When I Was Wild
DECEMBER 2, 2006
At Thanksgiving I visited my mom in Connecticut. It's the house I grew up in. When I stay there, I sleep in my old bedroom. My mother puts my old illustrations on the walls except for the Ben Gurion which I gave to her. Other than that, she has my early works all over the walls. Some things are still as I left them when I moved out. One funny remaining token of my youth is the door to my bedroom. When I was wild and angry, mostly at my brother, I would punch everything. This door still bears the fist holes and I covered them at the time with a large press proof of a Brad Holland painting. I loved his work while I was trying to figure out what to do with my realism. Many early works were influenced by Brad's clean, clear ideas. So this is the poster and below are the fist holes. It all means something that it's still there, thought I can't figure out the significance. I do know mommy visits drawger and will be angry and my post. I like the door just as it is. Across the hall is my brother's door, it was disfigures so badly that I had to replace it. What a jerk I was.
Brad's Illustration on my childhood bedroom door.
But I wasn't always a jerk. This photo was given to me by my aunt. It's an amazing photo to me, because it's a place I visited every week until I was 21 or so when it was sold after my grandparents died. This is their kitchen. It's December 1969 and I'm there as well as my sweet grandmother in the center and my brother Dan is in the lower left. It's a Rockwell of a scene, a birthday and we are apparently about to eat cake number 2 judging by the dirty plates. I have been zooming into this scene and see all kinds of details; Budwieser beer, Ivory Soap, orange pull-top soda can on the table and all my sweet cousin's faces.
© 2023 Tim O'Brien