My mother’s true teenagehood came when she was 45 and learned about my father’s mistress. She took her rage and dragged me, a bespectacled 17-year-old, to a St. Janvier cowboy bar. Was I supposed to enjoy watching her pick up all those Jean Pierres? Was I to study her technique as she necked with a trucker named Denis? How did she do it? I never could. Sure guys asked me to dance, switching from French before I said anything, as if “Anglais” was written on my forehead. But nothing else happened. I was too busy being the adult.