Friday, December 2, 2011

Jimmy, Pete and an Ugly Duckling..

Mum, Pam, me and some guinea pigs Jimmy and Pete. Dad had a way with these guinea pigs. He would shout,'come one Pete, woo woo woo' making loud guinea pig sounds and they, Pete in particular, would run and jump in the air from one end of the cage to the other. Like a bucking bronco. I don't know if this is common practice. Pete's the one on the right, no surprise there.

Well one fine Clayton day(and there weren't many of those)a mad local dog broke into the cage and killed them. The police said we weren't the only ones in the neighborhood. Dad actually caught the dog with it's head in the cage and chased it with Jimmy in it's mouth. He saved Jimmy, who was mine, but then the bastard dog came back another day and killed him.

Dad reported Jimmy's murder and a policeman came to our house and wanted to talk to me, Jimmy's owner. When dad called me and I saw the policeman I noticed myself adopt a very theatrical gait as I walked towards him, my head down, my pace slow, sighing deeply so as to show him that I was in mourning. This was the first time the thought struck me that the stage might be a good destination for me..

Notice, I'm sure you already have, that I am deeply into my ugly duckling phase in this photo. I think the smile on my face is a large indicator that I was well aware of this fact. Love mum's 70's eyebrows. And as for Pam, all I can say is I do hope those guinea pigs have already been to the toilet!

photo c/o cousin Sally, thanks Sal!


  1. Funny how you look back on yourself as in your 'ugly duckling phase', Jane. I don't see it at all. I see a young attractive girl gazing into the future and putting her Guinea pigs on display.

    But you, of course, see your inner world from memory and how different the inner can be from the outer. Thanks for a terrific post.

  2. Oh thank you Elisabeth.. I like the way you put it. Yes there was some inner struggle that I do see here.. and like you say it's all a matter of perspective.

  3. i am currently plowing through cartons of old family photos. oh, god; the pudge stage. i can remember the deep, deep humiliation when my mother took me to a store that had a special section for "chubby" girls. couldnt we just have gotten through that year w/o going there? i have come across class photos where i had, back then, taken a razor blade and cut myself out of them; around 5th grade (11-12 yrs old).

  4. Oh God, shopping with mum for clothes! Her will against mine. The 'pudge stage' love it. Sounds like you had the exact same reaction to it as I did. Perhaps I should take the razor blade to this photo? It's never too late xo

  5. my mother wanted to dress me like i lived in an institution for the mentally distressed.

  6. ha ha.. yes I had a bitter fight with my mum one time over a pair of shoes that would have fitted in nicely at one of those institutions. She won.