“How come you wear the same clothes every day?” the pigtailed girl asked. Chuck turned crimson, and silently wished for school uniforms.
I can feel his shame. Nicely done.
Thank you, Tucker!
Sad but too often true.
I felt sad for him. I had uniforms when I went to school in Hong Kong, and when I came to the US public schools, where I didn’t have to wear uniforms, I ended up looking very strange (in mismatched ensembles) and often wearing the same clothes twice in a row until I found that it’s a faux-pas. But our means were limited, and I didn’t have that many clothes. And kids made fun of me. So I found the new choices a burden. This brought back painful memories, and I identify with the character well. It’s very poignant.
Thanks for telling your story, Lisa. I am glad this piece of microfiction resonated with you. I am also first-generation in the US, and wrote this story based on my own childhood experiences with clothing-related faux pas. I twisted the story to make the main character an all-American boy, because I felt that the experience of shame must be universal! Thanks again for your comment.
I also like the title with its double entendre. At first I had thought it only meant class as in classroom, but I realized it had another meaning as well. Class distinction is much more transparent without uniforms.
Thanks, Lisa. The title just came out accidentally–and then I said “oh, that has a double meaning” and went with it!