Manual My Friend, Boots

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Physical description

She projected such profound self-confidence, it was palpable. And though I doubted it was catching or even learnable, I wanted at least proximity to it. So there I was in January, on the first day of the second semester of art school, my first day of college, in drawing class. We were all sitting in the freezing art studio in the armory, in these seats with drawing desks attached to them that had been placed in concentric circles around the center-piece; a table with a pile of cones, cylinders, cubes, and spheres on it, that we were supposed to draw for the next three hours.

By the time the bell rang, the room was almost full. A few minutes after that, a time filled with the shuffling of portfolios and arranging of various pencils by lead levels, the art teacher entered, and began droning his instructions. As he spoke, two late-comers banged open the door. The one doing the talking was tall and good looking, with short blonde hair tucked behind her ears.

She had wide-set blue eyes and high cheekbones, and the low affect mien of a bored aristocrat. The other one was also impressively tall, with short dark hair, and an endearingly serious face. They were dressed identically, in Levis and white cotton sweatshirts. The only difference was that the follower girl was wearing worn, paint-splattered Keds, a nice touch for an art student, I noted appreciatively.

The blonde one wore black leather ankle boots, with a side zip, and buckles. The one with the boots was apparently undeterred by the fact-based logistics of the situation.

In fact, she seemed impervious to embarrassment. Obviously, all the seats close to the center-piece had been taken, as had the not so close ones. She simply picked up a chair from the back of the room, attached easel and all, and carried it, forcing people to scootch their chairs out of her way, and make room for her, and plunked it down right in the spot in front of the center piece, the best spot in the room. During this appalling breach of decency, she continued her monologue, while the other girl, rapt, followed her story and copied her every move. She too finagled her way to a good spot, the second best spot, as it were, next to the blonde girl.

As they did this, the sordid tale went on, much to the apparent shock of the follower girl.

Shock was, naturally, the point. They had evidently all attended the same Catholic high school, and it was clearly the scandale du jour among them and their friends, and cheekbones here had the inside scoop. Or something. She was almost regal in her self-assuredness. Right there, in my mediocre seat that I had come early for, I made a vow to my friendless self to become friends with that girl.

The one with the boots. I went up to the two girls after class, very nonchalant. The three of us laughed at the coincidence, and decided to take it as a sign that we were meant to be friends. I liked them both right away, but secretly zeroed in on the blonde one.

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The follower one, who was the superior artist to pretty much everyone in the class it would turn out, was named Deidre. The tall blonde one with the cheekbones was Laura. How did she manage, at the age of eighteen, to be so dazzlingly poised? I aimed to find out and bask in it like poor motherless Norma Jean Baker, frantically bathing in Chanel Number Five, in a desperate attempt to become loveable. We bonded immediately over a few key points.

We both thought that patriarchy was a big bag of bullshit. We agreed that homophobia was gross. We venne diagrammed her childhood love for David Bowie and my lifelong worship of Michael Jackson into a shared agreement on Prince.

They *actually* go with everything.

We traded stories of our high school jobs at mall information booths, hers in Rockford and mine in Champaign. The one really glaring difference that existed between us, was that, though her dad had died before she was born, creating an achilles heel with which I would later become familiar, she was buffeted, held up, by the love, adoration really, of her mother. I caught on after knowing her for a while, that such a thing gives one an inner strength, at which I would continue to marvel hence forth.

Why Thin Mints? Because Laura loved Thin Mints. Once, one of these boxes arrived with a set of flannel periwinkle sheets inside. The other thing about Laura that you found out as you got to know her was, she was nice. She was profoundly kind, not just to her friends, but to pretty much everyone, whether she knew you or not.

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She was loyal. She was trustworthy. She was funny. She was smart.

She was generous. And because of all these qualities, she was cool. As it turned out, the icy Scandinavian hotness and leprechan-ish luck were merely the cinnamon and sugar sprinkled over the baked in decency that comes from a good upbringing. Did she have flaws you ask? Well, of course. Everyone does. For example, she actually thought Velveeta was a food product. Also, it seemed to me that she fell in love too easily with her inferiors see Achilles heel. She had the habit of taking in strays, and she was probably too trusting.

Eventually, some while after we finished college, I must have worn her down, because Laura lent me the boots. I wore them with jeans, I wore them with dresses and skirts, I wore them with shorts. I wore them when I rode my bike.

When I went to graduate school in Philadelphia, I wore them to my Freud seminar. I wore them to teach my Advanced English Composition class, which I had basically refashioned into a symposium on Edie Sedgwick, and I wore them out to dinner. They were perfect. One day, I noticed that the boots were getting a bit worse for wear.

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Not that they looked bad. They looked better the older they got, like Cary Grant or something. The heel had worn down almost to the insole. I took them to a real old timey shoe repair shop in South Philly. Right away you could tell that the proprietor was the real deal. Help give Boots a special day by visiting his favorite places, including his Daddy at work!

Take Dora and Boots out to a ballgame to help Boots try to get his first hit ever! Join Dora on a bedtime adventure to find Boots' cuddly dinosaur — he can't sleep without it! Join these awesome amigos for great friendship adventures! View in iTunes. Trailers See All. Artists in This Movie See All. Miriam Cruz. Jorge Aguirre. Viewers Also Bought See All. Dora the Explorer: Dora's Butterfly Ball.