Summer's Here!

Summer's Here!

We've made it past the longest day of the year, and the best part of summer is stretched out in front of us!

Between my Sophomore and Junior year at Oberlin High School, my Grandma bought me a Timex watch at Midway Mall. For some reason I think it might have been JC Penney, which in hindsight is sort of funny as Theo (my Grandmother) would have sooner taken up drinking again than to go clothes shopping there. If nothing else, I guess it goes to show you that you never know where you are going to find yourself when pivotal moments happen in your life ; )

To be clear, nothing against Penney's as it was where the Henderson kids were clothed and shod until their summer jobs provided enough pocket money that they could start making their own sartorial decisions. 

At any rate, my Grandmother and I found our paths about to diverge paths at Midway Mall - me to go to Camelot Music to lay hands to a Lou Reed record, and her to find something for herself at one of the more well-heeled stores. We always parked by the entrance to JC Penney's so she asked what time we should meet back there. I explained that I didn't have a watch, but that I would be sure to ask someone the time. That proved to be a non-starter for her and she briskly walked me to the jewelry section, started spinning the rack of Timex offerings and told me to pick one. I did, and then noticed a red, white, and blue NATO style strap and she had them make the change, made sure the time was set correctly, paid the cashier and told me (in no uncertain terms) not to be late meeting her at 7:15 P.M.

Life is full of all sorts of random circumstances. But that was one of those seminal moments that you don't recognize at the time, but continue to haunt you for years to come. I remember two things, quite distinctly about that watch - I quite liked it, and it failed to survive beyond the summer of 1983. That was, not in small part due to an ill-advised visit to a man made lake in Northern Ohio with our neighbors and the realization that my new Timex, for all of its finer qualities, was not water resistant in the slightest. After a few hours in a "mini" motor boat, the crystal was fogged up, never to fully recover. 
The Timex of 84 did not live to tell the tale, but the memory lives on in my personal OBIE1, complete with a red and blue NATO strap, courtesy of the good folks at Rowing Blazers - Rowing Blazers Strap

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