Tuesday, July 20, 2010

I saw a picture today...

Oh, Facebook.

You bringer of unexpected memories of the past, both sweet and bittersweet.

It amazes me that I can sit here, completely unsuspectingly and a single photo posted by someone I have never met in my life can transport me to a time I hadn't thought of in years. A picture of three long-haired high school boys, giving an unknown camera-person the finger outside of a run-down cabin.

When I was about 15 years old, my family was visited my aunt and uncle, who were not really my aunt and uncle but rather two of my parents' closest friends (although incidentally it turned out that we were somehow related by marriage a few generations back). They had three children, the youngest one a year older than I. Running with the extended-family dynamic, I grew up thinking of these kids as my cousins. In childhood, I was closer with them than most of my blood-cousins anyway.

As we grew older, it became less cool to be shipped around while our parents got together and I'm pretty sure that this was one of the last times any of the kids decided to come up to our place with Auntie Lyn and Uncle Steve. This time, I believe it was sometime in late April, my youngest cousin Jamie came along and brought a friend...

Ohh boy, was my awkward little 15-yr-old self smitten.

For two days I experienced what was, to date, one of the most intense if short-lived crushes on the slightly older friend that had invaded my home. Tall, slim and long-haired, and musically inclined which was green-light-go for my adolescent fantasies. Whereas my cousin, in typical-16-year-old guy fashion (no hard feelings Jamie!) was not particularly interested in hanging out with his vaguely odd, dweeby little cousin, but his friend took an interest in talking to me about my musical interests and aspirations, and although in retrospect this was likely more-or-less a bone-throwing act of patronization, at the time I was enthralled with the attention.

Being the socially awkward teen I was I wanted to embark on some kind of whirlwind romance but my flirting skills were stunted and the most I could muster at the best of times was a giggle or a shy upturned glance a la Lauren Bacall. When the weekend drew to an end I withdrew into typical teen 'emo' behaviour - the moodiness, the candles and bad poetry, all that.

Through the years the memories faded, but it's surprising how a picture can take you back to that tumultuous age where your emotions rose and fell with the abandon of a discarded plastic bag (credit to American Beauty for that imagery lol)

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