I t’s not pizza if it’s not Patsy’s
Callie Michaels shook her head in amusement as she watched
her friends scatter to the different racks of clothing.
Individually, they were unique. But as a group, they were
extraordinary. Alexia Grant, Bianca Bertoli, and Danielle Hamilton—
their backgrounds were as varied as their personal tastes. And yet, they
were the glue that held Callie’s dysfunctional life together. Her eyes
glanced at her Tag Heuer watch, marking the time. They had a date for
lunch and she refused to be late.
Fashion was Callie’s forte, and if there really was a fashion police, she
would be the head of the precinct. So when she found Alexia admiring
herself in the mirror, she immediately came to her rescue. Animal prints
were one thing but looking like Jane of the Jungle was quite another. And
when Danielle made the mistake of strutting past her in an extreme mini
skirt, she questioned her motives, stating that perhaps a thong would
be less revealing. Reluctantly, Danielle added a couple of inches to her
hemline. But the kicker was when Bianca showed up in army fatigues
and combat boots. Callie dragged her to the Baby Phat rack and insisted
she drop the Destiny’s Child survivor-look because yesterday’s fashion
was such a faux pas!
She felt like a sheepdog, rounding up her friends and herding them
to the cash register.
And what a spectacle! Their purchases were extravagant, and the
salesclerk’s eyes widened in delight as he swiped their American Express
cards and mentally tallied his commission.
On their way down the escalator, they stood frozen on the steps
A Very Dairy Christmas
in exaggerated poses, much like the women that Callie’s mother
photographed would do. They looked liked models—tall and leggy—
with long, perfectly styled hair. And they were dressed in the latest
When the escalator reached the bottom level, they broke their
poses and rushed to the department store exit, attempting to squeeze