The Child in Me

Andrea posted a meme listing five things you miss from your childhood. That got me thinking about my childhood. I never wanted to be a kid and I really mean never. Some of my earliest memories before school, before moving to Barnettville, are of thinking about the things I would do when I was grown up. Before I knew anything about life really, at the age of three and four, I remember wishing I could be an adult. And I don’t mean I remember one day when I wished this, I mean this was my thing — I wished it ALL THE TIME.

All of the things I wanted to do weren’t things kids did. None of my interests ever seemed to be on par with my age. For as long as I can remember my inner dialogue was made up of thoughts like, “When I grow up, I’ll show them.” “When I’m an adult I won’t have to listen to them anymore.” “I wish I were an adult so I could go to [insert Paris, London, Greece, Italy, Australia, Toronto, NYC, Hawaii, on a cruise, Fantasy Island . . . or any place I might have just seen on tv or read about in book]” “Nobody’s going to stop me, when I grow up I’m going to be a movie star.”

You get the idea. I never really took to childhood. It didn’t suit me. I felt smothered, confined, restricted, even jailed. Once I had a boyfriend who never got over being 10 years old, literally. Ask him the best time of his life and he would answer when he was 10 years old running, playing, open to everything, untarnished. He was popular and had many friends. Other kids looked up to him and respected him. It was a very successful time period in his life. He missed it terribly, would have transported himself back there in a time machine and started all over again if he could have. I didn’t understand that at all. To me that was the most absurd thing I had ever heard, to be your best most successful self at the age of 10 . . . crazy!

And you have to understand that my childhood wasn’t particularly bad . . . it was actually probably quite good, certainly much better than a lot of other peoples. I just never embraced it at all. I didn’t want it. I wanted to be in charge of my own destiny, free to try everything and see just how far I could go. I wanted to be challenged, everything was just too easy, and the older I got the more I wished to turn 18 and be an adult. Because for me that was when the show was really going to start, that’s when life would begin.

So five things that I miss from my childhood . . . I can’t think of a single one. Maybe it’s because I was never really in it, it wasn’t real, it didn’t matter, it was the future that was important and I always had an eye pointed toward that prize. Always waiting for the real stuff. My sister sometimes will say that something reminded her of something when she was a kid and she’ll go all nostalgic. I can get nostalgic over stuff that happened in Toronto (in early adulthood) but nothing before then. I mean I have memories, I had pets and friends and adventures and things, but none of it tugs on my nostalgic heartstrings.

A few years ago someone asked me if I ever thought of my high school sweetheart and wondered what my life would have been like if I stuck with him and got married. And to me the idea is just insane, to even ask such a question of me is nuts. Because to me that whole thing doesn’t even constitute a relationship, just kids having fun, thrown together by raging hormones . . . it certainly didn’t count. Yet some of my high school friends married their sweethearts and they seem to be doing fine. My sister married hers and I know for sure that they are doing great. I mean it must’ve been real for them, it obviously counted.

So this leads me to wonder what happened? How is it that my sister and I grew up in the same house with me seeking only to escape childhood and with her embracing it so fully? Does a six-year age difference explain it? Or is there more to it?

Mood: headachy
Drinking: coffee
Listening To: some furniture salesman chatting up my landlord outside
Hair: getting washed today! Yay! . . . could some dye and a cut be on the horizon? . . . stay tuned

My Drinking Style

Your Gemini Drinking Style
You can drink without changing their behavior much.
You’re so naturally chatty and short-attention-spanned that it’s just hard to tell sometimes.
You amaze people by conversing with finesse and allusions, then doing something to belie an extremely advanced state of intoxication, like puking in your shoe.

You possess the magic ability to flirt successfully (and uninfuriatingly, which is very tricky) with several people at once.
You like to order different cocktails every round — repetition is boring!
You may create a drinking theme (like yellow drinks: beer, sauvignon blanc and limoncello) for your own amusement.

Your Signature Cocktails
Easily bored Geminis need some stimulation in their drinks — those with two parts, like a black and tan (or just a double), are particularly appealing. Otherwise, you’ll drink all over the map, ordering frou-frou drinks to add to you collection of cocktail monkeys or going for whiskey rocks because you’re feeling rather noir. Gemini rules the herb anise — home-infused anise vodka is sure to win you over.
Your Celebrity Drinking Buddies
Johnny Depp, Angelina Jolie, Kylie Minogue, the Olson Twins, Colin Farrell, Ice Cube, Natalie Portman, and Mr. T

The Year I Was Born . . .


In 1969 (the year you were born)

Richard Nixon becomes president of the US

Senator Edward Kennedy escapes injury when the car he is driving veers off a narrow bridge on Chappaquiddick Island

US astronaut Neil Armstrong becomes the first person to set foot on the moon while commanding the Apollo 11 mission

Breathtaking pictures of Mars are transmitted to earth from NASA’s Mariner 7 as it passes within 2,200 miles of the Red Planet

Woodstock music festival begins in upstate NY, featuring performances by Grateful Dead, Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Jefferson Airplane, and many more artists

250,000 Vietnam War protestors gather in Washington for the largest anti-war rally in US history

The first draft lottery since WWII is held in New York City

The Beatles’ performance in public for the last time, on the roof of Apple Records

The Stonewall riots mark the start of the modern gay rights movement in the US

Marilyn Manson, Jennifer Aniston, Renée Zellweger, Edward Norton, Christian Slater, and Linus Torvalds are born

New York Mets win the World Series

New York Jets win Superbowl III

Montreal Canadiens win the Stanley Cup

Sesame Street premieres

Midnight Cowboy wins the Oscar for best picture

David Bowie’s debut single, “Space Oddity”, becomes a huge hit – in part to the US landing on the moon

Sharon Tate & the LaBiancas are found murdered by Charles Manson & “family”


What Happened the Year You Were Born?

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What Slanguage do you Speak?

Your Slanguage Profile

Canadian Slang: 100%
Aussie Slang: 50%
Prison Slang: 50%
British Slang: 25%
New England Slang: 25%
Southern Slang: 25%
Victorian Slang: 25%

Books

Not because Oprah told me to . . . but just because it’s been on my list for years and I fell upon an affordable second-hand copy at Rags of Time bookstore . . . I’ve started to read Faulkner’s The Sound and the Fury. I’m 63 pages in and unable to stop reading when I pick it up so I try to only pick it up at night when I’m in bed and hopefully tired enough that I won’t read all night. This is no relaxing piece of mindless fluff. It’s tough, a lot going on, very complicated. But what’s interesting is that he’s done exactly what I’ve been trying to do with my own novel . . . which is why I had to endure eyes glazing over and unbearable comments like, “I really like the boy, but where did he go? Is he going to be in the story again? Is he Callum’s son?” It’s complicated đŸ™‚ Anyway, Faulkner uses repetition and some italics (though not a lot and not in every instance) to help readers slip in and out of time with him. When you add in phonetic spellings to capture the essence of the south and what seems to be a complicated plot purposely blurred so as to not let the cat out of the bag all at once . . . you don’t come out the other end with an easy read. But why should reading be easy? Isn’t it more entertaining and stimulating to be challenged by what we read? I think so. But still readers have to be able to follow you, you’ve got to leave some sort of trail of breadcrumbs no matter how faint. And they have to want to follow you, the characters and story have to be compelling. I may learn more from reading this book than I have all year in workshops . . . and it only cost me five bucks.

Another book I bought on Saturday at the used bookstore was The Lost and Found Stories of Morley Callaghan, 1985, hardcover, 1st edition, still in the Coles shrinkwrap. What a find! Very cool. Of course, I don’t care about keeping it untouched, I intend to read it. But still, it’s in mint condition and will be a nice addition to my bookcase (which I’m slowly but surely getting organised). Going through the books, I see that there are many I’ve brought with me that I have no idea why. I may do another purge and see if the secondhand bookstore wants to buy them from me or sell them on consignment. I also noticed at the video store that they do trade and save on dvds. I may purge some there as well. Going through my movies the other night to pick something to watch with Jenn and Jason I was surprised by how uninspired I was by many of the titles. I should just keep the really good stuff and get rid of the rest to make room for more really good stuff.

Heaven on Earth

Grammie was in my dream last night. She was young like when I was a kid, all dressed up to go to church with those low-heeled Tender Tootsie tan coloured pumps and a full head of thick light brown hair. We were in a big room with cathedral ceilings waiting for Grandad. She was fussing about something, tidying up, fidgeting while we waited. And the curtain rod wasn’t right on the window but she couldn’t reach it even though she was so tall. She was running and jumping trying to reach it. Young. Able to run and jump . . . in pumps no less! It was a good dream.

Mood: Sleepyhead
Drinking: Coffee
Listening To: Zombie, The Cranberries
Hair: I read on a men’s long hair site yesterday (which I surfed into by accident while looking for a photo of the New Brunswick flag) that my hair needs to get wet everyday in order to be really healthy . . . hmmm, do these guys know what they’re talking about?

And the News I Forgot to Mention . . .

I got the full-tuition scholarship for the Maritime Writers’ Workshop at UNB July 10-16. I’m thrilled! And honoured! And surprised. Now, I can go. I’m really going. This is a crazy year for me. Of course, this means I will be out of town during the height of the Festival by the Marsh, missing the jazz and dessert at the Marshlands Inn, but oh well, there will always be next year.