Monday, April 26, 2010


Mifflin is coming up, which is not normally something I would at all be excited for, but I am interested to see it, and compare it to what I have been told about what it used to be. Spring always seems to bring the protestor out in me, and I swear my heart was made in the '60's. It was not just protesting the war, but a weird era of unity that I don't think I will ever get to experience. I know I seem to write about this same idea every 6 months, but it is because I never have the time or energy to properly give a full rounded explanation of my idealization of this era.

Paul says that Mifflin used to be more about drugs and less about drinking, more about everyone getting together to celebrate life and, in the back, fight the system. He called it anarchy and I know I wasn't there, but I don't think that was it. Or maybe I just don't have the right view of anarchy.

In the '60's people from all over came to Madison. Paul told me about all the Runaways. Mifflin street co-op was the only co-op in town, and it doled out food these young runaways, and helped foster various other like-minded businesses. Madison has a good heart, even if it has been slightly tainted by my generation. Many say that the Sterling Hall bombings put an end to it. It crossed a line, it was too violent, and droves of people left after it happened. Karl and his brother learned how to fly planes, stole one, and tried to bomb some WI company's fields (I of course don't remember the name or what they produced now). And they managed to do all of this without killing themselves in the process.

The don't condone violence. But to care about something so much, to be so frustrated with a system that ignores and ignores the fact that thousands of people are dying, for no apparent reason, that you don't know what else to do is amazing. I feel like that is so lost on my generation. Lost on me. I have written and angry essay or two, but I never DO anything. All these people that raised me, my fake aunts and uncles, they were a part of something, they were a part of a movement, they were fighting for what they believed in and being stupid college kids at the same time. I am just being a stupid college kid.

Someday, I will gather all the information that I have learned through years of story telling, documentary watching, book reading, and write a fictional book about Madison in the 60's, that will draw heavily of real life accounts. The take-over, the beginning of Mifflin, Sterling hall bombings, the police paranoia, everything. Perhaps a good project if I ever decided to try to get an MFA in creative writing here.

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