Back in 1988, I had recently come back from a visit to my grandparents' house and stolen an idea from my cousin. Inside the old garage to the south of my grandparents' farmhouse, my cousin had written a letter and stashed it on a (somewhat) hidden ledge inside. The letter was a time capsule of sorts as it detailed his name and age as well as what he liked to do at that time. Heading home, I thought I should do something similar.
I wrote a letter and decided the best hiding spot would be the underside of a shelf in the pantry. You know, because anyone who is hunting for a fun treasure goes straight for the pantry. Twenty-five years later, I'm happy to say that the letter is still in its place.
In cursive complete with I's dotted with circles, the envelope suggests that the contents contain deep dark secrets from 1988: "Whoever is curious enough to open this envelope, please don't laugh at what you read because every sentence on these pages is the truth."
Well, not so much deep dark secrets as just a laundry list of things that I liked to do when I was almost twelve.
So what does a 1988 kid from the Midwest write to future generations?
Dear Whoever This May Concern,
My name is Tim Lybarger, I am 11 and will be twelve on the 6th of next month. Today is June 19, 1988. I have lived here in this house for my twelve years in life and I don't know how many more years I will remain here. My family includes my father Robert, 42, mother Susan, 38, brother Matt, 15, and my cat Nacho, 8. I enjoy listening to music groups such as INXS, Run D.M.C., and the Monkees. This afternoon I went to the movies to see "BeetleJuice." My favorite sports are baseball and basketball which I play quite often with good friends of mine like Greg ____, 13, Brett ____, 11, Lucas ____, 10, and Chris ____, 15. My main hobby is collecting baseball cards. Today was game six in the NBA finals between the LA Lakers and the Detroit Pistons. They are tied up 3 games to 3. I'm writing this in pen in hope that this letter will be preserved for a longer period of time. Well that's really all I have to say. This letter may have been short, but thanks for listening.
Sincerely, Tim Lybarger (June 1988)You know what's crazy? I'm about nine months away from being the age my mom was when I wrote this letter.
Needless to say, the letter was immediately returned to its proper home inside the envelope glued under the shelf in the pantry. While the shed at my grandparents' house is long gone -- as I assume my cousin's letter is as well -- mine is still hidden for future generations to find.