If you listen to country music at all, you've probably heard this song by Brad Paisley.
If you haven't heard it and want to, you can check it out here:
Letter To Me
Yeah, it's kind of hokey and corny, I admit, but it did get me to thinking.
What would I write in a letter to me?
Well, first off, I wouldn't send it to myself at 17. I'd pick age 19, and it would probably go something like this:
Believe it or not, this letter is coming to you from you in the year 2008. No, the Jetsons aren't living here yet. I just want to give you a little piece of advice.
In the summer of 1972, somebody that you love more than anything else in the world is going to tell you about something that. at first, is going to sound completely innocent and harmless. I'm sure you know who I'm talking about and what she's going to tell you about is a Christian group that's going to sound like Campus Crusade or something. Do not be fooled. Do everything you possibly can not to get involved in this mess and do everything you possibly can to get her out of it. If you don't try that, you'll still be kicking yourself about it 36 years later.
Trust your first impressions on this thing because they're absolutely correct. The buffoon who runs it, who is touted as the Man of God for our Time, really is the Flim-Flam Man. If you don't run the other way, in about six months, you'll find yourself sitting on a hard metal chair in a freezing cold room watching this bozo lecture on his own version of the Bible and you'll pay your hard-earned money for the privilege. I know you find that hard to believe now, but you'll do it to please her and to become one of the "in crowd." If you don't, every question you ask will be answered with, "You'll have to take the class to learn about that." I know it sounds like joining the Sigma Chi house, only you don't get a pin and there are no keg parties.
I know what you're thinking - you love her so much that you'd shave your head and sell flowers at the airport with the Hare Krishna's if she asked you to, but this bunch is not only going to hurt you, but it's going to hurt her in ways you can't even imagine yet. That blind loyalty is going to lead to you spending the summer of 1974 in a crummy apartment in a crime-infested area of Charlotte trying to get to sleep at night while the married couple you live with expresses their affection for each other on the other side of the carboard-thin wall. Don't ask me why because you wouldn't believe me if I told you.
I could go on and on, but I think you get the idea. This is going to ruin your relationship and you won't know why at the time, and you won't really know what happened until 20 years after the fact. You'll still be friends, sort of, and talk to each other now and then in the future, but there's always going to be an empty place in your heart that won't ever really be filled. Get her out before it's too late.
By the way, don't major in Psychology. It's a complete waste of time.
See you in the funny papers.
Oh, well. If only...