Monday, January 07, 2013

Kim & Writing Well

William Safire had this pillow on his sofa.  As one of the country's premier 20th century writers, he was a master of the written word, a life-long student of the language and if I recall correctly, a fixture at the New York Times.  I love his irony.

Over the past few years that I’ve been posting to this blog many of my old classmates have written to say hello, share some memories, and contribute some photographs.  Some have taken the interest to figure out who I am, others haven’t, and others still, remain curious, but only mildly so.  I’m content with all those responses.

The blog has become a kind of central clearing agent for a lot of folks having a lot of different motivations and more importantly, differing viewpoints.  It’s been a fascinating and enlightening endeavor.  We were and remain a diverse group.

Kim Nelson, one of my favorite former EH classmates ventured in with a modest comment some months back.  Kim was a favorite of mine due to her always cheerful demeanor and she was sharp as a tack.  She’s sharper now.  There were several others like her that I tended to place into one of 3 distinct sub-groups—sports, academics, social.  Kim was in my academic sub-group, along with several others, some of whom are shown in the picture below.

Sometimes there were kids who were members of more than one sub-group, such as me.  But, there was no formal or even decipherable formula for inclusion in one of my sub-groups.  They just were.

In exchanging a few emails with Kim, I was immediately impressed with how finely she crafts her words.  Word choice, sentence structure, and thought are all of the first order.  Then I recalled the poem she wrote that was featured on the front page of one of our Senior year TARTANS.  That’s the one featured at right, above…she was showing writing genius even then, wasn’t she?

By our Senior year we already pretty well knew who our class academics were; but, then came the results of those special tests I never really understood.  You recall them, perhaps…the National Merit Scholarship and maybe one or two others.  I didn’t fare very well with them, but the group of academics shown below did.  Most of them were in my academic group where we rather anxiously compared grades after tests and report cards.

Kim was tall and had a great sense of humor.  I’m pretty sure she was crouched down in the picture below…she was taller than the others there.  And if you look closely at her expression, doesn't she have a mischievous look about her?  Her Dad was an Army combat commander during WWII and actively participated in the campaign north along the Italian peninsula toward Germany.  He was in the thick of it.

7/28/2016 update:  Kim tells me that she was stooping down to give Sells a pinch on the butt in the pic.

Interestingly, of this group, only one of them was a Summa grad and that was Dennis Withers at left.  Missing from the photo is Carolyn Almond, who for reasons I wouldn't know, wasn't in my mental file of class smarties, but the test revealed otherwise.  I understand that she is a member of MENSA and she is one of my Facebook Friends where we trade brief thoughts now and then; hers mostly light and pithy.


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