WeWriWa—Mean Girls at Woolworth’s

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Welcome back to Weekend Writing Warriors, a weekly Sunday hop where writers share 8 sentences from a book or WIP. I’ve been sharing from the opening chapter of my recent release Little Ragdoll, a Bildungsroman (growing-up story) spanning 1959-74.

Five of the Troy sisters have gone to an uptown Woolworth’s with their surrogate mother, and have found a number of girls from their own neighborhood who also wanted to go uptown. They haven’t had anything nice to say about the girls or their family. One of them has just said 5-year-old Adicia looks like a dirty, ugly, torn-apart Raggedy Ann.

***

Adicia hides behind Emeline, too shy and scared to say anything.

“Do you have a boyfriend yet, Lucine?” Helen Johnstone asks. “All the boys are fighting over me and competing to ask me to the dances.  I guess nice boys prefer girls who wear new clothes and don’t live in tenements.  Imagine that.”

“Unlike you, I have more interest in school than getting a date,” Lucine says. “I want a real diploma, not my Mrs. degree.”

“Why do you and your raggedy sisters have such stupid old lady names?” Sharon George asks.

***

A largely unspoken irony of the names insult is that all the girls making fun of the Troy sisters have names which are now largely considered dated and middle-aged, no longer popular or fresh-sounding. (Nothing against those names or people with them, but you can’t deny a name like Barbara or Linda doesn’t exactly conjure up images of a young girl anymore!)

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7 comments on “WeWriWa—Mean Girls at Woolworth’s

  1. Kids can certainly be cruel.

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  2. Jenna Jaxon says:

    You have certainly captured the cruelty of children and teens. Vicious didnt just come into fashion with the internet. Very true to life.

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  3. Sarah W says:

    “Because our parents love us. How did you get your names?”

    Wow. Just . . . wow.

    Like

  4. burnsmillie says:

    I’m hoping in a week or two, someone’s going to get these snotty little witches good…a snappy zinger, or mud on their dresses, or even better horse crap…Something! Augh, I hate them.

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  5. I do enjoy the fact that your little girl heroine isn’t cowed, she has an answer for every zinger. I want the mean girls to get a comeuppance too LOL! Another great snippet, if sadly true to life…

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  6. caitlinstern says:

    Mrs. Degree… well, that is a goal some women have. But it’s nice that these girls have other goals. And what, they haven’t heard about family names?

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  7. The coveted “Mrs Degree” That is priceless!! It is interesting, how names go round. I think back to my grandmother’s name and her siblings’ names and now little babies are getting dubbed with those names all over gain. I grew up thinking what a fuddyduddy name “Henry” was. Now I know three little boys named Henry. Good 8, Carrie-Anne!

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