👆 These red titles are links to more detail...
My mother built bombers during WWII. My dad flew as a radio operator in the Pacific war. They returned to hide in their tiny Midwestern town and have a family. Their idyll was short lived - when I was two years and nine months old mom was overcome by the tuberculosis we both caught from her father, and she nearly died in the state hospital.
Around 7 May 1947. 2 min read.
🧒 Clues about self-perception and relationship to the world...
When I returned to town, I was forced to play the gender game. I did not let it influence who I felt I was, only what I would be allowed to express. I never insisted I was a girl, I wouldn't have wanted to be locked into female stereotypes. But I really hated being expected to act like a guy!
Around 1 September 1952. 2 min read.
🌠 So why should anyone read about my lousy childhood? Where is this going?
In third grade I was the male lead in the multi-class operetta, playing a scarecrow in a cabbage patch full of fairies (the female ballerina kind.) Rehearsal prepared me for everything except the reality of it being night, the auditorium totally dark, and the two piercing spotlights, at my eye level back along the side walls, utterly blinding me.
Around 2 June 1955. 1 min read.