Sunday, October 14, 2007

My hero wore a speedo

When I was a young and nubile teenager back in 1972 (it hurts just to write that date) I had a disturbing incident I feel it is time to share. I've held it in too long and it's about time I thank the man who came to my rescue.

My bedroom was in the back corner of the Wisconsin home my parents still live in today. It had the standard pink walls and frilly curtains of the period. I remember a hot morning in late summer waking in my bed wearing only my baby doll pajamas. (Side note: What ever happened to baby doll pajamas? The stuff they sell today makes you feel like GI Joe rather than Barbie).

Anyway, I awoke with a strange feeling I was not alone. I sat up and to my shock and fear there was a creepy looking meter reader ogling me through my bedroom window. Being young and rather stupid I didn't yell or get my parents, I simply jumped up and ran into my closet.

I had a small window in that closet and standing on a couple of board game boxes I peeked out to see what my would-be attacker was up to. I was surprised to see him running away as if being chased by a rabid dog.

After I came out and shut the closet door I found my rescuer standing there in front of me. It had been the summer of the Twentieth Olympiad and I was madly in love with swimmer Mark Spitz. Taped to the front of my closet door I had a life-sized poster of Mark wearing nothing but a red, white and blue Speedo and his seven gold medals. When I ran into the closet the open door must have stopped right in front of the window and the scum bag outside came face-to-face with Mark and his glistening, chiseled chest.

So more than 30 years after the fact I owe Mark a long over due thanks. Thank you, Mark, for scaring the crap out of the peeping tom in my window, and thank you even more for a poster that gave me many, many sweet dreams.


  1. That is a great story! I remember that poster and wished I had one. My mother would never have allowed it in the house. She did do a pastel sketch of his face for me. I still have it, put away safely.

  2. Your mom did a sketch of Mark Spitz! I wish you would scan it an post it.

    For the life of me I don't know why my folks let me have the poster but I'm really glad they did.

    Read you on BE. SB2

  3. Thank you for posting this! My best friend also had this poster on her closet door, and it brings back all my 10-year-old memories to see it. My dad and his younger brother looked remarkably like Mr. Spitz and my friends were always swooning over them (much to my embarrassment)! By the way, I found your post by googling "life sized mark spitz poster 1972". Thanks again!

  4. Dear Anon...I was also 10 years old when my older sister had this very same poster hanging above her bed. I would lay on her bed and just stare at Mark....he must have been my first crush. I wish I had the poster today but it probably was thrown in the trash:( He can still make my head spin...thanks for the memories!

  5. Thanks for sharing this! I had this same poster in my bedroom... He was so dreamy!! I had to find an image of him since Michael Phelps broke the record today. Phelps is my daughters swimmer dreamy.

    Still Mark did it better - that mustache and those speedo's and that long luscious hair! Sigh... they don't make them like that for me any more.


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