Friday, June 13, 2008

Posting My Lists, Checking Them Twice, Trying to Find Out What the Hell I Was Thinking ...

As an adult, if there is anything I want to own that is embarrassing to admit, I buy it myself. Seasons of "The Girls Next Door," workout videos by the trainers on "The Biggest Loser," shoes that resemble orthopedic platforms -- I choose not to force others to spend their hard-earned money on these things. As a child, however, having none of my own money save for the $800 in savings bonds that would not mature until I was 18, and, of course, not yet realizing that I had decidedly lowbrow tastes, I asked for gifts not only without shame but with enthusiasm.

Below, a sampling of birthday and Christmas lists through the years:


Whole Foods tee shirt? Nice propaganda, Mom and Dad. (They also tried to make me drink soy milk and eat non-Kraft mac and cheese!)

Circa 1989-1990

I like that there are 19 items and then a dismissive "That will be all." (Also, see my premonition of the jumpsuit fad over 18 years in advance!)

(Click to enlarge)

My editorial comments remain my favorite parts: 'COOL Posters' are specified as "Dogs, Cats, Zebras, Koalas" and next to 'dollhouse furniture' I demand "nice!!! not like Zoe's!!!" (Incidentally, I would receive said Make-Your-Own Dollhouse and would abandon it unfinished).

1992 (aka TROLLS!!!!!!!!)
(Click to enlarge)

In this list, the first using a computer, I helpfully told my parents that they did not need to get everything I asked for (what a humble child) and marked things I really wanted with an asterisk. Note that I liked both C&C Music Factory and The Babysitters Club ... in fact, I was a member:

Circa 1994

Oh, adolescence, how you shame me! No one but me knows that I asked for the Pearl Jam CD just so I could say I owned it. "Anything by King Missile," "Especially from Contempo Casuals" ... I have no explanation for these sentences, but I blame hormones. I don't remember why I wanted a Bert doll, but I'm guessing it was the dawning on my unibrow self-awareness.

(Click to enlarge)

Carpenter jeans! Melrose Place! Yes, it's 1995, and for some reason I really want sparkly butterfly barrettes. Because they go so well with carpenter jeans and a hat with pom poms and ear flaps (Kidding this time! Kidding!)

Freshman Year of College
(Click to enlarge)

Not a gift list, worse -- a list of all of the inside jokes I had with my friends when we were 18! Some gems:
-Drunk listening to Herbie Hancock
-Getting drunk on Monday night (Ed. note: Sigh ... back when that was novel)
-My first time getting stoned 11/7 (Ed. note: Awwww ... it took me a whole two months to acclimate!)

I'll leave you with pictures of me and Jeff in the Freshman facebook, about five years before we started dating:

P.S. Why the purple marker note? Did I think I might get too trashed on a Monday listening to classic jazz that I wouldn't be able to recognize my own face?


  1. i have several comments for you, missy. first of all, what's with the mocking of your childhood self? i looked up to you, you know! i always admired your highly advanced penmanship and letter-writing skills.

    also, you loved whole foods t-shirts. the ones with the linoleum-printed vegetables on them. you used to come back to visit austin just to go to whole foods and buy souvenir t-shirts.

    also, i am totally enamored of the idea that you were into barbies and stephen king novels at the same time. i mean, you were reading gory horror novels and playing with dolls? i bet your parents were secretly weirded out.

  2. My personal favorite is the 1991 Christmas list in which you condescendingly put Santa's name in quotation marks.

    Sorry, I'm a new fan of your blog and was reading old posts.

  3. I believe your unibrow self-awareness began long before your request for a Bert doll - check out your self-portrait at the bottom of your circa 1989-1990 list!


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