Saturday, February 5, 2011

Snow Days

Snow Days

Remember what it was like to have a snow day when you were young? For one thing, I think I had three in my life. It was just never done. These days I see the kids and the way they handle this most magical of gifts, the snow day, and I wonder what alien universe I woke up in. From the fact that they get at least two or three every year, to how these things are decided. Last year they had one and the snow never came. That’s right; the Superintendent hadn’t actually seen snow before he called a day off.

I remember a serious snow storm in nineteen sixty seven. I lived three blocks from school, and of course I walked. Do you know how hard it was to get a snow day off from the school Superintendent? He was charge’ d’affaires of a system which in those days was only outdone by military prison in its ability to deny freedom to stout-hearted, adventurous and glory- seeking young men. Of course, by adventure and glory you do understand me to mean girls, right?

Whether it was to hang out talking with friends about them, committing outrageous acts to impress them, or simply walking in circles hour after hour in a public place, these matters were of great import. Working up the courage was so difficult. It was sheer triumph to finally spit out the bold and public “Hi”, which she had waited to see if you could summon the courage for. Having summoned the courage was never as important as it seemed it would be, but it put a guy on a new level. It made him a doer.

These times stay with us forever. They say a bit about who we are, where we came from. It is very similar to having been in the military in that It is recognizable. However the sixties, parenthood, Nixon or Vietnam changed us, guys who went through either can tell each other from fifty yards. I am glad.

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