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Errantry: Novak's Journal
...Words to cast/My feelings into sculpted thoughts/To make some wisdom last
Personal: The Blizzard of '08 and Childhood Superpowers 
6th-Feb-2008 03:15 pm
Cheerios/Glories of Youth
There was a time in my life when the blizzard raging outside right now would have filled me with thrills of anticipation, especially in its forecast of twelve to eighteen inches of snow accumulating today. The cancellation of the University's sessions today has instead only hit me as an opportunity to do laundry. If you'd told the 9 year-old me that I'd be happy to do laundry in the face of such disaster, instead of making what I now know to be life-threatening tunnels along with my obligatory snow fort, I would have stared at you with the acute blankness of Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder before immediately forgetting you and your silly words and returning to my much more important work.

Of course, I might at that time welcomed the adult observation that my childhood utter imperviousness to cold constituted an authentic superpower: at some point I inherited my family's normative reaction to this weather, which is more on the order of kryptonite than invulnerability. Now I fear that it will soon be my tiny nieces who are digging tunnels under a few feet of snow and endangering themselves in that way, once they too learn the lesson that childhood seems best experienced away from adult eyes. But I wish I was nearer to them right now, to watch them play in the utter mess left by the storm, though I confess that watching them from behind glass with a cup of hot chocolate sounds more appealing, at least after maybe five minutes' play with them in their snowsuits. I suppose I could resurrect that much of the 9 year-old Mike before succumbing to the elements....
6th-Feb-2008 09:46 pm (UTC)
At Mass today I saw a tiny girl the spitting image of Haley race down the aisles during the homily (on sincerity). As I tried later to ignore the people sneaking past my seat after the distribution of the ashes or after Communion, I thought to myself that her glee -- which somehow disturbed no one, even me -- was far more appropriate than the subtle silent sneaking of her elders...

Of course, no one who ends up smiling when they receive ashes should be allowed to say anything on the subject of proper behavior...
6th-Feb-2008 09:56 pm (UTC)
One of my favourite memories of the young Grace was when I was at Mass when visiting my sister: the psalm had just finished, which was a fairly pleasing if not quite upbeat musical setting, and in the pause before the second reading began, the one year-old Grace shouted out, "Yay!"

And I suddenly realized, as people smiled or laughed quietly, that that, too, like your thoughts today about the Haley look-alike, was probably the best and most appropriate reaction of the lot of us....

Edited at 2008-02-06 09:59 pm (UTC)
6th-Feb-2008 10:41 pm (UTC)
And yet that "yay" coming out of a dozen teenagers, is why I loathe LifeTeen Masses... hmm.
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