Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Cardboard box archaeology.

To commemorate my second sick day in a row, I went through a cardboard box I keep to throw things in -- whatever I think I'll want to remember in the future.

There were lots of old emails from the nascent age of emailing, a ream of instant message correspondence, pictures, tapes, journals, papers, notes, etc.

Anyone who knows me knows I can't remember a damn thing, so the box is my way of making up for it. I'll sift through it, won't remember the relevance of something, and throw it out. But most of the time these things provide that spark, and a place or a time or a face comes back instantly. Mentioned it to a friend today and she says all Cancers do it.

Does anyone else do this? If so, what do you keep in there?

The strangest part is that on four different occasions, I dug through the box, came across something, and the person associated with that object either called me, sent me a text message, or emailed at that particular moment. Sara called when I was reading one of our lengthy, convoluted emails, I received an email update about Jenny's blog after I came across a printout of one of our rare instant messages, Amanda emailed as I read one of her letters (we haven't talked to each other in six months), and in possibly the weirdest case, Mel instant messaged me saying that Mark Kozelek from Red House Painters sounded like Neil Young...right after I'd rummaged through the box and picked up a set list from Mark Kozelek's appearance at a Neil Young tribute concert.

WTF is that all about?


Anonymous said...

I keep a cardboard box of porn.

millionsuns said...

come on Kevin, where are your balls? no need to be anonymous!

Anonymous said...

in fact mike you have to get back Boner Jams 03 to me

Jenny said...

If I remember correctly, you're the one that explained "synchronicity" to me (dear god was it really) 12 years ago. Frankly, I'm not in the least bit surprised.Suzy has a way of doing that to me, whenever I mention her out loud, I hear from her in some context in the next 24 hours. Bizarre.

I too keep a box. I still have in it old notes sara and I passed in high school, old love letters, Owen's ridiculously talented drawings, a ream of silver Christmas tree tinsel that i carried around in my courderoy pockets for 6 months after finding it one night in august on an acid trip, concluding in my heightened spiritual state that it was the physical incarnation of my passion . In short, things from my teenage years. Also, most of our back and forth emails from 1995. I have a very large box.

I also have a porcelain bowl with a mask-shaped lid full of beach sand. unfortunately, I no longer remember from whence that sand came. If any of YOU remember, please remind me, or else I'm going to throw it out. I, too, have a swiss cheese memory.

amanda said...

I use to have like three trunks full of that shit. You know, My Journals (capital J), the salt and pepper shakers from the Sheraton that Sara and I went to on the last day of summer, baby tees too small for me now, Own's drawings, E-nails from you, blah blah blah. But then There was a mishap with my storage facility sending bills to the wriongs addres and they auctioned all my shit off. The question, who wants my old memories? The CD and Vinyl collections I can understand, those have cash value and cache, but the drumstick from Bikini Kill cobvered in nosebleed clood? The cllection of "trip" journals, the pictures of strangers, who buys this stuff just to throw it away?
remebering that has totally bummed me out. Now I just throw away all unecessary junk seeing as how my bookshelves and music shelves and various other media accoutremens are taking over my life and apartment. In my library, I shit you not, one of my cats (Black Sabbath) got lost in these mammoth stacks of books and graphic novels that are overflow from my bursting shelves. She was meowing and I COULD NOT FIND HER. Until I shifted one of the crumbling stacks and found her curled up between old issues of Transmetroploitan and my Red Sox Century book. Anyway, I miss having those boxes of random meanignfl stuff but I don;t muiss it too. Sometimnes it just made me sad. And disorgained.

amanda said...

I can't type and it would not let me edit my comment

Sara J. Allen said...

I was kicked out of my house last summer. My parents downsized and their requests for me to remove my boxes of stuff were not really requests anymore.

We hauled it all up from NC and I opened the boxes and it was shocking how much I had saved. Yes, millions of napkins and a Disney Collection and My Little Ponies and the Rolling Stone featuring Kurt Cobain's death and love letters and letters even better than love letter and things stolen from the Sheraton and things I cannot place for the life of me. Why didn't I have a labeler when I was 17?

Jenny, the sand, it's on the tip of my tongue, i can almost remember, but not quite. Kure Beach with Marco and Shane? God, I haven't thought of that in a really long time. Did that really happen?