Tuesday, March 28, 2006

A contributed photo & story from Randy Carlson

DUBLIN, Ireland - No, this is not the 2006 American Ryder cup team enjoying a pre-match practice round at the K Club. The site is in Ireland, at the Royal Dublin Golf Club, May of 2005. But the players are more a hack then a crack golf group.

The cast from left to right is Rick Brown, former SWCS teacher (who will be golfing with the Class of '66 at Chautauqua and probably attending the informal events), Paul Hedin “Class of 67” architect at Habiterra who personally knows the Morris sisters (that’s for Mike’s benefit), moi (John Giacco would be so proud) during one of the rest periods when I wasn’t searching the gorse for one of my errant shots, Bill Evans, former Jamestown area Pizza Hut owner, and last, but not least, Tony Barone who used to own the Lakewood Drug Store back in the day.

I sent this to Mike to follow up on his junior class post and to give him a SWCS-related topic where he didn’t have to do any heavy lifting. I’m sure he wouldn’t mind similar submissions from other classmates.

Looking forward to July, see you then.

Monday, March 27, 2006

Being the son of the school principal

Van Swearingen
Originally uploaded by Brite light photos.
JAMESTOWN, New York - I don't know if Van Swearingen will be among us this summer at the reunion of the Class of '66, but I remember being acutely aware in high school that he was the son of the principal.

Son of Cheese, that awful nickname we had for Mr. Swearingen.

It wasn't that Van was likely to say something to dear old dad. Van was good guy I remember, but had a certain sadness about him, perhaps the burden of his dad being the principal. Maybe it something else like seasonal affective disorder. God knows I had it during those long winter months. (And I still do. Why do you think I'm so fixated on living in the tropics?)

My mother was a teacher, a 4th grade teacher at R.R. Rogers school in Jamestown, a school largely populated by Puerto Rican immigrant children who spoke a very staccato Spanish, precious little of which she could understand.

I'm not entirely sure what that has to do with Van Swearingen being the son of Cloise E Swearingen, except that it jumped into my mind as I thought about my mother getting to know many of the SWCS teachers through various teacher functions around Jamestown.

I never had a chance walking into a new classroom. The teachers all knew that I was Evelyn F. Fitzgerald's son and also what her expectations were for me. It all started with Robert Lamp in the sixth grade and I was still dealing with it in senior year with Harry Robie and Hubie Davis.

It took me several years in high school to figure that one out, too.

So I wonder what kind of expectations the teachers had of Van, son of the boss so to speak? I remember Van did very well in school, and his photo pops up in various athletic photos. A well-rounded guy.

Let's hope Van makes it to the reunion. I want to buy him a drink in honor of his dad who put up with all of us.

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Staging photographs at our 40th Reunion

The Five
Originally uploaded by Brite light photos.
JAMESTOWN, New York - When I saw this shot in the yearbook, I realized that this (and more than a few others) could be easily staged again and maybe even put together into some kind of publication after the reunion: sort of a then and now.

I don't know that the photo I ran a few days ago (of the guys in drag) should be restaged, but then, that might be the hit of the whole party. Cast your ballots: restage or not?

But this one is a classic high school photo, probably taken down at the snack bar area next to the football field. I had a white raincoat just like the one on Randy Carlson in the middle. Was it a London Fog? Good grief, the things you remember.

If those young faces aren't familiar, they are (right to left): Dan Loucks, Dave Carlson, Randy, John Schultz and Jim Nelson.

Yearbooks have fallen out of vogue at most schools and colleges. Every few years, my university has a fundraiser type approach me to say how wonderful it would be to have a yearbook. Wonderful until I tell them what it will cost to get it shot, organized and printed.

More than a few schools and colleges have gone to video yearbooks, but even those are complicated to put together and don't have the same look and feel as our red-covered Centralian which I've been hauling out on a regular basis for nearly a year now.

Here's another photo from the Centralian that might be reshot sometime at the reunion, provided both Linda and Marty attend.

Senior hams