Calling on the saints of lost objects

By Anita Garner

I’m sharing office space right now with stacks of scrapbooks and photo albums, with boxes and bins filled with photos, searching for pictures meant to be in my new book.My forthcoming book (“forthcoming” is such a lovely word) will contain photos and the publisher’s waiting for me to decide which ones.  I’ve decided.  I just can’t find them.

There’s no shortage of pictures available, but I have specific memories in mind.  Later, The Glory Road website  will be updated for the book’s release and there’ll be room for lots more there, but where are the ones I’d set aside for the book?  They were here a few days ago.

It’s time to invoke St. Anthony (specializing in finding lost objects) and St. Jude (specialist in hopeless causes.)   When we lived in Louisiana Bayou country, all my friends were Catholic.  I envied them their array of saints who are apparently available all the time.  We little Pentecostal preachers’ kids were advised to talk to Baby Jesus, but then we were also cautioned about when we should and shouldn’t be specific with our requests so we weren’t always sure we were doing it right.  With St. Jude or St. Anthony you can say, “Will you help me find my keys?” and sometimes they will.

I don’t want to put things away until I find what I’m looking for.  In old movies, Irish characters sometimes said, “Saints preserve us!”  If the saints know exactly where my misplaced photos are, this would be a good time to show me. I’ll be most grateful.

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Faded Photographs

Audio blog with music.  Listen here.

First of the year organizing brings up the same question each time.  How to separate the precious from the merely familiar? What to let go of? What to keep?

I’m the guardian of my parents’ memories.  Boxes of them.  Stacks of them. So many photo albums my camera couldn’t fit them into one picture to show you.

How to know which I’ll regret parting with?  What’ll be valuable to someone in the future? Do I keep all of this and leave it for my daughter to decide?  Do I call on the gods of technology and ask if there’s an affordable answer?

Sticky notes mark my feeble attempt to identify by decade

I’ve moved them around for years and don’t know if anyone else will want them someday. There’s the option to preserve them digitally, but there are so many of them. My scanner isn’t great and each time I start to scan one, I stop and remember stories. Obviously I’m not suited for this job, and I know I’m not alone. I’ve met other people whose garages belong half to them and half to the past.

During my own broadcast career I’ve let go of boxes of tapes, lots of shows and commercials, moving some to digital formats. That wasn’t hard to do, but this isn’t really my stuff, so here I am starting another year, still in possession of all my parents’ memories.
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Thank you, Tony, for the music

Tony R. Clef, guitar

“When I’m sixty four”