Monday, July 25, 2005

Things I Miss from Childhood

I read this topic on Miss New Orleans’ blog, and thought I’d chime in. (While you’re there, check out this great post about a mysterious email.)

I miss these five things from childhood:

1) Riding my bike. And not just riding it aimlessly, but using it to go places. Used to be I’d go everywhere on it, and now, I don’t even have one. I should do something about that—especially since I’m once again living in a neighborhood where I can actually reach places I’d want to go by bike. Problem is, I still haven’t gotten over the psychological impediment that helmets are goony.

2) Dad, Nan and Aunt Esther. There are more relatives I miss, but these are the three that are gone that spring to mind. I think about Aunt Es’s love of old music, and realize I totally took that for granted when she was around. I miss walking into the family room and sitting down to watch a couple innings of the Phils with Dad. I’ve watched a little baseball since then, but it just isn’t the same. And Nan could always make me laugh, even when she wasn’t trying. Make that Especially when she wasn’t trying. I still have the $50 bill she gave me on the last Christmas she was alive. There just hasn’t been anything special enough to spend it on yet.

3) Seeing my friends every day. I’m not just talking about my childhood friends, either (although it’d be damn nice to see them more than once in a blue moon, too—although I’m as much to blame for that as anyone else). I’m talking about being in a little community of friends to hang with day in and day out. For most of the year, we were all at school; during the summer, we were at the pool. I’ve got a group of friends I see at work every day, and I always have fun with them, but I can’t kid you to say that it’s the same. Luckily, I get to see my wife every day (who inexplicably remains friendly to me), and I’ve got a damn good group of friends who I get to see more often than most grownups do (or at least, more often than it seemed my parents saw their friends). But those occasions when I get to see my friends constantly—a week down the shore, or Folk Fest—are magic.

4) My hair. Yeah, I’m a baldy. And I actually don’t mind it; if I keep my hair trimmed short it actually looks pretty good on me (I think). But damn if I don’t miss actually having options for it. Part it on the left, right or middle? Grow it long and shaggy? Ponytail? Spiked? Now, it’s either trimmed or it needs to be trimmed. Or its shaved altogether. (I’d also like the exuberance of having zero body fat back; another good reason to get that bike.)

5) Suspense and surprise. I love comics. I love reading comics, and reading about comics. I miss riding my bike to the drugstore and buying two comics and a box of Lemonheads. But I really miss having essentially no idea of what was going to happen in the next issue of the comics I buy. I don’t know if it’s possible to cocoon myself from spoilers so completely and still actually buy comics (and be informed of new books I might like)—particularly since, process junkie that I am, I love reading interviews with creators. Buy man, those few times when they actually pull the rug out form under me, I friggin’ love them for it.

So that’s my list. I’m going to formally tag Andrew to list his, but if you feel like self-tagging, just let me know in the comments section and go to it!



Andrew said...

Challenge accepted. See my list here.

Laurie said...

That was great!! I miss my bicycle and comic books, too. Being a chick, I was partial to Archie comics.

Greg! said...

I may do a list of my own at some point, but for the moment I simply have to ask:
Did you ever really have zero percent body fat? Really?

Rob S. said...

No, not zero percent. But there were some times in my life (including childhood) where I was quite skinny.

Now, sadly, is not remotely one of those times.