What is the opposite of being old?   1 comment

Early memory.  Sweet memory.  Soft and tender and thoughtless.  I wonder why it bubbles up now while I am very ill.
She was younger than me, just a little bit, Francine Jacobson, my first friend.  She would let me take the lead in play, let me be the Doctor, take her temperature, never was cross or said No.
She lived downstairs, on the very first floor.  You just had to ring the doorbell and she let you in.  She had a sister, even smaller and tenderer than she, little Sherry Jacobson.  Francine would even let you play with little Sherry.  Her father, Lester Jacobson, was a big strong man who loved Louis Armstrong.  I don’t remember what business he was in but he always left Francine with lots of samples to share, No. 2 pencils, never used, with pink gum erasers on the end.  She was the first in our world to know and have and give away BUBBLE GUM!  Bubble gum!  Individual pieces wrapped in cartoons!  As many pencils, as much bubble gum as you ever wanted.
Her mother, Libby Jacobson, was beautiful, not like a mommy.  She wore make-up, had a figure.  I don’t remember her cooking.  I think Libby and Lester must have gone dancing to the big band music.
When I was about five, Libby Jacobson, beautiful Libby Jacobson, got sick, the way it was not supposed to happen.  First Francine went away for a while.  And then her mother died.  And then Francine and Sherry and Lester went away for good and I never saw them again.

One response to “What is the opposite of being old?

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  1. So evocative… I can smell the erasers on the pencils.

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