorthand on a legal pad, to typing as fast as lightning with the taps of the keys and whooshes of return bars ringing through the auditorium.
I sat enthralled. It was better than a beauty pageant.
I was enrolled in the business curriculum because my guidance counselor told my parents that I was a nice girl but not to expect much out of me because I wasn’t very bright.( I would have liked to have shown him the check for the proceeds from selling my court reporting agency of 25 years. Oh, well.) I could do that stuff in my sleep. I could take Gregg shorthand at 120 words per minute and type at 80.
I couldn’t wait to run home to tell my mother that I wanted to join the Army. When I came bounding in from the breezeway into the kitchen, she was standing over the sink watering plants. I blurted out, “Ma, Ma, I want to go in the Army.” I reiterated every single minute of what I had observed.
She didn’t even look up. She had a scowl on her face and said, “No, you won’t.” I was about to walk away totally defeated. “It’s not the place for you!” I turned.
With what seemed like an afterthought, she paused and said, “And don’t even think of becoming a nun either.”
That, my friends, was the end of a conversation never mentioned again.