Friday, November 19, 2010

At the Beach - 1983


I love this picture.  It reminds me of those grainy shots you see of the 1950s family, where the greens and the peaches and the oranges are all a little too bright and there's an old Buick or Pontiac somewhere in a driveway.  I look at those old photos and think, "I may be stressed and worried and not calm right now," but there's a world that's perfect.  I always feel calm when I look at those old pictures.

So here we are.  That's me in the center, in 1983.  (At least we think it's me.  I don't remember this day, but others do, and I'll believe them when they say I was there.)  That's the year I graduated from high school and this picture captures us all being together.  Friends.  Part of a tribe.  I've written before about being new in this area and looking for friends.  Now that I've got some I realize that I want more.  Not necessarily more friends, but friends in a different way.  I want to be part of a tribe, like I was in 1983. The kind of tribe where some group thing is going on most weekends, where you don't need an invite to attend, just know where people are and show up.

I was in a few tribes back then, and one of them is still together, almost 30 years later, raising their children in Cleveland Heights, Ohio.  I see them on Facebook, still a tribe.  It felt so enveloping.  So safe to be part of something bigger.  It's an easier push, that pushing, when you're not alone. 

There's a quote I latched onto many years ago that feels relevant now.  A band was being interviewed and the interviewer asked a band member what they were after.  "I want what we all want," he said, "Connection.  Clarity.  Bendiction."

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