When I was 10, we lived a few short blocks away from a comic book store. I don’t remember how I first got into comics. I think it was most likely my brother. Whenever we had any spare change we would walk down and buy whatever we could afford.
The owners never made me feel strange for wanting to hang out in there. I didn’t appreciate it then, but I do now. It never occurred to me that it would be weird for me to be in there. It is only as a grown woman that I have been made to feel unwelcome in a comic book store, and at comic book conventions.
But back then, I was just hanging out with my brother. We bought comics. We discussed the relative merits of different superheroes. We were both really into Marvel, most likely because of that old X-Men cartoon. Do you guys remember that? It always seemed really focused on Jubilee even though she was the lamest, most boring one.
Anyway, we both had this brilliant collection of Marvel trading cards. They were my most prized possession. I don’t even know what happened to it.
My second most prized possession during that time was this baseball cap. I have no idea where it came from. It was white with a blue brim. It had wolverine embroidered on it.
I loved that hat. I wore it every single day over the summer between 5th and 6th grade. The white got dingy and dirty. And the brim started smelling like a wet dog collar.
I only took it off to shower. I think I even slept in it a few times.
Unfortunately, my mother decided that I wore it too often. And so, tragically, she confiscated it and threw it away.
It was heart breaking.
But I never lost my love of comics. I still read them, I still collect them. I still discuss the relative merits of different superheroes.
And I still really wish I had that hat.