My Convertible Life

Monday, August 17, 2009

Remembrance of Summers Past

It's not as elegant as Proust's madeleine, but I had the strangest moment last week when I fixed the beverage shown above.

The glass is one of those Looney Tunes glasses that you used to be able to get with a purchase at Burger King or McDonalds back in the 70s and 80s. My favorite one was a Miss Piggy glass (she's on the motorcycle bursting through the stained glass window in The Great Muppet Caper) -- found this picture on Ebay that shows the whole set; sadly, my glass broke when I took it to college.
Anyway, back to the Looney Tunes glass, which I inherited from my Nana after she died more than 15 years ago. I always loved using those glasses when we would visit her house on the river. She'd fill them with ice and Pepsi-Cola to take down on the pier. As strange as it sounds, that was a luxury -- we didn't drink sodas at home when I was young.

So the other day, I needed some caffeine to avoid joining my kids during their naptime, so I popped open a can of Diet Coke. It was room temperature, so I reached into the cabinet and pulled out this Foghorn Leghorn glass without thinking about anything in particular, added some ice and poured in the drink.

Then I stopped and looked at the glass, suddenly filled with memories of my Nana, of playful summer afternoons by the river, of being young and finding great pleasure in the smallest treats. I was so grateful to have had the sort of childhood that could be summoned up like that. And I imagine that my parents and my in-laws are creating little things like that now for my children, without even knowing it, that will become the catalyst for their own fond memories one day.

What little things conjure up fun summer memories for you?


  1. Has "Grandpa" taken the kids to MickeyD's for their "Grumpy Meals?" That's one thing my girls remember.

  2. Funny how most of our best memories are of the smallest things. I guess that goes to show that time spent with people you love is never wasted, no matter what you are doing.

  3. And me, being your shallow friend, wants to talk about the glasses. I had those Muppet glasses! I loved them. My favorite set was the Camp Snoopy set though. I wish I still had them.

    Off to eBay . . .

  4. OK, I'll try again. I'm learning how to post a comment:

    So the glasses, I remember . . . but your words took me back on the pier with MY mother, sitting there with her . . . sun sparkling on the river like, well like . . . it is as if this memory . . .as if I am there this moment with her. . . knowing now that she loves me . . . in a way I couldn't know then. . .like she and I are in a special cocoon of time. . . then and now happening at the same time. . . a gift sent to her and received by me now. . . . . . . .

    Thanks. I love you.

    I'm glad we spell my name with the double "n". I want my mother's name, Nana, to stand out. Because that is what she does for me.

  5. I always thought foghorn was a bit ridiculous and his accent was put upon... I used to think that, until I started working in the General Assembly. At least a half-dozen of our state senators sound EXACTLY like foghorn leghorn... I say I say I say

  6. This post is totally my speed. I don't have memories of glasses so much, but a snatch of music or the sound of the cicadas will suck me back through a black hole to Nebraska in 1982 or some such thing. Germany in 1979 (wet pavement smell). The sensory memories are the most visceral.

    1. Thanks :) And agreed, it's tiny things like sounds and smells that can conjure up the most detailed memory that had previously seemed lost.


But enough about me, let's talk about you. What do you think about me?

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.