The Sunday after Labor Day, Caroline ran down the stairs on her way to church. I stared at her feet in disbelief. “Caroline!” I exclaimed. “Your shoes! No white shoes after Labor Day.” The tone in my voice was as dramatic as if a robber had broken into the house. “Oh, Mama! I forgot. It is after Labor Day!” She ran upstairs and reappeared wearing a darker, more appropriate color. To my relief, the child understood the importance of the unspoken rule of no-white-shoes after Labor Day.” “Oh.” I reflected. “I have done a wonderful job raising a true Southerner young lady. She did not protest, fuss or whine…..she protected herself from scandal and preserved our family honor.

The Sunday after Labor Day, Caroline ran down the stairs on her way to church. I stared at her feet in disbelief. “Caroline!” I exclaimed. “Your shoes! No white shoes after Labor Day.” The tone in my voice was as dramatic as if a robber had broken into the house. “Oh, Mama! I forgot. It is after Labor Day!” She ran upstairs and reappeared wearing a darker, more appropriate color. To my relief, the child understood the importance of the unspoken rule of no-white-shoes after Labor Day.” “Oh.” I reflected. “I have done a wonderful job raising a true Southerner young lady. She did not protest, fuss or whine…..she protected herself from scandal and preserved our family honor.

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