The letters of our thoughts are the ideas present in our mind before they come to realization . . . Thoughts that are, yet not felt . . . The words of the subconscious . . . of the soul . . .


Monday, August 20, 2012

On Generations

My Grandparent's wedding at the East London Synagogue

I wonder some times about the passing of time. At times it feels like a never-ending continuous loop, day in day out, a winter's night and a summers day . . .  and suddenly - moments there are clarifying moments . . . When the house is silent, and I sit by my computer, awake as I procrastinate on some random assignment . . . I wonder when things came to this moment.

When did the baby that was born yesterday learn to walk and (begin to)talk? When did Poland suddenly become 6 years ago - or my first day in Yeshivah a decade ago? 

When a gigabyte go from an awe inspiring amount of storage capacity on the computer I got for my Bar Mitzvah become virtually negligible space on a storage card the size of a coffee bean? 
My sister and me -  on the set of The Net, 1994

I look at the cars from my youth, and they look like shoe boxes . . .

And I realize this is all only a blip. Suddenly the Sixties went from being in the past . . . to an era closer to my own birth than to the present.

My father on the set of Echoes of a Summer. This photo was taken 10 years before I was born. My father is younger than I am now in this photo.

I think to the youth of my parents.

I think back to my grandfathers - the world they were born in and the questions I never asked. My paternal grandfather fought in WWII. My maternal, stationed on a US base as a dental technician during the Korean War.
So many questions I never asked.
How the different the world was then . . .

My maternal grandfather was born in Williamsburg, before anyone outside the working class would ever call it home. He grew up in the Village where his fathers sold Yiddish Newspapers near Washington square. Here he grew up in the greatest city in the world . . . and we never spoke about it. Did he root for the Yankees or the Dodgers? (My guess? The Bronx Bombers) What is it like to visit Cooney Island when it was the place to visit on a hot summers day?

What will my children think of me? Of my writings and experiences? Will my grandchildren look at my birth at the turn of the century with the same wonder that has always made 1895 seem so much further back in our past than 1902?

My only solace is the eternity of Torah. When nothing else is a constant . . . when culture changes by the hour and looks so foreign by the end of the day . . .


Schvach said...

You're getting old. I first realized my age creeping up when I was in my mid twenties and a kid walked up to me on the Roosevelt Ave IND stop in Jackson Heights and addressed me as 'sir'. I felt I had died!

Schvach said...

In the top-most photo of your grand parents' wedding, who's the lady in the left-most part of the photo, the one with the tilted hat? She makes me want to jump into a time machine.

Anonymous said...

those head phones are back in style.