– memories of a man getting older –


February 25th, 2011 · 1 Comment

There can be a fog that blurs the distinctions between reality, memories and dreams. Here’s one:

The Forum Theatre was where we went to “go to the movies.” It was the only place to go. It was a movie house with one screen and it’s currently the scene of a foggy memory.

I was outside, standing in a long line to see Bambi. You entered the Forum through wide front doors and walked up an inclining floor to the ticket window. This lobby area was rather dark and the color maroon comes to mind. The line moved slowly, inching forward, shuffling steps, closer and closer to the ticket window. The person in front of me got a ticket and then it was my turn.

I stood before the glass that held a round, metal, microphone-looking thing that would allow words to be exchanged. It was through this device that the ticket seller’s words arrived like a sledge hammer, “Sold out.”

And the memory ends, curtain down, lights up.

I don’t recall sharing the anguish with any friends yet it would be odd if I had gone to the movies by myself. Certainly Stevie would have been with me. Maybe Eddie, Ricky, Kenny, Bobby or Billie. But, no, there is no memory of any of them on this occasion. Me alone – sold out.

Yet, looking around through other memories I find some of the strongest are of events when I have been by myself. Most of these I do not share, with reason. For there are true things that happen and these truths sound ridiculous and unbelievable to others. When trying to narrate these types of events it becomes apparent there is absolutely nothing to be gained by another person having some minimal understanding of them, and a minimal understanding is all that seems possible. So, I reason, there is no point in the telling. It appears things that are extraordinary – out of this word – do not translate well into words or thoughts to be understood. It appears these gems reside not in the grey matter of understanding but elsewhere.

Well, I hope my daughter experiences the opportunities that being alone can bring. I hope she has a multitude of experiences she sees the futility of sharing. And, I hope there is a ticket left when she gets to the window.

Tags: Metuchen N.J.

1 response so far ↓

  • 1 Cliff Breen // Feb 27, 2011 at 2:32 am

    Hi Al.. I loved your piece about the Forum and Bambi. The same thing happened to me when Wizard of Oz was playing.. waited forever in a line with my sister stretching up the street beside the Forum only to be just in the door and hear it was sold out.

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