There were three of
us. Jamie had curly hair. Roxanne had freckles. I had no remarkable looks, but
I was tough.
We built a treehouse
in the vacant lot near our elementary school. Our hideaway was fashioned from
boards we found and nails we bought by not using our ice cream money for ice
cream. Fortunately, all of our moms gave out ice cream money.
Not yet. I want
to look at the clouds.
Leave her be.
Brainiacs brain is engaged. Did you get straight As again,
Nope. But Mom
says its nearly expected for fat girls to get Cs in gym. Do you
want to diet with me? Mom says all protein is a good idea.
Thanks. Not. I
can wear a two piece.
Come on, no one
wants to race down?
No in my house,
later-the Frozen Chosen mans truck is coming and I need a
Jamie, keep a
I think Sam
likes me. He waved when I rode by his driveway on my bike. He also asked me if
I wanted to go to Brook Park with him!
Elissa and Sam
sitting in a tree, k-i-s-s-i-n-g. First comes love, then
did you come from?
turn to walk Princess. Mom says.
dont leave. bring Princess up.
Princess, all the
same, was a fat dachshund. She couldnt be pushed or pulled past the
second branch. Fat dogs fail gym, too.
I tied our pup to the
trunk, instead, and then wandered with Maddie and Jamie to the blackberry
patch. The vacant lot was a treasure place.
shortly after with an orange Push-Up. The Frozen Chosen man had run out of
Weeks later, Jamie
brought a brightly colored flyer to our treetop getaway. She had picked up that
handbill at the local McDonalds. The papers bright colors announced a
Muscular Dystrophy Carnival.
our own. It says it doesnt matter how old you are. It just matters that
you want to help crippled kids.
We could ask
Sam and Marvin to help.
Where would we
get prizes? How would pay for things? Can I be the
organizing since it was my idea.
We could sell
bubble flowers and hotdogs.
Your mom will
make the hotdogs?
Ask Maddie to
help, too? Shell be hard to live with if shes left
Only if Sam can
be on my team. Hes almost equals a little sisters
a month to make this work. The first week of August would be swell for a
For five weeks,
Jamie, Roxanne, and I argued about who would be chairperson, ran from store to
store soliciting donations of goods and services for prizes, and asked shop
owners to put our signs in their windows. Most of our signs were made with
crayon. I was worried that they might melt.
Youve grown. I remember when your mom brought you in weekly. She got
prescriptions filled and you got candy. You were a chubby little
donate to our carnival?
Would you like
Id like a
prize. You can write it off since the carnivals for charity. Also, if we
make enough to go on TV, we can name your business in our
know. Business is slow in the summer.
So, surely, you
have things that arent selling. Prizes can be anything.
Hi Jamie. Do
you want that cleaned bulk rate or regular?
good sweater. Im wearing it draped for effect. Snazzy?
Want to donate
to our carnival?
but we have a no donations policy. Otherwise, all of our services would go to
charity and wed have to close the store. There are so many worthy
girl, not an organization. Besides, I wasnt going to ask you for free dry
cleaning, but for a few of those bags on that roll. Thatd be a great
Why does it
always rain at the wrong time? Sam was right in saying thingsll go
The forecast is only seventy per for cent rain. Thats a thirty per cent
possibility that it will be sunny. Did you hear me? Catch! Those are for the
paper flags. Blow up the rest of the balloons, too. Were going to have a
Did your mom
make the popcorn yet?
the money can?
Where did you
Like the clown
Love it! Take
those two, over there, a bunch of balloons, and the sign. Walk around a few
blocks. Let people know our carnival is going to start in two
yourself-theres no one here.
I just sent
been me. Im tired of hanging flags. In fact, I quit.
We need you to
staff the water target booth.
friends home. Its raining. You girls cant stand around in the
backyard and get soaked.
Despite the rain, our
youth, the small number of carnival goers and our strange prizes, we collected
more than $500 dollars for the muscular dystrophy research. We never got to
appear on TV, though, even after we were invited, since our principal
wouldnt let us miss school.
Later that year,
Roxanne moved to New York. Jamie transferred to a private school. I was left
with carnival memories and the feeling, not of being a threesome, but of being
lonesome. At least, Maddie got double dog walking duty and Sam never tried to