Friday, December 04, 2009

Snow Day

I can’t believe it.

It’s supposed to snow in my little bitty home town way down in South Texas today.

The thing is, we have yet to have any snow at all here in Chicago. South Texas is getting snow before Chicago does. (It’s not fair, but I am excited for my family and friends down there.) I’d be willing to bet a thousand bucks that that’s never happened before in all the history of historical events.

I was 12 years old the first time I ever saw snow in my little bitty home town. It snowed a couple of inches during the night and we woke up to a real, live Winter wonderland just like all the lucky folks up North get to do.

It was extremely exciting. I was nuts over it.

Normally, schools in South Texas close down if there’s even one flake of snow or a pellet of ice. But for some reason that day, we went to school. (I was in the 8th grade.)

Before school began, we got to have a real snowball fight, just like kids in Minneapolis get to do. Being that it seldom gets below freezing down there, none of us had any gloves or mittens. So, we improvised by wearing socks on our hands and proceeded with the snowball fight before the bell rang.

The principal of the school, Mr. Peacock, was standing on the front steps, keeping a watchful eye on the winterized activities.

At one point, I hurled a snowball at my friend, Judy, and managed to score a direct hit. I guess I was a little too enthusiastic in my snowball-throwing because her glasses went flying.

Mr. Peacock, ever with the watchful eye, call out in a commanding voice, “Buck, can I see you in my office, please?”

Of course, all my friends were all, “OOOooooo!!!” as a trudged inside behind Mr. Peacock.

We went into his office and he thought awhile. The tension was awful.

He reached in his desk - - - and brought out some sheet music.

It was a piano score to The Bells of St. Mary’s. He wanted to know if I could play it as the processional for our 8th grade graduation ceremonies in May.

I was stunned. I looked at the sheet music. It looked like a pretty complex arrangement for my 12-year-old abilities but I was going to have four months to learn it.

Mr. Peacock used to be the athletic coach at the school and all three of his sons had gone off to college on football scholarships. He was also a close friend of my family and knew very well that I was totally inept at sports.

I’m sure he knew that I was often teased in school for my lack of abilities in phys. ed. But now, he was giving me an opportunity to show what I could do in front of the whole class.

(He also scared the crap out of me for assaulting Judy with a snowball.)

Four months later, I was up there at the grand piano on the stage, playing that big processional as my classmates marched down the aisles. Let me tell you, I was one proud 12 year old kid.

Mr. Peacock was a very wise man.

I’ll always remember that snow day back in 1972. It’s nice to know that my Jr. High school is covered with snow once again.


Update: My mom just called and my cousin just emailed me - -
and yes, it's snowing down there.


At 3:47 PM , Blogger Speck said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

At 7:29 PM , Blogger QuotidianEditorialist said...

Hahaha. You know what I thought of after reading this? "Oh my's SNOWING down SOUTH".

At 3:59 PM , Blogger Miss Healthypants said...

Wowie! :) We're heading for some big-time snowfall here soon, too.


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