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Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Memory Lane is the new awesome

One of the subtle hints your parents might give you to let you know that you shouldn't ever plan on moving back in with them is destroying your childhood bedroom. I'm not talking just putting a new bedspread on the bed and calling it the "guest room" ... but actually tearing down walls. Over the weekend I found myself in LA dedicating most of my time there cleaning out my childhood bedroom so that they could take down the wall that divided the upstairs and turn the two small rooms back into one large cushy family room.

I got right to work unearthing artifacts of my teenage years. I spent hours sorting through old photos and marveling at the superb sense of style my friends had in the 80's, trying on old cheerleading outfits and tacky velvet prom dresses with the matching dyed satin shoes, reading love letters from old boyfriends (all of whom are married with several children by now), discovering evidence of a strange obsession with small, cutesy frog figurines...

and painful attempts at art from my time as an aspiring oil painter...

as well as finding old relics from my college days...

It was amazing to me how every little thing in that room had a flood of memories attached to it, and it made it really difficult to throw anything away.

The highlight was probably the time capsule that we had hidden inside the wall 20 years ago when we had it constructed in the first place. We knocked some premature holes in the wall until we found the little box that my 11 year old self had filled with things that I thought that "people in the future" would want to know about.

There were my favorite cartoon shaped erasers, a pair of my old eyeglasses, an article from the newspaper announcing the big earthquake that had just happened in San Francisco and some pages torn out of a JC Penny catalog, which I considered the epitome of fashion at the time.

I had also written a note to explain the time capsule, and obviously not having much of a concept for how soon we would be tearing that wall down, wrote "Hello future generations. By the time you read this, I will probably be dead."

I managed to keep about 3 boxes of memories, and as I left, I turned to my parents and in my best Reagan to Gorbachev voice said, "Mom and Dad, tear down this wall."

It's the end of an era.

14 Comments:

  • At 11:59 PM, Blogger jordan said…

    That time capsule is rad. I remember loving JCPenny when I was 10 too.

     
  • At 12:12 AM, Blogger bex said…

    yeah. it makes me want to leave time capsules all over. i hid one in the wall of the MTC when I was there. I probably loved JCPenny then too.

     
  • At 10:48 AM, Blogger mark Elliot said…

    In the wall of my grandfathers *small house there are bags of diamonds and rubies. Durring its construction, a few of my cousins and I hid them there. We found those jewels, or rather, created them by smashing bits of the glass and break lights on my older brothers 1960-something *Plymouth Barracuda. When these bits of glass were smashed they broke into wonderful little pieces. Like crushed ice. Like diamonds. Like treasure... So we placed them in ziplioc baggies and hid them.

    Bex, thanks for the reminder of beautiful things hidden and forgotten.

    *Small, because it is in the backyard of the main house. In his golden years my grandfather needed a little bit of personal space. Away, but not too far, from my grandmother.

    *The Barracuda was supposed to be fixed up. And even though he held onto it for the next 15 years, he never got around to it.

     
  • At 11:21 AM, Blogger Steph said…

    Did you cry? I probably would have. My parents moved from the house I grew up in when I was 19 and away in Rexburg, so I had very little say in what was kept from my room. I definitely wonder from time to time whatever happened to certain things, like my clear plastic purses or my "Girl Talk" game, but overall, it's probably best that I wasn't there for the whole experience. I salute you for your bravery.

     
  • At 1:33 PM, Blogger bets said…

    You didn't have very much stuff in that time capsule. Although what seven year old is going to give up any of their really rad toys for posterity?

     
  • At 2:41 PM, Blogger bex said…

    seriously. it was hard enough to part with my favorite erasers.

    here is another funny thing i just put together - one of the strange things i had stuck in the time capsule is a little drawing of puffypaint fish that i had made. and there on the wall of my bedroom is a huge fish that i painted 10 years later. Is there some strange fish theme running through my life that i am only now uncovering?

     
  • At 4:59 PM, Blogger MissEm said…

    Awww, I had to do that a few years ago too. My parent's only let me keep one box though :)

    It's a miracle that our generation ever managed to develop good taste, isn't it?

     
  • At 6:40 AM, Blogger miss sparks said…

    you are brave. my shrine at home still exists...although i'm not sure that is an entirely good thing...

     
  • At 9:51 AM, Blogger cropstar5 said…

    bex are you planning on pawning off any of your prized possesions? because i really, really want one of those provo bumper stickers. really want. a lot want.
    christy
    ps... i'm in love with your blog. i wanna be you girls when i grow up (nevermind the fact that i'm already old)

     
  • At 12:51 PM, Blogger kat said…

    hey, i remember following that painted fish home from college one time when we were caravaning across the nevada deserts. fun times. also this post reminds me of my favorite movies, Amélie. remember how excited that old man was when she gave him his childhood box? the only thing i ever hid as a kid was some cotton candy my grandma bought me at the Ventura County fair. by the time i remembered that it was living under my bed, it was hard and crusty and almost unedible. almost.

     
  • At 12:58 PM, Blogger Katie said…

    oh man, I would give my right arm for one of those Provo stickers. I was there during the dancing-crackdown and loved every minute of my rebellious trips out to dance around Utah Lake. Classic college memory!

     
  • At 9:30 PM, Blogger bex said…

    i totally will send you guys a bumper sticker. i didn't throw those away. email me your address and i will send one out. rgholdston @ hotmail.com

     
  • At 9:31 PM, Blogger bex said…

    katie - it won't even cost you your right arm, (though think of all the things i could do with an extra arm!))

     
  • At 8:12 AM, Blogger Iggy Enigma said…

    no way! my ex boyfriend made those Provo dancing stickers. you and i do not know each other, yet here we are connected through blogging and my ex boyfriend. weird.

     

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