Throwback Thursday: A Series

I used to save ticket stubs. I started back in the early 1990s. I kept them in a ziplock baggie. I did this for over 15 years.

I’m not sure why I stopped, but I did. Maybe it was when I started having kids and didn’t make it out as much. Either way, the ticket stubs stopped making their way into the baggie and then I lost the baggie. This was an awful realization because these stubs are much bigger than tiny pieces of paper. They’re scraps of memory; tangible strips of emotion.

Sally Mann recently said, “Using photographs as an instrument of memory is probably a mistake because I think that photographs actually sort of impoverish your memory in certain ways.” And I have to agree with her. I started saving these ticket stubs long before we carried cellphones everywhere. You weren’t allowed to take a camera into a show. This was a huge no-no. When you attended to a live show, you simply watched the show. You didn’t snap pictures from your iPhone and then upload it to Instagram proving to a group of people (who ultimately don’t give a shit) that you were there. Back then, you simply watched the damn show. And you listened to the show. And your memories of that show became richer. (At least for me.)

I know. I’m coming off as some crotchety old fart with this crap. And that is a shame. Because I’m also so totally guilty of this. Just last month I found myself snapping pictures while at the Mountain Goats show. Why did I feel compelled to do this? It was an awful shot. And yet I found myself, much later, on a train home, uploading it to Instagram. Why? The answer to that question isn’t, “Because my picture is journalistic!” The answer to that question isn’t, “Because people want to see my shitty picture of John Darnielle.”

The answer is more along the lines of, “Because I want to show people that I was at the Mountain Goats show.”

To which I would ask, “Why do you care?”

I understand why we upload the hell out of our memories. But I also get to question it. I question my motives for doing so. And maybe if I leave the phone at home, I’ll come away with richer memories.

But I digress.

I lost the baggie. Or so I thought. On Sunday, after my latest NYRR race in Central Park, I got home and decided to gather up all my recent bibs. (I save them as well.) I went to add them to an old filing cabinet I used to use for graphic design projects, recipes, and the like. That’s when I saw it, peaking out at me. The pink ziplock baggie!

I dove right in.

You know how when you receive too much stimulation all at once it can be too much and it leaves you feeling vulnerable? That happened to me as I sifted through all my old ticket stubs. I became overwhelmed with emotion. It was too much. So I put them away.

So I’m going to go through it weekly and upload them here. I’ll tell whatever story I can tell about each show (there are movies in there as well); who I went with; what was happening at the time; where I was living; and anything interesting that took place. I’m going to do this every Thursday.

So, without further ado, I give you my first post: Fugazi.

I attended with Missy and my brother Rob. We all lived in D.C. at the time. I walked there from my apartment on 16th Street. It was a chilly December evening.

NaBloPoMo: Over Time

Drop Back.

When I lived in State College, PA, I hated football. I was a waitress at a place called Ye Olde College Diner and while I loved football weekends for the tips, I hated the actual game. It came with the territory: the more you hated football, the better a waiter you became.

Working football weekends was a difficult feat. You were groped by a drunk idiots, stiffed by an sore losers, trampled by packs of frat boys, and having to sit through all the alumni stories about how “I graduated from Penn State before you were even born!” was torturous. But I made a lot of money—and I mean A LOT of money—so I jumped at the chance to work a football weekend.

When I went to Penn State, the football team was at the top of its game. They were well on their way to what would later become a bowl game and tickets were considered paper gold. For those of us that didn’t give a damn about the game, we made a killing selling our student tickets. It was a win-win for everyone involved: I worked and served people their fried food, stickies and milkshakes for tips, at the same time they paid me top dollar for my student tickets. For this reason, I never once went to a game.

Forward Progress.

It’s a Saturday afternoon in November of 2009 and I’m 35-years-old. The TV is on in our small (but nice) New York City apartment. The sun beats in through the windows warming us on an otherwise crisp fall day. My husband of six years sits next to me on the couch tapping away on his laptop. Our son is asleep in the room next door. It’s been 12 years since I graduated from Penn State (12 years!), and about 14 since I worked at the Diner. And I’m waiting. But it’s not on tables this time.

I’m waiting for the game to start.

New Site Stuff

I’m sure that by now you’ve noticed some changes taking place around here. We’re currently in the process of optimizing this Web site, making changes to the layout, design, and overall identity, etc. 

Please let us know if there are any bugs. More changes are going to come over the weekend (including adding in some color), and if there’s anything strange going on, we’d like to make those edits at that time.

Thanks! I do hope this proves to be rejuvenating for everyone!

About This Site

My name is Michele. I’m a 35-year-old graphic designer living in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. In August of 2007, I gave up my Midtown Manhattan job to become a stay-at-home mom. When I’m not busy entertaining my son, I’m designing logos like this one or Web sites like this one.

This Web site spans my life in New York City directly following my experience on September 11th, 2001, how I met my husband, our elopement to Niagara Falls, my pregnancy, and the birth of my son.

I write about living in New York City, the intimacies of my daily lifepregnancy, and motherhood. I also write a weekly column about one of my cats called Tuesdays with Murray.

CONTACT

Please feel free to contact me at mihow @ mihow.com. I enjoy getting email. I read everything I receive and I do try and write everyone back. I welcome comments as well (as long as you’re kind). Constructive criticism is always welcome but don’t be a chump. A lot of the best information found on this site come from the comments people leave.