Some memories are nothing but habit.
Trauma? Loss? Love? Joy? My mind goes back to the same bank for the usual withdrawal. Why? Because I know the way -- the walk is short, tellers friendly, and they’ve honored my overdrafts for a long time. “Be there in a jiffy. You want this in years five, ten, or twenties? ” And without thinking, I cash in on the same image.
I would never cleanse my mind of any memory, but I’d like to do some restructuring. Move some of the boring ones, my personal clichés, to the end of the line. To put it ever so crassly, I’d like to ditch what are effectively the booty calls of memory, those that are always waiting, ever there. “You want your young love? We’ve got your Steve right here.” God, not Steve, I'm so bloody sick of Steve. I had other young loves, for Pete’s sake. For Pete, and Rob, and Keith’s sake.
I’d like to roam around and explore some forgotten territory.
As an example, if someone should mention children and music lessons, the go-to is my $5 Goodwill clarinet that couldn’t blow an honest C. Why not instead think of Kim? My best friend Kim who played Chopin in packed recital halls when we were in 3rd grade, and taught me to play a simple Mozart sonata on her baby grand, timing the piece to the metronome. Kim, whose family had three pianos, one in the living room, one in the family room, and one in the playroom. Kim, who had three pianos while I sat in my basement and blew my lungs and heart out on a $5 metal clarine…
Damn it, why do I keep scratching that? It doesn’t even itch anymore. Clearly this new roam will take more than a day.