When I was in first or second grade, I bought my parents the best, most valuable, anniversary present I could imagine - a hunk of fur. Actually, I think it was a whole pelt from a small rabbit. I bought it on the black top market from a skinny blonde kid named Blake in my class for $2. God only knows where he got and even more of a mystery is what my parents must have thought receiving it. Disappointingly, they don't seem to recall.
Fast forward two years and my Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous preconceptions were still going strong; so when I saw a real, kid-sized rabbit fur coat at the local J.C. Penny, I could hardly imagine such luxury was within reach. I remember running my hands over it and taking in every bit of its heavenly softness.
Needless to say, receiving it for Christmas that year, blew my mind. Check out how I'm posed in this Christmas morning picture - that sassy hip and head tilt really conveys the glamor and the attitude. It says, "I'm in a weedy back yard right now with my aunt but I could easily be on a yacht." (Also check out my poor dopey brother - so happy and content with his random car watch).
Unfortunately, while it may have made me a starlet in my mind, the fur coat made me a pariah on the playground. Not many third graders are wearing fur coats and they especially weren't wearing them in rural Gilroy. In addition to the snotty comments, I also had to run constantly at recess or risk having some jealous brat pull out a chunk of my fur. Screaming, "Stop! This is very expensive!" didn't seem to help.