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    Where’s Kookie Going?—Edd Byrnes

    The day was sunny and warm, a perfect Saturday, but Bonnie Marshall, Debra Olson and Susie Grinel hardly noticed as they walked along the road, kicking pebbles with their bare feet. “Just because we’re only ten,” Bonnie complained to Debra as she rolled the sleeves of her shirt higher, “they don’t have to treat us like children.” Her friend, Susie, who was thirteen, nodded. None of the older girls had to walk home from the beach, she thought. They always got rides. Suddenly, a motorscooter sputtered up the road behind them and came to a stop. Deb was the first to turn. “It’s Kookie,” she gasped, “where’s he going?” and grabbed Bonnie’s arm. They stood and watched as he pushed his scooter to the side of the road and lifted the hood that covered the engine. “I didn’t think he was so tall,” Deb said and looked down at her bare feet and cried, “Oh, I look so awful.”

    “Me, too,” Susie moaned, “my hair’s a mess,” and she tried to smooth it down with her fingers.

    As Edd reached for a tool, he saw them and smiled.

    “Maybe he needs help,” Bonnie whispered. “Should we ask?”

    Edd looked up as they joined him. “It’s not too serious,” he said. “I’ll have it fixed in a few minutes.”

    They stood in a circle and watched. Edd told them he had just moved into a new house and he didn’t have much furniture yet. When they asked him where he lived, they discovered that it wasn’t far from where Debbie and Bonnie lived on Bowmont Drive. “I guess that makes us neighbors, doesn’t it?” Edd said. And when he smiled, Bonnie noticed it was a soft, shy smile. He looked just like he did on TV.

    “Do you talk ‘kookie’?” Susie asked. “Nope,” Edd answered, “I don’t go in for it too much except on the program.” Then he laughed. “I bet you don’t know what ‘the skizziest’ means?” Everyone shook their heads no. “ ‘Skizziest?’ means more than ‘ginchiest.’ ”

    Susie poked Deb. “Ask him,” she coaxed. “Go ahead, ask him.”

    “Ask me what?” Susie and Bonnie blushed. Finally, Bonnie said, “Do you know Sandra Dee? She’s our favorite actress.” “Well, to tell you the real truth,” Edd paused—then added, “she’s the skizziest!”

    When the scooter was fixed, he asked: “Would you like a lift home? I’ve never ridden four on a scooter before, but Im sure we could do it.”

    Since Susie was tallest, Edd suggested she take the rear seat. Debbie was next tallest so she sat behind Edd and held onto his shoulders real tight. “His shirt’s the same blue as his eyes,” she whispered to Susie while Edd was helping Bonnie onto her seat in front. Finally, they were all set and Edd called: “Hold tight, everyone, here we go.” And they started up the road, slowly at first. “Boy, oh, boy,” Susie whispered to Deb, “wait ’til we tell the kids who gave us a ride home.” And she and Debbie crossed their fingers and made a wish. They wished that somebody on the block would see them drive up because, after all, who would ever believe it!



    It is a quote. PHOTOPLAY MAGAZINE APRIL 1960

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