Friday, January 24, 2014

The First Dagny

We met in the student lounge through a friend of hers.  Another friend of mine from Young Americans for Freedom had handed me Anthem as we passed between algebra classes. After I read it, I gave it to Jan. 
Prom Night 1967
 In 1966, Janet M. Matyas was my high school sweetheart.  She was a year younger than I, and in the “major work” program of Cleveland Public Schools for gifted and talented students.  (I was not. I went to summer school to catch up.)  She played the violin.  After Anthem, we went on to read all of the existing books. I subscribed to the Objectivist Newsletter and took the “Basic Principles” class.  Several of our friends also had read Atlas Shrugged or The Fountainhead.  High school romances are transient; and I changed schools the following year.

Cleveland as seen from Lakewood
For that year, we had the steel mills and trains, a high rise apartment for viewing the city from the lake and some penthouse parties (though no Penthouse Legends) with our friends.  At a spring dance that year, we were there with everyone else and happy to be on a date, but oddly enough, the band played "You've Got to Hide Your Love Away" which is in 6/8, and we danced it as a waltz -- not a big deal, but, when we were done, we looked around to find the floor empty, except for us.

Winton Place is the tallest. At the left in front is
Edgewater Towers where we lived
(but not where I grew up).
Janet and I cringed at the classical architecture of the banks.  We had great universities, corporations dedicated to electrical research, and John D. Rockefeller as the model of the hometown boy who made good.  Riding into downtown on the Rapid, we entered beneath the Terminal Tower, staring hard and deep into the many tunnels into which other train tracks disappeared.  The Terminal had a concourse with a tobacco shop.
It does not get more romantic than this.
About 1989, we found each other through FidoNet.  We exchanged a few letters. The last I heard from her was in 1996. 


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