Wednesday, July 30, 2008

hair products and existential angst

I recently bought some new conditioner, and I swear it smells exactly like Agree shampoo which I used constantly as a teenager. I tend to commit to certain hair products—Agree as a teenager, St. Ives in college, Herbal Essences in my early twenties (though the conditioner is too thick.) In the last few years it’s just been whatever fruity Suave I can get my hands on—usually apple, sometimes coconut, occasionally strawberry.

Anyway, all day, every time I catch a hint of it today it’s making me think of my early teens, in particular summers. Maybe I have summer vacations on the brain, but I’m nostalgic for camping trips. The summers we spent in cabins up in Black River (now when we go it’s usually a hotel). Laying around the cabin reading teen magazines and Sweet Valley High books, begging my mother for money to walk up the road to the store to buy those sweettart suckers and other dimestore candy. Later, we had a camper, but my habits were much the same, though I moved onto horror and romance novels, as well as the fluffy True Story and True Romance Magazines (my mother's one and only reading interest at the time) that I’d read up in the bunk of the truck camper. This was around the time I first started writing poetry, and like everyone, I was probably lured by those National Library scam adds you’d find in the back of them. I remember very distinctly sitting at a picnic table and trying to write a poem, that is, in between mooning over boys, which was only fueled by the romances and the magazines.

I was fifteen, the worst time. I fought with my mother almost constantly. I was too dreamy, too much of a smartass. I preferred to live very much inside my head (and this is different, now?). I had this feeling of so much, I don’t know, possibility maybe. Optimism? This was before my first kiss. Before I learned to drive. Before I started planning what I wanted to be when I grew up, where I wanted to go to college, what sort of life I wanted to live. Sometimes I’m so nostalgic it makes me slightly nauseous. To be that hopeful and foal-like in my new body. To be fearless and dreamy and romantic. But then isn’t that always the curse. To wish you always knew then what you know now. *sigh*

Of course, sometimes I feel like I'm still that girl, too dreamy and romantic, too much inside her own head. Too much in love with romantic drama and angst...It also feels sometimes like I'll always be that 15 year old inside, that I never really quite grew up, or never grew up correctly, or in the way other people do.

(Sidenote: whereas Agree pretty much made my hair like straw, this new Dove kind is actually very nice..)