Monday, July 20, 2009

The Eagle Has Landed!!!!

Forty years ago today, the first man walked on a surface other than the moon. Neil Armstrong with the words "that's one small step for man, that's one giant leap for mankind," fulfilled President Kennedy's promise of putting a man on the moon before the decade was over.

In a period in our history where we had Vietnam on one end and a crisis to become known as Watergate in the near future, the golden age of our space program was on display for the world to see.

One of NASA's and the space program's biggest cheerleaders was a man named Walter Conkrite who passed away Friday at the age of 92. Like the space program Conkrite was a pioneer in his business and became known as the first anchorman.

Lulac had a great story with some local input in Cronkite.

The big story with the passing of Conkrite is Conkrite's American and where it has gone. For 19 years he was in the anchor's desk at CBS from 1962 to March 6th, 1981. The evening news was part of the American fabric of life. Your house was defined as an ABC, NBC, or CBS household. With less channels, no internet or cell phones, America was more informed and we were better citizens for it.

Cronkite's greatest moment was perhaps coming and after a trip to Vietnam said the war was a stalemate and could not be won on the battlefield. Probably no one outside of government will ever shape foreign policy the way Conkrite did that evening.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

OLOL 1984, The Kids Are Alright!!!!

Most of the Class in the Picture

Lisa and Carnac the Magnificent share a picture. Actually, it is former history teacher Tom Ryan and a coaching colleague of Lisa's dad. Ryan did an outstanding take on Carnac during student appreciation day during Catholic Schools Week. You didn't want to be a question or an answer.

This past Saturday, Lourdes Regional's Class of 1984 gathered to celebrate their their 25th reunion in Elysburg. I believe 139 walked out of Lourdes on May 25th, 1984 and we get about 20 to 25% of the class back. Our biggest attendence was our 10th. Family obligations have seemed to take over after that. Translation......the kids are holding us hostage!!!!!

Our class had a lot of pressure from the outset with a novel by George Orwell and album by Van Halen by the same 1984 title. Orwell's real name was Eric Arthur Blair. Like Orwell, our class may be as complex. From and essay, Orwell considered himself a democratic socialist while is novel 1984 identifies him with being noninvasive.

If you look back at the past 25 years, member of our class have fought in wars, raised kids, some now have grandchildren, fought disease, traveled and lived around the world, married, divorced, remarried or never married at all. One person is actually retired!!! In all, we have done the things that generations past and generations of the future will do post high school graduations.

For myself, high school graduation marked a time and point of my life where there was no going back. From the time I was 5, I woke up almost everyday from August to June with a place and purpose in life. Graduation marks the time in life where you have to carve out that new direction that slowly chips away at that purpose of the past. I think our class has handled that well.

I have to admit, for the most part I did more listening than talking. A couple of surprise, but I didn't talk to many people about the years 80 through 84 that we spent together. I spent more time trying to update people who weren't at the reunion to their whereabouts. On side note, I don't think anyone makes a living in the manufacturing field. Sign of the times? Although our class had seen some PC's in our senior year (Radio Shack Tandy's) many classmates or spouses make their living in the IT field. I guess we had the right stuff. No one really talked about Lourdes Regional itself.

For a play on some of the numbers. We were the 25th class to graduate from Lourdes Regional. Our class produced one married couple out of 139 and they are still married. This year 25 students graduated from Lourdes.

In 1984, one of the biggest things in the world was "USA for Africa" led by Michael Jackson. 25 years later, he was front page headline for a fortnight with his passing. Bruce Springsteen had his biggest album with "Born in the USA" in 1984. Here are some lyrics to leave you with from that album:

Well, we busted out of class

Had to get away from those fools
We learned more from a three-minute record, baby
Than we ever learned in school
Tonight I hear that neighborhood drummer sound
I can feel my heart begin to pound
You say you're tired and you just want to close your eyes
And follow your dreams down

Well, we made a promise we swore we'd always remember
No retreat, baby, no surrender
Like soldiers in the winter's night with a vow to defend
No retreat, baby, no surrender

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Lourdes Regional Class of 1984 Reunion Today!!!

I will be off to my 25th Class Reunion today at Helfrick's Grove in Elysburg. When we entered Lourdes Regional in September of 1980 the #1 song in the land was "Emotional Rescue" by the Rolling Stones. When we graduated on May 25th, 1984, the #1 song was "Hello" by Lionel Richie.

My favorite was from Bruce Springsteen called "No Surrender".

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Where has "The Voice" Gone?

Hello everyone!!!! I just took some time off the blog between some vacationing and umpiring baseball and softball. So much to write about!!!! Very shortly the fall football season will be here and I will be back on the air.

As they say in England, what a fortnight. We lost Ed McMahon, Farah Fawcett, Karl Malden, and Michael Jackson. Sarah Palin called timeout or help!!!! Wimbledon was an instant classic and Lance may rule France again on July 26th.

Govenor Rendell's annual showdown with the Legislature may take on new proportions this year. Vinny and Bobby are the main event in Sunbury.

This Saturday, Lourdes Regional Class of 1984 celebrates the 25th year we left the hallowed halls on Clinton Avenue. Always a good time and hope to reunite with many friends.