Cutting School, Watching Gone With The Wind, and Smoking My First Cigarette

It must have been in the Fall of ’69 when we decided to cut school. I don’t know who carefully crafted the escape, knew the bus schedule, or the show times of the movie–it surely could not have been me because . . . I was a follower, not a leader. At least that’s the excuse I gave my mother when the school called to ask why I was absent that day.

In those days, teenagers could buy cigarettes–no questions asked. And in those days, moviegoers were allowed to smoke cigarettes in the theater.

Ah, popcorn and cigarettes–the stuff life is made of. (How many cigarettes could one smoke during a four-hour movie?)

We made it back to the school just in time for me to catch the school bus for home but not until I wretched uncontrollably alongside the road after we descended the bus steps.

©Teresita Abad Doebley All rights reserved 2009-2011.

Note: the above theater, the Landis Theater, is the same theater we watched Gone With The Wind. It opened its doors in 1937 as a movie- and vaudeville house and fully restored in 2005 as a movie house and performing arts theater. I have not been inside that theater since that day.


17 thoughts on “Cutting School, Watching Gone With The Wind, and Smoking My First Cigarette

  1. Such wonderful memories… and yes, I remember when you could smoke anywhere including in a hospital… Amazing. 🙂 Love those shots!
    I’m finally catching up on everyone’s blog. Thank you for your patience! 🙂

  2. The photos are great, as was the story.

    I remember those days when cigarettes were cheap and anyone could buy them. I’m glad they’re over (and glad I quit smoking!).

  3. My babysitter took us to a double feature in which she smoked damn near a pack of ’em. And the thing of it is, I can’t even file a class action against her cause she’s dead. Damn the luck!

  4. Could watch Gone with the Wind over and over again – in fact, I already have.
    And oh for the days when people could smoke in the cinema! Now, the only option left is to put on a kilo crunching through a box of popcorn washed down with icecream!

    thanks for the nostalgia trip!!

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