Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Things I remember about Jaclyn Daniel(s), the most popular girl in the 6th grade

In no particular order:
  1. She moved to El Paso from Birmingham, Alabama.
  2. She spelled her name "Jaclyn," as opposed to "Jacqueline," which seemed extremely modern and chic.
  3. She had very light blond hair, with wispy little bangs, and she wore glasses.
  4. Her first best friend was Sara Jacobs. Later, she became best friends with Sara Shelton, who was a year younger than us. (This sounds weird, but Sara Shelton was the coolest girl in the fifth grade. She was obsessed with the color gray.) Sara Jacobs seemed bitter about this change of events for the rest of the year.
  5. Jaclyn, both Saras and I took tennis lessons at the same country club. IIRC they were all better at tennis than me.
  6. Her older sister was also very popular. She had brown hair and her name was also spelled unconventionally; I think it was "Lauran."
  7. Lauran had a boyfriend that people called "John-John," I think because he was a John II. Their song (as in, "This is our song!") was "Don't Cry" by Guns 'n' Roses. I thought that was very romantic.
  8. Once Jaclyn's mom was giving us a ride somewhere (she drove a gray minivan) and "Total Eclipse of the Heart" came on and she (Jaclyn, not her mom) got somewhat emotional.
  9. During another car ride with her mom, I remember listening to a Bryan Adams tape.
  10. She was obsessed with the movie Robin Hood, Prince of Thieves, and Christian Slater in particular.
  11. She was also obsessed with the movie Grease.
  12. Once both her parents were driving us somewhere, and we were talking about the movie Father of the Bride, and I accidentally said the word "hell" (as in "What the hell") and felt embarrassed, but they didn't seem to notice.
  13. She wore Clinique Almost Lipstick -- not in "Black Honey," but that fruit punchy shade they used to make.
  14. She had an outfit that was black with a big pink floral print on it, a shirt and matching shorts, that she'd bought at a little boutique in Ruidoso, New Mexico, which I had never shopped at.
  15. She often wore hoop earrings.
  16. The things she had packed in her lunch always seemed unusual and glamorous, like tortilla chips and Muenster cheese.
  17. She once told me that she'd thought for a long time I was Jewish.
  18. In the sixth grade, whether or not you shaved your legs was a very big deal. She was one of the first girls to start shaving her legs. Once, a group of us were eating a snack in the restaurant at the country club, and Sara S., who was sitting next to her, said "Jaclyn, you missed a spot on your leg and it's driving me crazy," and everyone laughed, probably not because it was funny but because we felt mature.
  19. Once either she or Sara S., meaning to say either "fart" or "toot," had slipped and said "foot" (rhyming with "toot") and this became a running joke that they referenced for months and months.
  20. I only went to her house once, for a birthday party. She lived in a cul de sac.
  21. Later in the year she moved to The Woodlands. After we said goodbye in the parking lot, the rest of us went to our usual tennis lesson. Sara S. cried the whole time. I cried too, and even at the time, I was surprised I was crying.
Things I don't remember about Jaclyn Daniel(s): whether or not her last name had an S at the end.


  1. I like that this post ends with the phrase "the end" without that stupid fake finality that actually ending something with the phrase "the end" so often yields.

    1. Now pretending I did that on purpose.

  2. isn't it great how names of kids one knew in childhood always sound like fake names made up by novelists? some of mine include Casie Rudisel, Jordan Shake, R.J. Forbes, Amy Siebenmorgen, Larry Patterson, and... Justin Case.

    1. Totally! I could rattle off so many names right now but I'm not sure whose Google Alerts I want to set off.

  3. Ha, I also knew a Justin Case!

  4. So in the end what does it all mean?

    1. it means POPULARITY MATTERS

    2. "Conformity is its own reward"

    3. The only people I can remember from junior high are some people that were in band

  5. This is such a good piece, so simple and touching. It's like an old story-telling folk song by Dar Williams or Carly Simon or something.