Should I continue to wait, now that you are silent? Must I also remain silent? No, I will say my piece. I will speak my mind. For I am full of pent-up words, and the spirit within me urges me on. I am like a cask of wine without a vent, like a new wineskin ready to burst! I must speak to find relief, so let me give my answers.
I started keeping a journal in 1978, when I was twelve years old and entering seventh grade. Whenever I filled up one notebook, I started writing in another, saving each one and collecting them in a box that has traveled with me through many iterations of self.
Every now and again I will open the box and lightly sift through worn memories, stopping just as my synapses begin to overheat with emotion of one sort or another. There are letters in the box as well, and a few pictures, along with several artifacts from my not-so-wayward youth. From time to time I resolve to study the memories, in search of a missing puzzle piece to complete some picture of myself that is, undoubtedly, lacking.
Now I am bringing the box into the real light for no other reason than to remember what I am bound to forget someday soon. Onward.
There’s a scene in the movie “Broadcast News” where Jane, the producer, is trying to convince Paul, the executive producer and Jane’s boss, that he is making a terrible mistake in judgment by selecting a particular anchorman to present a breaking story. Paul rebuffs her: “That’s your opinion; I disagree.”
“It’s not opinion,” Jane responds boldly.
Paul stares at her for a moment. “You are just absolutely right, and I’m absolutely wrong,” he says. Jane purses her lips and delivers a single nod of agreement.
“It must be nice to have all the answers, to always know that you’re the smartest person in the room,” Paul quips with sarcastic annoyance.
“No,” a somber Jane replies, “it’s awful.”
Jane is my kindred spirit, and you’re in my world now.