Growing up, if my family wasn’t randomly breaking out into song (because, yes, my life is and has always been a musical), we were tossing references back and forth. Close to every sentence has at least one reference, some so obscure those eavesdropping would have thought we were speaking a foreign language. This is probably why my newest book, Society’s Foundlings, is riddled with random references.
In the acknowledgements of my book I thank and tip my hat to a few of the people who have given me the building blocks of my reference palace, including by brother, Ben, my mother, Barb, and one of my best friends, Alyse. Someone who I failed to mention, though, was my Grandmother. And she is someone who deserves mentioning.
Though, she passed away when I was very young, she has given me a lot. She has added to my love of reading. I have her Anne of Green Gables books, the ones with her name written in them. I have her Anne of Green Gables doll. I order Eggs Benedict whenever I can for breakfast and orange cream ice cream at the boardwalk and the beach, just like she did. I share a name with her and am named after the same strong and incredible woman, she is named for. And, most relevant to this post, I share a love of Harvey, the movie about the 6ft 3.5in tall pooka. I even dressed up one year for Halloween as El Wood P. Dowd, with a hat that had slots cut in it for rabbit ears and business cards with one number crossed out (call me at this number, not at this number).
A book, a movie, a song, a television show- they have memories tied to them. You see them, you hear them, and they make you pause for a moment with a small nostalgic smile. Because you remember that person it reminds you of, who first showed it to you, who watched it, read it, sang it with you. You remember that moment it’s associated with, like a photo album you don’t have to pull out of the top shelf of a closet. And you remember how it made you feel. The way it spoke to you.
John Green (yes I am referencing him once more), did a whole vlog about Harvey. As he says, “All I know is I woke up the morning after watching Harvey feeling a little bit better and in all the years since, I have never felt quite as hopeless as I did before I watched Harvey.”
If you haven’t watched Harvey, I suggest you do. It’s a life changer for sure. And maybe when you’re reading Society’s Foundlings and you come to the part where they are watching it, you will pause for a moment and smile.