Funny Shoes and Tang

I am a Wednesday child. Full of woe. More like full of Whoa! I was a Go Baby, active and hyper. As I look back over fifty years there are some things I must acknowledge.

I had a deformed foot at birth. My very smart mother insisted to the doctor that my right foot was not right. Fortunately, Miami had a maverick of a pediatric orthopedist who DID NOT do surgery on club feet. Instead, I had serial castings and then I wore a “Funny Shoe”. This shoe.Funny shoe - right foot Funny Shoe - right foot, lateral view

I loved half day kindergarten. I was in the afternoon class. I took swimming lessons in the morning and then my mom made me a grilled cheese and let me have a Fizzy, flavored bicarbonate tablets that you dropped into water. I threw scissors at my best friend in 1st grade. Scarred her face, barely missed her eye by 1 cm. I had a bad temper even then. I love(d) Tang. Thank you, NASA! I had the most kickass glitter purple spider bike with a white vinyl banana seat. The handle bars had shimmery white tassels. Captain Kangaroo freaked me out. He gave me the creeps. I had a toy machine gun that fired sparks out the end. I like Dusty Rose and Mercury Morris. I knew Anita Bryant was a hateful woman spewing ugliness in her white polyester pantsuit. I liked climbing trees and when they built the foot bridge, I liked to hide underneath the bridge. I had a Red,White & Blue bedroom for the Centennial in 1976. I had Brabie Dolls, but my Granny hand sewed all my Barbie clothes. I was the only girl with hand sequined gowns (mini replicas of Mardi Gras gowns). I loved watching my parents jitterbug. I loved watching my oldest sister’s boyfriend do the Jive Talk in his platform shoes. I liked how my mom squealed every time Tom Jones was on Merv or Dinah Shore. I loved disco but somehow knew that by the time I would be old enough to dance disco, disco would be gone. I loved September. I like Bruce Jenner and Marc Spitz. I wanted to run fast and jump far. I knew that Lady Marmalade’s song was naughty and I would sing it to myself just to be naughty, too. I loved the feeling of cold terrazzo floors on sunburned skin. I hate walking on Chattahoochee patios – hurts my feet. But not as much as those tiny Australian pinecones.

pineconesI love Grant’s 10 candy bars for $1. I loved Herbie the Lovebug and Leif Garret and The Hardy Boys. I hated Nancy Drew mysteries. Wuss. I refused to read them. I was over the moon when the big, new, modern public library opened. There was an elevator. I started reading adult fiction when I was 12. I loved the Y-100 radio station and making our own mixed tapes by recording songs using a tape recorder and the transistor radio. You’d wait for hours to catch that popular song. I loved Kick-the-Can during summer recreation at the park. I loved using a magnifying glass to catch the paper (melaluca) trees on fire. I loved when we got a second phone in the house: a princess phone. I remember the busy signal. Houses had one car garages. I loved the start of every school year and covering our text books with brown grocery bags. Then you could doodle on them all year. I refused to take typing in 8th grade, “I am not going to be some secretary!” I’m still a shitty typer. I remember getting a microwave (it was nearly the size of a washing machine). I remember when Velcro came out. Again, thank you NASA! I loved my Eskill clogs and Jordache jeans. I never conquered the Farah Fawcett feathered hair style. I had a pervert flash his privates at me one morning while I was walking to 7th grade junior high. He asked me for directions and when I walked up to his car, he had his junk out of his pants. I laughed at him. Then I shouted at my friends that the guy in the car had he penis out of his pants. Then everyone was laughing. He drove off quickly. I loved school and the Youth Fair (the swings and the Himilaya). I loved Crandon and the smell of hotdogs and ketchup at the beach. I only skipped school once and went all the way to Ft. Lauderdale and the Elbow Room. I loved Flippers (a game room) and Zipp’s ice cream. Sir Pizza had the best pizza ever. And Dixie Cream doughnuts will reign forever as the best. I also loved LB’s Eatery and Andalusia Bakery (in the Gables). Listrani’s in DC. My schwanky job at Sutton Place Gourmet. But my first job ever was with Chick-Fila in the mall. I remember when they built the Florida Turnpike. We rode our bikes on it down to Black Point. I remember Winston’s in Georgetown and Poseurs. I saw Duran Duran, The Ramones in the school cafeteria at American.  Chaka Khan, Sting at Merriweather Post Pavillion, The Rolling Stones at the Orange Bowl. Oh and the Orange Bowl Parade. I remember when the Challenger exploded, again….NASA! I helped re-elect Reagan. I voted for Clinton (Bill). I finished college and medical school. I had a huge-ish wedding and reception and had two sons. I started a practice. I own the practice. I built my dream house. I have a home. I wrote a novel….started two more. I’ve been to Rome and London and I am going to Paris. I have my second dog. I have the 6th and 7th cats. I love my little sportscar. I hated the minivans. I had the 1st GEN cell phone – too big to fit into a purse. I had an Apple IIc in college. I smoked….briefly. I may have to smoke a few Gauloises while in Paris. I have had mammograms. I get my colonoscopy this year, I swear I will hear Jacques Cousteau’s voice as I watch the video feed through a Valium and Versed haze. I have decent credit (again, finally). I’ve been in love (again). I love this life……I wonder what the next fifty years will bring.

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