Life in my small pond & Me
Posted May 29, 2010on:
One of the great things about living in a small pond is you know a lot of the fish who reside in it. I know many of the guppies, goldfish and, yes, even some piranhas swimming by.
Good news. I’m done with the fish analogy.
It is true that just about everywhere I go I find people I know. It’s not because I’m an important or powerful person. Instead, it’s a function of:
- Being on the planet, especially the La Crosse planet, a very long time.
- Having work that takes me into all aspects of the community, as a reporter and later as freelance write and personal historian.
It is damn fun to be with someone else who says, “you know everybody.”
Despite that prevailing notion, I do not. And please don’t ask me for anyone’s name. I used to be able to remember them or at least know how I know them, but now …
The other day when I spoke at that Vital Aging conference at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse, I looked over and at someone in the crowd and said, “I know you.” It took me a minute or two to connect she was a parenting class that my husband and I took many moons ago.
She was so impressed with my memory – I remembered she was a kindergarten teacher up in Onalaska, just north of La Crosse. She even accused me of having a good memory. Hah!
I think I knew this person back when the 40-megabyte brain that I was born with did not get so packed full. Early stuff in seemed to have a better chance of staying there.
And today’s brains hopefully are built with hard drives that hold many, many gigabytes.
But the real reason I’m writing this blog piece is that my son and girlfriend were just down in Atlanta looking for a place to live in the fall when they move there. They found a place and when they signed the lease, the owner said to Michael, “Where did your parents grow up?”
He said Milwaukee for his dad and St. Louis for me.
The landlord then said, “I went to high school with your mom.”
He actually was in my brother’s class, two grades older. I was friends with his sister.
The good news is that the landlord still rented to Michael, despite this family connection.
How fun is that. I don’t have to even visit Atlanta and there is someone I know. You can run, Michael, but you cannot hide.