Lucy Mae Meets Eric John

I found this little sailor suit at the thrift store before Lucy was born, when I didn’t know whether she was a boy or a girl.  It reminded me of the sailor suit worn by my beloved CPK from about 1985, that I coveted for months at Circus World (remember those stores?) at the mall when I was in 3rd grade.  My parents were not keen on spending $40 on toys, so luckily grandma recognized my deep appreciation (obsession) for baby dolls and surprised me with the sailor boy for my birthday.  His birth name was Dana-Something so I sent in for “legal” adoption papers with the name changed to Eric John. I treated my dolls like they were real so they are in really good condition today.  Lucy has finally grown into the sailor suit, so I just needed to find a standard rubber pacifier to match the CPK, which today have become an overpriced specialty item coveted by granola yuppies.  Funny, I saw a documentary from the 1980s about the ghetto on the West side of Chicago, and happened to notice the welfare/public aid office handed out rubber pacis to poverty-stricken mamas, probably because they were the cheapest option at the time. Nowadays they cost about $10 a piece at Whole Foods.  Lucy doesn’t care for pacifiers in general, so I had to dab a little nectar on the end to get her to chew on it.

FTR, I would pay money to see photographs of my childhood mall, as it was in the 1980s.  Especially the Kinney shoes, the rainbow room radio station, the Waldenbooks, the Aladdin’s Castle arcade, and especially Santa’s Village!  If the photos exist, I can’t find them on the internet anywhere.  I recently saw an old Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood where he visits his local shoe store and it was a flashback to my own Kinney Shoes, and looking at the rows of Buster Browns!


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