Updated: Jan 24
Chapter 6 Capitol Girls
After graduation, mother got me a job in the Gold Star pants factory with her. That was the worst summer of my life. I had two Italian ladies, one on each side of me. They would talk all day, telling dirty jokes and using filthy language. My face would just be red the whole day. One of them, Sofia, said to me,” honey, you don't belong here, you belong in an office”. By the end of the summer, I did find a job in an office, Capitol Records. Not the plant where my father worked, but the record club company. Back then companies like Columbia Records and Capitol Records had subscription clubs. The customer would sign up and every month he would get the record of the month. My position there was in customer service. I loved my job.
At Capitol Records I met people that I would be friends with for decades, Janet, Pat, Priscilla, Annmarie and Marlene. We were all young, dating and looking forward to getting married someday and having children. We would get together once a week, alternating at each other’s homes. We shared everything, our joys, and our heartbreaks.
Janet first had her heart broken by a handsome Italian attorney she was dating. Then she met a State Trooper that is still her husband today. They have been married for probably 40 years or more.
Priscilla was our favorite. We loved her so much. She was very funny and so beautiful. She looked like Elizabeth Taylor but with blonde hair. She was very self-conscious about her weight even though none of us cared about her size. She was crazy about this guy, who worked for the Scranton Times. He was a very passive guy, but for some reason is nickname was Killer. She practically stalked him. He finally had to give in and they got married. They had two children, Dayna, and Bryan.
Annmarie was going with a very good-looking Italian boy from Old Forge. They seemed very much in love. They got married young and had a son. However, it turned out he was not capable of fidelity. She got divorced and never remarried.
Pat was in love with a man who owned a million-dollar business and was very well known. They went out for years, however he was not interested in marriage. He broke her heart. To this day she has never married.
I worked at Capitol records for a couple years and I met some famous people. One day The Righteous Brothers came in, Bobby Hatfield and Bill Medley. I remember noting that Bobby was very nice and friendly. However, Bill Medley was a little bit of a snob and uppity.
Then we got the news that Capitol was closing the record club division in Scranton. They were building a beautiful new building in Los Angeles. They asked the top employees; the most productive people go to Los Angeles and train people. I thought this was it. This is my escape. The company was going to pay for my plane ticket. They had a building with apartments for just the Capitol employees. My friend Marlene was going to go. This was great because I would not have to be alone in a strange city.
I went home so excited that night and told my parents all about it. My father started to yell at me. “He said if you try to leave and go to California I will jump in front of the airplane.” There's no way he was going to let me leave.
When I look back on it, I think why didn’t I pack secretly and run away in the middle of the night. I could have stayed at my friend Marlene’s house. I could have boarded the plane the next day. I guess my training had always been to be meek and subservient to adults. My self-confidence was too fragile to stand up for myself. Another getaway plan thwarted!