Wednesday, February 15, 2023

Getting to know me


This photo is what I used to believe was my first memory. I am sitting in my big brother's lap on a blanket in my front yard. My other brother is holding our dog Lucky's head.  The other kid is our neighbor from across the street. In retrospect, I may just think this photo is of my first memory because it is one of the few baby photos I have of me. I do recall my mom telling me that Lucky nipped me and my mom scolded him. She claims he would sit and protect me after that. Lucky eventually was sent to "live on a farm" because he had a habit of biting people. Lucky wasn't.

In the almost two decades I've been writing this blog, I've offered up quite a few biographical tidbits about my life. I have written about trying to interview my elderly parents about their lives before they died. Neither was very forthcoming. I think they had just settled into their old age and didn't really want to think about the past. Most of what I gleaned about their lives came from stories they would tell us as kids on long car rides to go camping or musings around campfires.

Unlike most children, I was actually curious about who my parents were before they became my parents. But since they are dead and most of the people who knew them when they were young are dead, I will never have more than a sketch of who they were and who they wanted to be.

My own children don't seem to really care about who I was or who I am. I accept this because they are immersed in their now and the complications of being teen agers. I generally try to avoid telling stories of when I was their age. I like to think I can tune into the clues given by eye rolls and distant stares and have stopped volunteering stories of my youth.  I come from a distant time that they can't relate to. And the things I used to be proud of (like being a drum major at a school with a "Braves" mascot and wearing full buckskins and a headdress) are now considered incredibly not politically correct. My daughter is particularly embarrassed that I participated unknowingly in cultural appropriation by dressing as a Native American Chief. 

My high school has since abandoned their inappropriate mascot image of an Indian brave if not the name. In 2019 they changed the name of the mascot from "Braves" to "Brave" (which they somehow thought was more acceptable). But when I visit their web page there is no mention of a mascot Brave or not. Their logo, however, is now a capital "B" for Boise. 

I'd like to think that if one day my kids decide they want to know who I was or wanted to be they can browse my blog and get a pretty good picture.  I've written about just anything I can remember. Problem is that it isn't written in any particular order and you have to sift through a lot of nonsense I thought was entertaining and humorous. I have always been adept at writing about nothing.

On the occasions I've run across people I haven't seen in awhile and they ask me what I've been up to over the years, I used to suggest they read my blog. I just got blank stares. I finally realized that people don't want to weed through more than 1,400 blog posts to see what I've been up to. In reality I don't think anyone cares that much. It's probably how I feel about those year in review newsletters some people send with their Christmas cards.

So I don't have much confidence that my children or relatives will bother to catch up with my life by reading my blog when I'm gone. Come to think of it, I wonder if Blogger will keep it up after I'm gone or they will delete it when I stop writing.

That would suck.

Anyway, it takes a lot of energy to read through someone's blog unless you have been following them all along and have an interest in what happens to them. I've never had anyone follow me for an extended period of time. I used to try and follow other people's blogs. But most of them gave up writing after a few months (or in some cases a few years). I haven't had the energy to follow anyone in a long time. Seems like most people have switched from personal blogs to blogs they think will make them money.

Good luck with that. 

Maybe some day I will go through my archives and glean out the ones that truly tell my story. Sadly it seems a bit like King Tut putting a sign on the wall of his burial chamber reading, "The good stuff is in here so you can stop digging."

Part of me believes that if you really care, digging is half the fun.

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