A Brief History of (my) Time, Volume 1

13 Apr

In case you were wondering, here’s what I’ve been up to so far in my life:

Ages 0-10:  Childhood – From what I hear, the early part of this phase of my life was quite pleasant.  I see pictures of what appears to be a very cute and delightful me.  My brother Matt and I did many hilarious creative things, encouraged and aided by my totally awesome mother.  One of our greatest hits:  We used to wake up in the middle of the night, sneak to the kitchen, empty the contents of one of the cupboards and sleep on the shelves.  We really wanted bunk beds.  Resourceful, no?

At a certain point, however, things started to go awry.  Here are the facts:  I’ve been told by several childhood friends that I was a bossy bitch in preschool.  One friend has particularly painful memories of wanting to play in the kitchen area, but, apparently this was MY turf at Zion Lutheran Preschool and I ran a tight ship.  If you didn’t want to work the station I assigned in the kitchen, you were shit out of luck.  Have fun at the sand table.

Another friend tells of her anguish during the Christmas pageant.  I was Mary (Obviously.  I have a distinct memory of gunning for that part.) and she (a very, very, small girl) was the baby Jesus.  She cried the whole time because she was terrified that I was going to sit on her.  Unprofessional.

In the years that followed, I was kicked out of two different daycares for general malfeasance and foul language (I threw a lamp at a girl’s head and did more than my fair share of pinching and hitting, called several children “bastards”, and perpetrated many other bad behaviors).  I was kicked out of brownies for making the brownies hand sign with two crucial fingers missing (brownies, can you guess which finger I kept out of the three?) and just being a mean little shit in general.  I screamed at my poor mother with alarming regularity and wrote many scathing letters detailing my emotional trials.  In short, the later part of my childhood was a mixed bag (of those disgusting nougat candies) for those around me.  I, however, had a great time and remember feeling just swell.  I was the fattest, tallest gal in my ballet classes, wrote numerous short stories about best friends running away together and living in the forest, and, with the help of my accomplice/brother, inflicted many acts of terrorism on our neighbor, Alexia and our cats, Sunshine and Cece (including one “game” where we would run the length of our large living room holding the cat at arm’s length and throw the cat 15 feet arcing through the air and – fingers crossed – landing her on the couch).

Then there were the fashion battles.  Oh lordy.  In the first grade, I fell in love with what can only be described as “hooker-chic”.  More than anything, I wanted to wear a maximally oversized tee shirt (preferably NKOTB, but hypercolor would work too) with one of those plastic circle-gather-y things, fishnet tights and kitten healed ankle boots (in case you’re wondering, the answer is no.  No, that outfit does not have bottoms – in many ways I was a trendsetter, forecasting the current onslaught of 20somethings wearing shirts as dresses…….).  I hoped to accessorize this outfit with a banana clip to hold my crimped mane and L.A.R.G.E. hoop earrings.  I really thought that this look would help me break through as a “cool kid” and would establish me as a potential bride for playground weddings (I was sick of being the officiant, but these jokers just couldn’t put together a nice ceremony).  We’ll never know if my plan would have worked because my mother, in a stroke of genius (and possibly while recovering from the stroke that my newfound sense of fashion brought on), replaced my wardrobe with Multiples – a line of jersey-knit-blob-garments that can be mixed and matched in hundreds of ways (!), none of which will get you cat-called on the mean streets of Mt. Pleasant.  Needless to say, I was not pleased.  I’m sure I expressed my displeasure in a letter.  Mother:1, Liz:0.  It was only the beginning.

It wasn’t all bad though.  I never peeked at my Christmas gifts. I loved to read.  I was very well behaved in restaurants.  I played/plotted well with my brother……. (racking brain…….).

What happened next?  Wouldn’t you like to know….. stay tuned.

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