May 7, 2007

Holy communion, Batman!

I was in Virginia this weekend for my cousin's daughter's first communion. Having been raised nominally Jewish, I know little about this rite, but one of my earliest fashion memories centers around the ceremony.

I was about five and many of the little girls in our neighborhood were having their first communion. I vaguely remember being in a church and watching them all go up and take the wafer and sip the wine. But I vividly remember what they were wearing: White dresses and gloves and veils. Just like a bride! I, of course, immediately wanted to convert.

A couple of days later, I was talking to my grandmother on the phone and I told her all about the brides dresses. My grandmother, the Orthodox Jew, offered to buy one for me, her first grandchild. My mother immediately got on the phone and put the kibosh on that notion. I believe the phrase "Don't be an idiot," was uttered. In any event, being denied a first communion dress--and veil and gloves--left a permanent scar.

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