Saturday, April 03, 2010

From Day 0 - Part Nine

This morning I am reminded once again of mortality. While searching for pictures of the high school I attended, I find an obituary for my first wife's dad. He passed last year at 70. He was a cool guy. May he rest in peace.

At any rate, after reviewing my recent posts it became obvious that they were a bit more verbose than I had planned. So, gentle reader, there will be some effort to reduce some of this verbosity.

Pictured above is the Jr. High School and High School I attended for six years. The Westmer Warriors, we were known as. All of the other kids and tumult and nasty high school students that seemed to thrive on scaring the hell out of the young students simply seemed to harden my outer shell.

While preparing for PE class in seventh grade, some high school students tried to hang me. Luckily the ligature snapped.
My inner science geekiness was becoming more and more obvious. A crush on a little blond was sincere but she preferred the athletic, outgoing type. Ah well.

This was in a time and place where science geekiness was a magnet for persecution. Known as "The Doctor" or "Eagle", the former reflecting my extremely short hair cut, these nicknames were not complementary. I could reasonably explain basic electrical theory or computers or photosynthesis or oxidation or radio wave propagation but couldn't throw a basketball or football to save my ass. Thus, I belonged to the lowest student caste.

The long school bus rides to and from school was a mix of torment and peace. Attempts to sit alone and read were frequently successful. Other times I was subject to ridicule, having my books taken and thrown about.

Entering high school was a non-event; just another grade. It was now that I discovered how ill my Dad was. He had type 1 diabetes and suffered a minor heart attack. To keep the family financially sound, he had taken a full time job at a local foundry. To help, my Mom took a waitress job. That left me to take care of my two younger brothers and sisters after school. I cooked and cleaned and did farm chores every night. After the heart attack, he quit the foundry job and unsuccessfully applied for disability. When we worked on the farm together it was my job to watch for insulin reactions. Several times it was necessary to lead him back to the house like a puppy and give him juice to raise his sugar level.

I was diagnosed with hypoglycemia and an ulcer.
I met my first real girlfriend, later to be my first wife.
I became a geek/rocker/social dropout.
I owned my first motorcycle.
I flirted with my lover.

1 comment:

WooleyBugger said...

I wasn't part of the so called "IN" croud either in school. My time was spent riding dirt bikes and playing guitar and reading/writing.