Tuesday, April 25, 2006


Brain Probe

Sitting in Bob Evans worrying about my failing memory.  I'm always thinking about the loss of those tiny moments, small conversations, quiet spaces and the many non-earth shattering occurrences of my life. Where have they gone? Do they still hold residence in my brain? Behind doors closed with the locks of marijuana abuse and alcohol residues?

If someone, some mad scientist, inserted a mind probe and gently, please ever so gently, poked...would I be able to recall in vivid detail faded recollections from ...say the summer of 1974? What was I feeling, hoping for, dreading? Where was I in terms of self-awareness, self-destructiveness, self-esteem, self-development, self-reliance, self-examination, selfishness, selflessness?

I think of 1974 because I am drinking coffee out of a small ceramic breakfast mug and finishing off the remains of a $7.89 breakfast at Bob Evans and recalling the $0.99 plate breakfast at a little old Hole in the Wall off campus in Murray Kentucky, called the Hungry Bear.

I have vivid vague memories of the place, usually because I was in the throws of a magnificent hang-over. The diner was right across the street from the Sig-Ep house, of which I was a Little Sister and beyond that, a constant visitor. Not only the Sig-Eps hung out there, but everyone else including, but not limited to,....straights, freaks, GDI's, frat boys, jocks, hippies, do-gooders, Bolio's, grad students, professors, drunks, flunkies, Narc's, sorority chicks, bootleggers, Viet Nam vet's, ROTC, police, police wanna bes, drug addicts, Homecoming Queens, locals, barefoot, long hair, no hair, motor cycle riders, punks, pot heads, sweeties, jerks, hoods, car thieves, drug smugglers, artists, crazy people and their girlfriends, and people from New Jersey.

Besides the $0.99 cent menu the biggest attraction was the 7 foot mangy stuffed bear in the corner...a  real bear once....Complete with teeth revealing snarl and extended arms with the four inch claws!


Before it was the Hungry Bear, it was a B-B-Q place called the Saucy Pig. Considering the clientele, the name was constantly bastardized to "The Hungry Pig" or "The Saucy Bear". More often than not it was referred to as either "The Pig" or "The Bear"...as in, "Let's go to the Pig".

We'd sit bleary eyed, eating our $0.99 cent specials, drinking our bottomless coffee and staring at that stuffed bear.

The samemeal is now $7.89 at Bob Evans.

And a darn good price for 30 year old memories. Much less expensive than a brain probe from a mad scientist, more than likely an ex-customer of the Pig.


nellemclaughlin said...

OH Mary! Had I known I might have hitched a ride down there and we could have met! lol I can SOOO relate to this entry. I never did hard drugs but I am convinced pot wiped out the memories of many folks I know. The stories I could tell though....hmmm. I didn't get to college back then. I had a baby at 19 and I was home being the earth mother. NO day cares back then. I went to college when my baby turned 14. Missed out on a lot of the experiences. I used to think if only.....but now I feel that I did what I did and have made the best of the consequences. We don't have Bob Evans in the North but when I get to Maryland I always have breakfast there. Memory lane......always bringing a trail of smiles. :)

yakima127 said...

I love your stories of past experiences...what a life you have lived...J

mtrib2 said...

I have many memories of the bars in Carbondale and the keggers with more drunks than you could shake a stick at.    I went for 10 years without a single drink and now I can have a drink and it is nothing more than that, just a drink and I may never take another again, as it has lost all meaning.   I get up in the morning and depending on the weather can't move, or really can't move.   Caffiene and Nicotene along with the prescription non-narcotic drugs is all that keep me going.    The most recent which is finally helping me can be habit forming ( Lyrica ) along with the other medications.    The new anti-depressant ( Lexapro ) is finally helping me also.    Medicaid instructs doctors to prescribe the cheapest and oldest medication for patients, and only after taking those meds and getting no relief are the new drugs prescribed.    I am composing a multi page letter to the head librarian of the Batesville Mississippi Library that did a complete fact finding mission for me on the newpaper article of the wreck I was in, in 1973.   I now have a much better photo and she contacted the newspaper and found that the photographer had died 2 years ago and the negatives would not be easy to have made into photos.    The ones she did send me from microfilm were everything I needed.     I am correcting the newspapers mistakes by the reporter and giving her the events that were to follow.      I doing this carefully and comprehensively as to how it affected my life.       mark

mavarin said...

In my experience, old memories just need the right trigger. It looks as though you just hit te trigger for a few of yours.  Rehearsal (replaying and self-reminding)  and mnemonics (triggers) help.  Otherwise, the memory doesn't keep junk it's not using readily accessible. - Karen

readmereadyou said...

It's amazing what can bring back memories. I almost wish, however, that we had a computer chip inserted in our brains which we could activate just by typing our personal code on the computer and then, type any date in our past and remember everything from that date either in our own minds or right in front of us on the screen. I know.......I'm strange. : )

suzypwr said...

I am glad to know I am not the only one trying to remember what happened to my memory.


am4039 said...

oh I have some memories of places I used to go too, Me and this guy would always go out drinking and then about 6 in the morning we would always go to eat, I honestly was never hungry at that hour but we had good times. That I remember, lol

ryanagi said...

*choke* "and people from New Jersey."

LMAO!!! You made OJ go up my nose!!

onemoretina said...

Sounds like you had a nice little trip down memory lane, compliments of Bob Evans (  I haven't been in a Bob Evans since I left Ohio ... a little memory trip of my own ! ) Funny how that happens.  Sounds like 'The Pig' was a great place.  Our place to hang was near a lifeguard station at the beach, and the best thing about it was the variety of people you would see.  Great people-watching, although at that time, I don't think I would have noticed that about it.  All I noticed was that I was at the 'right' place.  Tina

lightyears2venus said...

Ok, I'm not ashamed to ask--what's a Bolio?  Recently my husband and I revisited one of our old hangouts (one that's still there anyway), the Howard Johnson's across from his dorm (we being GDI hippies).  That would have been 1971 and we would sneak out on Saturday morning (women, of course, were not officially supposed to sleep over) for breakfast.  I always felt like every guy in the dorm was watching us, their eyes boring into my back as we crossed the street, the rows of dorm windows like eyes.  Of course, none of them was even UP at that time, nor would give a hoot.  I adore Readme's idea.

demandnlilchit said...

Back then I could dring coffee all day and all night and still fall asleep at the drop of a hat, back then I could burn off that .99 cent meal just by walking out of the 'Denny's' at 3 a.m. and getting into my car. Oh to have the energy, AND the body that I once had and to have the knowledge and the patience that I have accumulated all these 20 something years later.  As for being able to remember everything from that time in my life, some is best lost in memory! Oh those chemically challenged days! lol lol lol