"I remember the days of long ago; I meditate on all your works and consider what your hands have done."
Today was book group at work. (Who else but an editorial dept would form such a group at the office? Because we didn't get enough reading done at our desks... Not that reading for fun and reading for work are anything alike. Anyone who says so is lying. And is definitely not an editor.)
So like I said, it was book group day, which means it was my chance to pretend I was a college student once again, soaking up the luscious atmosphere of literary group discussion. We read selections from Donald Miller's A Million Miles in a Thousand Years and G. K. Chesterton's The Autobiography of (you guessed it) G. K. Chesterton. Both centered around the memory and how our remembering memories actually changes them in our minds... and changes us.
Among the (many personal and philosophical) points discussed was this question: Do our earliest memories say something about us, or are they more or less random? If they are meaningful, does that mean we tend to remember something that strikes a chord in our young souls, something that will represent a grand theme in our lives? Or does the early memory itself become the standard, the litmus test against which we measure the authenticity of all future memories? Ok, so we didn't ask all those questions. I fleshed them out a little (or a lot) in my mind. But I don't feel any closer to an answer. Maybe there isn't one.
As I write this, I'm eating a dinner of scrambled eggs with butter and a baked potato, soon to be drowned in sour cream, chives, and more butter. Both are washed down the hatch with a crisp Diet Pepsi. Why does that matter? Because each of these items is linked to a specific memory (or series of memories) from my childhood.
My grandma used to make me scrambled eggs with butter for breakfast. Especially in the summer, though I don't know why. I had forgotten about that until recently, but I swear there is no way to duplicate the smooth, steaming taste of eggs that have been cooked in a thin sheen of saturated fat and salted to perfection.
Baked potatoes were another standard for my mom and me. Usually accompanied by peas or green beans, nuked from their frozen state into a hot, green volcano erupting next to my noodles or whatever else we were having in our cozy, two-gal household (at least while it lasted).
And the Diet Pepsi... Look I know there are strong feelings in both camps. Coke vs. Pepsi has been known to break up marriages in my family. (Just kidding! Maybe...) Anyway, at this point, I don't even drink it because I like it. I drink it out of habit, you might even say out of allegiance. Fealty from a soda can? Indeed. I've heard of tribal loyalties based on less.
In conclusion, I have a lot of work to do answering those hefty memory questions I posed earlier. But all in due time. Right now, back to dinner. Before my eggs get cold.