I used innocence representing the letter “I” in my book EMOTIONS: Not your Mama’s ABC’s!
The story, which will be posted in its entirety in tomorrow night’s blog, details my own coming of age story.
See how I went from maddpup to maddogg.
The setting is England and a lovely, rare summer that graced us.
I am an admitted Anglophile and I carry some of my most precious memories from years spent there.
One of the curious things I discovered were the little finger sandwiches available at kiosks near the bus and train terminals. They were very simple: butter, watercress, and a thin slice of meat. Beef and lamb mainly; you didn’t see chicken like we Americans consume it. Nor did you see obscene bags of popcorn or cotton candy in clear plastic bags as big as a hot air balloon.
We are so subtle.
I see pictures of people misbehaving in other countries and I cringe because they obviously have no fucking idea the damage their behavior does.
It’s only one little thing? It doesn’t matter in the big picture of things?
In many cases, you are going to be remembered as the bloody Yank who was loud, rude, and entitled. I would have received an ass-whipping if I ever acted like that.
On to the book excerpt:
Intriguing would probably fit every one of the stories in this compendium (I hope). However, I chose innocence, or more accurately, the end of innocence, as the subject. The following story chronicles the “official” end of my own chastity and recounts some of the best of a treasure trove of memories I carry from the kingdom of England.
I remember we stayed in an English country manor for a time just outside of Oxford near the River Thames. They had an immaculate putting green on site that I totally ruined. I completely flooded out another of the rooms when I left the hot water running all night. I basically did everything I possibly could to set back U.S.-Great Britain relations by about fifty years. The Beatles were still evolving into the worldwide phenomenon they became, England ruled the world of football, winning the World Cup in 1966, and Alf Garnett laid the foundation for the racial policy of future U.S. president Donald Trump in the British sitcom Till Death Us Do Part.
I loved the food in England except I am not a big fan of lamb or mutton. Of the good: Bird’s custard (yummy), fish and chips (must use Plaice caught from the North Atlantic), collecting Matchbox vehicle toys, the castles, the architecture, the museums, and the very best contribution the ancient country has ever given us—the miniskirt.
I was not so big on stinging nettles which sprang up in our garden from time to time. The other thing I was not so fond of was the racism the Brits showed toward others. They seemed to label anyone who was not white as a “wog.” Blacks, Pakistanis, Indians, and anyone of color qualified for this denigration.
Now, before anyone wants to jump me for Brit-bashing, I have no doubt that this racism I witnessed was nothing approximating the same scale of violence and hatred at the same time that American citizens were suffering as we too, were continuing to learn what it means to be human.