Friday, August 27, 2010

The Night Bobbie Played Dirty Pool

When I was stationed at Fort Meade, Maryland, one of my favorite shipmates was Bobbie Jeremiasen. She was a cryptographic technician, mechanical, and trained to repair cryptographic equipment, which meant she was one smart young lady. She was also one of the most incredibly beautiful women I’ve ever seen in my entire life. Needless to say, she was quite a popular young woman, partially due to the fact that she was the unofficial manager and mascot of the Navy football team, and every guy in the barracks had a crush on her. In January of 1984, I had a once in a lifetime experience. While walking through the Meade Post Exchange, I passed the magazine rack and did a double take, a triple take and a quadruple take. My jaw went slack as I asked myself, “Good God, is that Bobbie on the cover of Playboy?” Long blonde hair: check. Porcelain clear complexion: check. Bright blue eyes: check. Beautiful white smile: check. Dimple in the chin: check. Plus Bobbie had a figure that would make an actual hourglass jealous.

I actually looked on the inside cover of the magazine and found the name Kimberly McArthur. Later that day I asked Bobbie if she ever modeled under the name McArthur. It was not until sometime later when I found out that Kimberley McArthur had been the 1983 Playboy of the Month. She was 5’4” and Bobbie was 5’10” (and yes, I’m the only guy who would’ve looked at that).

At the end of the season, when the Navy football team won the base championship, I presented Bobbie with a Navy blue and gold football jersey with her name printed across the back and bearing the number 10. (Bobby is one of the few women I’ve seen who could wear a number 10 and nobody would snicker).

There are a few more stories about Bobbie that stand out in my mind. One night Bobbie’s boyfriend was playing pool with another guy, and for reasons I cannot fathom, Bobbie decided she was not getting enough attention. That evening, she was wearing black hot pants and a hot pink halter-top. That was enough to turn any guys head. Bobbie had had more than a few drinks and was about two sheets to the wind. Every time her boyfriend’s opponent would line up a shot, Bobbie would bend over the pool table and wiggle and giggle. This drew quite a crowd. Every time Shocking Blue sings, “I’m your Venus” with the lyric “Makin’ every man a mess,” I think of the show Bobbie put on that night. I have no idea what Bobbie was drinking that night, but if I did I’d order a few cases of it.

I have no idea who won that game, but I distinctly remember stepping outside to cool off with other awestruck young sailors, some of whom literally howled at the moon. And I will kindly note that, as much as we appreciated Bobbie’s shenanigans, nobody laid a hand on her.

Sometime later though, Bobbie inadvertently touched off the great Fort Meade Army Navy pissing contest. I heard this story straight from Bobbie. She told me that her Army supervisor had approached her when everybody else was out of the office, placed his hands on her shoulders and said, “I could make things a whole lot easier for you around here,” and briefly touched her breast. Shortly thereafter somebody stepped into the office and Bobbie made a hasty exit. She reported what happened and the fecal matter hit the proverbial fan. Big time.

The Navy command wanted that soldier court-martialed; the Army argued that he should only lose a stripe and be demoted. I understand he was ultimately given a fault transfer and shipped over to Germany with a notation on his permanent personnel record reporting what had happened. One more incident like that and he would be out of the service with a dishonorable discharge. The fact that he was a married man with children might have played some part in that resolution. I will add that there are few things more pathetic than a man in his mid 30’s with no prior experience other than that sort of dishonorable discharge. Have fun getting a job with a record of sexual assault.

P.S. For the Navy barracks 1983 Christmas party, Bobbie showed up as always looking awesome: black slacks, white sweater, and a gold metallic belt. I happened to speak with the executive officer of the Navy detachment, a Commander. I nodded towards Bobbie and commented, “I guess you’ve been hearing quite a bit about her, haven’t you sir?” “Who’s that?” he asked. “That’s Petty Officer Jeremiasen,” I said. The commander replied, “Oh, so that’s who she is.” He also made a comment to the effect that the offending soldier had very good taste but incredibly bad judgment. The reason I like this story is that the Commander did not know who Bobbie was.

I also want to note for the record, and I also heard this from Bobbie herself, that I never heard anyone in a Navy barracks say anything like, “Oh, she must have been asking for it.” Indeed, when I spoke with Bobbie and mentioned that I would really like to get my hands on the guy who had groped her, she cheerily informed me that if I wanted to kick that guy’s ass I would have to stand in line. She’d gotten the same offer from a few other guys.
All things considered, I’m proud of the fact that both the navy officers and enlisted men behaved with decency and respect.

P.P.S.: Bobby if you’re reading this and you’re single, call me.

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