…to which I always reply: “It’s not a medical bracelet.”

In the early eighties, in the aftermath of the Adam Walsh kidnapping, schools (or at least the public schools in Milwaukee) got proactive about identifying their students should anything horrible happen. Essentially, kids were issued medical bracelets that would serve as dog tags should their… I don’t know, lifeless bodies be found in a ditch somewhere.

Not a medical bracelet...

The front of each bracelet contained the kid’s full name, address, phone number, and birthdate. Of course, in hindsight, this might not have been the brightest idea. It’s basically the equivalent of writing your kid’s name and address on the back of their jacket. But hey, it was the eighties. Reagan was president, for crying out loud!

On the back of the bracelet, kids were allowed to choose an illustration from a gallery of pre-drawn art. For whatever reason, the five-year-old me chose the creepiest illustration out of the batch.

...but definitely a creepy clown.

I wore this bracelet all through elementary school (from kindergarten through fifth grade), but as soon as I started middle school it was no longer cool to wear a bracelet with a creepy clown on it. And so it sat in a dresser drawer until just a few years ago, when I happened upon it and decided to see if it would still fit.

It did. Just barely—it’s latched on the very last loop, which means I can’t gain any weight for fear of it popping off my wrist—but still, I find it pretty remarkable that I can still wear a bracelet I first put on my wrist 32 years ago.

Finally old enough for creepy clown bracelets to be cool again,