memory lane...

Another day off. A time to rest my mind and body. A time to hopefully refresh this heart of mine. Some Sportscenter, some play with the kids, some junk food, some house cleaning, some phone calls to friends, a hot bath, a nap, a venison tender loin for lunch, an hour in a good book, a date night with my wife, and some good ole’ contemplation to think upon whatever pops into my head.

Sabbath is what the Bible calls it. I call it shut down or standby. I need it lately.

I wanted to think about some memories from my past that randomly pop into my head…here’s what chased me down…

I remember spilling a gallon of milk on the kitchen floor when I was a kid.
I remember locking my babysitter out of the house.
I remember chewing tobacco when I was 8 and throwing up at my neighbor’s house…I never did that again.
I remember kissing all the girls in my kindergarten class every morning before school. I would line them up and give them each a smooch.
I remember eating my neighbor’s dog food out of the dish on their porch…until they caught me one afternoon.
I remember collecting chestnuts in a grocery cart each year and sorting them into piles like gold.
I remember catching old diseased salmon down by the lake with grappling hooks and then pushing the eggs out of the females and selling them to the bait shop.
I remember picking worms with my whole family out in our neighborhood at night. I had a miner’s hat, so I could pick with two hands.
I remember falling out of my bunk bed.
I remember pooping in my snowsuit when I was 10 because I couldn’t make it home in time to go to the bathroom.
I remember throwing a snowball at a car and breaking the back light…and then running for my life.
I remember playing little league up at Brietbeck Park and packing Big League Chew in my mouth like a Major Leaguer.
I remember getting my bike stolen from the part that I just bought with my own “worm picking” money.
I remember getting caught for stealing fake gold jewelry from Jamesway. I had a stash of loot under my porch.
I remember singing around the piano with my family and then reading books together.
I remember cutting down a Christmas tree on my Aunt’s property in the Catskill Mountains and then driving it home on top of our van.
I remember listening to “Silver Bells” while we were decorating the tree each year when I was little.
I remember picking apples for cider when I was 10 years old and getting paid $9.10 by 12 bushel bin. I could pick two an hour sometimes.
I remember watching WWF wrestling through my best friend’s porch window because we weren’t allowed to go inside.
I remember taking piano lessons at Mrs. Hally’s mansion up on top of the hill of Van Buren St. It scared the life out of me every time I open the iron gate and walked up to what I thought was a haunted house.
I remember waking up early and leaving for Disney Land in the middle of a blizzard.
I remember meeting my great grandmother, Leta, before she passed away.
I remember peeing down the register in my upstairs bedroom because I didn’t want to walk all the way to the bathroom.
I remember punching a girl who wanted to kiss me in the back of the bus and giving her a black eye.
I remember collecting baseball cards with my best friend, Art, and spending unending hours sorting and pricing them.
I remember getting deathly sick when I ate inordinate amounts of Bing Cherries at a nearby fruit farm.
I remember walking in the woods and looking for treasure and thinking I found some one time.
I remember climbing trees after school until it got dark and then running home for my mom’s home cooked dinners.
I remember sleeping with my dog out in his dog house in the winter.
I remember jumping off the side of the barn and dunking the basketball.
I remember hitting a dog on my bike and flying over the handle bars. I slid down the pavement on my lower back scraping it down to the bone.
I remember having a Mazda lot car and driving it around my yard for hours until the body fell off the frame.
I remember eating blue berries down near the swamp and then eating wild concord grapes that would grow in the hedge between the apple trees.
I remember watching the deer through our bedroom window digging up the snow under the apple tree to get to the apples underneath.
I remember ice skating out back on the little pond in the woods down in the Ash tree grove.
I remember waking up in the morning to 12 inches of freshly fallen snow covering the branches of all the trees and finding out school was cancelled.
I remember making snow forts after dad made huge piles with the snow blower.
I remember playing snow football with my brothers and sisters and tackling each other so hard that it would knock our breath out of us.
I remember listening to Steve Green in our bedrooms and thinking he rocked.
I remember watching fire works each July 4th that were launched from the break wall out next to the lighthouse.
I remember dad taking us to watch fast pitch softball under the lights over by Fort Ontario.
I remember diving off the high dive at the public swimming pool for the first time. It hurt.
I remember flexing my muscles at the pool for the girls to see and drool over.
I remember crying at weddings when girls I had crushes on got married.
I remember talking with my dad in the woods about sex…unreal.
I remember watching my dad referee basketball games and get ripped to shreds by the crowd that I was sitting in the midst of.
I remember mom making the best spaghetti in the entire world and then making apple pies that were to die for.
I remember not hitting puberty until I was like 15…I still to this day have a locker room phobia.
I remember the first time I heard how babies were born…I just shook my head in disbelief.
I remember watching the Wizard of Oz with my family each year and being deathly afraid of the monkeys.
I remember not having a television when I was little and asking our neighbors if we could come over to their house to watch Yankees baseball.
I remember my dad listening to Syracuse Basketball on AM radio late into the night.
I remember when I ran into my dad with a hard plastic sled on Fallbrook Mountain…tears came to his eyes.
I remember sleeping out in a cabin with my friend after we went squirrel hunting. I froze to death.
I remember drawing pictures while the pastor was preaching.
I remember the after church birthday celebrations after the Sunday evening services.
I remember my grandpa making us Chinese stars when they were illegal and taking us out to throw them at the side of the shed. It felt scandalous.
I remember hating going to bed when the sun was still shining outside. I just laid there looking out the window.
I remember the first time I was scared of war when Libya was giving us a hard time. Mom showed me how big they were compared to us and with that, I laid my head down and went to bed.
I remember stealing cookie dough out of the bowl in the kitchen when mom wasn’t looking.
I remember eating meals together as a family and laughing our heads off.
I remember mom always chiming in about some bible passage that showed us how we should talk, think, and behave. We called her a “sermon in shoes”.
I remember my dad playing circus with all us kids on family night and making merry-go-round music while he flipped us around.
I remember having church in our house when it got cancelled due to snow. Dad set up chairs in rows and spoke from a make-shift pulpit.
I remember sitting in the dentist chair and looking out the window over the Oswego River.
I remember catching baby pike down at “the slips” and putting them into my friend’s aquarium and watching them eat feeder guppies.
I remember the feeling of sitting at home with nothing to do.
I remember raising homing pigeons in the shed out back and when I finally let them out, one out of the ten actually came back. Stupid homing pigeons.
I remember going down to Bev’s Ice Cream for youth group and skipping rocks on the glassy evening Lake Ontario.
I remember asking Jesus into my heart when I was five kneeling at the couch.

I could go on and on, but I’ll stop there for now. Sometimes it’s therapeutic to rehearse the stories of old. They are salve to a restless soul. And that’s what I feel my soul has been as of late, restless & aimless.

Sometimes the best way to move into the unknown of your future is to revisit the certainties of your past. They have a way of shining light into the darkness of the present. A trip down memory lane is never a waste of time.

Comments

SkyWriting said…
hi jason. i'm from springfield, mo, and i'm singing the story at my church in a couple weeks. i have some questions on what some of the lyrics, are though, and i was wondering if you could e-mail them to me? (skyler@hillenburg.com) i would greatly appreciate it. love your music! have a great day! thanks!

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