All alone in the moonlight

1 11 2009

I take back everything I said.

Well, not everything.

And I don’t really take it back.

Let me, shall we say, add to what I wrote in the last post.

Memory matters to me. I don’t want to get ensnared in it, but I don’t want to forget, either.

I don’t want to live in those memories, don’t want to act as if that’s where my life really is or belongs. I’m not about to head off to my first day of first grade.

But that was once me. I did once wear dresses my mom made, wear ponytails (which I preferred to pigtails, i.e., knots worn high above the ears) and barrettes, and smile into the sun and for the camera.

Today I only occasionally wear my hair in a single ponytail, only occasionally smile into the sun, and rarely for the camera.

This isn’t a paean to lost innocence. I was six then and am some decades past six now. I grew up, and am glad for that.

I lost a lot along the way, as does every person who makes the trek from child- into adulthood, and have gained, as well. Again, nothing unusual about that.

And I guess that’s what I do need to remember, that there is nothing unusual about this—that I do have a past in addition to a present and likely a future. This is what it is to be a modern adult.

But I also have to remember that I have as much and as little control over that past as I do my future. I can’t always call up memories at will, can’t always place them when they do surface, and don’t always know what to do with them. Good, bad, happy, sad, indifferent—doesn’t matter. They’re there and they’re gone and they sometimes come back.

And in coming and going they carry pieces of me with them.

I live here, now, but I don’t yet understand what it is to live here, now, and to move into my future. No, I don’t want, per my last post, to get stuck in a cul-de-sac of my past, but I can’t and don’t want to erase it, either.

Not anymore, at least: I have tried, and failed, to erase it. If you don’t think you belong in life, it’s only a hop to the belief that you need to erase all evidence of your self, if only in yourself.

But now I’m re-constructing my life, re-claiming it. I have no idea what I’m doing, not sure of these pieces which come both bidden and not so, not sure of my. . . hopes? possibilities? for the future.

(And, oh yes, I can carried away by the future, as well; what finer form of escapism than to think But later, after. . . ?)

Neither my past nor my future is under as much control as my present, and even my present is under less control than I would like (tho’ I do admit that that’s not wholly a bad thing).

Still, I am here, now, which means making what sense I can of who I was, then.

Or at least recognizing that I was, then.

Don’t look back

31 10 2009

Getting rid of my t.v. has not much altered my viewing habits.

Hulu. And CSI on CBS. (I’m still watching CSI: NY, but that may end. They’re turning the damned show into a blue-tinted CSI: Miami. One Horatio Caine is already too many.)

I’ve watched some Buffy and Angel and (guilty pleasure) Stargate SG1, along with a few episodes of the 21st c version of Battlestar Galactica. I watched the opener of FlashForward, but none since. Oh, and Stargate Universe, which is grim and intriguing and just a little bit boring.

The Good Wife is supposed to be good, as are Glee and Community, but I don’t know that I want to get snagged into anything else. I got shit to do, and I’m already finding too many ways to avoid doing it as it is.

I was a regular viewer of CSI et. al. before I stopped watching t.v. over a year ago, so I don’t really feel like I’m making any new commitments; even the new SGU feels more like a mash-up of the old SG1 and BSG.

Only FlashForward was at all new, and I watched that because I’d heard good things about it and was intrigued by the premise. But while the kickoff was mildly interesting, a part of me was thinking Do I really want to let myself get sucked back in? I was relieved to read that later episodes sucked.

Of the shows I watch, only two are still on the air (SGU & CSI); Buffy is disappearing from Hulu and I’m almost done with SG1.

So, no truly new shows, and a few old ones of which I’ve pretty much had my (re)fill.

But what about those old old shows—you know, like Lou Grant? Didn’t I write a little mash post to Lou Grant a month or so ago?

Haven’t watched it since.

I noticed today that the classic version of Bionic Woman is on Hulu—it shouldn’t surprise you that I loved that show as a kid—as are other shows I watched in my parents’ house. One Day at a Time. Partridge Family. Charlie’s Angels. Picket Fences. Hill St. Blues. St. Elswhere. Hell, a bunch of shows from my childhood and adolescence are on Hulu; I could spend any number of weekends gettin’ my nostalgia on.

Except. Except I don’t really want to.

It’s not that I wouldn’t enjoy the shows again—I have no idea if I would—but that I don’t want to go back. I went through that time once, watched those shows then.


It might seem like I’m making too large a point about too small a matter—old t.v. shows—but I really don’t trust myself to look backward. It’s not about the time being good or bad; it’s about it being over.

Yes, I do look back, and am sometimes pulled back, but I always have to keep in mind that I live here, now. A little escapism is fine, as is a considered reflection on memory, but not too much, and preferably only if it helps me make sense of my life here, now.

I’m already sufficiently disoriented by my presence in the present. I don’t need to add to my distractions.