2004.1.23 – that nostalgia thing

Are you a piner? One who pines? Does nostalgia overtake your existence to the point of you being unable to continue with your daily routine? Does it make you feel sad that you are living in the now, rather than the then?

Hello. My name is Chantale and I am a nostalgia addict. I am addicted to the past and it?s rosy coloured memories. I realize that everything was not as grand back then as I see it now, but I still look back fondly. In fact, after about 20 years have passed, I will most likely look back fondly on this time as well. Time passes and apparently they say that it heals all wounds. The passing of time also seems to put a bright glow on everything that happened. Terrible moments are still remembered, but the ordinary becomes extraordinary through the historical lense.

I am the worst kind of nostalgia addict. The kind that longs for days prior to her birth. The kind that feels a strong connection to a time and place that was before her existence. Hippies are not very prevalent in the 21st century, yet I still feel a strong connection to the hippie ideals. It is almost as if I have memories of being there, in the moments of the sixties. Perhaps it is past life memory. Perhaps it is being raised by hippies and hearing stories. Perhaps it is just a longing to be a part of history. Even of a history that happened before my actual time on earth.

The sixties weren?t so bad. Sure the hippies were a little spacey, sometimes based on drug use and sometimes not, but they had the right idea. Peace and love, man! Make love, not war! Hell no, we won?t go! We should be shouting these slogans from the rooftops now-a-days. Where is our Janis? Our Jimmy? Our Morrison? There are no heroes or idols like there were in the sixties. Sure, we had Kurt Cobain and an entire generations hopes and dreams were set upon this unwilling indie prince. Cobain ended it for reasons truly unknown at the time, but as the years progress we see more and more evidence of foul play or simple depression. This voice of a generation? was nothing compared to the voices of the sixties. When did we lose our spirit of revolution? Where did it go?

Living through the eighties hardened even the softest of hippies and made them into a new breed of business people. Yuppies were all the rage and still press forward to this day. Current young business people are opting to be the new-yuppie, rather than falling back on the peace and love ideal. This makes for a poor situation when attempting to rally groups of young people toward resistance. Where there is injustice we need voices of dissent, yet it appears that these voices have been hushed. The number of people who speak out against social injustice has declined in recent years and it seems that the trend continues.

This is one of the reasons for my hippie nostalgia. I long for the days of peace and love. Of being kind to one another no matter what race, gender, ethnicity or creed. Of caring about the feelings of others and treating people in a civil manner. Of having a peaceful resistance. I am not saying that we can win a war with peaceful resistance, but perhaps we can stay out of a war with it. When the time of battle has ended will be feel happy? Content? Safe? I can honestly say that I will feel just as unhappy, discontent and scared as I was the day those two planes made their trip into two tall buildings in the city that never sleeps. Catching one man in a foreign land doesn?t make us any safer. Showing mercy on the people that live beneath the leaders would do good. It certainly would not hurt.

So how can we quench this thirst for nostalgia? How can we live in the present while honouring the past. By remembering what became of our heroes and idols. Continuing to follow the path of peaceful resistance. Walking down memory lane once in a while, but not getting caught up in history. Be loose and free and live the life you want to live. Never be afraid to be different. Follow your instincts. Treat others with care and kindness. Don?t be afraid to admit your mistakes. Make nostalgia worthy memories. Learn from the past and relish the future for it is always tomorrow and only we can mold it.


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