My brothers decided to have their friend, John Graham, over to spend the night. I was 12 or 13, and he was my first crush. They spent all afternoon in the back yard, and after supper they slunk to my brothers’ bedroom to guffaw and make rude noises. Nasty, mouth-covering-hand snickers oozed under the door frame.

As I sat alone in the living room that night, pretending to watch the Ed Sullivan Show, I prayed that John would come out of my brothers’ room and glance at me. I had my arm slung across the back of the couch, my fuzzy hair flattened firmly against the headrest, and my knobby, scabby knees crossed seductively. I was ready to be noticed.

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