In looking back on my childhood, I remember the Christmas gifts that disappointed me, rather than the Christmas gifts that made me happy. Two instances stand out in my mind. But first let me give you some context.
I was raised right outside New York City. I was the third of four children, and my father was a physician-a general practitioner-who still made house calls. My mother used to complain about the phone calls in the middle of the night, always stressing that I shouldn’t marry a doctor. One day, I believe it was in the summer, I broke out in a serious case of the hives. My father immediately gave me a cortisone shot and the crisis was averted. However, he concluded that my hives were the result of my being allergic to chocolate.
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