Monday, August 8, 2016

You can't take the past from me

My childhood was running through streets, fields and forests and play tag, war, fairy tales, superheroes, farming, hide and seek and Lord of the Flies. It was hiding from big kids and building huts out of ferns and selling cartoons to the neighbors. It was breaking off icicles from garage roofs and jumping on beds and stealing lego from my after-school sitter and getting frightened and scarred by scary movies. It was mom's bed time stories, and my own stories growing in my head when mom got sick and couldn't talk, and learning to read with my aunt's boyfriend's comic books. It was kids putting popsicle sticks in each other next to me in the sandbox while I dug to find the center of the earth; it was digging holes in my bedroom floor; it was vibrantly alive nightmares about my house disappearing when I turned my back. It was a superhero costume with a cape, an allowance large enough for cap gun ammunition, a ragged plush panda, love for the girl who built a snow fortress in the school door, a rumor that said I turned invisible when nobody saw me and a bullies teaching me about sex and violence. It was grandparents who were the nicest people there were who lived way too far away and cousins who I wanted to kill and at the same time live with forever together in our secret clubhouse.

And what was before I turned ten and interesting things started happening.

What I'm talking about here, as Ghostbusters (1984) enjoys a best-selling streak on Amazon unlike any 30 year old movie and proves it's possible to make everyone happy excepting only those whose happiness depends on having stuff other people can't have, is that anyone who claims a movie remake ruined their childhood had better seek professional help to get over the crippling sensory deprivation experiment their childhood must have been. If you're trying to say your childhood is the ephemeral experience of whatever pop culture was served to you, you have problems. Of course, it's never too late to have yourself a childhood you can participate in. Start right now, by going outside, and doing something you have never done before.

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