Somehow I kept my job, in spite of that and other similar gaffes. I think the boss of the library liked me. Anyway the day came when I received my first paycheck. My mom wanted ten dollars out of it for room and board, and of course I needed bus fare and lunch money, but the rest went for a fantasy garment.
My first trench coat.
In this coat, as I skulked about the streets of D.C., I could pretend to be anything, a newspaper reporter, a foreigner, a spy, a woman of mystery generally. Anybody but me. Later paychecks went for record albums, shoes – the shoes I wore in those days! They don't make them like that any more – even a matching fedora. But that trench coat I wore for years and years, long after I lost my job at the Post, even long after the waterproofing wore off, shortening it as hemlines rose during the sixties. I forget what finally happened to it. I guess it disintegrated completely at last and went into the ragbag.
What did you buy with your first grownup paycheck?