By James D. Carney
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Additional resources for A Historical Theory of Art Criticism
Mom decided to declare a temporary truce in her war against Dad in order to score a place for us to live, and Dad put aside his simmering resentments to have us girls back in his life. So for several tense months in 1974 and 1975, we were more or less living together again as a family. Camp Wig could be amazing for exploring, being half-naked and wild, kept company by tomcats and playing in the fecund river mud, but it was not practical. It was buggy and hot in the summer and freezing cold in the winter.
While she yearned for his affection, she learned to be noticed in other ways. Mom was a born extrovert who used her babysitting money to take tap-dancing lessons. And folks around Ashland all say how popular and beautiful she was. By the time Mom was a junior in high school, Dad had graduated from Fork Union seventh in his class and was enrolled at Georgia Tech. He flunked out after only one year—he said he was having too much fun fooling around to go to class. In the summer of 1963, he and Mom were still dating sporadically, but neither of them was about to marry.
Mom went to school all day and worked as a waitress at night. I resumed spending a lot of time alone. I explored the redwood groves in Samuel P. Taylor State Park and played in the creek that filled with salmon during the spawning season. I made myself meals like Chef Boyardee pizza from a box and baked my own chocolate-chip cookies from scratch and walked myself to the school bus, even on the first day of school, although I wasn’t entirely sure where I was supposed to go. At school I made friends easily, and everyone thought I was outgoing, never seeing the loneliness that was normal to me by now.
A Historical Theory of Art Criticism by James D. Carney