When Queen Emily commands a meme be completed, one must obey.

The Rules:

  1. Depending on your age, go back 10, 15, 20, or even more years.
  2. Tell us how many years back you have traveled.
  3. Pretend you have met yourself during that era, and tell us where you are.
  4. You only have one “date” with this former self.
  5. Answer the questions.

I have gone back 20 years which sorta freaks me out that I can go back 20 years. We’ll say it’s June, halfway through the year, just because. Young me is 22 and living in student housing in Northridge, California where she is attending grad school. She and her fiance (AKA Bookman) of two months are looking for an affordable apartment near campus. I caught up with young me sitting on a bench in the shade on the quad.

  1. Would your younger self recognize you when you first meet? Totally. Different hairstyle and my hair is darker and sort of reddish since it no longer gets bleached blond by the California sun (this would be disturbing to her because she loves being blond), but there would be no mistaking that I might be an (albeit older) evil twin.
  2. Would she be surprised to discover what you are doing job wise? Would she ever. She is in grad school planning a future as an academic and dreaming of being a famous feminist theorist and beloved literature professor. She would not be able to imagine that her future self is in grad school studying library and information science and dreaming of becoming a techie humanities librarian.
  3. What piece of fashion advice would you give her? Sorry to say she could probably give me fashion advice. She actually liked to shop and read fashion magazines back then. She would be disappointed to know that I hate shopping and couldn’t care less about keeping up with what is fashionable.
  4. What do you think she is most going to want to know? She’d probably want to know how the wedding went and whether she is still married to Bookman. Did they have kids? Where is she working? And where is she living?
  5. How would you answer her question? I’d tell her that she is still happily married to the Bookman and they didn’t have kids (which would probably be a relief to her). I don’t think I would tell her anything else though, just that there will be good times and hard times but she will be happy.
  6. What would probably be the best thing to tell her? Relax, enjoy life, don’t be so uptight and stressed over school, and don’t worry so much about finances.
  7. What is something that you probably wouldn’t tell her? I wouldn’t tell her about the 6.7 earthquake that she is going to experience in a little over a year. Even if she knew she’d be fine she’d worry about it too much. I also wouldn’t want to tell her that it would take nearly 20 years for her to figure out what she really wanted to be when she grew up. Oh, and I wouldn’t tell her that in two years she’d be a vegan. That would probably freak her out a little bit because at age 22 vegetarian, let alone vegan, is something she has never considered.
  8. What do you think will most surprise her about you? That I am living in Minnesota and love experiencing all the seasons. That Minneapolis of all places is the city that she loves most and wants to live in the rest of her life. At that point in her life she thought she could only ever be happy in California or maybe the Pacific Northwest if she had to consider an alternative.
  9. At this point in your life, would you like to run into “you” from the future? Part of me wants to meet 62-year-old me but only if that me could say, “don’t worry, everything will be fine and you will be happy.” But since there are no guarantees I’d rather not meet her. I much prefer not knowing. Besides, I wouldn’t want to lose the pleasure of imagining all the happy possibilities the future might hold, the trips I might take and the people I might meet.

The questions were harder to answer than I thought. I won’t tag anyone, but if you want to play along, please be sure to let me know!

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