In the basement, in a blue plastic container-box, are my address books from the 80s, 90s and early 2000s. In address books, there is no such thing as deleting. Even with pencil, you can see where someone was, or you know where their name used to be. So when my address book got too painful, I just started another one. There are about six or seven. I was kind of surprised that after all the years they hadn’t gotten lost. They’re spiraling away inside no time in the basement.
I wonder what would happen if called my ex-husband from thirty years ago to see what he was up to. Things didn’t go well back then. He held me down and screamed at me and worse. I taunted him back for not being as smart as me. To this day, I still have issues.
Now it is so easy. I purged my Contacts, and they are all just gone. I had literally hundreds of past students, past colleagues, past mentors, past friends, and couldn’t stop visualizing them as I went. The mentors were hard; I had worked for years to get to the point where they recognized me or at least my name. They were hard won, nurtured over years of expensive conference restaurants: I knew some “famous” people, but they faded away as my disease progressed. I try not to be bitter about the fact that if I were in a wheelchair I’d be an overcomer. That’s a horrible thing to think. But as a nut, I’m an embarrassment.
There will be no address book to look back on, to call them up some day. They are off creating knowledge, smarter than the average bear. One day, daffy as a dormouse, I used the same exact dataset to prove opposing points of view. That was the end of it for me, honestly.
So, David’s still in my address book.