Paragon Park was to the south shore of Massachusetts what Revere Beach was to the north shore in the 60’s and 70’s, a white trash beach with an amusement park attached. My sister Marianne loved Paragon Park and insisted on going there every year for her birthday. One year, I think I was around 7, we were getting ready to head out and I stepped on a tooth pick that was standing straight up out of the carpet. I don’t know how far it went into my foot but it was far enough that no one could pull it out. In my neighborhood it was a point of pride to have toughened your feet up to the point of leather as soon as school let out in early June, and that clearly wasn’t helping the situation. Marianne was screaming bloody murder that I better get the damn toothpick out of my foot or I would be sporting it on the Cyclone. We were going either way! That was our Marianne, long on empathy. Marylou makes an executive decision that included a trip to the emergency room. The toothpick was quickly dispensed with, my sister Paula passing out in the corner, and we were good to go.