It's Fall 1974 in Smalltown, Texas.
I'm the new kid in town (My mom & dad have uprooted me without consent during my critical teen years - scarring.)
I've got no friends.
It's my first day of enrollment in a new middle school.
Mid-semester, no less and it's public. (ugh, someone should have told me that public school meant a little more than no nuns, no uniforms, and no religion class!)
I'm sitting quietly at my desk trying to be invisible when the "Arthur Fonzarelli" of the school turns around in his desk and asks loudly, "hey, are you a prostitute?"
I responded innocently, "why no, I'm Catholic."
The entire classroom roars.
It wasn't until years later that I finally figured out what was so funny...prostitute?... protestant?
Anyway, an angel in disguise came to my rescue, our next door neighbor, Paula. She introduced me to new friends and made me feel welcome. She worked with me on my wardrobe faux pas and even taught me how to dribble a basketball.
So thanks, Paula, this little groovy dress is for you!
BTW: Paula is a pediatric nurse now and still an angel. She celebrated her 21st birthday again this week!
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