Greatful Dead
April 27, 2007

You know me now, at least glimpses of my life, and you probably have images and ideas. But if you knew me then at all of 16, you would see a girl with Phish t-shirts, a grey Ford Taurus station wagon with dancing bears, and a propensity to listen to CSN&Y. We all have those phases. Well maybe not us all I guess others could be different. For my college roommate it was R&B. Go figure. But they are phases. They make up our younger selves and the basis of our older memories. They create a part of who we are today and speak to a side of us. I can never forget that was who I was as a happy go lucky high schooler. I had the best friends in the world, who I spent all my days with. We drank and smoked and sat around philosophizing about life and love. We played and studied. Those girls knew me and we acted as a unit. I saw myself aging this way with long grey braids and Birkenstocks, never thinking twice about growing up or moving on. I brought these ideas with me to college attaching the stickers to my dorm room wall. Like all things I slowly grew and changed. My music taste varied and my wardrobe expanded from used Levi's. So much for leather sandals at least ones with straps. But I have that memory with me still and I can hear Sugar Magnolia, Friend of the Devil, and China Cat Sunflower and feel wonderfully terrifically hippy peacy lovingly great about my self, my life and where I have been. Those girls and those days were gratefully memorable and I can recall it all as if it were yesterday.

Shannon went first recalling details of being at home. Summer break for our soon to be Junior selves. She was lying on her bed when her dad entered her room requesting all her Grateful Dead CD's. He told her of the news and as a tribute would be playing their tunes on loop all day at the restaurant he owned.

Magoo went next and recalled being in the moving in stages of his house as a soon to be freshman in college. It was his first days of life in Tampa. In the August heat of Florida he was unpacking and had the T.V. on. Though not a fan, he recollected the moment clearly as well.

I finished our trio of stories. I was in Chicago at a summer debate program, in the basement of a building at Northwestern learning fun facts about immigration law. Our instructor walked in and announced the news and then pronounced "Phish Phorever" in bold letters across the chalk board. Words too that did not survive - but that is a whole 'nother story.

Over large ass bowels of pasta at our local Mac Grill with paper table clothes, crayons, and Magoo and Shannon's drawing lessons, we discussed those younger days of our pasts. All things from those high school times; parties, music, laser light shows, and other assorted paraphernalia. That and the Dead and how we all remember where we were when Jerry died. As if it is our generations JFK. Though Jerry was not our generation, at least not initially. But that was over ten years ago and we all remember. Vividly. Even Magoo, who vowed that he did not listen, had a memory. Isn't it amazing how we can recall these details? How certain moments in time seem to be frozen and we can recollect the time of day, weather, smells and tastes. Was he that monumental to our music and society? Was it the culture he promulgated and the ideas that went with it? I am sure that this could be the case for others. But maybe for us it was just a vestige of our youth. I know where I was because I was happy and in love with my teenaged self. I was good at being 16 and I had not a care in the world. I spent the ins and outs of my days with my friends enjoying our leisure days. I may have been a pseudo hippy who had liberal notions, but I had beautifully happy high school days. I can taste that feeling, which may be why I can recollect that moment in time so well. And for that I am Grateful.

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7 Comments:
Blogger JustRun said:

I was working my summer job. I remember thinking "why am I working at this age?" Jerry would have probably said the same.

6:06 AM 


Blogger brookem said:

i remember i used to have grateful dead clay-like? earrings. wow. and those days i was wearing cords, wool socks (w/birks because that was hip), or those felt-like clogs, with either a big wool sweater or a long sleeve shirt with a tee shirt over it. ha, what a fashion statement we were back then.

7:03 AM 


Blogger Mel said:

Oh how I love the Dead. I was a little young to be buying albums and smoking out....but I've been to 5 concerts. My father was a Dead Head for as long as they were around and after Jerry died he picked up on the String Cheese Incident scene. He would travel all over the country. He took me to one just last fall. It was amazing, it was almost like being at a Dead concert because they do so many covers.

On weekends I still wear my birks and Dead t shirts....I wear my HUGE tye dyes to bed...:)

Love this post

10:56 AM 


Blogger Accidentally Me said:

You were a hippie!!! That is adorable!

I think I was like 10 at the time, so it wasn't really a story that resonated with me...

11:10 AM 


Blogger dara said:

I love the Dead. In high school, my best friend and I used to listen to them over and over again. And in college, I wore Dead t-shirts with my long skirts and birkenstocks all the time, and stuck the stickers all over everything I owned.

But I only have a vague idea where I was when I heard -- because it was right around the time I was graduating from college and I had no tv.

11:20 AM 


Blogger Bre said:

My uncle is a huge Deadhead. I remember thinking of him immediately and calling him at work to see if he was ok!

1:38 PM 


Blogger Jessica said:

And I assume kindies in a chillum?

6:34 PM 


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