Growing up in a small town in Southern New Jersey

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Sleeping in

It's Saturday.  It's 1:30 p.m.  I'm 16 years old.  I'm just not getting out of bed.  Yes, folks, on Saturday, I slept in.  And every Saturday I woke up with a headace.  Not enough oxygen in the past 12 hours?  I don't know.  All I know is that I woke up with a headache.  And no, I lived in a tea-totling household, so it wasn't a hangover.

Living in the attic with my sister was great because no one bothered me, or woke me up.  And Saturday was the day I slept.  All the other days of the week I had to be up by 6:30 a.m. or earlier, depending on what I hadn't set out the night before, such as clothes.  Decisions by girls (namely me and my sister) who had few clothes, had to be given great thought.  I mean one had to think whether their peers would remember that I had worn that same outfit two days ago.  So, unless I just wanted to grab something out of my closet (which was a few nails hammered into the wall, upon which my clothing was hung) and hope I hadn't worn the same thing two days ago, so I could get out of bed at 6:30 instead of say, 6:00 a.m., I had to set out the clothing the night before.

And back when I was 16 no one would ever been seen in public with just washed hair.  Oh, no, never, never, never.  Even if we had gym 6th period (that was the last period of the day), we would not get our hair wet in the shower.  It just wasn't done.  So I had to figure on whether I was washing my hair in the morning or the night before.  There were advantages to both.

Washing the night before, of course, the advantage was obvious.  I could sleep in until 6:30 a.m., and just comb my hair out.  The disadvantage to that was that I had to sleep on those huge rollers so that my hair wouldn't be one big, curly, frizz ball in the morning. 

Washing my hair in the morning had no advantages that I can think of, except that I would smell like fresh shampoo, and at that time I didn't know that was something boys liked.  Or did they?  And washing my hair in the a.m. meant that I had to set my hair in the big rollers and then hope that the hair dryer would get those big curls dried enough so that when I combed out my hair, it wouldn't spring back into a big, curly, frizz ball. 

Those were the decisions of my life when I was 16.  However, on Saturday, I didn't have to make any such decisions.  In fact, the more I hid in my room working on non-existent homework, I could get out of dusting, vacuuming, cooking dinner, going to the grocery store, etc.  The love of going to the grocery story wore off when I was about 12.  Every since, it's been very low on my list of things I love to do.

There were certain things I absolutely had to do on Saturday, though.  I had to clean up my room, which included changing my sheets and pillow case.  And since to me, cleaning the floor meant moving the furniture, almost every Saturday I rearranged my room.  I know that nuts, but I did.  And mainly I kept my room clean because I never knew when the fire inspectors were going to surprise us, and I didn't want to be the cause of us failing the fire inspection or being labeled a fire hazard.

I'd show up downstairs, ready to go to Youtharama, or some other church activity, which followed dinner.  So, when I smelled food being made, I knew it was safe to head downstairs and offer to help mom with something.  I usually ended up just setting the table.

Okay, folks, most of this is a work of fiction.  I rarely slept until 1:30 p.m., although on the rare occasions when I did, I certainly did have a whopper of a headache, which I figured was because when you sleep you take in less oxygen, and therefore, I was suffering from oxygen deprivation.  And the fire inspection thing?  They always let us know in advance when they were coming and mom would be in "whirlwind clean" mode, so we all knew to get our rooms spiffied up. 

The things about the hair is mostly true -- at least the part about my hair looking like a big, curly, frizz ball.  But my hair looking like that most of the time any way, no matter what I did to it.  

Last:  I apologize for misspellings.  Apparently Blogspot has deleted their spell check icon, at least I can't find it, and therefore, I can't spell check my BLOGs any more.  And, I am NOT a spell checker.  I have never been able to find my own mistakes.


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