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No Pantyhose, No Bra

(by Jackie Schifalacqua Atkins)

My mother might go into the kitchen if she needed a glass of water and no one was around to fetch it for her.

Cooking food was something akin to punishment. First you had to admit you ate food, which according to her was something people had in common with animals.

She was raised in an Italian ethnic household, and my guess is that this resistance to the planning, preparation, and serving of food to her family was comparable to the negation of relegating women to servitude. While her mother was always in the kitchen, my mother saw no need for it. She was too busy joining committees and starting initiatives to ban Mad magazine from store shelves in Mount Penn, Pennsylvania.