As we cleaned out the study (my archives) to make room for the nursery, we unearthed many treasures from my past, including these reminders of my days as a progressive political radical in the early to mid aughts.
Over the weekend, Stephanie and I began working on converting our study into a nursery. The name “study” might be a little misleading. In actuality, it is a spare bedroom where we put our desks, bookcases, and became a storage room for items that didn’t fit neatly into the character of the other rooms in our duplex. The room also contains my closet and my dresser, so in a lot of ways it was like my own personal archives.
As we began sifting through the items in that room, we unearthed many items that unleashed a flood of memories. When I view this process in context of what this room is to become, I begin to see these items as a means of one day being able to relate my own personal history to my son.
Of course there are items like all of my CDs, and the thought of being able to one day sit down with my son and go through all of the music that has enhanced my life, sharing with him what each album meant to me.
There’s the tattered and torn Bible, missing a back cover, which I used in high school and college, complete with my notes and highlights. That alone would seem to give this Bible enough sentimental value, but there are other stories that exist outside the pages that go along with it, and some day he will need to hear those as well.
I ordered the bracelets pictured above shortly after this nation reelected George W. Bush in 2004. At the time, I was a progressive political radical and I wore the bracelets as sign of protest for the next four years. Of course I have since turned away from days as a political radical and now find myself somewhere slightly right-of-center when it comes to politics. I look forward to being able to share with him the story of my political journey and evolution.
For months, my wife complained about the stack of newspapers on top of my desk. These weren’t just any newspapers, but rather newspapers from the Dallas Mavericks’ magical run to the 2011 NBA title. Also included in the stack were tickets, passes, and other trinkets from the playoff run. I put these items with the rest of my sports memorabilia in plastic crates in my closet. When he is old enough, we will pull these crates out and go through each one of them. I especially look forward to being able to go through each and every one of my Mavericks tickets stubs and telling the stories of the 7 foot German who made their games so enjoyable to watch.
Buried at the bottom of the stack was a purple folder. When I opened the folder, my eyes first jumped to the pocket on the right hand side. There, I found several papers I had written as a senior in high school, some worth of one day sharing with my son, others not, but it was the contents of the left-hand side pocket that matter more.
In there, were several copies of Smellbread, an underground “newspaper” several of my friends and I published while at Lon Morris College. While we made some youthful mistakes in the publication, we had noble intentions. We wanted to save our school from destruction at the hands of a–let’s just say less than righteous–President and an inept Board of Trustees.
Lon Morris College shut her doors in August 2012, after years of financial insolvency. It was what we hoped to prevent with the publication of Smellbread, but not enough people cared to pay attention. Looking over all the treasures I unearthed over the weekend, I think our son stands to learn the most from the stories this little “piece of dead tree,” as we so eloquently described it, has to tell.