Although Meg Petronius had warned me that working at VA was no walk in the park, I found it pretty much to be a walk in the park. Maybe that was because I was a teenager myself. I was nineteen and not much older than the kids, and most of the things that interested them interested me, too.

On top of that, I liked the work. I spent my days playing with the kids and teaching the boys manly stuff. The food was good and the Supervisor of Female Residents was terrific – I flirted with her energetically.

Here are a few vignettes from my summer at VA.


One day I mentioned to Rich Bolotin, my boss, that I liked to play basketball, even though I was no good at it. He said he liked to play, too, and was good at it. I didn’t believe this for a minute, so I suggested we put up a basketball hoop and I would show him how the game was played.

It took a few weeks but I scavenged all the parts we needed and we went to work. Everything at VA was supposed to be “educational,” so I gathered the boys around me and proceeded to show them how you erected a basketball hoop.

I’d borrowed a post hole digger and demonstrated how it was used, then let each of the boys try it out. They were terrible at it, so I told them to watch me and learn something. Unfortunately, this was boring and they began goofing off. Every once in a while one of the boys would step in the hole I was digging and cave it in.

The first time it happened I just told them to knock it off and pay attention. The second time I hollered at them, and the third time I lost it completely. I slammed the digger to the ground and yelled, “I’ve had it with you little cretins!” (I actually said that.)

They looked at me wide-eyed. I guess this was the first time I’d really lost it with them, though it would hardly be the last. I pointed my finger at the boys and ran it back and forth so they would know I was speaking to all of them. I said, “The next one of you that steps in that hole is going to be on KP duty for a month! Do I have your complete attention?” Seven heads nodded vigorously.

“Good,” I said. “Now let’s get back to work.”

I turned around and stepped right in the hole.

Graham crackers

Meg had warned me to keep my distance from Angie, a cute redhead, because Angie was “boy-crazy.” And Meg was right – I was the new boy in town and Angie had set her sights on me from day one. It seemed that every time I glanced her way she was giving me her version of a seductive smile. I pretended not to notice.

At night the kids had a bad habit of getting themselves so wound up they couldn’t settle down, so at eight p.m. all raucous play had to stop. Then, at 8:30, they drank a beverage designed to help them sleep.

This vile stuff consisted of hot milk with graham crackers crumbled up in it. I liked both those things, but the combination was a soggy mess and turned my stomach. Still, the kids liked it and it did seem to help them sleep.

One evening during my second week at VA I was sitting on the big swing under the oak tree beside Terry Petronius, Meg’s older sister who job-shared with Meg a couple of days a week. Mikey walked up to me, held out his glass and said, “Please can I have some more, Mr. C?”

Not sure what the rule was, I glanced over at Terry, who gave me a bored shrug.

I headed into the darkened kitchen and then into the pitch-black pantry, fished around for the string and pulled it to turn on the light. The graham crackers were kept in the right rear of the pantry, and I was heading back there when the light went out.

“Hey!” I shouted, “Turn that light on!”  I looked back and saw a small person silhouetted in the doorway. Long hair. Sexy giggle. ”Damn it, Angie,” I said, “turn the light on!”

“I got a surprise for you, Mr. C!”

“Forget it. Turn the light on!”

“Hold out your hand and close your eyes!” she said in a sing-songy voice.

“No, I …”

“Hold out your hand and close your eyes!”

I sighed, closed my eyes part-way and held out my hand. But Angie said, “You’re peekin’!” so I closed my eyes a little further and watched through my eyelashes as Angie did a little shimmery dance. She then placed something soft in my hand and ran off shrieking with delight.

I turned on the light and looked at my hand. Angie’s panties, pink ones with little blue hearts on them. The aroma of Angie wafted up and I nearly swooned, then ran off, chasing after her.

Fortunately, I stopped. Hold on here, I told myself sternly, you’re not a randy frat boy anymore, you’re (supposedly) a mature, grownup supervisor. And I knew exactly what a mature, grownup supervisor would do – he would read Angie the riot act, letting her know how wrong her conduct had been and that if it ever happened again there would be serious consequences.

Before I could change my mind I strode rapidly over to the screen door and barked, “Angie!” Everyone looked up, startled, and Terry said, “I think she went up to her bedroom.”

I walked down the back hall to the stairs to Angie’s room. I could go up those stairs. But I knew that if I did something might happen that would be unbecoming to a mature, grownup supervisor.

I sighed and returned to the side yard and sat back down on the swing beside Terry. She looked over at me and said, “Where’s the graham crackers?”

Next up: VA, Part 6

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