Sunday, January 25, 2015

Filing away the past

My straightforward task — cleaning out a file cabinet — should have been routine. A non-event.

I've tried to pare things down before, but this was a walk through my academic life.

I found class notes and blue books. And old readers (remember those spiral-bound packets we had to buy?).

I found papers I don't remember writing about poems I don't remember reading for classes I don't remember taking. (And I was an English minor!) The dot-matrix printing may have faded, but the grades and comments still resonate like a Phil Collins tune.

Recycling everything felt like throwing away my thoughts and experiences, even my old feelings: Panic, anxiety, exhilaration, pride (and that only brings us to 1992).

I have to admit, I saved a few of those papers. Whoever says grades don't matter clearly does not have a file cabinet of old work.

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