Thursday, November 17, 2011

Bouncing Back

Wednesday I talked to students at Roosevelt High School about Gary history and gave them copies of “Gary’s First Hundred Years.” I concentrated on the chapter dealing with 1981-1995, “Hanging On, Bouncing Back,” in particular the school days section. Several of the girls played varsity basketball, so I read a paragraph about someone who played on West Side’s team during the 1990s. SPEA professor Ellen Szarleta, the director of the Center for Urban and Regional Excellence, contacted me to do it and told me I had the students’ attention the entire time, no mean feat.

Former student Don Young brought noted artist and sculptor Murcie Poplar Lavender to the Archives. She wants me to look at a 500-page autobiography that she has completed. Thirty years ago she did an 8-foot sculpture called “The Steelworker” for a park near the mill but a truck subsequently backed into it and ruined it. Murcie and I were recipients of the Neal Marshall Award of Excellence six years ago, thanks to Don nominating us.

Historian Gregg Andrews sent me a CD of his group Dr. G and the Mudhens that is quite impressive. I especially liked “My Daddy’s Blues” (also the album title) and “The Things You Do.” I suggested the band try to be part of the Mammoth Lakes, California Bluesapalooza that my old high school classmate Flossie Worster is associated with.

My bowling slump continues although I had one good game and the Engineers won two points. Next to us were guys wearing System of a Down and Stone Temple Pilots t-shirts. I mentioned seeing Velvet Revolver (featuring three of the Pilots) at the Star Plaza. I’ll be off next week for Jeff Hagelberg’s wedding but hope to get in a practice session with Clark so I can come bouncing back.

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