Mighty Life List
Nov 28 2007

Personal Timeline, Continued

This is from the prompt on page 49 of No One Cares What You Had for Lunch: 100 Ideas for Your Blog. The first part of my timeline is here.

Age 11: When I babysit, we pretend there are refrigerator elves who will leave toys in the cripser if you put raisins out for them.

Age 12: At the end of the last slow dance, I receive my very first kiss. His lips touch the soft skin just below my right eye; I can feel my pulse there for weeks afterward.

Age 13: A product of Nancy Regan’s most agressive “Just say no” campaign tactics, I puffy paint “PARTY SOBER!” among the other exclamations on my plastic Sports-A-Rama visor. The upperclassmen follow me around laughing and pointing.

Age 14: One of the girls decides that the cheerleading socks with the school’s initials on them make her legs look fat and refuses to wear them. The squad is soon locked in heated battle — initial socks vs. scrunchy socks — with no one willing to wear socks that don’t match the other girls’.

Age 15: In an effort to be more likeable, I decide never to get mad at anyone or say anything negative about anyone ever again. It is the most stressful, frustrating few months of my life.

20 Responses to “Personal Timeline, Continued”

  • Leticia Says:

    Age 14 and 15…hysterical

  • nadarine Says:

    I did a very similar thing when I was 13: I tried to become a “nice person” by smiling at everyone and thanking them for everything. This lasted about five days, at which point I was ready to go home and just give in to the siren song of Nirvana on my stereo and angsty pouting.

  • Emily Says:

    WOW, I had completely forgotten about puffy paint!

  • Jules Says:

    House of Jules

  • QofD Says:

    This post makes me want to throw my beret in the air and spin around in circles, so whatever you have must be catching.

    I laughed myself hoarse over the scrunchy socks vs. initial socks debate.

  • denise Says:

    age 15 – me too. i decided that i wasn’t going to make fun of or judge people based on physical appearance – acne, big nose, hair, etc. because if i did, whatever i made fun of would happen to me. once that seed was planted, i couldn’t undo it though. probably saved me from getting my ass kicked.

  • ALF Says:

    You have a good memory! I like the refrigerator elves idea.

  • Joe Says:


    “I puffy paint “PARTY SOBER!” among the other exclamations on my plastic Sports-A-Rama visor.”

    has to be the best sentences ever placed o the Internet.

  • Sarah Says:

    Oh no. What is it with cheerleaders and socks? When I was in high school, it was all about scrunchy socks, socks that don’t show, or tall socks. Don’t even get me started on hair bows.

    Good Lord.

  • Melanie at Beanpaste Says:

    I love these timelines. Such a spare, elegant way to present personal humiliations.

    I have very clear memories of painstakingly coordinating two(!) pairs of scrunchy socks with my puffy paint sweatshirts. And, yes, they made my ankles look fat.

  • martialartsdiva Says:

    Oh, too funny! Refrigerator elves? Your post cracked me up big time.

  • samantha Says:

    ditto on the socks debate…. except i was totally in regular P.E., not being anywhere near coordinated or cool enough for cheerleading.

    and being nice? i abandoned that in about 10th grade when i discovered sarcasm and other subversive forms of wit, with which i could belittle the popular kids… as i was still uncoordinated and mostly un-cool. i’m better now, i swear. :)

  • Amy K Says:

    Bwahahaha! Puffy paint!

  • lisawhip Says:

    Age 15: Substitute “minutes” for “months,” and we had the exact same experience.

  • HeyJoe Says:

    I have a very hard time recalling much of anything from those years. I don’t know how you manage it. My life must have been so dull that I’ve blocked it all out.

  • Jenn Says:

    Maggie – first of all, I love your site. I found you through Dooce and now I read your site everyday! I posted my personal timeline, after I read yours. Thanks for the great ideas!

  • witchypoo Says:

    I was wondering just how tough it would be to come up with accurate timelines. I’ll just start one in my drafts folder, and see what I can come up with.

  • ricky Says:

    Okay Meg-
    Please tell me I wasn’t part of the sock debate… Shoe laces, yes…But socks?? Wow, you have a great memory!

  • Jackie Says:

    I made a similar resolution. It was “don’t say anything behind someone’s back that you wouldn’t say to his or her face.”

    I talk A LOT of shit to people’s faces.

  • Rachel Says:

    Did you go to Mira Loma High School in Sacramento? Because that sounds familiar…..