Murdo Girl…Shall we dance? (Or should we just take Geritol?)

Yes..My friends, another rerun. I got back from seeing the Wyoming family last night. Today I worked at our Church garage sale. I am a vital part of this yearly event. I was there working ALL DAY. I will be there bright and early tomorrow to give it all I’ve got, then I will probably rest for a few days.

I didn’t really take that many breaks. I’m still recovering from a day of bowling with the Wyoming kids. Apparently, one has to be in good shape to bowl. I hurt everywhere.


The Early Days

It’s not easy being an unappreciated star. Natalie Wood was discovered in a drugstore/soda fountain just like Mowell’s Murdo Drugs. The little Murdo Girl just needs to find her stage. In a way, she reminds me of Lucille Ball in,” I Love Lucy.” The desire is there, but the talent?…Not so much. (Remember Cleopatra?)



Dad said he watched Lawrence Welk for two years, but he wouldn’t recognize anyone on the show if he met them walking down the street. He said he might recognize someone on the Ed Sullivan Show, but barely. I know why he tells everybody that.

I like to perform… On Saturday nights, I used to dress up in my red gown or some other outfit, and dance in front of the television. I sang with the Lennon Sisters. (Everyone likes Janet the best, but I like Peggy.) I sang songs with Guy and Ralna, and danced with Bobby Burgess and Barbara Boylan. I always saved my red gown to perform with the Champagne Lady . She wears beautiful dresses. Most of her dresses have tulle skirts, sprinkled with sparkles.

I don’t perform in front of the TV anymore. Dad switched to watching Gunsmoke. It’s a little hard to dance to Gunsmoke. No one even dances in Miss Kitty’s saloon. It doesn’t matter anyway, because I’m getting too old to do that. I still like to perform though.


I play the saxophone, but I begged Mom to let me take piano lessons. All my friends play the piano, and their Mom’s say they’re more apt to use piano skills in later years. I begged so much, Mom finally said okay. We were driving over to Elsa Peck’s house for my lesson, when I figured out I was only going to get ONE lesson. When I complained, Mom told me to stop simpering. (Simpering is a new favorite word of Moms, although, I think it really is a word.) I told Mom, “Just never mind.” She mumbled something about, what was I thinking anyway, we don’t even have a piano.

I guess I didn’t think it through. Before they even began, my piano playing days were over.

I love Murdo, but it’s not exactly the place to live if you want to be a performer. I like to pretend I’m an Olympic gymnast.  Suzanne and Cynthia Bork, and I  have fun judging each other’s routines, but to become a good gymnast, you have to take lessons. I’d probably have to go to Pierre or Rapid City.

Suzanne, my cousin Andrea, and Cynthia…none of them are stars either.

The only thing I can think of to be when I grow up, is a stewardess, but as you know, I’m afraid to fly. I’ll go ahead and tell you something right now. I can’t really sing very well either. I think that’s why Dad quit watching Lawrence Welk. It’s a good thing I have a few years to figure it all out.

When you think about it, Billy graduated from Murdo High School and he’s going to college in California. He’s doing just fine. I think he wants to go into the parking lot business. There aren’t any big parking lots in Murdo, so I don’t think he plans to move back. My brother has deep roots here though, and I know he’ll always stay in touch with all those guys he went to school with. He might even come back and go fishing with them once in awhile.


Fishing near Belle Fourche, SD..Bobby Brost, Billy, and me..Bobby let me borrow his hat. (Grandpa Sanderson pronounces it, Bell Fyushe.) I thought I had a big one, but it turned out to be a leaf. A little while later, I knew I had hooked the biggest fish ever. It was another leaf. Bobby said, “Well, at least it’s a bigger leaf.” I think the fish I’m holding was Bobby’s

Billy and Bobby go on fishing trips at least once a year.

12 thoughts on “Murdo Girl…Shall we dance? (Or should we just take Geritol?)

  1. sanjuan831 April 22, 2017 / 9:30 am

    Love these stories of the Old Days! Glad you’re re-introducing them.


  2. lifelessons April 22, 2017 / 1:18 am

    Glad you reran this. I hadn’t read it.. perhaps you blogged it before I found out about your blog.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Mary Francis McNinch April 22, 2017 / 7:14 am

      Thanks Judy. I hope to get back on schedule with reading and writing next week. I hope you’re doing well!

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Teresa Palmer April 25, 2016 / 10:08 pm

    More things I can relate to-not singing but…tuning in to Lawrence Welk. I was one who liked Janet the best. That was great Sat. night entertainment! Life wasn’t all that bad!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Mary Francis McNinch April 25, 2016 / 10:14 pm

      Pretty darn good I’d say…and we only had one channel to watch..CBS


  4. sanjuan831 April 25, 2016 / 9:07 pm

    I think our generation danced and sang with the TV stars! I love those pictures of you all fishing. //Grandpa was thrilled to go see Lawrence Welk in LA. Bill arranged that- right!? Bill had us all beat on that one.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Mary Francis McNinch April 25, 2016 / 9:28 pm

      I didn’t know, (or remember), that Bill took Grandpa to see Lawrence Welk. The fishing pictures were in 2012, after we spread the ashes..that was a full circle trip for me. I went to Wyoming to see Mason’s family too. Love you Cousin!


      • Valerie Halla April 25, 2016 / 9:32 pm

        2012 fishing trip sounded fun – but we spread your Mom’s ashes in 2009…or maybe you mean some fish ashes! Hope Gus is following this blog! You’re the best!


      • Mary Francis McNinch April 25, 2016 / 9:45 pm

        Wait..the fishing trip was after the 2012 reunion with the Martins. The only time I was in Murdo, was when we went to get Bobby. Thanks Cousin…


  5. countrygirl57 April 25, 2016 / 7:47 pm

    Thanks Murdo girl for keeping me entertained. I love reading the stories 🌹🌹🌹🌹

    Sent from my iPhone


    Liked by 1 person

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