Memory Lane

7 October 2018

“Freshman Flashback,” by Scott Garson ’88, The Carleton Voice, fall 1985

I remember I’d been wading into a rather uninviting ocean of Religion 10 reading—the kind that invariably sends you scurrying to the dictionary twice a sentence—when she walked in.

The abyss that divides the two modalities of experience, sacred and profane, will be apparent when we come to describe sacred space and the ritual building—

“Whassup?” she asked effervescently, and without waiting for a reply, “Hope I’m not bothering you or anything.”

I could tell her good mood would be fatally infectious, so I tried to get her out fast. “Well, actually . . .” I began, hoping the pause would convey more than the words “I am kinda busy here with some religion work. I’ve really got to cram.”

“Great. We’ll cram a pizza and a couple brews before the show.”

“What show?”

Repo Man. A cult film, and cult films beat the hell out of religion. . . . Answer me this,” she insisted, now standing aggravatingly over my shoulder. “What’s more essential, the . . . ” she paused to locate my place on the page, “. . . abyss that divides the two modalities of experience, or the wonderful therapy of lying back in front of the big screen?”

For some reason, I lacked the energy, or maybe the heart, to respond. Realizing I’d acquiesced, she began tugging me from my chair.

“C’mon,” she said, “let’s get out of here.”

I made a last feeble request. “Can I at least finish this sentence?”

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