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Monday, November 22, 2010

A history lesson about me

Going through all those boxes of childhood stuff in the basement helped jog my memory of what I was like and things I did as a kid.

1. I tried out for and participated in my school talent shows from grades 1-8.  It kinda blows my mind that I had the nerve to try out when I was only 6 years old.  I danced to Blondie's "The Tide is High."  In 2nd grade, I danced and lip-synced to Manhattan Transfer's "The Boy From New York City" with a 1st grade boy.  He was the NYC "boy," and I kinda danced around him.  We won that year...solely based on cuteness because talent was nil.   I think most every year after that I danced to something by Duran Duran.

2. In 1st and 2nd grade, I played Star Wars on the playground with two boys, Mark and Greg.  Mark was my "boyfriend."  He was Luke.  Greg was Chewbaca, I think.  I was Leia.  Mark's birthday was the first party I ever attended.  He had a place-setting for me right next to him.  We played some kind of game where we had to balance a potato on our shoe.  I remember I won and his mom took a picture of me in my rockin' fake leather boots with the potato on my toe.

3. When I was in 3rd grade we were instructed to do all the math problems at the back of our math book.  I don't know how long we were given to accomplish this, but I didn't do any of them.  I hated math from the moment this was assigned, and I hated math even more when I had to stay in from recess for weeks and weeks to do the math problems at the back of the book.  I distinctly remember my mom sitting at the dining room table with me as I cried and cried over the horror of doing that math.

4. When I was in 4th grade I got a retainer to keep me from sucking my thumb.  It was a medieval torture device with prongs sticking down from the roof, basically making a metal gate so that I couldn't put my thumb into my mouth.  It took awhile for me to be able to speak properly with it.  After I saw the orthodontist, I remember my teacher asking me to read aloud in class.  I had to read something about the hemispheres.  I lost a tremendous amount of saliva trying to pronounce that word multiple times for the reading.

5. In 5th grade I got into a "fist fight" of sorts with a classmate.  She and I had an on-again/off-again relationship.  One year we'd be friends, and the next year we'd hate each other.  Fifth grade was apparently an "off" year.  My mom had made me a winter coat made of a white fur like material.  What I remember is my on/off friend dragging it on the gym floor.  I seem to recall walking over to her and popping her in the face.  It got ugly after that, and Mr. S had to intervene.  (I'm Facebook friends with this woman now so she can set me straight if my memory is off.)

6. In 6th grade a classmate got pregnant by an 18-year-old guy.  My introduction to the "real world." I remember our teacher wrote "For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge" on the board, which was also my introduction to that word and what it meant.

7. In 7th grade I was perhaps the most hated kid in junior high.  To this day I still don't know why.  That sucked.

8.  In 8th grade I was hell-bound on seeking revenge on the assholes who made my 7th grade year a living hell.  So I became a cheerleader and got straight As and won the Principal's Award, which is like the Oscar of my former school.  It might have felt better to give 'em all black eyes, but just rubbing their faces in my awesomeness was pretty good too.

9. In 9th grade I started at an all-girls Catholic school downtown.  It was my first experience with black girls.  I am ashamed to admit that my initial thought was, "How will I ever be able to tell them apart?"  That first day of school they all looked the same to me.  This is part of the reason I am pro-public schools.  Diversity is a good thing and really shouldn't just begin when one becomes a teenager.

10. In 10th grade I began dating BM, my high school sweetheart whom I fortunately did not marry.  He was (and is) a good guy, but I'm just not the type of person who could have married my high school boyfriend.  I guess this is where being inherently "boy-crazy" is a good thing----check out the other fish in the sea.  He and I dated for the remainder of my high school career.  We dated for my first semester of college, but once I got a taste of being around guys all day long, I was over it.

11. In 11th grade I was voted Junior Class President.  I had run for class president in 9th and 10th grades but no dice.  Junior year meant planning a prom.  I almost didn't get to attend prom because I had strep throat.  I missed my ring ceremony due to strep.

12. During spring break of my senior year of high school, my friend Kelly and I went to.......Cincinnati, OH for a couple days.  Somehow you don't get the screams and catcalls when lifting your shirt at the art museum and zoo as you do in Fort Lauderdale.  It was fun but even then I knew this was terribly lame.

Other things I remember in no particular order----
* Coming home from elementary school and eating a snack at the kitchen table with my mom every day.  Telling her about the events of the day.  This is part of the reason I wanted to be a stay-at-home mom.

* Dressing up as hookers one year for Halloween with JP, DD and MBP.

* Making mud pies in the backyard with my brother.  When he went into the house to get something, I put mud into his Spiderman house slippers.

* Peeing under/behind the wiegela bush in the back of the yard.  (I mean we had indoor plumbing....I guess it was just for the thrill of peeing outside.)

* Swinging on the swingset in the backyard singing Buffy Sainte-Marie's, "I'm Gonna Be a Country Girl Again."

* Laying in the back of the car listening to Eric Carmen's, "All By Myself," and brooding.

*Dancing in the basement with my mom to various Johnny Mathis songs.  She did her sewing down there and would listen to his LPs.  She and I would waltz around to various tunes.  

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