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Janet, Anna, and Mark (circa late 1981)

When my parents got married they bought an old 1890s fixer-upper in our town’s newly-created historic district. When I was born five years later, there were bare walls and gaps between the boards and a table saw in the living room. My grandmother was appalled. I doubt I cared much. As you can see, we had one of the most important things: a working record player and a good collection of albums (nearly offstage left).

My parents still look pretty much like this. My mother went through an unfortunate period of permed hair in the mid-1980s and Dad now has glasses, but otherwise that’s them. My hair’s a little longer and darker than it was back then. And I’d like to think I’ve gotten passed the blank stare. You’d have to check with Hanna on that one, though. She claims I have this look I get when the cogs in my brain go funky … maybe this photo captures an early instance of such a mental meltdown?

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