A Real Nothing Date. . .
Annette turned to her best girlfriend, Shelley Fabares. “It’s so beautiful out,” she said with a sigh, “and you can have such fun at Disneyland on a day like this . . . especially when you’ve been wanting to get back into circulation again,” she concluded hopelessly, shrugging her shoulders toward the opposite end of the park bench, where Tim Johnson and Shelley’s date, Hal Stalmaster, were comparing notes on outboard motors. “Nothing. Just—nothing. They didn’t even so much as hear us.”
“We can’t get a word in edgewise,” Shelley commiserated.
“And it’s no use trying to look interested,” Annette went on. “They know we’re not.”
“So what do we do?”
“Okay,” said Shelley flatly, “we suffer in silence.”
Annette folded her arms across her lap, stuck out her feet and examined her shoes. “Funny,” she mused, “they make such a fuss over you before they get a date; then you say Yes, and right away they lose interest.”
“No incentive,” Shelley agreed. “Let’s face it, the part boys like best about girls is chasing them.”
“Hah!” Annette forced a laugh. “Some cave-men!” Suddenly she put down her feet and sat up stiffly. “Say,” she began, “why don’t we get them to race us to the old blockhouse?”
“What’ve we got to lose?” Shelley was already on her feet.
Tapping Hal playfully on the arm, Annette broke into a run. Over her shoulder, | she yelled back, “Last one to Frontierland buys the chow!” It worked like a charm. In no time flat, the boys were at their heels.
“At least we got them up,” Shelley whispered.
“And now we’ve got to let them beat us,” Annette whispered back, “but it can’t look too easy. You go ahead—leave all the rest to me.”
Ducking behind Pancake House, she smiled to herself as she saw the fellows scramble past. They sure were getting a run for their money.
She took her time. After she’d watched Aunt Jemima flip over the seventh hotcake, she set out after them at a slow trot, and by the time she caught sight of Frontierland, all ground, laughing. Instantly, she developed three were sitting on the a slight limp on her left side.
Tim saw her and came running. “Gee, did you hurt yourself?” he asked worriedly.
“Just twisted my ankle,” she fibbed, “It’s nothing, really.”
Taking her by the elbow, he led her over to the others. “Bargain’s off,” he told them. “We’ve got a casualty.”
“Baloney,” said Hal, looking Annette straight in the eyes.
“Oh, Hal,” Shelley groaned, “stop acting so suspicious.” But to Annette she whispered, “For goodness sakes, Annette, don’t overdo it!”
Tim made a fist. “Them’s fightin’ words, Hal, old pal. But it just so happens ain’t armed.”
Shelley giggled. “Fight it out later, boys,” she said. “Let’s work up an appetite first.”
Just beyond the Davy Crockett arcade, Chief Shooting Star was rounding up volunteers to learn an Indian feast dance. “Here we come, Chief,” Hal called out to him.
“Dance now,” Tim grinned, jostling Hal’s elbow, “and pay later.” Everybody started to laugh.
They were the only pupils in the ring, and they went through their paces surrounded by a whooping, squealing band of five-year-old spectators. And they were pretty awful, but the Chief let Annette try on his headgear anyway. “I feel like Pocahontas,” she grinned.
“Slow-poke-ahontis,” quipped Hal, “but you did pretty good for a dame with a twisted ankle!”
The piece of feather
Before she could think of an answer, the headdress slipped down over her face, and by the time she got it off, one eye was tearing. “Darn, there’s something in it,” she said, rubbing her eye.
“Probably a piece of a feather,” said Tim. “Here, stop touching it . . . let me—”’ He was so gentle as he pulled the lash down. “Did anyone ever tell you,” he remarked quietly, absorbed in the operation, “that you have beautiful eyes?”
“No,” Annette lied, “but did anyone ever tell you you ought to be a surgeon? You have such steady hands.”
All of a sudden, his hands weren’t steady any more, so he took them quickly from her shoulders and hid them behind his back. “If you’re okay now,” he said lightly, changing the subject, “let’s get a move on.”
The minute they crossed over into Fantasyland, everything got crazy. First, at the Sleeping Beauty Castle, Shelley locked herself in a dungeon, and they had to go get the caretaker to spring the lock. Then, sailing through Wonderland, Tim tried to pick Annette a daisy—it looked so lifelike—and got an electric shock. Finally, Hal did so much thrashing around on the Mad Hatter’s ride that he fell out of the teacup- buggy, and had to spend the rest of the ride on the saucer.
Boys are great
Picking himself up afterward, he cried, “I’m starved! Where do we eat?”
“There’s a real swanky restaurant inside that Pirate Ship,” Shelley told him. “Can we afford it?”
“Be my father’s guests,” Hal replied, bowing.
“Not on your life,” Tim objected. Then they got into such a silly harangue about who’d lost the race, they ended up insisting they were going to have a duel on the pirate ship for the privilege of feeding the girls. All of which might have been very thrilling to Annette and Shelley, if they hadn’t been scared the fellows were going to fall off the masthead and break their necks.
As it turned out, nobody won anyway, because luckily the head-waiter from below-deck climbed up and asked them, please, could they be a little more quiet, so the customers could enjoy their dinners in peace.
After that, they didn’t have the nerve to face him in the restaurant, so they just quietly stole away. Tim and Hal bought popcorn, hot-dogs and chocolate sodas, and they found themselves a cool spot on the grass behind a big rock, where there were lots of real daisies. It was beautiful and peaceful there.
Tim picked Annette a whole handful, and then he fed her popcorn as if she were some kind of little bird. She liked that best of all.
Later, Hal started singing “I’ve Been Workin’ on the Railroad,” and they all joined in. Not bad harmonizing, either, for a foursome that started off on a real sour note.
Boys are pretty great, Annette thought, as Tim reached for her hand and suggested the long way home. Sometimes they just need a little push, that’s all, she concluded.
ANNETTE SINGS ON THE BUENA VISTA LABEL. SEE SHELLEY ON ABC-TV IN “THE DONNA REED SHOW” EVERY THURSDAY, 8-8:30 P.M. EDT.
It is a quote. PHOTOPLAY MAGAZINE SEPTEMBER 1960