I’ll never forget getting Nickelodeon for the first time. It’s arrival was profound — it happened at a time when there nothing quite like it in Istanbul. Little did I know, how the network would prepare me for what to expect when I arrived in America a few years later.
One show in particular, “The Adventures of Pete & Pete” went one step beyond just teaching me about American culture. It was different. There was something about the show that perfectly captured the innocence of childhood, and the melancholy associated with leaving it behind. It displayed the growing pains of becoming an adult while still remaining both odd and youthful. It was unconventional in it’s esoteric references, but me and my friends nonetheless felt connected to it’s unique frequency. I found great solace in the two Petes.
To go from being an 8 year old boy who worshipped this TV show in Turkey, to actually sitting down with the elder Pete (Michael C Maronna) - and have a mürmur with him 20 years later, is something I can’t even use words to describe. I wasn’t too nervous but I was very, very tongue tied - it was such a surreal experience, something I’ll never forget.
I want to thank you once again Michael. Despite you encountering a life threatening accident a day prior, and having a soccer match to tend to on the day of our talk - you still came to mürmur with me. That speaks volumes in terms of what a man you are. And don’t think it has gone unnoticed in my eyes, your multiple efforts to correctly spell my name with the Cedilla under the C. Not many people do that, actually, no one does. And let’s not forget about the care you took in teaching yourself to correctly pronounce the word Döner.
We have a saying in Turkish - “Nerden Nereye”. It’s practically impossible to translate, but implies on the passage of time. How we start in one place, and end up somewhere completely unexpected and surprising.
So with that I say to you, Nerden nereye…
(Originally Published in February 15, 2018)