Saturday, September 02, 2017

Sunday Stealing


1.  What kind of school did you attend (Big? Small? Public? Private? Specialty? One-room schoolhouse?) Public grammar school, public high school, and then the local community college for a very short time.

2. What did you wear to school (uniform? dress code? Whatever you wanted?) In grammar school, I actually had to wear a dress or skirt every day. Once I got into high school, it was jeans and t-shirts, day in/day out.

3.  How did you get to school? Grade school: walked to and fro. High school: walked home/car pool in the morning. GAWD how I hated the car pool! It was an awkward collection of girls that my mother cobbled together, based on geography, not friendships. A fucking painful way to start the day.

4.  Who was your favorite teacher? Why? When I was in junior high, we had a PE teacher we all really liked. She wasn't that much older than we were and was so easy to talk to.

5.  What was your favorite subject? Why? English or history. Because.

6.  What was your least favorite subject? Why? Math or science. Because. (School brings out the surly in me.)

7.  Did you belong to any clubs? I was on the school paper for a while ...

8.  Were you a picky reader? Not at all. Read everything I could get my hands on. Especially about Presidents Lincoln and Kennedy.

9.  What did you do in your free time? Read. Listened to records. Watched TV. Rode my bike through the forest preserve. Hung out at the zoo or the mall. Went to the movies ... a lot.

10.  Did you get good grades? I did, except when I didn't. I either got A's or C's/D's.

11.  Did you like/participate in sports? Liked? Yes. Participated? No.

12.  Did you have a boyfriend/girlfriend in high school? 


13.  When did you get your driver’s license? 30

14.  What kind of kid were you?  (Popular? Class clown? Shy?  A nerd?  Teacher’s pet?) Nerd

15.  Who were your heroes? Streisand. It's not possible to calculate how important she was. A powerful and unconventional woman whose value was seen and celebrated

16. Were you ever bullied? Yes. I think, unfortunately, everyone is at one time or another.

17.  Did you learn how to touch type? Yes.

18.  Who was your best friend?  (Are you still friends today?) Her name was Judy. No, we are most certainly not friends today. If you want to read about it, here's our history. I warn you, it's complicated.

19.  What is one thing you regret about high school? I don't think I regret anything. I hated it and would never go back, but not because of anything I did.

20.  What were you most proud about? It made me a better aunt. I'm sensitive to my niece and nephew and how painful adolescence can be.

Bonus:  Did you like high school?  Hell to the no. My parents' marriage was unraveling. My older sister had a breakdown that no one acknowledged (not even to this day). My favorite grandpa died. A relative molested me. That was within my family. Outside, Vietnam dragged on and then there was Watergate. All this was swirling around me, and I was supposed to care about pep squads and candystripers? PUH-LEEZE! It was during those years I clung to something that has always kept me sane -- the movies. 

There were some really great movies released when I was in high school. The Godfather, The Sting, Cabaret, Serpico, Jaws, The Way We Were, The Exorcist ... If only I could have lived all four years in the dark with a package of Twizzlers in my hand.


This afternoon I decided to part with 18 books, 3 sweaters, a sweatshirt and 2 t-shirts. That's a box of books and a plastic bag of clothes.

And yet my home is still overflowing. It's disheartening.

Direct from my raisin-sized heart

I know this is going to make my sound like a Grinch, but I encourage everyone to think very carefully before they give to the victims of Hurricane Harvey.

After 9/11, after Katrina, we learned two things about what happens when a tragedy gets intense national attention:

1) People forget about their local charities. It's only natural, really. We each have finite resources. If you're sending $20 or $50 to the American Red Cross or some other national charity, that's money that's not staying in your neighborhood. So smaller organizations suffer, and that's unfortunate because the need for their services doesn't lessen because of a national disaster.

2) Our attention spans are short. Once the news cameras leave Houston, the donations will dry up. And that, too, is unfortunate because the victims of Harvey will continue to need help well into 2018, and beyond.

So please, make sure that when you donate to a Harvey charity, it's not the only charity you support this month. And don't forget to keep donating, even after the leaves fall and the snow comes, and you may no longer be hearing about Houston every day.

Houston Food Bank

Houston Humane Society