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Tuesday, June 14, 2005  

A Chain of Memories
(An experiment in distributed blogging)
I’m very excited about “Batman Begins” opening this weekend. I love Batman, and the first Burton Batman film was hugely influential on my childhood. I think I saw the film 5 times in the theater. Though oddly it wasn’t until years later that I really got into the comic-book stories. The first Batman comic I ever bought was a story about Batman fighting Klansmen in the turn-of-the-century American South. The comic was purchased (along with “The New Warriors” #2) at a 7-11 on Main and Palmyra in Orange California.

This neighborhood, currently home to Paul, was once home to my Grandemere Verive. Jany was a very strong woman. Her family was active in the French underground while the Nazis occupied their small town in northern France. Then the American GIs landed and the fighting came to that quiet village. I realized her strength when I once shuffled a deck of cards from the drawer in her kitchen.

Everyday she would play a couple of games of solitaire, and the cards were latterly creased down the center from years of riffle-shuffles in her strong-hands. If she won one of these daily games then, feeling lucky for the day, she would buy a lottery ticket (the scratch-off kind.). I was visiting her at the Fountain Bleu apartments one day when she won and we walked to the 7-11 where I could get a candy bar and s couple of comic books (or perhaps a cheap plastic toy.) and maybe play a few games of “Altered Beast” or “Golden Axe” at the coin-op machine over magazine rack.

We would then spend that evening watching TV after eating her Linguine with clam-sauce. (Not the typical butter-and-garlic sauce the is standard, but a velvety tomato-based red sauce.) We would watch “The Big Spin” and “Golden Girls” and “227.” I would also often browse though the towering bookcase in the foyer that was filled with old musty books (many in French.) My favorites were the vintage set of World Book Encyclopedia and a very old copy of the collect works of Poe that was either my Fathers or my uncles from school. I absconded with this book sometime during high school, and now it lives on MY foyer bookcase.

posted by JMV | 6/14/2005 05:54:00 PM
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