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Today in My History

2001:  If I Had a Cause
2002:  The Torch is Passed

2003:  Greasing My Palm
2004:  I'm Not Ready for Technology
2005From the Nursery

2006:  Off to the Spa
2007I Think I'll Skip the Corn Flakes

2008:  @#$% Facebook

2009:  Mr Toad's Wild Ride

The Producers

Books Read in 2010
Updated: 1/20
"The Weight of Gold"

Recipes for Cousins Day Drinks
(updated 9/4/09)


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21 January 2010

Reunions are a great time to find out whatever happened to your former classmates and teachers.  Sometimes it's not all good news. 

We are planning the 50th anniversary of my high school class of 1960.   How I can go to a 50th anniversary when I'm only about 35 years old myself, I don't understand, but such are the vagaries of time and memory.

I've been in contact with the woman who apparently is the principal organizer of such events for my school.  My school, of course, is a misnomer, since "my school" was bulldozed back in the 1960s.  In my day, we were punished if caught fraternizing with the boys in the high school a block away.  Now they have combined the two schools into one giant co-ed Catholic school.  "St. Vincent" no longer exists, but Cathedral Sacred Heart is its new name.

The organizer asked me if I would like to help with plans for our big 5-0 and I said yes, though I am pesimistic about how many people will show up.  We were a class of sixty and I always say we were the least spirited class in the history of the school.  Nobody ever wanted to do anything and that seems to have carried over into post-graduation.  I think five people showed up at our 25th, and one of those said her curiosity had been satisfied and she didn't think she'd be back.

Five more (a different five--not me this time) showed up at the 40th and it will be interesting to see who showed up this time.  I didn't go to the 40th, quite frankly, because I was embarrassed about my weight.  But now the hell with it.   It's the 50th and what the heck--let it all hang out.

The interesting thing about talking with the organizer (or should I say listening to the organizer, since she's really a talker!) was hearing about old teachers, most of whom are dead.

My Freshman homeroom teacher, it turns out, lives in Los Angeles and I was able to get her address and dashed off a quick note to her, updating her on my life, sending her photos, and thanking her for the good influence she was on me in the two years I spent with her in that school.

There were the sisters (Daughters of Charity are "sisters" not "nuns."  I used to know the distinction, but I don't any more!) who have died, many of them.  They were all 95 years old (or so I thought) back in 1960, so that didn't surprise me.

But the big shock was about one of my favorite teachers, a lay teacher (whose name -- and the subject she taught -- I will not mention, in case her family would be embarrassed by it).  She was always one of my favorites and I took classes from her for two or three years.  I think I also was in contact with her at least once after graduation.  I knew her address and probably wrote to her. 

Many years ago, I happened to come across her obituary.  The cause of death was not given, but as her son's obituary was also in the paper that day, I just assumed that it had been an auto accident.  I sent a note of condolence to her family and received a kind of a strangely terse reply.

It wasn't until today that I discovered that this woman killed her son and then killed herself.  I'm still in shock by that.  If you could have lined up all of the teachers I have had throughout my life she would be one of the last I would think would snap like that.  What a sad thing.  She had shared other sadnesses in her life with us once, because it was necessary for a project we were preparing.  But she seemed to have overcome that and gotten on with her life.

Sometimes it's not entirely wonderful to find out what happened to people in your distant past!  I also discovered that 7 of my classmates have died, which I suppose is not surprising, but sad nonetheless.

We've had storms passing through here all day, including one with torrential rain and hail (which fortunately didn't last more than 10 minutes).  It's been very exciting.  Fortunately, I finished the song-writing project that has been plaguing me for a week (Oh how I understand poets who are so proud of having written one line in a day!) and my next project is to prepare for an interview with an old acquaintance of mine, who has recently written a book.  So when you see me curled up in the recliner, with two happy dogs on my lap and a book in my hands, know that I am hard at work.


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Nice looking house



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