I was dreaming when I wrote this. Forgive me if goes astray…. (Prince 1999)
Before I begin writing, I usually want to know where my article is going to take me, but I know from previous experience, writing is a process. I have actually published a few blog posts, but nothing that has captured the entire year. I still do not know what has happened. Everything has been a blur.
Thanksgiving is my New Years Day. I celebrate Thanksgiving by playing The Fresno High Senate Stogie Bowl. The Senate is the oldest high school club of its kind in the country. I play football every Thanksgiving with high school students and alumni. I have attended for 30 consecutive Thanksgivings. Some players were born in 1999. I wear clothes that are older than most of the players… I am that old.
I did not actually play last year, because I was recovering from an auto accident. I dressed in my usual outfit and ran around the field, but I was afraid of permanent injury. This year I was able to play again. I was careful, because I am old, but I played. How old? I attended high school with Melenbacker’s mother. Melenbacker attends St. Mary’s College in Moraga. That old.
The Senators share at half-time, although we did not play a second half this year. Fresno High’s starting quarterback (above) plays for the Actives. (He wants to become a minister.) Tom Wendt, an Orange County artist, represented the class of 1979. He also carried a Sherlock Holmes book. I shared how Fresno High taught me to deal with adversity, and how I needed the experience this year. I explained how some people emphasize that once you learn how to ride a bike, you never forget. What happens when you fall?
At Fresno High, we learned how to get up, and once you learn how to recover, you never forget that lesson either.
Fresno High teaches creativity. The Fresno High Senate taught me how to join groups. I am both creative and experienced at joining groups. This is a strength and a weakness. Sometimes I overextend. My focus blurs. When I believed that my computer was hacked, I did not know if one of my many networks was trying to help me or if someone was attacking one of my groups. I still do not know what happened. I just know that I lost my balance and crashed.
I remembered how to get up.
For most of my adult life, I had a vision of a dream job. I wanted to return to Fresno High and teach. Somehow during this last year, I found something close. I teach photography and yearbook at Pittsburg High. PHS resembles Fresno High. I love the school, the students and my courses. We learn how to ride a bike after falling.
I fell often this last year. I fell in love, I fell apart and I fell down. I thought that I was alone for all of it, but I suspect that I am wrong.