There were folks who could remember most of the words to the following commercial, but no one could recall ever eating the cereal. While looking for this video, I found another (earlier) one that said, regarding the character Boss Moss: "He never has a solution, but he's always very understanding." Then the Freakies emerge from the barren, spooky, foresty place to a flowery meadow with a Freakie-tree atop a hill in very hopey-changey colors. Freakie, indeed.
Also, I got to meet up with four old friends and, among other things, raise a glass to our friend Terry, who's been gone over a year now. It doesn't seem that long ago, but I know it was before the 2008 election... that would have killed him, too. A great athlete, Terry also had a brilliant sense of humor. One recollection that always gets told in this group refers to high school math class. Whether it was Ms. Jetton or Ms. Swink, algebra, trigonometry, or calculus, when the teacher asked for the solution, Terry's big hand always went up first. Regardless of the nature of the problem, Terry's answer was always the same, if she'd dare call on him.
To the absolute glee of his class-mates, and constant angst for those poor teachers. I believe he actually used it in French class, too.
Terry would have been only 46 nowadays, but was ripped apart by cancer. All through school, I referred to him as my best friend. Even long after going our separate ways beyond high school, we still called each other every Christmas Day, and discussed our "gifts" (the physical ones and the important ones), and our families. I wish I could get a call from him tomorrow. I wish he'd have lived long enough to read my blog; I have every confidence he'd have been a frequent presence, and boldly supportive.
To you, my friend.
There was an equal contingent of Tar Heel and Wolfpack fans at the get-your-drink-on/high-school-reunion gathering, and some (mostly) good-natured banter. It is a Wolfpack hero, though (and hero of mine also), who best sums up the sentiments I'm feeling here, now: Jim Valvano...
It is difficult for me to write this, because I've lost about as many as I've loved. But then, we've all faced our own hardships, right? Embrace every opportunity you have to embrace those you love. And may you all be as lucky as I am this day. Merry Christmas.