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Sometimes there are patterns

March 27, 2007

I have a peculiar ritual that I feel like sharing with you today.

My family moved to Portland from rural Kentucky in 1987 – you can read a bit about that experience in an earlier post here. We discovered all the great things that one must experience in Stumptown, including Powell’s, which was an instant favorite place for me.

We’d go to Powell’s on the weekends and I’d go off by myself, usually around the philosophy and literature rooms. I’d linger long enough to need to use the restroom, and this is where my ritual begins.

There was nothing intentional about it. I simply went into the same stall every time. Second one from the left, if you’re wondering. Then, I would always look at my reflection in the mirror-like metal of the sanitary napkin can to the right – this didn’t begin intentionally either. Rather, my reflection was just there.

And so every time I went to Powell’s and went to the restroom, I never failed to look in the reflection there and peer at my face up close, noticing the little details – my lips, the little red dot on my check, my eyes. Just a little, “Hey, that’s really me!” look.

For twenty years now I’ve been doing this – sometimes I don’t go to the restroom when I’m there, of course. But whenever I do, I look at my reflection and think about how much I’ve changed. I’ve literally watched my face grow up from a child to a teenager (too much makeup!) to an adult. And adults, it turns out, get little lines around their eyes. And this would include me.

I was at Powell’s last night, and I had the impulse to share the image of my tinny reflection with you:

Stumptowngirl at Powell’s

Maybe in another twenty years I’ll give everyone an update on those little lines.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. March 27, 2007 2:57 pm

    Aye, you’re a wee lass, a pup! Wait til the gray streaks start appearing–then you feel the chill claw of death. Happy Tuesday!

  2. March 27, 2007 4:46 pm

    Lines! I don’t see no stinking lines! Cool pic btw. You are a very cool girl to have such interesting little rituals. Don’t let Jeff scare you, I’m thinking of getting him a rocking chair for his birthday this year so he can sit on his porch and be an old codger while he listens to his ipod and complains loudly of there being no new good music. 🙂

  3. March 29, 2007 9:56 am

    And another thing, all this stinkin’ music the kids are making today is way too emo! Why, back in my day, you hadda make music that would crush the bones of the kiddies before they even got into the mosh pit. Back in my day we had mosh pits!

    Eh, lassie, could you speak up, I cannae hear so well outta that ear ….

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