Monday, May 30, 2011

Memorial Day - 2011

Last year I wrote a serious piece about one of the fallen young men we honor on this day. He was a WWII bomber pilot who was shot from the sky over Europe in early 1944. He was also a graduate of the United States Military Academy at West Point. As a young group leader he took his task seriously…seriously enough to offer his life to help accomplish his task.

We try to select leaders from among us who have either demonstrated their substance through their prior performance, or in a more hopeful sense, someone who has the capacity to grow into the job with which we entrust them. In my experience, until the early 1990s when a Wall Street Journal editorial wondered in print, “Are There Any Adults in Charge?” during the early days of the Clinton administration, I had never thought that we might have trouble finding adults among us as our leaders. To my knowledge that had never been a problem before.

A year ago during the Memorial Day weekend, our President chose to take a short vacation to Chicago and, as a nod to the reverence of the day, tacked on a quick visit to a local Chicago national cemetery to put in an obligatory appearance. God was not pleased and the skies opened up in a downpour and an electrical storm.

In accordance with tradition, this year he put in his appearance at Arlington National Cemetery at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. God smiled, and provided a beautiful day for the ceremony. Then, our President screwed it up and went out to play golf that afternoon, once again raising the question…are there any adults in charge?

I’m not one to criticize another man an opportunity for a pleasant round of golf when he has the chance, but I can attest to the fact that 95° and humid is not a pleasant day on a golf course. On the other hand, after recently being embarrassingly schooled by Netanyahu, writing the wrong year in the Westminster guest book, and messing up the Queen’s toast in a very public way, maybe he was due. But it surely did appear to be in bad taste.

The Telegraph writer, Nile Gardiner, had more to say on the subject in his article.


Sunday, May 29, 2011

Victory at Sea on DVD

Perhaps you’ve already seen this DVD set in the Walmart cheap video bins….$5. If you were like me, about 1953-54 you anxiously waited each week for NBC to broadcast the next program in their Victory at Sea series. Not much in them meant much to me…Dad flew in the Air Corps over Europe, but the visuals were mesmerizing. And its music was composed by Richard Rogers (Rogers & Hammerstein).

If you’re stumped for an occasional gift for a grandchild, or even for one of your offspring, you could do much worse than giving one of these 3-disc sets. At $5 they are an incredible bargain. With the Internet available these days, they can launch off in hundreds of different directions to learn something triggered by things they see in the videos. Given the state of current public education, the chances of your grandchildren learning anything approximating this information is probably slight.

Film used in these programs was of the period and the narration script was close enough in time to the events that it could be considered of the period also. I always like to read or view source material similar to the documents of the past few posts as they are not subject to later interpretations which can, at times, skew the truth.


Saturday, May 28, 2011

Historic Document - Gulf of Tonkin Resolution

The Gulf of Tonkin Resolution was the authorizing document used to enable the executive branch to attack North Vietnam at will rather than having to gain concurrence from Congress. It was drafted in response to an open sea incident that occurred in the Gulf of Tonkin. 

Ultimately about 2,600,000 of our young men and women would be engaged in-country and 58,000 of them would die there.

Signatures on the document are Lyndon B. Johnson (D-TX), Lee W. Metcalf (D-WY), and John W. McCormack (D-MA)

Patriots, all. Democratics, all.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Historic Letter -2 ?

Another potentially historic letter was this one written in October 2007 on Senate letterhead and signed by 41 Democrat Senators. The Fox News story at right describes the event that ultimately resulted in the letter being sold on eBay for $2,100,000 by Rush Limbaugh. Mr. Limbaugh matched the amount raised and the full $4,200,000 was donated to The Marine Corps - Law Enforcement Foundation resulting in a windfall for the Marine charity and egg on the faces of 41 United States Senators.

The sales verbiage, in part, went like this:

“When "Dingy Harry" Reid and the U.S. Senate turned away from the business of the nation to instead smear a private citizen, forty-one of them sent a letter demanding the "repudiation" of their inaccurate interpretation of Rush Limbaugh's comments about Jesse Al-Zaid (a.k.a. Jesse MacBeth) and other "phony soldiers" who falsify their service. This letter was delivered to Mark Mays of Clear Channel Communications, Rush Limbaugh's syndication partner, and widely quoted in the Drive-By Media.

“Up for auction is the original letter signed by 41 Democrat senators.

This historic document may well represent the first time in the history of America that this large a group of U.S. senators attempted to demonize a private citizen by lying about his views. As such, it is a priceless memento of the folly of Harry Reid and his 40 senatorial co-signers.

“The entire proceeds of this auction.. the entire high bid... will be donated to The Marine Corps - Law Enforcement Foundation, a registered charity which provides financial assistance to the children of fallen Marines and federal law enforcement officers. Rush Limbaugh serves on the Board of this organization and has been active on its behalf. All costs of this auction will be paid by the seller... every dollar of your winning bid will go to this charity, which has to date distributed over $29 million.”


Thursday, May 26, 2011


You might want to take a copy of this letter for your own files. Strikes me as one of those potentially historic documents. If you're in Texas, you've been hearing a lot about this topic, if not in Texas, I suspect you may not have heard too much about it.

This is one of those moments in time that makes one proud to be a Texan. The Texas legislature decided it was time to take things in their own sensible hands and pass a law making it illegal for Federal employees (TSA) at the airport to molest travelers, including babies and young children. The law had completed its trip through the "process" and was due for a final vote yesterday. The letter was written to a few of the top ranking Texas legislators and the bill was pulled.

There may be more to come on this subject, but even if not, the Texas legislature has accomplished a significant thing. It forced this letter to be written. I like the old Boston politician, Martin Lomasney's advice on the importance of discretion: "Never write if you can speak; never speak if you can nod; never nod if you can wink."

The way I read this letter is that a Federal Attorney has carried the message that if Texas insists on protecting its citizens from Federal molestation, the airline system inbound to Texas may be shut down. We will fondle the ladies, or the planes don't fly. Pretty amazing stuff, isn't it? And here it is in writing to be seen through the ages.


Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Statistics & Map Links

This post will serve as a focal point for various statistical and short quotes of interest.

1913 NTTC Map1915 - Dixie Highway
1954 DFW
1965 DFW

The Peter Principle is the principle that "in a hierarchy every employee tends to rise to their level of incompetence".
Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.
Aristophanes. "Youth ages, immaturity is outgrown, ignorance can be educated, and drunkenness sobered, but stupid lasts forever."

1961 - 1965 Big E Queens

The Big E Beauty Pageant was a portion of an annual Spring variety program called the "Highland Fling". The pageant was something dreamed up by principal Roy C. Johnson and Miss Miriam Moore, one of the P.E. teachers. The contest was modeled after the Miss America Pageant without the swimsuit competition. Formal evening gowns and talent presentation were a part of the competition and outside judges were brought in. About 15-girls entered the competition each year.

Note the change in the evening gown designs from 1961-63 to the 1964-65 winners. By 1964-65 the gowns had become more tailored and sleek in appearance, compared to the Antebellum style of the earlier gowns. The only thing I can think of that changed in our society during those years was the JFK assassination which has long been called the end of our innocence. Maybe the newer gowns were starting to reflect that...all of them are lovely, though.

The first 5 winners and finalists are shown in these pictures. We had some pretty girls among us, didn't we?

 1961 Miss Big E: Darla Houlihan (’62); finalist: Judy Oxford (’62); Lynda Lynch (’61), Patsy Phelps (’61), Judy Hill (’63).

1962 Miss Big E: Carol Reeder (’62); finalist: Marsha Routt (’62); Pam Shear (’64), Laretta Ardoyno (’62), Susan Begley (’63).

1963 Miss Big E: Susan Begley (’63); finalist: Judy Hill (’63), Sharon Elliot (’64), Jane Welborn (’63), Cheryl Reeder (’63).

1964 Miss Big E: Sharon Elliot (’64); finalist: Angela Meer (’65); Nancy O’Neil (’64), Christy Hawrylak (’65), Shelia Ward (’64).

1965 Miss Big E: Bonnie Pemberton (’67); finalist: Dixie Davis (’67); Judi Ryno (’65), Christy Hawrylak (’65), Angela Meer (’65).


Tuesday, May 24, 2011

First Faculty – Eastern Hills High School – 1961

The pictures were scanned from a 1961 CLAN yearbook and were the only formal portraits taken of the teaching staff while we were at EHHS. In subsequent years the teachers’ pictures were candid shots that significantly varied in quality. Although a 1960 CLAN might show a slight difference in faculty composition, it would most likely be a relatively trivial variance.

When we graduated in 1963, the teaching staff had changed somewhat and the count was up to 46 from the 36 pictured here. The listing below was scanned from a 1961-62 Student Directory.

The school was undergoing rapid growth as the Baby Boomers entered their high school years. Graduate count went from 145 in 1960 to 410 in 1965.


Monday, May 23, 2011

EHHS First Faculty From Poly & Handley High Schools

The teachers marked transferred to EHHS from 2 nearby high schools to become members of EHHS' first faculty.  The page scans are from 1959 Poly and Handley High School yearbooks, the last year before EHHS opened fall 1959. 

Poly was a few miles SW of EH and Handley was a short distance East, near the Lake Arlington dam.  Our original faculty numbered about 36, for a student body of about 600 the first year which grew to about 1250 when we graduated in 1963.


Friday, May 20, 2011

Family Truckster

Now and then I see a vehicle on the road that makes me do a double take, wondering what in the heck is that? Saw one a few days ago in a local parking lot. It was so clumsy looking that it immediately reminded me of the family truckster in one of those old Chevy Chase movies. The GMC shown above isn't the exact thing I saw, but it's close--the one I saw had 4 grill intakes in front. Can't tell them apart these days, but a really ugly one will still stand out.


Wednesday, May 18, 2011


Even though I am a 3rd generation Texan and proud of that heritage, early on I found the Texan social structures somewhat stifling. It seemed that folks just wanted to dig into my personal business deeper than I wanted to permit. Not that I had anything to hide or that I was averse to bragging, it was more that I liked to move around with a certain degree of anonymity without being constantly measured by what others thought they knew about me. I like the notion of the here and now…that the present words and deeds should either carry a substantial weight or they don’t.

I think it started in the pre-high school years when I encountered some of the social cliques and suffered a small bit of their exclusion. More tellingly, once accepted into a clique, I disliked their somewhat aggressive stances toward either accepting or rejecting others. I like everybody and always have. Well, that’s not quite accurate…I have encountered some monumental jackasses, too.

Once paroled from Texas after EH and employed by a large corporation, I had the opportunity to not only learn more about how other folks in other regions thought and acted, but also to come back to Texas on business. To the Texans I visited, I was now a foreigner…someone who was not from Texas, and therefore, not one of the group. Although this attitude was encountered in other southern states, it was strongest in Texas.

Only if identifying myself as a Texan were an advantage to my mission, would I do so. Of course, my accent often gave me away. My work took me into some of the large industrial installations in the region where safety was a paramount concern and where wearing a hard-hat was mandatory.

Wearing the hard hat opened an amusing avenue for social experimentation.  I was always given a brand-new, white hard hat and a DYMO label maker with which to make a name label for the hat. Since I was usually an independent contributor, an expert from from afar, I had some freedom to do as I wished. So, also having the youth to not really give a damn about any consequences, I would pick one of those Chicago-style Slovakian names that was full of consonants, always ending in “ski” and having enough letters in it to wrap all the way around the hat so you couldn’t see all of it from the front. 

Something made up like, “WZBIKYZEWSKI".

In the land of Joe Bobs and Mary Ellens, someone wearing the name, “WZBIKYZEWSKI” on his hard hat never failed to draw attention. But something we Texans tend to practice is to not ask about things like that. We’re curious, but we don’t ask.

 I’ll never forget riding an elevator down from the top of a large plant with one of the plant operators. We stood across from one another in the elevator, looking down at our feet. The ride was about 15-stories, so it took some time.

I caught him when he first spotted “WZBIKYZEWSKI” on my hat. He just glanced and quickly looked back down. Then he did the double take…a second glance, this one longer. He couldn’t see all the letters, so he shifted just slightly, trying to look around the edge to see the rest of them. I started to slowly look up and he quickly shifted his gaze back to the floor. This continued for a couple of cycles and we reached the ground floor. He never asked!

Me, I would have asked, “how in the hell do you pronounce your name and what are its origins?” I’m curious about things I don’t know. But none of the Joe Bobs in Texas ever asked. That may have been one of the starting points of my lifelong fascination with presenting others a puzzling situation just to see how they handle it.


Sunday, May 15, 2011

Pictures I want – Got any?

Here are some pictures I would like to have to use in illustrating this blog. If you have any of them, please send me a good scan as an email attachment to the “contact” email address, upper right.

1-2013 Update: Gus notes that this is a popular page that attracts a lot of visitors. However, Gus also notes that response is disappointing. Gus believes that is largely due to one or more of 5 factors:

     1-you have none of these things;
     2-you have them, but are technologically challenged or just plain lazy about getting off your tail to get what you have scanned and sent in;
     3-you’re still pissed off that you weren’t voted ‘favorite” or more troubling, still pissed that someone else was;
     4-your old boy/girl friend broke your heart, so heck with it;
     5-your grandchildren are taking up so much of your time…baloney, they’re in school now.

Note to the technology challenged: Take your pictures to WalMart, ask them to scan your pictures to a jump drive…it’s surprisingly cheap and once done you have your e-files available to load into any USB device.


1958 and earlier class pictures from Meadowbrook, Tandy, and Sagamore Hill Elementary, Handley Elementary schools. These would have been taken in 1958 or before and show some of the future members of the EH Class of 1963. Hopefully they are identified on the back.

Also want similar class pictures for EH Class of 1961 - 1962 - 1964, since we '63s knew a lot of you, too and plan to enlarge this mega-site to include our adjacent classmates.


1960,  these were 4-page folded sheets containing all grad names.


What was and who started the Thaelis & Delphi service clubs? Besides hosting a couple of annual dances, what else did you do? Were they associated with a local Women's Club?  My present thought (11/2012) was that the idea originated from the Poly area and was a kind of East Side move toward identifying future debs apart from the old school West Side.  Your thoughts?


Looking for information, pictures, and recollections of this celebration at Meadowbrook during the 1950s to 1960s.  It is believed to have started about 1953 and continued annually until at least 1965.  Quite a production.


Handley Junior High - 1959

And for better or worse, here some of us were as 8th Grade Handley Pups in May 1959. Another year and we would be EHHS Sophomores, starting out at the bottom of the pile once more.

These pages were published in the 1959 Handley yearbook. At Handley, grades 7-12 were combined into one school facility so the yearbooks portrayed those 6 classes. Enjoy the memories.

I counted 121 pictures here which would be about 1/3 of the 1963 EH senior class. However, a fair number of these kids went elsewhere to high school and we picked up a larger contingent from Meadowbrook at EH.

East Handley Elementary
West Handley Elementary
Little Elementary (now part of Arlington ISD)
Meadowbrook Elementary


Meadowbrook Junior High - 1958 - 1962 (EHHS '61 - '65)

For better or worse, here some of us were as 9th Grade Meadowbrook Buffaloes in May 1960.  The next fall we would be EHHS Sophomores, starting out at the bottom of the pile once more.

These sheets are probably quite rare as there was no yearbook published during our junior high years; just these composite pages printed in the school newspaper.  You've got to be quite a pack rat to have saved this kind of stuff all these years, and that I am.

Then you have to fumble around with the scanner to get the oversize sheets digitized in pieces and stuck together.  Enjoy the memories.

I think I counted about 230 pics here which would be more than 2/3 of the 1963 EH senior class.  However, a fair number of these kids went to Poly after this and we picked up a contingent from Handley at EH. 

Any idea how many 6th grade classes fed this school and from which elementary schools?

    Meadowbrook Elementary
    Tandy Elementary
    Sagamore Hill Elementary

­1960 Meadowbrook JH Graduates - 228
Acuff, Paula…Alexander, Ronald…Almond, Carolyn…Baer, Edward…Ballard, Jim…Ballem, Sharron…Balthrop, Gary…Balthrop, Sherry…Barber, Jeanette…Barnes, Charles…Barnes, Nancy…Barr, Linda…Bartholmew, Darlene…Bartholomew, Sam…Beall, Celia…Beck, Carolyn…Begley, Susan…Benbow, Nola…Bettinger, Brenda…Bockman, Dean…Bodine, Nan…Brandon, Glen…Brewer, Sherry…Browne, Kathleen…Bruce, Charles…Buckman, Phyllis…Burton, Gay…Butler, Bruce…Butler, Helen…Carrol, Joyce…Gastillon, Thomas…Cathay, Billie Sue…Chrisman, Barbara…Coffman, Wanda…Cole, Charles…Cole, Steve…Collins, Brian…Colwell, Wilma…Conner, Marilyn…Cooper, Jerry…Cooper, Mike…Cooper, Sandra…Cox, Jimmy…Crawford, Paul…Crowder, Carol…Cunningham, Sarah…Davis, Phyllis…Decker, Randy…Dennie, Ronnie…Devoe, Betty…DeVore, Gail…Dickerson, Joe…Diehl, Sandra…Dillard, Bobby…Edwards, Sandra…Eldridge, Carol…Ellis, Dianne…Fike, Karen…Fleming, Paul…Fry, Sandra…Gallagher, Johnny…Gilbert, David…Gilmore, Bill…Golden, Ronnie…Grimes, Sallie…Grove, Bob…Grunow, Barbara…Grizzard, Mike…Guthr1e, Larry…Hadsell, John…Hall, Kenneth…Hamilton, Harriett…Hancock, Robert…Haight, Robert…Hardin, Dianne…Harris, Ronnie…Harris, Susan…Hays, Sherry…Held, Vicki…Hicks, Dudley…Hill, Diane…Hill, Fred…Hill, Judy…Hofmann, Susan…Hoffman, Billy…Holland, Barbara…Holmes, Judy…Honeycutt, Sandra…Holt, Jim…Hooton, Diane…Horn, Christine…Howard, Marion Lee…Hubbard, Sharon…Huber, Ronnie…Huckaby, Marcia…Hudson, Julie…Hullum, Edward…Humphrey, Kay…Hunsaker, William…Hunter, Betsey Ann…Jackson, Janet…Johnson, James…Jones, Charles…Kelly, Janet…Kessler, Eddy…Kilgo, Benny…King, Barbara…Kirke, Thomas…Koch, Warren…Koebernick, Thomas Edward…Kouns, Kitty…Bob Ladd…Lambert, Jerry…Langdon, Linda…Larmer, Bob…Latham, Mike…Lathrop , Nancy…Lavelle, Cheryl…Long, Jamenta…McCauley, Melita…McCollum, Daniel…McCook, Kendall…McCoy, Danny…McDonald, Bruce…McDonald, Suzanne…McGee, Kay…McVean, Jim…Maddux, Dennis…Martin, Douglas…Massey, Bob…Massey, Dan…Marcotte, Carolyn…Matthews, Tee…Means, Steve…Milburn, Marilyn…Miller, Neldon…Miller, Reynolds…Moore, Forrest Mike…Murley, John…Nelson,  Kim…Newman, Sharon…Newsom, Ernest…Nixon, Phil…Nusbaum, Jeff…Paul, Robert…Peacock. Juanita…Perkins, Guy…Per1ick, Don…Perrino, Karen…Perry, Pamela…Pridgeon, Pat…Proctor, Louise…Quire, Patricia…Reams, Lonnie…Reaves , Albert…Redtford, Carol…Reader, Cheryl…Richardson, Madelda…Riedel, Rita…Rigby, Charles…Ritchey, Donna…Roberts, Shirley…Rodriguez, Mike…Rogers, Bobby…Ryder, Janet…Rucker, Sharon…Sanborn, William…Sands, Robert…Scott, Carl…Scott, Kenneth…Scott, Sampson…Searcy, Terry…Sells, James…Shetter, Lonnie…Shields, Paul…Shore, Sandy…Slay, Jack…Smith, Barbara…Smith, Berta…Smith, Greg…Smith, John…Smith, Joyce…Snow, Sharon…Southard, J.W….Sowell, Donald…Speakes, Patricia…Spence, Richard…Stallcup, Carole…Stephens , Surrynda…Stewart, Tim…Sutter, Sharon…Swanson, Betty…Sweet, Harry…Tate, Paul…Taylor, Fred…Taylor, Mac…Tekstar, Danny…Thompson, Benny Lee…Thompson, LeRoy…Van Pelt, Paula…Visney, Bob…Von Diest, Terry…Wadlington, Susie…Wakefield , Eddie…Warren, Patti…Weimann, Dianne…Wellborn, Jane…Welch, Pamela…West, Robert…Wilkerson, Donna…Wilkins, Reginald…Wilkinson, Mike…Williamson, Kris…Winkler, Bill…Wippert, James…Wippert, Larry…Withers , Dennis…Wofford, Beth…Womack, Julie…Womack, Ronnie…Woods, Robert…Woodward, Candy…Yarbrough. David…Young, Mary

June 24, 2012 UpdateEH Class of 1964 
Your 1961 Meadowbrook Junior High 9th Grade Pictures from the Meadowlark.

July 11, 2012 UpdateEH Class of 1965
Your 1962 Meadowbrook Junior High 9th Grade Pictures from the Meadowlark.

July 21, 2014 UpdateEH Class of 1962
Your 1959 Meadowbrook Junior High 9th Grade Pictures from the Meadowlark.

July 21, 2014 UpdateEH Class of 1961
Your 1958 Meadowbrook Junior High 9th Grade Pictures from the Meadowlark.


Freedom is not Free

At the Strategic Air Command Museum in Omaha, Nebraska, there is a static display of an SR-71 Blackbird.  Carved into its base are these words,

“We must never forget that freedom is never really free, it is the most costly thing in the world.  Freedom is never paid in a lump sum.  Installments come due in every generation.  All any of us can do is offer the generations that follow a chance for freedom.”


Wednesday, May 11, 2011

1959 Poly & Handley High School Seniors

Those of us who had older brothers and sisters were somewhat aware of the existence of Poly and Handley. In fact, some of us dated and even married some members of those classes. However, those of us not having older siblings were only aware of their existence if a girl we liked was unavailable because she was dating someone from one of these other schools. It was always a bit confusing to me.

Fine reunion sites have proliferated over the past few years and continue to improve as time passes. Some of those old questions are increasingly being answered through the availability of this additional information. We tend to have good recall of our own years of attendance but understandably, none at all of the years that just preceded or followed our own.

I’ve long been curious about the particulars of how EHHS came to be with respect to its population having originally been drawn from both Poly and Handley. Influences from both of those schools were palpable when we were there, but in my mind, more strongly from Handley.

The pictures show the 1959 graduating classes from both Poly and Handley, the last graduating classes of both of those schools before the effects of EH were felt. In them, you can clearly see the relative sizes of the 2 schools, 424 Poly seniors; 74 Handley seniors. All of the Handley juniors, about 60 by George Bradford’s count, and about 85 Poly juniors were assigned to Eastern Hills as its first graduating class…the Class of 1960. A number of names in both of these classes are familiar to me and most likely older siblings of many of our classmates.

HQ scans of these individual yearbook pages can be found on the 1959 class sites, POLY and HANDLEY.

Clearly Poly was the principal donor school for the first EHHS classes, contributing about 20% of its 1959 population to EH. And it appears that the Handley population may have been in some decline from 74 (1959 Sr.) to 60 (1959 Jr.that became part of the EH Class of 1960)


Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Eastern Hills High School 1961 - 2010

A c. 2010 HQ picture recently uploaded to Wikipedia stimulated putting it together with an old one I had from the early 1960s. It's pretty remarkable that not much has changed.
There are some additions that have been made to the rear elevations, but this one from the front looks quite familiar. Aside from the minor changes in the signage about the only thing I see that causes me to question what's going on, is the addition of some kind of fencing along the roof lines. Wonder what that's about?

Monday, May 09, 2011

Mollie Howell & Steve Means

Interesting short bios from February 1963, just before they struck off for college.

Note that Steve says he and Tate had started developing a taste for several musicians including "Ralph Bacardi". They, and their TARTAN insider confederate, Dillard, were proud of slipping that little bit of naughtiness by Mrs. Priddy, the TARTAN sponsor.

They and some of their friends had started trying a little "demon rum" and beer during their last semester at EH. I'm reasonably certain there hadn't been much, if any, drinking before that. Believe it or not folks, a lot of us in those days didn't drink, nor smoke, and unless I was entirely clueless, do any drugs. I can say with certainty that I don't recall any whispers in the hallways of anyone doing drugs, although there were probably a few that did...they just weren't a part of our clutch of friends.


Friday, May 06, 2011

4th Grade

The more I’ve delved into this look back exercise, the more I’ve discovered that whatever was going on in my small world was also going on in the small worlds of a lot of others. I doubt that changes much throughout life even though specific elements that made up our individual lives changed over time. We moved from toys to games to cars to girls/boys to work to children to homes and whatever else we could stuff into our lives along the way.

For me, the film Animal House showed that what I experienced as a college student was similar to what the Animal House writers experienced during those same years—even though they went to school elsewhere in the country far from my home turf. And as I watched some of the details written into that film, I saw some elements of my 4th grade year in it.

I recall drawing war scenes almost daily while the teacher was teaching—I was bored. While I don’t have any specific recollections of any of my classmates doing the same thing, I’m sure some of them were, we rarely did anything that others were not doing. A short scene in Animal House showed that some of the writers were drawing the same scenes. Unfortunately, none of my art work survived but the scenes were pretty much the same…fighters zooming down, shooting everything in sight on the ground.

Then I wondered where the idea came from….TV was only black & white in those days, only 3-channels, and full of WWII documentaries and movies. Maybe the idea came from those films. But I also recall having a lot of leftover Life magazines from the WWII years…Dad never threw anything like that out. Then I saw the 1944 Cadillac ad (below) online recently. That ad closely matches what I was drawing...anyway, that’s one of my 4th grade memories.

By the way, one of the Animal House writers is visible online and answered a few of my inquiries...kind of neat.


Thursday, May 05, 2011

The Sit Room

This picture came out along with a lot of others in recent days. It is reported to depict some of our top government officials watching the end of Osama in real time. In the interest of some inexplicable nod to keeping a non-existent peace, we the people are not to be permitted to see what they saw...the corps (sic) of Osama.

As a result, conspiracy theories are multiplying like wildfire. We may never know what they were looking at, but there have been some unsubstantiated reports...


Wednesday, May 04, 2011

The Clan - Eastern Hills High School Yearbook

If we attended classes at EH for 3-years, we came into contact with 5 different classes; 2 older, and 2 younger, plus our own. I got a yearbook each year...suppose most of us did. They came out sometime during the summer months and we spent a few hours of a summer evening having others sign the books. Some of those sentiments can be interesting reading even now.

I've picked up a 1965 Clan which was issued a couple of years after we left EH. In it the Sophomores of our 1963 Clan are in their Senior year. It's interesting to see the growth and maturity that took place after we left. Of course, every generation did exactly the same growing during those same years.

In reviewing the yearbooks I've seen some significant differences between them, in terms of picture quality and layout. Those are areas where the individual talents and skills of each annual staff reveal themselves. Personally, I think the 1962 Clan was the best layout and photo quality, followed closely by the 1961 Clan.

Our 1963 Clan cover is the best to my eye and the photo quality and layout, while still good, was not quite up to the earlier standards. The 1965 Clan I received recently is significantly lower in terms of photo quality and layout.

The Clan cover pictures in this posting are the first 6 Clans issued. I have not yet seen a 1964 Clan.


Tuesday, May 03, 2011

1962 - 1963 Football Team Managers

For 3-years Tom Hendrick and Fred Alvord were the varsity football team managers. I think John Alcon was a year younger and joined them in their second year, 1961. To tell the truth I don't quite know what all they did, but they did serve at the pleasure of Coach Mitcham and apparently did their job quite well.
As a player, all I saw was a fairly uniform cranky attitude from all 3 of them. Why they stayed cranky, I never did know, but the only contact I had with them was when one of them stayed by the showers as guardian of the stack of per customer and no more! Maybe that's what kept them cranky, because almost everyone could have made use of a second towel and many tried to filch an extra one.
I'm sure they were the keepers of the game uniforms, hauled ice water out to the practice field every day, taped some ankles, and a lot of other things that needed doing.
All in all, it must have been a pretty thankless job in close proximity to more than a few prima donnas. Anyway, they did a good job.