My husband just inherited a clock with Westminster chimes that used to belong to his grandparents. It’s now sitting on top of what our toddler son calls “the No-No,” aka a barrister cabinet.
Listening to the chimes every fifteen minutes is reminding me that my grandparents, too, had a (grandfather) clock with Westminster chimes; I had sort of forgotten about it until I heard this clock chime when I got home. When it went off, I got a very visceral wave of nostalgia.
People talk a lot about how evocative smells are–and I find that to be true, although I have a pretty terrible sense of smell (an asset for a high school teacher; high schoolers, as a group, do not smell great).
But the chimes got me thinking about memory in general (mine is terrible and so I rely on looking back at journals to remind me about stuff) and that sent me over to LiveJournal to peer back in time at me-from-the-past.
The last time I updated it was March 2, 2012. July 19 2002 was the first entry, meaning I more-or-less maintained that journal for TEN YEARS. Over that time, I learned some basic coding, make tons of user icons for myself, and developed and maintained relationships with people near and far. I really miss that community. In fact, about five of the last ten entries include lamenting how sad I was that my friend group (including me!) had sort of moved on and weren’t really doing LJ any more. The first entry was, in its entirety, this:
well, look who’s joined the damned bandwagon
i’ve got a livejournal! mwaha! i will admit it’s mostly so i don’t have to post on my friends’ as “anonymous” and sign them. wow, I suck. I now have TWO online journals. We’ll see which gets update more… if either of them does… heh.
So you can see this wasn’t my first foray into the web 1.0 version of what would someday become Social Media. (I haven’t yet had the gumption to try to find my—Diaryland diary, which was the first online journal I started to maintain. That one was mostly about my dating woes, and I officially retired it in 2005 when I met and started dating my now-husband. I can only imagine that I would be in danger of dying of embarrassment reading through What I Thought About Boys in 2001. Although maybe enough time has passed that I’d just chuckle kindly at my delusional past self?)
Social media has evolved, though, and most of the people I “hung out with” on LJ are now on tumblr, or Facebook or Twitter, or Instagram, or Snapchat, or all of the above… but the transition to shorter, more pithy and less personal types of sharing doesn’t really feel the same. And now here I am… blogging! #oldschool #longform #dinosaur
I think I might just have to do something else nostalgic, and bring back pen-and-paper letter-writing!