Memories: What Triggers Them?

Today, like millions of others, I paused to watch the memorial for Michael Jackson. I felt sad. While I can’t say I was a full-fledged “fan,” I did appreciate his amazing talent as a singer and entertainer–really the artist of my generation. I grew up with his music. In high school my friends and I used to go out on weekends to some of the local dance clubs in Pittsburgh for the “Under 21” dance parties. We’d dance non-stop to “Billie Jean,” “Beat It,” “P.Y.T.,” and “Wanna Be Startin’ Somethin’.” I remember watching the premiere of the “Thriller” video on MTV at West Virginia Wesleyan College. I had a small black and white TV, hooked up to cable, and a group of us gathered around and we couldn’t stop talking about it!

Whenever I give my seminar on “Writing Your Family History” I talk about how we are all storytellers whether we realize it or not. Stories can be triggered by thoughts, images, circumstances. Today, watching the musical and video tributes at this memorial service, I was reminded of the the friends and activities of my youth. It brought back many memories.

Farewell to the “soundtrack of my teens!”