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from Memoirs of a Dacia by Dacia M Arnold

Shelbyville, Indiana

In 1989 I moved to a small town north of Indianapolis called Shelbyville. We had a little white house with a full front porch and a porch swing. My dad took on a recruiting job in the small town when I was just starting school. My mother was pregnant with my baby sister and I was oblivious to everything but myself.

My most vivid childhood memories are always of Christmas, injuries, and getting in trouble. Shelbyville marked the most epic of Christmas’s and my most notable injuries and childhood groundings.

The Christmas of 1989 was the Nintendo Christmas. Mom was in her last miserable weeks of pregnancy with the demon spawn. James and I still shared a room at that point in which time was common place. Our little house had an addition in the back where the previous inhabitant ran a salon. This would later be converted into my brother’s room and then began the long cohabitation of my baby sister, Kyria (Pronounced Keer-uh) and me in a single bedroom.

My older brother went to school down the street, but because they did not have a kindergarten at the school, I had to be driven elsewhere. These morning drives introduced me to the Bob and Tom morning show on the radio, which has been on the air longer than I have been alive.

Kindergarten was interesting. I only remember a couple of things, but most notable would be when I was student of the week. My favorite foods were pizza and mac and cheese (still true to this day) and my favorite color was yellow which is a fluid subject as my moods and interests change all the time. For example today, I would say my favorite color is Toyota Barcelona Red, but out of the context of visualizing my new 4Runner, my favorite color is green.

My mother taught me super young, so when I got to school I was graded on my current level of knowledge. Since my mother had already taught me everything I would come to learn in kinder, at the end of the year I had made no major improvements. So, the school tried to hold me back from first grade. On the first day of school, I went to the same first grade class as my peers but was pulled out and taken back to the kindergarten class. More discussion took place amongst adults and I was allowed to attend first grade.

Oooh first grade. I walked to school with James who promptly dumped me when we got to the playground of the school. I learned what sex ones from one of the girls before school. I also had a cat sweater that matched a girl in third grade and I would get so excited to see her walk down the hallway. Milk came in clear bags and my first go at bagged milk ended in a chocolate on my white shirt. On the way to school was a corner store and we had to cross a busy street to get to it. There was no stop sign or light so on school days there was always a crossing guard with a vest and a sign. One day James and I went to the store for some candy or something. Little bitty seven year old Dacia stretched out both arms and braved the treacherous intersection with the magnificent power of a crossing guard. Remember when I said I was oblivious to the rest of the world? Well, a police officer slammed on their breaks to keep from hitting and killing me. He pulled alongside us as we walked home and asked where we lived. Using our best elementary school judgment, we refused to tell him because 1. Stranger danger applied to everyone and 2. We were probably in trouble. James was always th...

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