Thursday, November 27, 2008


Ants have invaded our house. i cannot get rid of them. they crawl along the counters, the walls and the floor. when i wipe them down with a wet cloth, they're back in a few hours. when i spray them with baygon or lysol, they reapear the next day. when i do find their destination, which is always sweet or sugar-laden, and put that sugary delight in the ref, they soon find another pastry of confectionery to exploit. no tupperware can keep them out. whatever i do. i can't get rid of them. i know it's trivial, but it is a frustrating problem nonetheless.

this problem has got me thinking about our lives and how they are constanly interrupted -- either pleasantly or rudely, depending on the circumstance -- by our memories. like ants, memories, especially those associated with "firsts" -- the first crush , the first kiss, the first trip to the beach, the first ride on a bump car and so on -- will always live in each person, no matter how young or old.

unfortunately, we remember all of our "firsts" -- even our first heartbreak, our first flunked exam, first rejection by our friends, scolding of our parents, our first irresponsible action. sadly, our memories can't be screened. the experiences that we go through are not always great and amazing. true, reminscing can make us feel warm and nostalgic, but it can also make us feel ashamed and guilty -- even impaired.

all too often, what we can rmember are the "firsts" that are embarassing -- our faiures and shortcomings as a person, as a student or worker, as a son or daughter, as a mother of father or as a husband or wife. our successes and inspiring moments are overshadowed by our wrong and hasty decision, our immature actions and our selfish acts. our memories are like reruns of mediocre movies, playing back in our minds the awful moments, the horrendous truths, the impairing emotions.

like ants that crawl everywhere, our memories crawl their way into our lives.try as we may to get rid of these shameful memories, they always resurface-- on the next day, week or month. no matter how hard we try and how old we become, these moments are never erased, only repressed, they linger at the back of our minds, coming and never going as the please. they are forever imprinted in our minds.

the lead character in the book A prayer for Owen Meany said, "you think you have memories? our memories have us." and he was right. if you think we have control over our memories, you're mistaken. these memories of ours are always out of control. in the end, the only thing we'll take with us six feet under is our memories -- with ants coming along.

maybe we should pass by cartimar and get an anteater as a pet.

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