Sunday, July 10, 2016

Brothers and sisters and Happy Birthday, Janie!

Front row from left: Janie, Marilyn, Louise, Judy, Toni. Back row: David, Teddy, Gerard

Janie came to town and we had a barbecue in Teddy's backyard. I know Teddy is not his adult name but how can I give up calling him Teddy? Is that not the best? He looks just like our paternal grandfather. He's a cheerful man as my father was. It wasn't until last year that I realized that my father was a cheerful man.  Slow learner.

Yes, I got a permanent, and now I look breathtakingly like my mother, although she brushed hers straight back. Why would one get a permanent when one is actually an old lady? Why? It's because I like to be at the forefront of fashion, and it's about time for the return of the permanent. Somebody tell Vogue Magazine.

Permanents are not as smelly as that Tonette home permanent my mother gave me, rinsing it over the kitchen sink and nearly gagging me with the stench. It was like water boarding with ammonia. In those days, you didn't let a permanent take its natural course; you put your hair up in bobby pins every night.  The fifties really was a water-boarding experience, now that I think of it.

It's Janie's birthday today. She's seventy-one.  In high school, she had these little spit curls in front of her ear. Not particularly attractive. "Why did you let me do that?"she  has asked.

Well, I don't know. Why did you let me write all those stupid things in my journal?  Thank heaven, those two high school journals were lost in the move from NYC.

Janie is one of the best people I know. I had to grow up to find that out. In fact, all my kith and kin are good people, but even better, they are drop-dead funny.

Happy Birthday, Janie.  I knew it was your birthday, because Mrs. Backer's bakery is closed the first two weeks in July--always was and always will be.

And guess what, you shouldn't have worn that wiglet in the seventies either.

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