Saturday, December 19, 2015

Kickin' it with Psychic Roots and The Dandy Warhols

When I was in high school and didn't feel like going out, I would say I was grounded. I used that time to discover new things like Dorothy Parker, Arthur Rimbaud and the House of Valois. During these falsified groundings, I studied genealogy and drew elaborate pedigree charts -- attempting to solve the world's problems this way. I would become immersed in lineages for days and weeks and check out numerous books from the library (and interlibrary loaning the esoteric ones) to try to understand the people, places and time periods. Genealogy has always been one of those things in my life that makes sense and no matter where I am, I can revisit it like home. My senior year was when I began mentally stockpiling resources and it was also the first time I read Psychic Roots: Serendipity & Intuition in Genealogy. It would take about ten more years for me to understand Jung's Synchronicity and the collective unconscious, but what really pulled me in was the introduction chapter titled 'The Trunk.'

I loved the idea of a kid snooping around in a basement (I did that), finding a trunk (I did that too), and being intrigued by what might be inside (raised on The Goonies, every trunk had something awesome in it -- "Chester Copperpot!!!"); it was the same reason I began doing genealogy. When I was eight, my parents divorced and among my dad's possessions was a blue trunk that contained what was left of his father's life. Chasing the clues left by my grandpa Ned was what fueled my interest in genealogy. The alignment of ages and stories kept me reading this book and for years after, when something that reminded me of the book organically arose, I knew this book had impacted me more than I had given it credit for. The ideas discussed in this book were planted in my psyche during a time when my mind was open to them and it helped me become a more open genealogist in the future.

The chapter 'Synchronicity: You Make me Feel so Jung' is a favorite, specifically pages 80-81.

I was listening to a lot of The Dandy Warhols when I first read Psychic Roots. Their album Come Down came out at that time but my personal favorite album, which did not come out until I went to college and re-read this book, was Bohemian Like You.

Henry Z ("Hank") Jones, Jr. Psychic Roots: Serendipity & Intuition in Genealogy

The Dandy Warhols Greatest Hits (Explicit Lyrics, so you may want to ear muff certain parts)