Reminiscing About Cereal

When we moved back to the United States in 1987, I was amazed at how different it was from Germany.  I spent most of my life in Europe, so there was a lot that I didn’t know or understand about America.

One of the first things I noticed was the cereal isle in grocery stores.  I was surprised to see an entire isle dedicated to cereal.  I wanted to try every single box of cereal.  I especially wanted to try the boxes that used pop culture to entice shoppers.

Unfortunately, my mom wasn’t willing to purchase that much cereal at one time.  Oh well, that’s how life goes.

Sagging Pants Problem Solved

The sagging pants fashion trend is popular among America’s youth; however, older generations tend to despise the practice.  Therefore, I have developed a plan to solve the sagging pants problem.

Instead of complaining about the fashion trend or making it illegal, the older generation should join the trend.  That’s right, everyone in their 40’s, 50’s, and 60’s need to start sagging.  If this happened sagging pants would go from rebellious and hip to utterly uncool.  – Problem Solved

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The House on Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros

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This book is a collection of short stories about a Latino girl growing up in Chicago.  Each story is short and easy to read, which makes the book flow quickly.

Her childhood stories are vastly different from mine.  However, many of the fears and anxieties that surround growing up into adulthood resonated with me.

Also, I understood the writers desire to be different from those around her.  I too wanted to follow my own path and live my own life.  I never wanted to live the life other people thought I should live.  In fact, that is something that has never changed about me.

The book is interesting and relatable.  I recommend giving it a chance.

 

Hiking Down Memory Lane

As teenagers, my brother and I spent a lot of time playing in the woods.  We went hiking, fishing, and swimming in the creek.

We also built a makeshift fort and took some of my mom’s old lawn furniture down there.  Mom never did figure out what happened to her chairs.

We spray-painted graffiti under the bridge.  We wrote our names, the names of our dogs, and noted each year we were there.

Basically, the two of us ran wild through those woods and we were having a blast.

That was 26 years ago.  Aaron passed away three years ago and his birthday is on Monday.  I decided to take his daughter (Gwen) out there.  She heard various stories over the years, but never got a chance to see the area.  It seemed like a good way to honor Aaron’s memory.

I was surprised to see a lot of our graffiti is still there.  Each step I took, felt like I was going back in time.  Even though the terrain has changed some over the years, I could still recognize different sections and areas.  I still remembered my way around those woods.

Memories of those days flooded my mind.  It was a surreal feeling.  I could almost see us and our dogs running wild.  I was excited to see it all again.  However, I felt the grief of my brother’s death.

I was hiking down memory lane and my heart was overflowing with mixed emotions.

 

Mortified Nation

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I found Mortified Nation on Netflix.  The documentary shows adults reading journals or diaries they wrote as teenagers.

I was constantly laughing during the show.  I wasn’t laughing at the person, instead I was laughing at how they believed the world to be as teenagers and at how I also had many of those same ideas.  In a way, I was also laughing at myself.

I forgot what it was like to be a teenager.  I forgot how scary it was to have all those first time experiences.  I forgot how confused I was about how to survive in this world.

The documentary ends with a reminder:  We are all freaks, we are all fragile, and we all survived.

Driving in Circles

When I was a teenager, the coolest place to hangout was at the courthouse square in downtown Athens, Alabama.  Teenagers flocked to the site every evening.  Everybody was there, or at least everybody that really mattered in our teenage world.

I admit, I was a regular visiter.  I also had a truck, so I would drive around the square with my windows rolled down and the stereo blasting.  The other kids with vehicles also drove around the square.  It was like a parade of teenage drivers.  After a while, I would park the truck and talk to people.  I  always had a blast while hanging out at the square.

As an adult, I think back on those days and wonder.  How in the world did driving in circles end up being the coolest and most fun thing to do in the world?  I drove for hours, but never went anywhere.  That sounds ridiculous to me now.