Robert U. Montgomery

Growing Up

First Kiss!

We had just moved to a new town and the girl across the street invited me over to play a board game. I don’t even remember the game, probably because of stress-related shock. What I do remember is that, suddenly and without warning, an 8-year-old Lolita named Susie leaned across the board and kissed me.

Then, her mother compounded the crime by telling my mother, who told my father. The humiliation seemed never-ending, although, in hindsight, I think that it lasted only one long weekend.

By my eleventh birthday I had recovered enough to live at least a semi-normal life. It helped that we moved again. This time the girl across the street from our new house gave me a silver dog tag with my name on it. “Uh, oh,” a friend told me. “You know what that means, don’t you?”

Excerpt from "Sugar and Spice and Everything Nice" in
Under the Bed: Tales From an Innocent Childhood.

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