Wednesday, April 30, 2008


I’m sitting here eating this “eating right” bar of the peanut butter crisp variety and I am really wishing that it was a Tiger’s Milk Bar. It almost tastes like one but it isn’t. When I was young, I would go on trips to Sears with Mom and Sisterhead and we would go to this section where there were treats and I would get Tiger’s Milk Bars and this absolutely divine red licorice that I think was slightly raspberry flavored and it had a panda on the box. Sears, like many of my childhood memories, is Sepia toned. The yellowish nature of the memory could also be due to cheap fluorescent lighting. I have no recollection of what was around this section of the store but I do remember shelving and these brightly colored treats staring at me from the dull metal shelving.

I wonder if Mom had other reasons for going to Sears. Was there generally other shopping involved? Did we just go there for Tiger’s Milk Bars and Licorice? Was it even Sears? Were there other treats that I don’t remember as well? Luckily, Mom reads the blog so she can probably answer some of these questions.

The building that was once Sears isn’t anymore. I don’t know if it is anything. I don’t know if it is even standing. I don’t know much about how the old neighborhood looks. Whenever I go home I rarely stop by. There isn’t much there and what is there makes me a little bit sad. I remember driving past the condo where I lived from age 2ish until right before my 10th birthday. I turned into the alley and everything looked so sad. It was dirty, silent, and empty. It wasn’t the way I remembered it at all. I remembered running though the “yard” and down the sidewalk with friends. I remembered hiding throughout the complex and all the friends Sisterhead and I had living nearby. It didn’t look like the place I played.

The house we moved into after leaving the condo is where my parents live today. It’s a happy place. The yard is lush and green, there is a garden. There are trees I used to climb and it looks better now than it ever did before. When we moved there, Sisterhead and I didn’t want to go. We loved our new house but there was something about the old one that was special. Sisterhead was born there. I had my first room that was all my own there. Our friends were there. I never really hung out with the neighborhood kids at the new place. Sisterhead found a few friends there but it wasn’t the same. Then again, I was a teenager and playing tag in the backyard didn’t have the same feel to it. There were different things to do and the world was larger.

Now that I am older the world seems small again. Going home doesn’t seem to take too long and when I get there things are just where I left them, but with some minor changes. My home in Chicago seems closer to my parent’s house than my parent’s house seems to the old neighborhood and Sears. I guess that is just part of life changing.

1. Horses in my dreams/ Like waves like the sea/ They pull out of here/ They pull they are free

2. Oh here we go again/ It’s time for the same arguments about/ About that and a little bit of this

3. What about the time/ You were rolling over/ Fell on your face/ You must be having fun

4. Unexplainable things will happen when we really see into each others eyes/ Right/ So why is it we rarely find the time to see each other in the eyes

5. You consider me the young apprentice/ Caught between the scylla and charybidis/ Hypnotized by you if I should linger/ Staring at the ring around your finger. Wrapped Around Your Finger, The Police (well actually it was a Tori Amos cover but have The Police version too and it is by them) identified by Katrina


Mom said...

I was over at Andersen today, and they are painting the duplex you lived in until you were nearly 3. Hmm, I would have thought we got the "tiger milk bars" (as you used to say) and licorice at the grocery store. But I'm not sure. No, we didn't go to Sears just for treats, but for other miscellaneous shopping. It was definitely *not* my favorite store. I'll have to think about whether there were other treats...

Didn't we go to Midtown Global Market when you were in Mpls. last? The old Sears building is still standing (it's one of thosse historic landmarks); it has been totally revitalized and is charming and wonderful and truly international. We will go when you are here in May, for sure. And we can walk on the Midtown Greenway. There's a lot to recommend "beautiful downtown Phillips" these days. But it's still not the "home" it used to be.

My own early-childhood memories are kind of sepia-toned too. Interesting...

Katrina said...

"sepia toned" makes me think of the beginning of While You Were Sleeping.

Yeah, it never seems the same looking at the old neighborhood. The people who bought our house painted it and changed so much of the landscape that when I go by it makes me very, very sad to look at it. In the beginning it looked good but then they kept doing and doing and it became way too much.

What I remember about going to Sears is playing amongst the clothes. My brother and I would hide under the racks picking up all the needles on the floors and have a competition of who could collect the most. Safe weren't we?

#5 - Wrapped Around Your Finger - The Police

Mrs. Loquacious said...

It's funny, the childhood memories we carry. Mine involve an old "Met" and "Woodwards" store in downtown Edmonton. The former department stores were always filthy in the wintertime and I remember browsing through the aisles of Hallowe'en costumes and Christmas decorations. It was a good, pure time in my life :)

Neither store exists today, and sometimes I get ridiculously nostalgic and sad thinking about such things and places. We are silly creatures of sentiment, aren't we?!

Natalie said...

i have vague memories of mason blanche in new orleans. i don't remember anything about it other than it was a department store and santa was there once. my other memory from that time period was eating at panchos mexican restaurant. it was so good. i ate at one two years ago and thought it was the grossest mexican food i had ever eaten. surely they used to be better! surely my memory didn't fail me. surely!

notfearingchange said...

Hmmm....licorice and chocolate...yum...

Funny how memories come trickling in at times! :-)