My Autobiography by Michael Normandy, Sr.

Here I am at 14. It looks like I was dressed in white, but I can't swear to it in these old black and white pictures. The story goes that Mom liked to dress me in white so she could tell if I got my clothes dirty! I guess that was a no-no for her at that time. Or maybe that story wasn't true. Mom was a master of exaggeration. As I got older, I realized a lot of her stories had a germ of truth in them but I don't think they would have fooled a lie detector!

    

The photo on the left looks posed but maybe it was just a lucky shot.  The one on the right looks like it was taken on the same day since I'm wearing the same outfit and my hair is slicked back. I don't know who the little boy is, but the little girl is Priscilla. She was very sick at that time. No one was sure what was wrong with her. Either that, or they weren't telling. Our family had this peculiar attitude toward doctors. Mom would tell us if the doctor asked if we had this or that, the answer was always NO!  Actually, we didn't go to the doctor very often. Mom cured earaches by putting olive oil in our ears and covered them with a hot woolen cloth held on our ears. It seemed to work. Grandma Normandia was the neighborhood healer and midwife and had a lot of folk remedies that would come under the category of Alternative Healing today. 

My nephew, Peter LoMuto, identified the car in the photo in spite of the fact that you can't see much of it. He said the vertical piped grill was the clue. He told us the car was a Packard, maybe 1939 or 1940. I'm wondering if it belonged to Uncle Mike DePrisco. Anybody know? I know he worked as a chauffer once for a rich uncle who might have owned a new car. I'm just guessing now. Not many people in our Brooklyn family had cars. Even if you could afford to buy one back then, where would you park for free?

This was taken of Priscilla on the roof of 621 Metropolitan Avenue in Brooklyn. I wanted you to see the model airplane I made. I was in love with planes. I even made a huge wing of an airplane once up in Grandma Normandia's attic. I'll tell you about it some time. I had hopes of going into the Army Air Corps after graduation from high school but no one had told me I couldn't be a pilot if I wore glasses. I ended up in the U.S. Army and I'll show you the pictures to prove it!

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