Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Nostalgia Gone

I could start this blog by stating my name is Warren and I’m a Notary Public but that style opening was used for the letter R.  Compounding my opening hook dilemma is my O blog expounded on Originality, which puts the onus on using the same opening twice so close together.  If you had the inclination and a few dollars you too could become a Notary Public, no real requirements necessary.  And the work of a Notary is very boring.  A notary is relegated to the role of a mere observer of other people’s paperwork without input or comment.  Notary is not an interesting topic.

One good (or not so good) N thought down the drain.  The dictionary is full of words but my head is not.

Santa Claus wants to know if you have been Naughty or Nice. Change the phrase and you come out with nice and naughty. Now that is an image that excites me.  The kinky side of my brain is working overtime now.  Sounds like a women’s lingerie commercial; I see a tall, olive skinned woman approaching…

“No,” the good angel on my shoulder is saying while wagging his (maybe it is a she angel, can’t tell with all the feathers) finger.  “Those day dreams are reserved for teenaged boys.  You need to write about important issues."

“All I can think of is notorious, nefarious, nuclear bomb, newspeak and narcotic.  Not very nice."

My little shoulder angel is now silent.  Writing is a solitary task.  People who hear and listen to voices usually end up in psychiatric wards for treatment.  And if I heard those voices I wouldn’t tell anyone, I got that good advice from the other angel on my shoulder.  He hates to be locked up and medicated.

Now the blog

News from New Jersey, my home state for the first 33 years of my life, is dire.  The recent storm devastated my father’s hometown, caused significant damage to the neighborhood of a friend since fifth grade and inflicted incalculable damage to many beach towns of legend.  Any thoughts of return trips to indulge in nostalgic adventures are gone.
I remember going to a July 4th celebration in Asbury Park with friends to see fireworks and cruise Ocean Avenue years ago.  We ventured out to near the end of one of the stone jetties to get a better view.  The view was great, ocean on three sides and a clear view of fireworks ignited from an off-shore barge.  As we intently watched the fireworks and maintained a steady footing on the slippery jetty we neglected the most serious danger.  The ocean: beautiful, awesome, powerful and dangerous all at once.

A wave spewed from the sea and crashed over the revelers at the end of the pier.  Luckily nobody was washed off the jetty.  But my friends and I were drenched, soaked from head to foot.  We retreated off the jetty, over the beach and into a local pavilion.  We found a bathroom, stripped down and attempted to dry ourselves with paper towels and toilet paper.  We drove 50 miles home with soaked shoes and clothes.  No harm done, but we came close to personal harm.  At 18 years of age we had no idea how close we had come to serious injury or worse.  If we had known the real danger we faced a wonderful, quirky memory would be tarnished with dread.

After my stint in the army I worked for the railroad that served the East Coast.  Now I see pictures of tracks underwater, a boat tossed onto the train tracks like a toy, and water pouring into underground stations.  My work then was hard and sometimes dangerous; I cannot visualize rebuilding the rail infrastructure, or roads, or bridges, or ports, or an entire city.

Now the coastal towns are damaged, beaches washed away and the pavilions damaged.  Seaside attractions all along the shore (as Jersey residents call the beach area) are destroyed, lives lost, homes damaged, and Ocean Avenue under water.  TV broadcasts and newspaper headlines scream these obscene descriptions to the world.

There is no catchy ending to my blog.  Just a deep sadness.  Nostalgia gone. 

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1 comment:

  1. We both got stuck with our chosen letter of the alphabet this week. That is why I jumbled the letters about and randomly chose one each week. This week I was really stuck so made up a story!