Previous Challenge Entry (Level 4 – Masters)
Topic: Sibling(s) (05/01/08)
TITLE: Coolsville Sisters Circa 1958, a Pseudo Fairy Tale
By Betty Castleberry
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They spent most of their time sneaking into each other’s closets and borrowing clothes without asking.
Every young lady in Coolsville who had reached the age of sixteen was required to write a list of goals for herself. Pearl, the oldest sister, who was one birthday past sixteen, had completed her list and was working on making the goals come true. The younger sister, Ruby, was fast approaching sixteen, and had begun to think about the goals she wanted for her own list.
One evening while the sisters were watching American Bandstand and chewing Teaberry gum, Ruby turned to Pearl. “Should I start my list with number ten or number one?”
Pearl swung her black and white saddle oxfords onto the coffee table. “Well, most girls think it’s best to work backward and have the most important thing on your list be number ten. You know, kind of like rating something on a scale where ten in the highest. And because I’ve given you this valuable advice, you will not tell Mother that I had my feet on the furniture.”
Ruby pursed her lips, smearing her cherry-flavored lipstick. “Then I guess I’ll start with number one and work my way up. Goal one will be to write Bobby Darin a fan letter.”
The oldest of the girls rolled her eyes. “He is so yesterday. Why don’t you write to Neil Sedaka instead?”
“I’ll see. What else should I put on there?”
“I don’t know. It’s your stupid list. My ideas came to me really quickly. Of course, I’m a lot smarter than you are.”
Pearl rolled her eyes again. “See? That’s a brilliant response. Hey, did you hear about the sale at Lentz Brothers?”
Now in the land of Coolsville, Lentz Brothers Department Store was a very hip place to shop. They carried all the latest fashions and any young lady who was anyone bought their clothes there. The owners also just happened to have a very handsome and popular son named Sy, who was the unofficial prince of Coolsville.
He drove a baby blue 57 Chevy and wore his black hair in a pompadour. The girls he favored with a smile had been known to swoon. He had never gone steady with anyone, though. There was a fierce competition among the maidens of Coolsville to be the first to wear Sy’s class ring.
Ruby gave her sister’s answer some thought. “I didn’t know there was a sale, but we don’t get our allowance for a week anyway. Come on and help me with my list.”
“You have to write it yourself, dip stick.”
“I know, Miss Meanie, but you could at least listen to my ideas, couldn’t you?”
Pearl sighed. “Go ahead. It’s my duty as the older sister.”
“Well, I thought I would put getting an A in algebra on the list, and I want to learn to play tennis.”
Pearl examined her fingernails. “I don’t like this Strawberry Parfait color. Go get me that new red one you bought.”
“Pearl, you’re not even listening.”
“Yes I am. Go get your nail polish and I’ll help.”
Ruby stomped out of the room and returned with the nail polish, smacking it forcefully into her sister’s hand. “Here. Another thing I want on the list is to be nicer to Mom and Dad, and learn to bake brownies. I’m including making my bed every day, getting up earlier, and exercising more. Goal nine will be to buy myself a yellow chiffon prom dress.”
Pearl looked at her sister in surprise. “Why?”
“Because I want to be ready for my junior prom next year.”
“And who do you think would ask you to the prom? You’re not that popular.”
“Just as popular as you. Anyway, I have a whole year to work on things.”
“Ha. You’ll probably go stag, if you go at all.”
“I have a guy in mind.”
Pearl slapped her knee and laughed. “That’s a good one.”
“Just wait and see. I’m putting down going to the prom with Sy as my most important goal.”
And so it was, Ruby attended her junior prom in a yellow chiffon dress with Sy Lentz as her escort while her sister Pearl looked on with envy.
*The moral of the story:
Sy Lentz is Goal Ten.
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