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Heidi and Christopher

Heidi_Christopher_Baby New Year_Father T



We hadn’t met in person yet when we knew of each other as members of the PROBE gifted program at our respective elementary schools.  I have a vague recollection that we shared some comments about not thinking we were getting challenged enough to keep up with our peers who were attending private schools or schools “west of the river.”  That would be a theme we’d revisit often in life.


I always thought we’d have several more chances to get together and laugh about our junior high and high school adventures being the straight-laced kids who had to dodge the pot-smokers at the Illing Jr. High “back fence,” getting heckled in our L.L. Bean gear, unaware that we probably weren’t helping our cause by dressing as matching cockroaches to re-enact a Raid commercial for Spanish class while singing La Cucaracha - among other get-ups.  


Whether I was dodging the clog that escaped from your foot while we were docents for the Cheney Homestead Museum, enjoying a Dr. Pepper and an orange with your mom in the Tanner St. kitchen during a rehearsal break of the wildly successful “Synocpated Six,” (see photo) we always had tons of laughs.  And your demeanor made it so easy for everyone to respect your intelligence – even the jocks and the “skids” – all of whom I could recite by name for you, even to this day, to your amazement.  Not exactly similar skills, but thanks for making me feel like they were.



I’m going to just leave one more photo accompanied by this memory. For a New Year’s Eve get together of our high school friends during one of our college years, for some reason we had the idea to dress as baby New Year and Father Time. I don’t recall how I got the short end of that stick when you were actually younger, I was actually gray and I had the ability to pull off a more natural beard substitute than the long paper one you sported – maybe it’s because you knew which “look” would be warmer on a New England January night.  Anyway at the end of the night you mentioned your mom had made one request – would I please be the first guest to cross the threshold? Apparently it’s good luck if a male is the first across the door and the morning paper delivery person was a girl this year and your mom just couldn’t bear the thought of a year of bad luck.  I couldn’t refuse your mom, of course, and I was rewarded with a jar of black-eyed peas for my effort.  And was rewarded with this photo that is etched in my memory forever.


Heidi_Christopher_Baby New Year_Father T

I miss you bunches old friend.  Wherever you are, I hope there is an oven large enough to hold your supply of M&Ms (god forbid someone cooks in it) and a never-ending supply of ice cream from Friendly’s, Shady Glen, Emack & Bolio’s and Steve’s (when it was still good.) Because that truly sounds like heaven.


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