What’s a Junesboy?
I’m hearing the question. It’s not a terribly important question, nor terribly interesting, but if ya wanna know…
Three answers leap to my mind. A Junesboy could be;
- Beaver Cleaver, the son of June and Ward Cleaver on television in LEAVE IT TO BEAVER.
- Timmy in the LASSIE television show (his mom was played by June Lockhart).
- Any young man whose father was named after his father and whose relatives couldn’t be bothered to pronounce more than one syllable.
Hint; answer #3 is the largest group.
I was ten or eleven years old and attending visitation of a funeral of one of my dad’s relatives in Elizabethtown, Kentucky. I didn’t know who.
In Kentucky, visitations can be as long as a flight to South Africa. I spent the eternity of the day wandering from room to room of the funeral home simultaneously seeking stimulation and invisibility. Neither were available in this venue. Keep in mind these were horse-and-buggy days before the internet and smart phones. Instead, we had conversation.
In these “good ol’ days” adults could lie, exaggerate, or just be wrong with a pretty fair amount of impunity, and if caught, be politely ignored in their factual transgressions, especially if aimed at someone younger…or female…or from more than 30 miles away (20 to the north).
Lord knows I love a good story and there were a few of those, but much of what I was hearing that day I could never repeat in my home or classroom.
Needless to say, “conversation” was not workin’ for me that day.
I spent the day having adults squint at me and say; “Yer June’s boy aren’cha?” I gaped in response. It was the only tool I had in the box at that age.
It was a long day.
Later, when I went to see the WWII epic film THE LONGEST DAY, my first reaction was “Oh guys, you don’t know.”
On the drive home I related my experience to my dad. He explained that his father (my Papaw) was named “William” and that he had been named William, Jr., but growing up in Western Kentucky, everyone just called him “Junior” or “June”. Somehow that made me feel like I was part of some sort of a secret society of “June’s boys” who might rise up someday and force adults to tell the truth or at least a good story and get on with life a little quicker.
I confess to some disappointment with how that turned out.