Friday, February 4, 2011

#120-FRIDAY FLASHBACKS (into 1941)

Something a little different today.  
This flash back is to 1941. No, not the movie, the year. (But I thought this poster was cool!)
(Before you go too far you might want to lower the volume on your speakers.)

         1941 was a terrible year in the history of our nation that culminated in the bombing of Pearl Harbor.

However, some good things did happen this year.  For one, on Tuesday, February 4th the famous American aviator Charles Lindbergh was born. (At this point you are wondering  where the heck I am going with this....keep reading.) 
 Also, on that same day the United Service Organization (USO) was created to entertain American troops. 

But, best of all, on February 4, 1941, in a small town in, Missouri a little girl named Karen was born to a high school coach and his wife. This article appeared in the local newspaper:

"If basketball fans wondered who the man was who came rushing into the gymnasium during the final quarter of the Mexico-Macon basketball game last night, with his coat  flying, well, here is he answer...Macon's coach, Owen Taylor was delayed in reaching the game as he had

to stay at home until the stork had safely delivered a baby girl to the Taylor family.  After becoming a proud papa Coach Taylor headed for Mexico to see just how his hardwood quintet were coming long in their tilt with the Bulldogs.  On his arrival the score was 25 to 18 in Mexico's favor.  His appearance must have inspired the boys for at that moment started a big rally which narrowed the bulldog margin of victory to four points, the final score being 31 to 27.  The new girl in the Taylor family reminds us that Macon has one of the finest girl basketball squads in the state and they have rolled up quite a record."



         Since my father was a coach (in those days he coached all sports) I was supposed to be a boy.  In fact the boys basketball squad had purchased a beautiful baby pram with the words "Speed Taylor" applied in gold letters on the bonnet.  Mom and Dad hadn't even picked out a girl's name so the nurse suggested her own name, Karen.  Mother swore that those boys would glair at her when she pushed me down the sidewalk in that pram.  (A sad post script to this, the Seniors on that basketball team all joined the Navy when they graduated.  At that time buddies were allowed to be stationed together.  They all went down on the same ship,  December 7th 1941, Dad thinks it was the Arizona). 

Best Movie: How Green Was My Valley
Best Actress: Joan Fontain (Suspision)
Best Actor: Gary Cooper (Sergeant York)
Best Cartoon Movie:  Dumbo
The #1 song on the charts was Stardust by Artie Shaw

But, as Miss Piggy (my personal mentor)would say, "Back to Moi.")

1.  It was a wonderful experience to be chosen to appear on the Art Linkletter House Party (Kids Say the Darnedest Things - and I lied my butt off!).
2.  I was excited when I was selected to appear in one episode of the TV show Teen Age Trials.  (a gal named Penny stole all of my lines!) 
3.  But, the most exciting thing of all was when I was invited to participate in the very first, Miss Teenage America Pagent at the Hollywood Bowl.  It was grueling, but, I managed to come in the first runner up.
4.  Then the summer after my Senior year (after placing in several pageants)  I finally won Miss Corvette and then Miss Auto Show.

After I won a few contests I tried my hand at modeling (and gave my mother hope that the big bucks she sent putting me through the Carolyn Leonetti Modeling School was going to pay off).


The above pictures are from my year of modeling.  I had a 19 inch waist (my thighs aren't even that small now).  The good part was that I was allowed to keep the clothing I modeled.  The bad part was that this perk was in lieu of money.  So I was dressed to kill but couldn't afford to go out and flaunt it.

Then one day my agent explained THE RULES.  If I wanted the good jobs then I had to sleep with him.  I clearly remember saying, "IF YOU WEREN'T SUCH A FAT, UGLY GREASY, PIG I MIGHT CONSIDER IT!" (And, yes, I was yelling). That comment got me black-balled.  End of career!

Next, I tried college, found interest in the drama department and was in a few plays.  (In Tea House of the August Moon I played  Higga Jigga - the one with the white head band.  The other was Volponi and I played Lady Politic Would Be).

A few other fun things happened... ... ...
As a police dispatcher in Palm Springs I was able to meet and play with a lot of celebrities.  (I'm the one on his right.)  And, when I was a courtroom clerk a segment was on TV about my job.

I relocated to Missouri and enjoyed my role as a teacher of learning disabled and behavior disordered children and youth.  I loved teaching and have been retired for about 5 years.

But, the most satisfying part of my life revolved (and still revolves) around my children and the beautiful grandchildren (and great grandchildren) they have given me. 

AND, YES, (for those of you with pencil and paper still trying to figure it out) THAT MEANS I AM "70" YEARS OLD, TODAY!  Check out my new profile picture (which was taken a few days ago) and tell me if you think I look 70 (but keep your fingers off the S the E and the Y buttons as you write) And, even though I AM 70 I do not plan to EVER grow up!  However, I am writing my “bucket list” and it's a DOOZY!

I know I promised a more recent picture, so....enjoy the new one on my profile!


  1. I checked earlier, but this post wasn't registering, yet. I'd missed yesterday's, so added my birthday wish for TODAY to that post ;)

    Anyway, here I am again...70! I'd never have guessed it from the way you write (your soul is clearly eternally young!)

    You've had a very interesting & varied life and you were so beautiful! Thanks so much for sharing this glimpse into it all & I hope you're having a really magical birthday!

  2. HAPPY BIRTHDAY !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    I hope you have a fantastic, wonderful, awesome, amazing, fabulous, fun-packed, adventurous, glorious, gorgeous, beautiful, terrific day today!!!! You don't look 70! Have a great birthday!!

  3. 'Hippo Birdie Two Ewes!
    Hippy Bathday To You
    Hoppy Buzzday Dearest Karen
    Hic Oh Birthday to YOU!'
    I've been celebrating already for you (hic!)
    Seriously, this post is just fabulous and I have really loved reading all about you. What a wonderful life and (pause for a whistle) wow what a glamorpuss' you are.
    I hope I'm not too late in adding my very best wishes to you. I get confused as to what time it is where and sometimes miss out.
    No, you do not look 70, no way!
    Have a ...oh I see that M has used up all the adjectives I would have used...phenomenal birthday!

  4. What a gorgeous lady you were and still are! How much fun you have had. And I know you are still loving life. We have some things in common but I'll go into that another day.
    Have a great day and just enjoy.
    (I'm still in awe of the 19 inch waist.)

  5. What a knockout! And a great post!

  6. Happy All About You Day! May you be blessed with anymore!

  7. WOW what glamorous photos. A great bunch of memories, photos and accomplishments. Happy birthday and here's to your newest career as Funniest Blogger (of any age!) on the web.
    Hope you have a wonderful day.

    That is a great new photo, but you should have taken it sitting on top of a car wearing a sash and holding a trophy!

  8. Here's sendin' ya a great big Ozark shout out...


    Sweetie, I only post every 7-10 days, my life just will not allow more. I threw up a new post a couple days ago.

    Hope you have a blessed day filled with love, laughter and cake baby, mounds of cake piled high with rich decant icin'!!!!

    I only eat cake for the icin'...Heeehehehe:o)

  9. You were quite a hottie my friend. Happy Birthday! I hope you day is a great one. I loved your retrospective.

  10. Happy, Happy Birthday!!

    I loved this post! What an interesting life! I love seeing all the pics.

  11. Happy Birthday kt!!!! Never never ever grow up :)

    What an awesome post . . . and what an exciting life! You are such a character . . . one of those people I wish I knew in real life to hang out with over a cup of coffee.

    By the way . . . love your new button that now graces the sidebar of Babyboomer Flashback :)

    Hope you are having a wonderful, special day!


  12. Have a Happ, Happ Happy Birthday Kt....enjoy your special day.....

  13. Haha great profile pic, and congrats on getting the music to work!

    Happy Birthday!

  14. You are still quite a lovely woman. Happy Birthday from a friend in the desert.

  15. Oh my gosh, Karen, you look so gorgeous on your modeling pictures!!! And you look FABULOUS on your new profile picture! :-)

    Belated Happy Birthday to you, my friend! God bless you always! :-)