Thanksgiving has long been my favorite non-denominational, non-music related holiday. It’s the only weekend of the year when everyone I know retreats to the suburbs for an extended week of nostalgia and pretty much the only time of the year I’m relaxed enough to completely check out of reality. My room at home has no clock, a broken phone and only lets in minimal sunlight, so I managed to pack a weeks worth of sleep into 36 glorious hours. I rarely checked my voicemail, let my BlackBerry messages pile-up and spent most of my free time importing old CDs into itunes (side note: How sick were God Street Wine?). It felt good---healthy---to let life settle for a second. Even the internet felt closed.
With the exception of the few months I lived at home after college, I haven’t spent any considerable time at my parent’s house since I was 18, so my room is kind of a memorial to my teenage years: my shelves are filled with outdated music books, yellowed newspaper clippings and soccer trophies I barely remember winning. At one point my mom and dad probably classified most of those ornaments as clutter, but now they seem to trace my growing pains through the fleeting trends and interests I embraced in the ‘80s and ‘90s.
Last time I was home I didn’t bring my computer, so I pulled out my old high school yearbook when I needed a quick distraction from my families' trademark brand of Jewish gossip. In retrospect, I probably spent more time working on the text for that senior yearbook page than I did studying for my math class, which is also probably why I now have both a blog and a GMAT math tutor. Yet, it’s still interesting to see who I felt the need to thank on paper ten years ago next "semester." At the time those words felt so finite, but a decade of memories later I'm proud to say most of those people are still around, even if many of them have aged from friends to family.
For whatever reason, I also used six quotes to caption the assortment of pictures spread throughout my proto-blog ramble. Like any slightly left-leaning high school dork, I included a few obligatory adolescent references to Phish, Saved by Bell and A Clockwork Orange (I was such a rebel) and I may or may not have included a Ben Harper line about “burning one down” (hell, back then he seemed more underground than the Grateful Dead).
But I quote I’m proudest of using I probably haven’t thought of since about this time in 1998: “The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world he doesn't exist.”
Like most of you, I first heard that line used in the Usual Suspects, but I've since learned that it is actually culled from Charles Baudelaire’s "The Generous Gambler." Either way, it kind of ties together two of the many lessons I’ve learned in the ten years since I slept in my parent’s house on a regular basis: that you should never underestimate anyone (for good or bad) and that you never know who or what you are going to find when you least expect it (ditto).