January 20, 2009

A Suess-ful Reunion

A couple of weeks before the reunion, I had asked Andy Mayberry to present to us a story or monologue reflecting on our days growing up in the Sheridan schools. When he sent me the rough draft of what he'd come up with thus far, I was reminded why I chose him for this task.

I think you'll agree with me that he truly delivered!

A Seuss-ful Reunion
By Andy Mayberry

Twenty years have passed.
Well … 21 to be factual.
It’s time to re-unite.
Something that’s almost contractual.

Some of us talked.
We wanted to gather,
to collect and assemble,
and have a chance just to blather.

It was Aaron who stepped up,
and then others did, too.
They said, “How we wish
we had something to do!”

So there you have it.
We’re the class of ’88.
Garnered, amassed,
to reminisce and celebrate.

Our classmates are scattered.
Some of them far … and some of us are wide.
We’re spread across the country;
across the Great Divide.

Some are here. Some are there.
We’ve looked for them …
well, practically everywhere.

Like Mandy Jester Martindale,
Moltz and Moon and Jay Mizell.
Some we’ve found. Others we’ve not.
But of all we can say, “We miss them a lot.”

Jerry Flynn, Kerry Bannon,
and Mark Freiermuth.
They were on the class web site when I wrote this.
And that is the ABSOLUTE truth!

Susan Averitt Bobbitt
left us a little prematurely.
We’re glad to see her again;
happy to reunite, surely.

Some of us have been friends
Since … oh, about 1976.
That was the year of Kindergarten,
and it really had its kicks.

It was America’s birthday,
and there were fireworks galore.
The world seemed so new,
and our bright eyes just wanted … more.

Our teachers … we loved them!
And our new friends were really cool.
“Maybe this would be OK,” we thought.
“This prison … that some call SCHOOL!”

The merry-go-round was a hit,
but recess was far too short.
Chase and tag for boys;
Now THAT was the sport.

Girls played with dolls.
Others cooked and played “kitchen.”
Some jumped rope outside.
Some were already learnin’ naggin’ and … but I digress.

Of course, I’m just joking.
The girls, we loved both then and now.
The young sweeties are now ladies.
To them, we tip a hat … and take a bow.

I remember one kid ate paste.

He’s not with us tonight.
You see, he was held back.
No names will be mentioned.
But it wasn’t Trent or Jamey Black.

Instead, Jamey threw a pencil.
The lead is still stuck in my arm!
In Middle School he kneed me,
but I’m sure never meaning any harm.

(It was a “rasslin” move called a “Two” … named after it’s creator, Mr. Wrestling II. Oh, yeah!)

Elementary was exactly that,
but then came Middle School.
Fifth grade through eighth;
and what was “cool” was the rule.

Six periods per day;
we changed classes in Middle.
Bladder relief ONLY at designated times;
you had to hold your piddle!

Mr. Whitworth was our principal.
He was honest, stern, fair and good.
Discipline was the name of his game,
and you always knew where you stood.

With age came sports,
and lots of other activities,
like band, dance, and cheerleading,
and increased “social” festivities.

Of course, in Sheridan,
deer season was tops for many.
Opening day? Boys at school?
About 20.

In seventh grade we met the “others” …
the kids from the North.
East Enders came to Sheridan,
and we were told to treat them with “warmth.”

We discovered soon we liked them.
We were like sisters and brothers.
We’d have been with them all along
if we’d had our druthers.

When eighth grade was over
high school awaited.
Whatever status we’d earned
had quickly been negated.

Ninth grade was scary.
The seniors were big.
And we heard that in a couple years
we’d have to take Trig!

There were these MONSTER teachers
who wanted us to hit the books!
People like Mrs. Graves, Mrs. Cook,
… and some pencil-neck geek named Scott Ausbrooks.

There was a look to be had,
and bald was a gamble.
It was a push for Mr. Easton,
but looked great on Larry Campbell.

Calvin Klein, Lee, or Wrangler:
Your jeans pick may have varied.
Big hair, mullets, and leg warmers:
With each, a message was carried.

Bon Jovi, Def Leppard, Hank Jr., and …
remember Club Nouveau?
We tell our kids music was better then ...
because … well, “We said so.”

Cheers and Alf and Family Ties
were some shows of the day.
I enjoyed them all and
wish they’d never gone away.

Sophomore and junior years brought
students from Leola and Grapevine:
More good friends for years to come
and lives forever intertwined.

Our senior year was terrific.
For many, centered around a team:
A special group of “Campbell’s gang”
that helped us all live a dream.

Yesteryear’s names and pleasant thoughts
are too many now to mention.
And then there’s the simple fact
that a-slippin’ is my retention.

When I wake from a long night’s sleep,
sometimes I think it’s summer vacation,
and all the joys of childhood and teens
will stay with me the duration.

It was a different world back then.
It was one we all enjoyed.
Time took it away,
but good memories cannot be destroyed.

I love the Class of ’88 …
not just because it was mine.
It’s the people who hold a place in my heart.
The memories there are divine.

CLICK HERE to download the poem in a MS Word document.

2 comments:

  1. Andy, so sorry that I didn't capture this fine moment on video like I intended to...in stunning HD even!!! ARRRGGGGHHHHH!!! Technology is such a blessing AND a curse!!! Anyway, a great poem from the guy who sat beside me in Typing class! And, by the way, thanks for the carnation on Valentine's Day!!! : )

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  2. Aaron, thanks for posting this so we could easily get a copy. Andy--brilliant! Just brilliant! What a way to capture so many memories from K - 12. Thank you for sharing your creative abilities. From one of the "East Enders"--a kid from the North

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