Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Watching the Passage of Time


It's a gray, foggy day, as the remnants of Ida finish their tour of the Tallahassee area. I get to work, look out my window, and see two large mechanical dinosaurs begin the destruction of another landmark of my history. This landmark is not terribly important in the grand scheme of things, but I have my attachments. They're tearing down the old Kmart building on Thomasville Road.

For those of you much younger than I, it was most recently an Albertson's grocery store, but all my memories are of the big red K. I remember my brothers and I saving our yard raking money to buy Stomper 4x4's and Dukes of Hazard model cars. The General Lee never quite looked like it did on TV, or the box cover for that matter, when I was done with it. When I was old enough to recognize that girls were not yucky, I bought my first cheesecake poster. I remember my brothers being mortified that I'd waste my $4 on a paper thing that hung on the wall, instead of another AA battery operated device of delight. This particular Kmart even had the auto service center. I'd sit outside with my Granddad and eat stale Kmart popcorn, while they installed a new set of tires on the Grand Torino or the El Camino.

My Granddad's house is gone now. It too fell victim to progress. When I would get sick in school, as a kid, my Mom would take me to Wendy's for lunch, and drop me off with my Grandparents, until she finished work. The day they tore down my Granddad's house was tough. I went to Wendy's for my dinner, and sat in his old yard and looked at all the rubble. The smell of 50+ years of his family life, the smell of holidays and family time, permeated the entire lot. I knew the smell would be gone the next day, so I sat in the yard, ate my burger, and enjoyed my memories.

I know the passage of time is irrefutable, and I look forward to the supposed Publix Greenwise that is taking over this real estate. But, it is still tough to watch the demolition of yet another of my childhood icons.

12 comments:

Mark said...

If you will get the popcorn, I'll go sit over there with you tonight. It looks like some kids have tagged the walls - could be fun/scary to explore.....

Human Wrecking Ball said...

I feel you Dawg.

longshanks said...

K-Mart and the Dixie store was all we had back in the day. First and last time I ever shop-lifted was at that K-MART, over a 99 cent can of skoal.

Jill Slaton said...

Chris-you can bring a tear to a girls eye reading this story. I too remember when your grandpas house was torn down. Even though I had only been there a handful of times that was a great house. Sorry to hear about the big K. Go live it up in the parking lot man.

Little Ball said...

Good blog but longshanks out did you with the comment!

BIGWORM said...

Jill!!! I didn't even know you knew about this little corner of the interwebs!

Shut up, LB!

Jill Slaton said...

Actually Daniel told me about this yesterday when I talked to him. Hope that is okay. The kids say hi and to tell michelle hi and that they love you guys.

Anonymous said...

There is something to be said about progress however sometimes it just hits a bit too close to home. I remember the smell of Granddaddy Tom's house and the memories...it is hard sometimes just to say goodbye!

P.S. The first time I ever shoplifted was at a K-Mart too! Barbie doll shoes! Pathetic I know!

RickySilk said...

man I loved Stompers

Rama said...

Yo, give me a blue light special!

Mingo said...

I'm still thinking about that poster.

Anonymous said...

dude< its your little bro. i remember all the things you do and than some. i remember waiting at the bus stop in front of grandpas and you kicking my ass with paper throwing stars. they are so much more dangerous when they are filled with pennies and held together by electric tape. my fucking head still hurts. theres no azalea bush deep enough to hide from that. i love you brother!