I remember first coming across the work of Marcel Duchamp.
I remember that showing me that art is not just about painting and sculpture.
I remember ditching class in high school and sitting on the hill in front of the building, and having the teachers yell at me from their windows that I should be in class.
I remember deciding that I wanted to make art.
I remember, during high school, getting five dollars a day from my parents for lunch, which I then had to decide what to use it for, either a nickel bag of weed, beer, or what it was meant for, food.
I remember my first interactive installation based art piece, and the difficulty I had trying to get the work shown.
I remember listening to Ice-T, N.W.A., Public Enemy, and 2Pac records in the basement of my friend’s parent’s house.
I remember us writing our own lyrics for the songs.
I remember going to the Metro in Chicago and seeing the diversity of the crowd during performances by underground hip-hop artists.
I remember my parent’s orange Volkswagen Beetle. I also remember their red Buick Skylark.
I remember my grandmother coming to see my graduation from college. I remember her coming to see my thesis show, and me trying to explain to her what she could not see. She left without an understandable explanation.
I remember I farted in my friend’s room, blamed it on his cat, and he believed me.
I remember waking up to the 9/11 attacks, and thinking it was a movie.
I remember the local street rapper Martin Luther King Jr. Whopper With Cheese, and how he would go to Tower Records to burn copies of his album, then stand on campus and sell them.
I remember being drunk off wine and wrestling with my ex-girlfriends dad in front of the bar. He also happened to be a former Olympic wrestler.
I remember being in Poland and trying to avoid stepping on the mass amounts of snails that came out the day after a heavy storm.
I remember trying to buy weed from a gangbanger in high school, he told me to meet him in the alley. I knew better.
I remember a friend in high school who became stuck permanently in an LSD trip.
I remember my younger brother introducing me to underground hip-hop.
I remember Italian beef sandwiches. I miss them.
I remember landing in Amsterdam the day Bush declared war on Iraq. We spoke softly for 2 days so no one could hear that we were American.
I remember stealing $100 from my father, going to buy fireworks, blaming it on my brother, and planting the fireworks in his room.
I remember my parents had my yet unborn brother’s room painted pink in anticipation of a baby girl. That didn’t happen, but they kept the room painted pink.
I remember my brother threw a brick into the air, and it landed on my head. My mother threw me in the shower, cleaned me up, and found no reason to take me to the hospital.
I remember walking to the store with my grandmother as a child and she would buy me everything that my mother would not, as long as I didn’t tell.
I remember my mom sending me to a friend’s pool party in underwear as a swimsuit.
I remember my mom dressing me in grade school. So glad I didn’t pick up her fashion sense, or lack thereof.
I remember my first crush.
I remember a kid from the neighborhood committing suicide underneath the cross of the local church. A tree stands in that space now.
I remember going to Bobo’s Hot Dogs down the street from my childhood home and buying a soggie, the only thing I could afford with the measly 50 cents I had.
I remember the plot of land down the street from my childhood home that said “apartment complex, coming soon,” for 6 years.
I remember painting class. I remember painting.
I remember when the subway took tokens.
I remember running from my high school security guards, who could not figure out that bright yellow jackets were not the best form of camouflage.
I remember the statue of the baby Jesus being stolen from City Hall in Chicago and me thinking it had to be the work of an artist. It was. And he was caught with it in the passenger seat of his car.
I remember going to the mall early in the morning and seeing all the senior citizens speed walking.
I remember when CD’s were sold in packaging that was twice the size of the actual CD case.
I remember The Box music channel, playing uncensored versions of all your favorite music videos, for a price of $1.99.
I remember when 2Pac died.
I remember when Bill Rancic won The Apprentice.
I remember Ed Lover and Doctor Dre.
I remember The Superbowl Shuffle.
I remember having an art piece that I wanted to do during my graduation from the undergraduate program at DePaul that I chose not to because I thought my grandmother and mother would never forgive me.
I remember during my undergraduate thesis show, having my professors walk around drinking 40 ounce bottles of beer and Boone’s Farm wine.
I remember all of the things I don’t want to say here.
And then there are all the things I don’t remember…