StoryRhyme After Dark: Getting Together

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Getting Together
By Harry Buschman


Some of the excitement has cooled down by now. After all, Jocelyn and I just turned thirty-four last week. High school graduation was 16 years ago and the excitement of squeezing as many kids in a telephone booth as you can is not as popular as it used to be.

But while the fad lasted it was an event of great interest to all the folks in Livingston, Indiana––it certainly was to Jocelyn and me.

If it wasn’t for Charlie Blocker and the telephone booth outside the Empress Diner I suppose Jocelyn and I would have never gotten together ... well I mean ... not like we did in the telephone booth, but squeezed in with 15 high school seniors in a telephone booth... Something was bound to develop, right?

The record was 12 kids until Charlie Blocker and the graduating class of 1990 came along. Charlie talked the school into allowing girls in the contest and even though they weren’t any smaller than the boys, you can imagine there was a real incentive to squeezing as many of teenagers in that telephone booth as possible. We could have squeezed in more if the girls had been a little more cooperative.

The only requirement was the referee standing outside the booth had to be able to close the folding door, otherwise legs and arms or what have you would have been sticking out at all angles. When he was satisfied the door was shut, the fry cook in the diner was assigned to dial the number of the phone in the booth and one of us would have to answer it. Only then would the referee open the door and untangle us... Counting us off one by one.

When the event was over Jocelyn and I promised each other that we’d get together again real soon and often. To put it bluntly, we did just that. We did it so often that marriage was inevitable, (maybe even unavoidable).

The graduating class of Livingston High won the Ma Bell TB event that June 16 years ago, and tonight we’re getting together again for a reunion. It’s possible we might even have another go at the telephone booth stunt for old times sake... But we’re not as young as we used to be.

In addition the telephone booth isn’t there any more. Telephone booths are not so easy to find these days––everybody’s got a cell phone now. The only one I know of still stands in the lobby of St. Mary’s Episcopal Church, and I don’t think the preacher would understand.

(c) 2012 Harry Buschman
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