Skip to main content

New Thoughts About Old Thoughts

So today I was going through a bunch of old notebooks I had stashed away in one of my dresser drawers. I was curious what kinds of things I had written in these things, some of which date back to my first years of high school.

A few observations:

1) I had an awesome sense of humor. Where did that go?

2) My memories of the past often do not include my emotional state of the time. I read many entries about how miserable I was at certain points of my life, and I have a hard time remembering those feelings.

3) To build on #2, my past feelings aren't the only things that are unrecognizable. Some of those things were written by an entirely different person, somebody I would hardly recognize as myself were I to have coffee with him today.

4) My handwriting varies from wildly illegible to quite good. Why the hell didn't I just always write in the latter style?

5) Some of the events I wrote about are still too painful for me to re-read, even after years of distance.

6) Nevertheless, I found that going through these was a great way to take stock of where I have come so far.

7) I need to write more often.

I'll leave you with a few entries I found detailing my first Greyhound bus experience:


Arrived at Kansas City Greyhound station shortly before 7:00. Next bus leaves at 1:00am. Was accosted, shortly after arriving, by a man claiming to need gas money for an elderly handicapped relative, or something of the sort. Told him I've no money. Not looking forward to the 6 hour wait...

A large, unkempt man sat next to me - not much said, but seemed nice enough.

A girl sat beside me on the bench earlier. Perhaps my age, perhaps a little younger. She looked nervous. Her glances shot dramatically from her extreme left to her extreme right and back again. Wondered if this was her first time traveling. Or perhaps she was confused.

*Note to self: Falafel = gas*


Arrived at Sioux Falls about an hour late. Slept most of the way on last bus - almost didn't get a seat. This station is far smaller - no worries about getting a seat on the next bus. The farther north I travel the more normal people seem to be. That Falafel's still giving me problems.

1 comment

Popular posts from this blog

The Clink (New Friends)

Each other is all we have. It's no surprise, then, that when we think about the chapters of our lives, those chapters usually begin and end with the beginning and ending of relationships. My current chapter began in July 2016, when I made the move from Philadelphia to Denver. In many ways, it was the fulfillment of a promise made between Peace Corps friends; Carly, Evan, and I spoke often of our desire to live in the same place some day, and after two wonderful years spent with Kyla, it was time for me to join them.

The great advantage to this arrangement is that Evan and Carly had been cultivating friends in my absence, so upon my arrival last summer, I was met with a wonderful group of people who had been carefully conditioned by Evan and Carly to like me.

Readers of this blog will remember Evan and Carly from my Peace Corps days. They were the closest I had to family for two years, and by the end of our service, we were inseparable.


Pappy. Pop-pop. Dilly-dally. Evan is know…

Reaction to Dante's Hell as Portrayed in Dante's Inferno

Since its Patristic roots, the Church has struggled with two seemingly contradictory aspects of God's nature. One one hand, God is said to be loving and caring towards his creation. At the same time, however, God is seen as a judge, dealing out justice to all according to their actions. Some Christians have argued that God, due to his overabundance of love, can never punish or cause harm. Other Christians have no qualms in maintaining that a loving God sends people to Hell, even against their own will. Most fall in between these two extremes. I would maintain that Dante's view of punishment in Hell errs on the side of the latter extreme, given the assumption of a loving God as described in Christian literature. The God portrayed in Dante's Inferno punishes based on gross oversimplifications. His God ignores the larger picture of human psychology and sociological influences in addition to the rehabilitative capacities of wrongdoers.

Good parents do not punish their children …

Love in the Peace Corps

I joined the Peace Corps because I wanted to connect with the rest of the world, to see life from the perspective of the oppressed, to spread joy and wonder and curiosity to new places. I did not join, in other words, to find a girlfriend.
Why was it then, that as soon as I walked into my hotel in Philadelphia, I felt like a college freshman? I couldn't get through my first elevator ride without my heart-rate increasing and my breath shortening.
The feeling returned during our introductory meetings: the nervousness, the flurry of disordered thinking that accompanied moments of eye contact.
Damn you, body. Why must you sabotage everything good in this world?
I talked this over with my friend Ted on day one in Morocco. I was prepared for the bugs and dirt and cultural difficulties that come with Peace Corps, but nothing could prepare me for the onslaught of charming, independent-minded, attractive girls that I would be meeting throughout those first weeks. He agreed. It was eerie how ma…