~ Oscar Wilde
Several weeks ago, I was sitting on my couch, quietly reading a book and I glanced up. My eyes lingered on a Vettriano print I have hanging in the corner and as I began thinking about the painting I realized….
It's gotta go.
"Dance Me To The End of Love" is a beautiful print, as is "The Singing Butler" and "Elegy for the Dead Admiral," both of which hang in my dining area (not that I've gotten a dining room table yet).
But they've all got to go.
They all remind me of Dipshit. They're happy memories, and that's not a bad thing. In fact, it's a good thing. But as I move forward with my life, the more I need to let go of the past.
I thought about simply replacing my current Vettriano's with other Vettriano's but as I scrolled through the offerings on both art.com and allposters.com I realized one thing: every Vettriano print I saw reminds me of Dipshit. I'm not sure why that is. Perhaps it's the style or maybe the romanticism I feel whenever I see a Vettriano, but whatever it is, I always correlate it with Dipshit.
Again, not a bad thing, but it's not a good thing either. To look at all the art work on your walls and immediately think of your ex husband? Makes moving on to bigger and better things a bit difficult, wouldn't you agree?
The irony is that as I sit here typing this post out, I'm wearing my engagement ring. No qualms, no forlorn sighing, no bitter memories…. In fact, one memory I have of this ring is from my bachelorette party. My (ah-mazing) friend Brande' came over the next morning with pictures from the party and there's a glare across the picture. "What's that?" I asked.
"That's your ring, honey," she patiently explained to my blonde self.
"Ooooooo…." I have to hand it to him. For a douchebag, he had great taste in engagement rings.
It's amazing what you associate memories with. A picture hanging on the wall brings back once-happy memories for me while a ring on my finger does nothing.
Songs. Scents even. Movies perhaps. Books.
My sister laughs and laughs because she knows one of my favorite scents ever is fudge and horse manure. Mixed. BEFORE YOU JUDGE ME…. I associate that scent with one of my most favorite spots on earth: Mackinac Island.
I always associate U2's Angel of Harlem with the night I drove into Chicago along Lake Shore Drive with my sunroof open at sunset thinking to myself, "I'm going to live here. I'm going to ace my interview tomorrow and live here in this magnificent city." And I did.
The song "Whoomp There It Is" brings to mind a certain guy from CMU named Travis. Travis was a "country boy" from Manistee who was rooming with a "city slicker" from Chicago named Jason. Now Jason was a definite prep and Travis was a "I don't give a shit" kind of guy and you always knew when Travis was drinking (or not) because he'd just track down Jason wherever he was in the room and scream, or whisper, or say in a normal tone of voice, "Tag team back again…." Over. And over. And over. And over again. Until Jason would run from the room screaming. Literally.
My favorite box to unpack when I moved into my apartment was the one holding my photo albums and such. The first one I grabbed and dug through was the one from Central. And as I sat there flipping through the various photos, I tripped across one of Travis and Jason. Of course, in college, I had a thing for Jason, who had a thing for my roommate Sarah. Right next to it was a picture of Travis. And all I could think almost a full 18 years later was, "What the hell were you thinking, Mo? Travis was HOT!"
Not the brightest lightbulb in the chandelier back then, that's for sure.
Grocery shopping with me is impossible. Everytime I see fingerling potatoes I get the giggles thinking of Brande' quizzing me on just how large (or rather, small) a past…. well, the term lover is adequate but as he wasn't, I don't want to use that word. Y'all are smart; you know where I'm going with that.
Vanilla wafers make me laugh, too. One night, my friend Kony asked if I could pick up some Nilla Wafers on my way to her house where we were going to make rum balls to send to our boys overseas. Blonde that I am, I bought vanilla wafers, not Nilla Wafers. She just sighed, laughed, and said, "Oh, Mo" while I traipsed back to the Jewel to get the right ones.
Archipalego's Bergamot Tobacco scented candle reminds me of my honeymoon. El Producto cigars bring to mind my maternal grandpa and his endless tinkering and eyes always twinkling. Drakkar Noir and Swiss Army cologne remind me of high school and college boys. Men's Speedstick will forever remind me of my father….
I just noticed that the majority of my scented memories, even the ones I don't mention here, are related to men. Hmmmm…..
Movies…. Here's a funny Mandley Family story for you involving movies.
One night, the five of us Mandleys went to Comerica Park to catch a game (that's actually where the pic of my mom and dad I posted a few weeks ago was taken). So as we're leaving, I was walking with my dad and asked, "Hey Dad! What's a better baseball movie? Field of Dreams or The Sandlot?"
My dad thinks about this for all of five seconds and says, "I don't know. But did I tell you what that shittin' VCR out at school did to my copy of Field of Dreams?"
Now my brother, who had been walking about fifteen feet ahead of us with my mom and sister and many, many other people shouts, "No, Jim! You didn't! But why don't you tell us now?"
And my poor, innocent, and yes, deaf, father looks at me and says, "Am I talking too loud again?"
And my brother of course shouts, "Noooooooo!"
And the crowd laughed. And my Speedstick-smelling dad laughed.
And it was a good memory.