First, let me tell you that I was the most boring, rule-following teenager on the planet. I had a curfew, as did most of my friends, that could be broken as long as I called with a good reason. My best friend, Megan, had the same standing rule. We didn't drink, smoke, or do drugs. Our idea of a night out "partying" was usually spent at a friend's house watching movies, playing ping-pong or pool in the basement, or going to movies. As you can tell, Columbus, GA, was NOT a hot bed of sin or debauchery, or I just sucked at finding it. I didn't have a boyfriend. No fake ID's, and God-forbid, I actually got along with my parents, ethnic issues not-withstanding....my mom was Korean and my dad is a Tennessee hillbilly, and I grew up in Georgia. If THAT isn't worth a blog by itself, I don't know what is....but I digress.
I will also tell you, with all seriousness, that I was not boy-crazy. Really. And I grew up next to Ft. Benning. I had come to the stark realization that, although I found most of the "fare" on base hot in the strictest sense of the word, I also saw them as a potential road-block to my goals of college, a degree, and a successful career (remember the Korean part?).
I did, however, have a car. And not just any car.....I had a fire-engine red convertible. It screamed, "Look at me! I'm easy!" faster than I could have shouted it. I also had friends that I "rolled" with, and no one rolled with me more often than Megan. She is the Connor to my Murphy, go watch The Boondock Saints to get THAT one.....go ahead.....I'll wait.....
Yeah, we're like THAT!
Now Megan has a certain, how shall I put it, "way" with men. They gravitate to her like the proverbial moth to a flame, did I mention she's a redhead? I usually got the polite acknowledgement most men give to the best friend of the target of their intent, and I truly did not care. My job was to man the getaway car, be the sarcastic screen to any half-wit advances, and, of course, provide the alibi should we break curfew (and we often did).
The alibi of choice was the Flat Tire. It was always plausible and rarely questioned. Plus, I think it offered the parents a way of believing, academically if not emotionally, that their good little girls would NEVER go to Ft. Benning at night and cavort with *gasp* 18-20ish year old....oh, how shall I put it....hornballs who are miles away from home, friends and family. Now, I also must clarify a point, Megan and I did not pick up random Ft. Benning-ites. That's what Post-debs (read "debutantes") did. We didn't go there with the intent of meeting, courting, and/or tricking GI Joe Schmuckatelli into marrying one of us to "save us from forever being stuck in Columbus". Megan usually met a nice (and I do mean nice, otherwise we would have kept our happy asses at home watching Queen videos) young GI in her father's dojo. Oh, did I forget to mention my friend could also destroy someone with her pinky? Must have slipped my mind....moving on...
She genuinely enjoyed their company, and was innocent in her flirting. Neither one of us required the damsel in distress bit o'saving (or unwanted pregnancies) that a dalliance with one of these young men could have produced. We simply dreamed bigger than that, and executed on those dreams. The awesome triad of military bases, broken curfews, and phantom flat tires did not make us the Bad Girls, or even the At-Risk Girls. Read it and absorb: both of us got out of Columbus on our own, thank you very much.....and fuckin' STAYED out!