Monday, May 09, 2005


Though the MIT bash failed to produce a single interdimensional gate crasher, the secrets of time travel were indeed revealed to me this weekend. My knowledge is limited, in that I haven't figure out yet how to travel into the future or to a traveler-specified point in the past. My experience of time travel has been more akin to the wormhole theory, wherein the time traveler hops into some kind of space-time mail chute and gets indiscriminately delivered to a point in the past.

I can't stop the Holocaust and I can't deliver penecillin to Plague victims, but I have found a surefire route back to what I believe was 1985. The exact year may be a bit off, but I can promise you that I was, for sure, in Reagan-era America this weekend.

If you want proof, you're more than welcome to try it yourself. Hop on the next plane, train, boat, or bus headed towards the University of Connecticut. Though it's nothing like the flashing lights and roaring wind of science fiction movies, somewhere around the border of the school's campus you will slip quietly into the mid-eighties.

I was there on Saturday to help my brother move out of his room. Sitting in the lobby waiting for him to return his key, I was keenly aware that I was no longer in the third millenium. The air was thick with Dude!s and Lame!s and toootallys, which aroused my suspicion but couldn't prove that I had traveled roughly twenty years into the past.

I recieved my confirmation while desperately searching for a newspaper to verify the date (their newspaper racks were suspiciously empty...). A boy walked past the bench where I was sitting with his hair expertly moussed, his khaki shorts belted to his waist, his leather loafers on his sockless feet, and the collar of his pink polo shirt flipped jauntily up to his jaw.

As if to answer any further doubts that this truly was not just the year 1985 but, worse, a teen movie in 1985, a scrawny Billy-Idol-style New Wave kid almost bumped into the prep on the way out the door. As the little punk took off down the sidewalk as fast as his Vans could take him, the prep shot a disdainful look toward the kid's tight black jeans.

Hauling my brother's stuff down the hall and into the elevator, I very nearly knocked over a tiny goth girl--wearing a New Order t-shirt.

The last time it was 1985 I was three years old. Having barely mastered drinking out of a lidless cup, I didn't devote much energy to absorbing the fashion aesthetic of the era. This time around I embrace it. I cuffed my jeans, popped the collar of my coat, slapped on some big ol' sunglasses, and made my hair as large as my scalp could handle.

The sad part is that "eighties retro Kathy" was nearly indistinguishable from "regular 2005 Kathy."

After loading the car with my brothers shit and eating a comfortable lunch, we left 1985 behind for the summer--though I think we somehow got stuck in 1994 on the way home, because I can't stop listening to Weezer and enjoy their first two albums so much at the moment that I just bought two scalped tickets to their concert on Wednesday for a little more than twice their face value.

C'est la vie, at least if I am stuck in the mid-nineties I'll be able to put to use the baby barettes sitting all over my room from the last 1994.

[A special good luck to Kai who is, right as we speak, preparing to take her final final of nursing school.]


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