Some of us are from Brooklyn, some of us are from Texas, and some of us are from Saudi Arabia.
But it’s funny how we look at the world through that prism of our youth.
It colors everything we see and hear, no matter how hard we may try to shake it.
I think we are more affected by our lives from birth to age eighteen than we can possibly imagine. The love, the neglect, the hurt, the loss, the smells, and textures.
Everything matters, of course, but beginnings make us a native.
Where do you think most reputable people come from?
So my father found himself starting over in the wilds of Illinois, where the “s” is silent. And as I grew up, I found that I was becoming in some ways very different from him. I came to see myself as a midwestern character, as open and friendly as the plains, while he only wrapped himself more tightly in Brooklyn. By age fifty he had developed a great man theory of history, whereby all men of significance are from Brooklyn. “You like that guy?” he would ask, looking at the TV. “Well, that’s another one from Brooklyn.”
-Rich Cohen, Tough Jews