BY SKYLER, DEB AND TIM SMITH
This is Skyler Smith signing off for now. As I’ve been mentioning over the past few weeks, I’ve decided to make my 100th installment of “Skyler Smith’s Tour of Mendon” a landmark of duality. In addition to hitting the century mark I’m heading for a hiatus.
Let it be known however, that I will be back; you can count on that. Notice my choice of words, I said, “hiatus” as opposed to “retirement”. No siree, even after my initial run comes to a pause, you will not have heard the last of Skyler Smith.
For the last few weeks I have been sharing some highlights from my most well-received installments and that’s how I’ll finish up. No whimpering here; we’re going to end this thing with a bang!
There was a runaway winner as to the single article about which I received the greatest amount of feedback. The people’s choice was one that I called “Skyler Smith’s Tour of Medieval Breasts.”
Read on and you’ll see why it was such a fan favorite.
SAVVY NAILS ~ When Deanna Haller, a former student of Dad’s, rented our little blue building near the 4-corners to operate her salon Savvy Nails, some interesting stories about Dad’s English classes at Victor began to emerge. My favorite is what happened one time when the students were watching the Romeo & Juliet movie.
Here’s the scoop. The go-to high school movie version of Romeo & Juliet has traditionally been Franco Zeffirelli’s 1968 classic film which starred Olivia Hussey as the 14-year old Juliet. While part of my “Medieval Breasts” theme had to do with the character of the Nurse being Juliet’s nursemaid, the funniest part had to do with Juliet.
Like I sometimes do in my own writing, Zeffirelli was noted for pushing the envelope of the sexual revolution. In this film he wanted to see how much he could get away with and still maintain the PG rating which would enable his film to be shown in most high schools. The key point in the story occurs when Romeo and Juliet wake up after having spent their wedding night together.
In pushing the sexual envelope, Zeffirelli threw out a caveat for each gender. When Romeo gets up that morning he walks away from the bed to the window. You’ve heard the term full frontal nudity; well what you see on the screen would be the exact opposite of that. It’s a bare butt bonanza.
3-D PERILS ~ Juliet was played by the amply endowed Olivia Hussey and, for a split second, when she gets up to say goodbye, her bountiful breasts spill out of her robe and, let me put it this way, if the movie had been made in 3-D, some people in the front row could have been seriously injured. While the view lasts only a split second, for the 14-year-old boys in that classroom it was a second that may have lived on for hours, or days, or weeks.
Deanna told me that when Dad was wrapping up class, he would usually close by asking if anybody had any questions. And Dad shared that the end of class, on what became fondly remembered as the Day of the Bouncing Boobs, was always a little different with the kids kind of looking at each other waiting and wanting to say something about the risqué shot, but not knowing how to do it without coming off as crude or crass.
So usually nothing was said, the bell rang, and the kids went on their way. But not in Deanna’s class. That crafty class clown Sean Wright finally came up with the perfect way to refocus attention on the scene in question and not get in trouble for it. Sean raised his hand, and with perfect timing and delivery said, “Mr. Smith, was Juliet really just 14 years old?”
I hope you like this story as much as I have enjoyed writing for all of you the last couple of years. It seems strange, and a little sad, to not be leaving you with a teaser about what to be looking for in my column next week. But as I’ve promised, this is a hiatus and not a retirement. Deb, Dad and I have had so much fun sharing our adventures with you that we could never give it up completely. Until we meet again, take care of one another.