Essay

3465 Words Sep 3rd, 2015 14 Pages
A
Write an essay (900-1200 words) in which you analyze and interpret Karen Shephard’s short story “Popular Girls”. A part of your essay must focus on the narrative technique and the many references to labels and certain locations in New York City.

Popular Girls

A short story by Karen Shepard You know who we are. We're Kaethe and Alina, CJ and Sydney. Stephanie. Our hair is blonde or brown or black. Rarely red, rarely curly. It's thick and straight, and falls back into place after we run our fingers through it and hold it away from our faces long enough for you to see our striking eyes. When we do this, you get shivers.

It's 1982, and we sit on the benches lining our New York private school's entrance, after classes are over
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We mention the biology teacher's name and flutter our lashes, holding our hands over our hearts. We also discuss the theater teacher. And that one English teacher.

We have breasts. When we stretch and yawn, we arch our backs, and our buttons strain. You can see bits of our Lily of France bras. We have seen the theater teacher looking at them. We are not shocked. We are not surprised. We wear them in mocha and black, dark purple and fuchsia. They are sheer and iridescent. If we are not careful, our fingernails snag on them. We don't let boys take them off. We take them off ourselves.

We listen to the tribulations of other girls' boyfriends. The boys muse about affairs. We suggest ourselves. We hold other girls' boyfriends' hands and write in our diaries, "Bingo!" We cross out the ex-girlfriends' pictures in the yearbook with a blue ballpoint pen.

We talk to senior boys on our private phones for three hours a night. We talk about girls' sexual limits. They tell us that the first time should be with an older, more experienced person. We lie under our Charlie Brown bedspreads, hug our pillows, and agree.

Some of us are virgins and some of us are not. Rumors have floated about some of us giving blowjobs in the wrestling room. Kaethe, people say, slept with Treat Williams.

Some boys we are friends

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