Wednesday, July 28, 2010
The Detritus of Life So Far
More boxes. Nifty metal rectangular ones from Ikea. Boxes bursting with photos that will never be put into albums. The boxes are dented from back in the days when they were pulled off the shelves of the built-in hutch and incorporated into some elaborate scheme involving Tonka trucks, Hotwheels, dinosaurs and those dark green molded plastic soldiers.
"Watch this, Mom! See this guy, he's going to...."
That was two houses ago.
Stacks of cds, borrowed from the family's collection and never returned to the proper cabinet. Books by Philip Roth, David McCullough and John Dean. The entire set of Harry Potter novels in hardback plus some of the audio books. Old cassettes of Jack Benny radio shows, a full set of David Sedaris books on cd. Anthony Kiedis's autobiography Scar Tissue. I wondered where that was.
Some Calculus books. Did MathMan say he was going to be teaching Calculus next semester?
A Rubbermaid box of things belonging to MathMam. Baseball memorabilia, some concert programs from a 1989 Paul McCartney show we attended at the Rosemont Horizon when it was still the Horizon. That was the same year we went to see Les Miserables at the Auditorium Theater in Chicago. The same year we moved to Chicago after we graduated from I.U and it snowed on May 5th. My dad was helping us move in with MathMan's mom. He looked up at the sky showering us with fluffy snow, then back at me and asked if I was sure I wanted to live in Chicago.
I was sure.
A little box of jewelry, mostly broken, that had once cluttered the top of my dresser circa 1978. I picked through it and saved the old spoon ring and two buttons: I'm Like Freakin Out! and J'aime le Francais. Stuck them right through some poster board so they can grace my "new" office space. Tossed the rest.
Oh, right. That's what started all this - I was going to shift Nate's clothes upstairs since we moved him back up to the small room that had been my office. He was ready to have his own room again, was tired of sleeping in the wide open space of the basement family room with no door that locked. He's a fourteen year old boy. I'm not stupid. I'm not going to be picking up discarded socks from his floor though.
With an assist from MathMan, the record albums in their milk crates were moved out of the closet and given a place, accessible, but out of the way in the corner of what was now my new office/weight room.
He also took down the mystery box from the top shelf. So that's where they were - the few photo albums we owned, full of pictures form the early days of our life together. Back when I had the time and inclination to sit down and enjoy the tedium of inserting photos into plastic sleeves. Back when I had photos developed and the archivist in me had to sit down and write on the back of each one - the people, places and dates. It was important. Back before three kids and jobs and distractions. Before I used the internet to do more than occasionally search for photos of houseplans people could order from Sears and other mail-order companies. When I would have laughed at the idea of spending large amounts of time in front of the computer during my non-work hours.
We didn't even bother to unpack those photo albums when we moved into this house.
Time to refold those old baseball jerseys and put them into some kind of box for Nate. And do we still have this iHome charger/player thing? Here are the instructions. Did I see that in Chloe's room?
Two Composition books with only a few pages used. Those might be nice to have this coming school year. MathMan's bassoon repair kit, still housed in the 1970s orange Tupperware it's been in since I've know him.
Sit down and look through that basket of photos that never even made it into the IKEA boxes?
And when did I put this box of Little Tikes building blocks in here? Those can go in the garage with the rest of the abandoned toys. Maybe it's time to donate these things. I don't see us moving them every time we change rentals just because we might have grandchildren some day. Better to let some kid have them now to enjoy.
The stack of board games teeters precariously next to my Conn trumpet case, completely ignored on the top shelf. Dang, I thought that silver trumpet was hot and I was hot shit playing it. Until I decided that I'd rather march as a flag twirler in a skimpy halter dress instead of those hideous band uniforms with those fuzzy white tall hats. The joke was on us, though. The band kids stayed toasty warm in their wool uniforms and we froze our nipples off when the parades took place on early autumn mornings that plunged down into the forties. With fog.
Do I really need to keep this old cheerleading patch with my name on it? It's yellowed. Might be fun to put it on my desk though. Just for kicks.
That ceramic tic-tac-toe set that Sophie made two years ago in Art Club should be put in something safe before it's crushed to dust.
What's this? A Samsung phone box from which Hanukkah? Must have been 2007 or 2008? We were still in the John Kay Road house. It was the used phone we bought for Chloe from her friend who'd upgraded to the first iPhone. Or was it a Blackberry? It was the phone that she dropped in the Target parking lot then accidentally stepped on while wearing those brown suede boots we used to "share." The ones with the heel that scraped the side of her newish used phone. I unkindly teased her about not being so graceful for a dancer.
I finished matching up the pairs of shoes I'd fished from the bottom of the closet and stepped back to consider how they now had feet bigger than mine.
What kind of trouble are you getting into this Wednesday?