Early Days

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This article is part of
"Robin's Personal Memories Project"
Click here for information on Special History Projects
This article is part of "Robin's Personal Memories Project"
The information on this page is from my personal history and memories
and should NOT be used for any reason other than reading enjoyment

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Parents, Gerry and Shirlee

Robin was born on 18 August, 1941 (on the hottest day on record) in Norfolk, Virginia. My father, Gerry, was in the Navy at the time, stationed aboard ships patrolling the eastern seaboard. Shirlee was working as a draftsman and for a railway company when my parents met. During WWII, my father served all over the Atlantic, including the Murmansk Run and several ships that he served on were sunk while he was on board. He was also involved in the invasions of Anzio and Normandy, his commanding officer was Douglas Fairbanks Jr,.

After the Navy, he traveled around the US, with his family, working in many varied jobs while going to college full time. One of those jobs was to work for Ringling Brothers in Bradenton, Florida. Shirlee worked in the wardrobe department while Gerry worked as a general handyman and roustabout. I remember watching the circus practice loading and unloading the three trains: lions and tigers and bears, oh my!

About 1949, we were living in Long Beach, California and Mom came down with polio. She spent a few months in an iron lung, while my dad and us kids were quarantined at home. (Read about 'The Game' under Life Lessons) My parents reconnected with Douglas Fairbanks Jr., and our family spent quite a bit of time at "The Ranch", or as it is known today; "Hearst Castle".

Another job that my Dad had was that of Commercial Fisherman. He and a friend bought a tuna boat named the "Ida May". Pop would take the boat out for several weeks at a time. I made several trips with him, learning basic radio communications and navigation at sea.

Both my folks worked in the aerospace industry. We were living in Southern California. Most of the kids were the offspring of traveling farm workers. They spoke either Japanese or Spanish, so I grew up speaking English, Spanish and Japanese interchangeably. (One of my "playgrounds" was Corriganville)

In 1954, my family moved from Hawthorne to the high desert of Palmdale. It was a small city of about five thousand people: a place where jets were being built and tested for the military. My dad worked at companies like Northrop, North American and Convair aircraft companies. For a while, he was a Test Pilot/RO for F-89's built by Northrop at the Palmdale facility. Have you ever seen the movie, "The Right Stuff"? My family was an integral part of that history. Growing up in Palmdale, Northrop and North American (two of the major aircraft manufacturing facilities) were losing several test pilots per month. Attending funerals was a hard lesson while growing up, but a much needed lesson learned.

In 1955, we moved to the East Coast: Stratford, Ct. I had the opportunity to learn how much different the population differs from East to West Coast. Driving across country (with four kids raised in the High Desert) to a large Metropolitan area was a series of lessons learned for all of us. We visited almost every National Park and monument along the way. It helped broaden my knowledge of the US and all of its' grandeur.

A year later, by way of New Jersey, we found ourselves in Fort Wayne, Indiana. My father was working for a very eccentric guy named Philo Farnsworth who was the inventor of television as we know it today. As Director of Quality Control, he was charged with writing training manuals. When he had completed a chapter, he would it take home and have me read it for clarity, a heavy task for a fifteen year old. He would ask company employees, "If my kid can understand it, why can't you?" That summer, the whole family (minus me) went to Washington DC for the summer. I spent the summer working on a farm near Churubusco, IN with family friends. Farms, barns, harvesting wheat and girls were all things to explore and learn, individually and together. I also learned to throw a lasso over a running teenage girl, an important life skill.

In 1957, I joined the Navy, and my family moved to Northern California. Pop finished his Doctorate in QA Engineering. He would work week days in aerospace, racing cars on the weekend. About thirty years ago, he decided to retire from aerospace and my parents opened the first of two dog breeding kennels. (Irish, English and Gordon Setters; German Short Hair Pointers, and English Cockers!) Between sports car racing, acting in several TV shows and movies, and showing pure-bred dogs, he led a very full life.

My dad had a wonderful sense of humor, developing what we used to call 'Pop Humor'. He would tell you the facts of life in short, sweet and to the point:

  • Flies spread germs – so keep yours zipped!'
  • Life is interesting: the first ten years you learn how to keep yourself zipped. The last ten years, you try to remember to open it!

My Mother also worked in aerospace and obtained a Doctorate in Mathematics. These days, she still runs a kennel that she and my father started. (Interestingly enough, they bought the land from the Packard family of "HP/Varian" fame!)

While I was growing up, my parents were both involved in the aircraft and aerospace industries. My family moved, quite literally all over the world, on a regular basis. Moving taught me special skills that would help me in later years.


  • Robin is the oldest of four children.
  • S. (two years younger) worked in aerospace for quite awhile. She and her husband also ran a farm in Northern California at the same time she was running a Dress Store. She is now retired and living in Mexico
  • P.(four years younger) graduated from California Maritime Academy, worked as an officer aboard ships. He then went into private industry and designed ships. Recently, he has been working as a Port Manager in several ports around the world.
  • V. (six years younger) trained as a midwife and was designing printed circuit boards when she was in her twenties -- she is now retired and living in Portugal.

First Bondage Experiences:

Robin grew up playing Cowboys and Indians, cops and robbers like most kids of the day. It seems that everywhere he lived, there were forts to be built, and flags to be captured. His fascination with "capturing an enemy and interrogating it" was an integral thread to a lot of these games.

"It was in 1955 that we moved to Reading, MA and Lawrence, MA. I found out that a lot of other kids played 'Cowboys and Indians', and other capture games. In each of these venues, it found some way to integrate some form of bondage into 'play time games'. It was in Massachusetts that I 'discovered other people had this interest as well'. Later, as I moved to New Jersey and on to Indiana, I honed my bondage skills and was able to determine how to get other people interested in bondage games. I had a great time exploring girls and bondage, and what made each of them exciting in their own wonderful ways."

Also see the page [ Movie locations ]

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