Saturday, August 8, 2009

I'm still a bratty looking kid

I’m on a “get rid of the crap in my life” kick, a clutter cleanse. Some people have trouble throwing stuff out—not me. I find de-junking liberating, not that I have that much left anyway. I got rid of/gave away a lot of things before the ex and I moved cross-country to Wyoming in 2001. More stuff got tossed when we moved to Utah in 2002, and by the time we unloaded the truck in Las Vegas in 2003, I was down to the bare essentials.

The other night I tackled the closet in my spare bedroom. I told myself I’d go through it for just an hour because when you set a time limit on chores like that, they don’t seem as overwhelming. Sixty minutes later I took three garbage bags to the dumpster. Aaah!

I came across a few remnants of my Kiwi ex—a couple of his cigarette lighters, a calendar with photos of New Zealand, and I stopped for a moment to consider his handwriting in a notebook I found. I hadn’t seen his handwriting in years.


I also came across a few treasures, some I don’t recall seeing before. Speaking of handwriting, check this out.

This is what it says on the back.

Just barely three years old and already writing like that! Brilliant.

There was no date on this, a poem I wrote in a Mother’s Day card.

”And you'll be very gay.” Imagine how much that will go for on eBay once I become a famous author?

Here’s a picture of my great-grandmother, my grandmother, Mom, and me. No date on the back, but judging from the size of me, I’d guess it was taken sometime in 1958. My grandmother, holding me, was about 46 years old. That’s what 46 looked like back then.

This picture cracked me up. Do I look like a brat or what? You can see there was no hope for my hair even back then.

Look at me and my sister Lori. I remember these dresses.

I also came across a bunch of old report cards. My kindergarten teacher wrote, “She expresses her ideas very well. She is mature for her age.” See? I was expressing myself well even back in 1962. Too bad I probably haven’t matured much since then.

It was kind of weird to come across these things. I was like, holy shit, I used to be a freakin’ baby! I used to be a bratty lookin’ kid! I mean, I know I wasn’t always this size, but for some reason, the reality of the passing of time kind of freaked me out.

Life is amazing, don’t you think?


Fragrant Liar said...

That last picture of you and your sister? I had a dress with that exact "sailor" collar, with the bricabrac.

I love how 46 now looks like 36. How far we females have come!

classicrockforthesoul said...

I love that picture of you, your mom, your grandmother, and your great-grandmother -- I love generational (did I just make up a word?) pictures like that! You look a lot like your mom.

I swear I was never a child... there's no way. I came out of my mother with these size 10 feet.

drewzepmeister said...

I do to, keep old stuff as memories. Most of is old letters, pictures, and e-mails tucked away in a file or a shoebox in a closet. I guess I'm a sentimental old fool...Oh well.

Lori Biker said...

I love the picture of us. We were so sweet and innocent...I mean we still are but.... I bet that's what bartenders see when we sit down and smile at them!
My word verification is: comfulat!

Linda and her Twaddle said...

I think your haircut was the international one. I had the same.

There is something interesting about the whole process of sorting. You always get stuck at one point looking at pieces of paper, photos and then all of a sudden hours have passed.

Your smile has not changed.

Lilly said...

Further proof your book is going to be a success!! I love looking at treasures like this. These are the real treasures not other material rubbish we surround ourselves with and get buried by.

I was telling my mother tonight that I carry around a tiny little book that my daughter made me when she was 3 - she made it with post it notes and folded them up. I look at it often and wonder where the years have gone. I am like you. I streamlined my life a couple of times over the last ten years or so and have only the essentials around me now. I am putting the focus on me not things.

That final picture of you and your sister is ADORABLE - personally I dont think you have changed a lot at all. Still full of life with a beautiful smile. Hope the book is going well.

R. Jacob said...

Cute then, cute now.
Maybe taller

Vegas Linda Lou said...

@ Fragrant Liar: No kidding about how women's looks have changed! Today 50 is the new 30--yay!

@ Classic Rock girl: I don't think you were ever a child, either. Not in this life. You're an old soul, kid! Love you.

@ drewz: Why not keep stuff that's meaningful? My rule is, if it brings me joy, I keep it. If not, it's tossed.

@ Lori: Funny that you think bartenders would see us like that. I mean, they should be the sober ones.

@ Linda: Did your mother insist on cutting your bangs short, short, short the night before picture day, too?

@ Lilly: Well, if there's anyone who can relate to focusing totally on me...

@ R.Jacob: Definitely taller, just as bratty.

lisleman said...

I had a great time making some copies of old slides from my parents. Good memories are the best. Sharing the results with my brother and sisters was fun and educational - always learn another story.

Hope you can share with your sister.

Vegas Linda Lou said...

@ lisleman: That's cool sharing this stuff, huh? You're right--good memories are the best. But it's the repressed ones that make an interesting story...

slacker-chick said...

That "bratty" photo of you is priceless! I can just imagine the caption, "No, I did not flush my sisters doll down the toilet, uh uh"

Elizabeth Mahlou said...

Nine years ago we gave away nearly everything as we moved from a 13-room house to an RV. It was great. Our kids did not have to wait for us to die to get the things we would have left them. So, we were done to nothing, but since then we moved into a small house and guess what, it just builds up again -- even though we don't need it! What is it about humans and their "things"?

Vegas Linda Lou said...

@ slacker chick: Yes, I was a nightmare of an older sister, but not in the way you think. I was more "Marcia, Marcia, Marcia..."

@ Elizabeth: That's cool that you gave everything away and RV'ed it! Sometimes I think I could be totally happy having the outdoors as my living room. We do accumulate stuff, don't we?