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Tonight, the role of Zan will be played by Ali MacGraw

It would make a lot of sense.

I suddenly feel as if I've been hurled back through time to the late 1970s — possibly the early 1980s. It's hard to tell the difference sometimes. But my hair is longer than it should be. Just the other day I purchased camping equipment and a sweater knit from yarn. And then there's this new fascination with brown leather boots.

It's also difficult to tell whether I'm reading certain books (Dubin's Lives, Shel Silverstein) because of a sudden attraction to this time, or if what I'm reading is causing this whiplash back to corduroy, Carter, and crochet. But it's happening. I've even taken to lugging around my Kramerbooks canvas bag instead of a purse because its evergreen logo happens to be in that puffy writing so evocative of my early youth, right down to the happy, swirling ampersand.

I've been here before — it's the homecoming parade cycle, the return to carved pumpkins. I know that this is a perfectly reasonable explanation.

The nostalgist in me finds it odd, though, displacing even, when John Denver comes on the loudspeakers in the art store just as I find myself in dangerous proximity to the crafts section.

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