Murdo Girl…Yakety sax

After reading our miss Murdo Girl’s papers from yesterday and today, it appears she is learning how to rationalize a situation. The goal being to avoid trouble whenever possible. She is growing up, but she’s not going willingly. At least today, she didn’t try to use any ten dollar words like surreptitiously.


Well, I made it through the first half of 8th grade. We got to move into the new elementary school right after Christmas and is it ever nice. It even has a library right next to the 8th grade classroom.

I was wishing we could all choose where we wanted to sit in the new classroom. I was pretty positive that Mr. Pickner would let me sit a little farther back. If he had hoped sitting me up front would motivate me to study harder and get straight A’s, it didn’t work. I’m not lazy or anything. It’s just that my study time isn’t as long in the mornings, since I’m wearing my hair short again. It dries pretty fast. (I study during dryer time.)


Here I sit, right smack in front again. Unfortunately, some kids got to move around. Mark sits right behind me now and I’m not sure if that’s a good thing. He can be fun, but he can be mean too. He already put a thumb tack on my seat, which I sat on, and once when Mr. Pickner was out of the room, he took his feet and shoved my desk out from under me. I landed on the hard floor. I’m not worried… I have a real good one on him that I’m saving for the perfect time. It was a time when he was horrendously mean, but not to me.

Do you know what Mark’s brother Jeff H. did? He took my Uncle Jeff’s Willy Jeep and drove it onto the iced-over pond that’s in a field behind their house. The Jeep was too heavy, and broke right through the ice. It sunk almost up to the windows. They got someone to pull it out, and I guess it still runs. Mark was really mad though because Uncle Jeff told him he can have that Jeep when he turns 24.

I have a feeling we’ll be reading more” Jeep” stories soon.

I had to start wearing nylons. It seems that when you get to the 8th grade, you’re supposed to wear them when you dress up. We went to Winner for a music contest, and that’s when some of the girls decided it was time to start wearing “hose.” I had to play a saxophone solo, and those darn nylons ruined it. Are there boys that read this? Oh well, I don’t care.

You have to wear a garter belt to hold your nylons up. It is a very weird contraption. It has long straps with a doohicky on the end that you put the top of your nylon over. Then, you have to pull another part over this button like thing. That’s what holds your nylons in place. There is a strap on the front and one on the back of each leg, so there are four altogether. The straps are attached to a garment that is held around your waist by elastic. I guess it’s sort of like a real short slip, only you still have to wear a slip too. The whole thing is called a garter belt. The nylons come separately.

I bet these girls aren’t wearing nylons..I’m second from the right..Alto Saxophone 

Right in the middle of my solo, the doohicky on the back of one leg came loose, and the nylon slipped right off, which caused the front to sag.  I finally got an opportunity to glance down when the piano player who was accompanying me, had a little part that I didn’t play my saxophone to. I could see the nylon was a wrinkled mess just like my Grandma’s hose (nylons) always are because they don’t make them small enough for her. Grandma wears a girdle to keep her nylons up, but it doesn’t work. Besides, you still have to deal with the doohickys attached to the girdle.(Some older ladies just roll them down over a rubber band. I wonder if that works better.) Well, at least the front doohicky on my garter belt never came all the way off, which was a blessing.

Anyway, for the very first time in my life, I didn’t get a Superior on my solo, because I was too distracted to remember all of it. I can’t even tell people about it, because it’s going to sound like an elaborate excuse, and they’ll think the real reason is, I didn’t practice my solo enough times to memorize it better.

Me, Grandma, and Mom

It just wasn’t a good experience all around. Mom threw a hissy fit, because I forgot to mention  I volunteered her to take me and some other kids to the contest. I told her the day before. She said I hadn’t even told her I was playing a solo, although I’m pretty sure I did. She asked me when I practiced because she very seldom heard me.


Mr. Pickner has become obsessed about black marks on the new floor. I think it’s nonsense, because that is something kids can’t help unless they take their shoes completely off. Yesterday after school, a couple of us were looking at the floor under our desks to see if we had made black marks. I said, “There are a few, but not enough to sweat over.” Mr. Pickner was standing in the doorway watching us. We didn’t notice until we heard him say, “I stay up at night worrying about you, and I worry, and I worry, and I worry.” He didn’t tell us to rub out the black marks, so we went home.

I can’t wait for summer to get here. If I have to dress up again this year, I’m wearing knee socks. No more garter belt for me. Maybe I’ll look for a pair with a seam up the back. I’m talking about the knee socks, not the nylons. I couldn’t imagine having to make sure your nylons are securely fastened plus keep a seam straight.

Billy was here for Christmas, so I guess I’ll have to write about that soon. He won’t read my stories unless they’re about him.



12 thoughts on “Murdo Girl…Yakety sax

  1. sanjuan831 May 19, 2016 / 7:22 pm

    Garter belts! What we girls went through. I went to piano recital contests and got nervous. Took piano lessons in Murdo.

    Liked by 1 person

      • sanjuan831 May 19, 2016 / 7:53 pm

        Mrs England and another lady I can’t remember.


      • Mary Francis McNinch May 19, 2016 / 7:59 pm

        It’s good to learn piano. I haven’t touched a sax since high school, and I played it for 9 yrs.


  2. countrygirl57 May 19, 2016 / 7:27 pm

    Chuckles galore. Love the garter belt. Remember them well. 😊😊😊😀😀

    Sent from my iPhone


    Liked by 1 person

  3. lifelessons May 19, 2016 / 9:11 pm

    Mrs. England lived in a little trailer between the Masonic Lodge and the old Peck house (Harold’s parents) later purchased by Larry Nelson. I took piano lessons from her, also. Afterwards, I took them from Elsa Peck. Lynn Brost took lessons from Linda Haugland..probably because she was dating David Brost. I also played alto sax but I was never very good. Larry Weigandt challenged me for first chair and I just gave it to him without doing the challenge. Ha. I knew how bad I was.


    • Mary Francis McNinch May 19, 2016 / 9:20 pm

      That’s funny. The summer Grandpa drove me to Vermillion for music camp, I rode back with Larry and his family. We stopped and met his older brother Keith in Springsomething. Larry was a year ahead of us. When he graduated Mark and I switched back and forth for 1st chair.


      • lifelessons May 19, 2016 / 11:07 pm

        All of the Weigandts were wonderful musicians. Keith played a coronet… I think he and Bradley Bork would go to their windows and play back and forth. We could hear them at night from our house! Keith was in my grade. He had a terrible crush on Karen Thune in grade school and one May day, when he couldn’t catch her to give her a kiss when she delivered his May basket, he continued to chase her for 2 more days every time he saw her. She was fast and he didn’t catch her, but the teacher finally had to be called in to tell him to cease and desist. I believe this was in the second grade.


  4. Terri Iwan Volmer May 20, 2016 / 8:21 am

    I also had Mr. Palmer for band and the first year I played a flute solo I was just a little nervous. I was pretty excited when I was done thinking I had did pretty good, and walked to where Mr. Palmer was sitting and he just looked at me and sighed. He said, “Terri, I have no idea how you did because all I could do was watch your knobby knees shaking and kept wondering how long they could hold you up!” I still have the sheet music for that solo and it looks so easy now.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Mary Francis McNinch May 20, 2016 / 9:26 am

      I love hearing from everyone sharing their experiences with me and each other. I hope you didn’t have nylons on Terri!


  5. Mary Francis McNinch May 27, 2016 / 12:02 am


    Sent from my Sprint phone

    Murdo Girl wrote:

    > a:hover { color: red; } a { text-decoration: none; color: #0088cc; } a.primaryactionlink:link, a.primaryactionlink:visited { background-color: #2585B2; color: #fff; } a.primaryactionlink:hover, a.primaryactionlink:active { background-color: #11729E !important; color: #fff !important; } /* @media only screen and (max-device-width: 480px) { .post { min-width: 700px !important; } } */


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