Throwback Thursday: in story form.
My mother had a jewelry studio. It was in the garage of our house in Albuquerque, New Mexico. After school I would sit on the steps just inside the studio and listen to the conversations my mom, Dan, and Doc would have. Dan and Doc both worked for my mother. They seemed like brothers than friends. They bonded over the difficultly of quitting smoking, a love of metal music, and political debating. All of these conversations took place as they cut copper, lit the welding torch, soldered the metal, pickled and buffed the jewelry. On one particular day after school I sat listening to a song and its lyrics: “If you like to gamble, I tell you I’m your man,
You win some, lose some, all the same to me,
The pleasure is to play, makes no difference what you say,
I don’t share your greed, the only card I need is
The Ace Of Spades”.
I said to Dan and Doc “oh I like this song. Who is it?” Dan and Doc both stopped what they were doing. “It’s Motörhead” they said simultaneously and incredulously. “Teresa why does Maya not know who Motörhead is?!” My mom smiled “she is more into R&B”. I smiled and said “I like this song. I want to know more about this music.” Doc and Dan gave me a quick overview of rock and metal. I asked them how they knew each other- I loved they way they wove there conversations together. Doc said, “We’ve known each other since ‘Nam.’ Doc was Vietnamese, Dan was a Vietnam soldier. As I continued to come in everyday after school to talk to Dan and Doc I realized they were both amazing people who were hurt, scarred, traumatized. They were both victims of a war that neither wanted any part of. They were suppose to be enemies and yet they were the same. They were brothers- victims of other peoples greed and ideologies. I learned so much from them. It was Dan that told me “Led Zeppelin, listen, you’ll love it.” I did. I do. It was Doc that showed me to forgive but never to forget, “or else we will repeat the same mistakes over and over and over again.”
We do. And I wish we didn’t.