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Unformatted text preview: Jeannette Walls is riding in a taxi in contemporary New York City, on her way to an event, when she looks out the window and sees her mother digging through trash. Although Mom has been homeless for years, Jeannette feels a sudden sense of shame and gloom about Mom's life and begins to reflect on her childhood and how Mom and Dad's choices affected her. The Walls opens the door to her childhood, beginning when Jeannette is three-year-old and standing on a chair to reach the stovetop as she boils her own hotdog. Her pink dress catches on fire, and she gets horribly burned. After a few days in the hospital, Dad shows up, lifts Jeannette out of bed and they do "the skedaddle," leaving the hospital without paying the bill. Much of Walls' memories of her childhood in the desert focus on "the skedaddle" and how the Walls family Mom, Dad, Lori, Jeannette, Brian, and, eventually, little Maureen move to different...
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- Fall '08