Yesterday at work, I was standing out by the new reception/circulation desk when a woman I'd previously directed to the testing center walked over and said, "I hope you won't think I'm rude, but...are you (my full name)?" I blinked and said, "Well, yes, I am." Turns out that she's a distant cousin of a boy I dated in high school, and that's how she knew me. She also grew up next door to Hopkins.
That put me in a nostalgic mood of sorts. I was a big Duran Duran fan growing up, and before you laugh, I have eclectic musical tastes. I can sing most of Bizet's Carmen, know the lyrics to multiple AC/DC songs, had Blondie on vinyl, and used one of the first Walkmans in my school to drown out idle prattle with the dulcet tones of Siouxsie and the Banshees. Duran Duran recently released a new album, the first song off of which is "All You Need is Now", a paean to youthful naivete about how fast one grows up and reality sets in.
I immediately downloaded it to my iPod.
Now I'm inspired by the ready availability of Eighties-style clothing to deliberately defy the First Gay Rule of Fashion: if you were old enough to wear it the first time, you're too old to wear it the second; i.e., you will look ridiculous if you try to return to the styles of your youth when you're in middle age. I'm not thinking everyday wardrobe, though. I've decided to go as myself for Halloween- myself at 16. Since I can do stage makeup and am not afraid to wear a wig, it should be relatively easy.
Still, I don't know whether I should be happy or disturbed that people who haven't seen me in two and a half decades recognize me immediately. Have I changed that little? What about me is so immutable that it's so obvious? The moment I turn so that they can see my eyes, it's completely clinched.
Our move back into the library building is somewhat to blame for this nostalgia, since the carpet that was installed while Hopkins was a student there finally got pulled up and replaced during the renovation. I'd like him to see the building as it is now, but what demons would that put to rest when I'm such a concrete reminder of his past?
Well, if I end up pursuing the Halloween costume, I'll get someone to take pictures of it. It's the last time I plan to revisit that look...if only the rest of it were as easy to let go.