A Little Longing for My Kind of Town

Well, so much for my hopes of establishing a little more of a routine in postings. Since the school year began, it seems as though time accelerated. As a good friend put it recently, “The school year starts and you forget about the rest of us.” Of course that is not true, but with the added responsibility of the soccer team and my time really has not been my own as much as I would like, or Ali would like for that matter. Which reminds me…I guess I ruffled a few feather of my Jewish brethren with the comments that I made about my soccer team. Let me be extremely clear, the whiney comment had nothing to do with the lads being Jewish, but it has everything to do with being a bunch of spoiled and entitled private school kids.

So, the White Sox won the World Series! Who would have thought? I spent nearly my entire life in Chicago, honestly thinking that I would never see a World Championship baseball team on either side of town. I transplant to New England and before I know it I am riding the roller coaster ride of last year’s destiny team, the Red Sox. Living amidst the celebration so long in waiting was something to see, but I have to admit, as great as it was, this year’s champs made left me long to be in Chicago more than I have ever, since moving out East. I wish that I could have taken off Friday, on account of that acute affliction, Sox Fever, and headed downtown for the parade. At least my mate Vince sent me some photos of the action. His family are die-hard South Side fans. I have to admit a partiality for the North Side, but I just love it anytime any Chicago team has a chance. I just love baseball and have always maintained a soft spot for the Sox. In fact, I think my Cubbie sympathies had more to do with geography than anything. So hats off to Ozzie’s Boys; there were moments when they reminded me of the Winning Ugly team of ’83, but this group made it a whole lot sweeter! I, too, still have a hard time believing it.

By the way, Ali and I had our first official gathering. I t was a Halloween party that achieved modest success. More to come with pictures, shortly.

Since the School Year Began

Wow! It seems as though so much has happened since the last posting, it is hard to get it all into a single posting. The end of last week marked the halfway point for the first quarter at the high school, where I work. It is hard to believe that it has been that long already. It seems like only a week or two ago the year began in earnest. I guess it is safe to say that my beloved was right to give me a hard time about taking on extra work, of course she always believes she’s right. This time she was more accurate. Between working at a new school and trying to get the routine down there while coaching a soccer team at another school, I have been racing around like a madman for most of the fall. So here is the redux.

The school year started off with a bang and the new school is a stark change in comparison to the kids from the tough streets of Waltham. Other teachers kept telling me, “These kids are pretty good, for the most part. They basically do what you ask them.” While I was a serious doubter, it has proven to be the case more often than not. It has been rather startling, really.

I have been coaching a soccer team of undersized, painfully young Jewish kids, from a private prep school, to mixed results. We started out with real promise, but have quickly begun looking more and more like a bunch of over-matched, falsely entitled, whiney brats that show little desire and even less heart. It has been a rough season to date and one that is only halfway through the schedule. I’ll keep you all posted.

Ali and I had the great fortune of entertaining my other parents, the Eastman’s. They are parent’s to my oldest friend. While they were on a layover, waiting to head back to Chicago, after enjoying a cruise up the coast of New England and Atlantic Canada, we met for brunch. It was a real treat to see them and take them out into the city. I only wish we could have spent more time with them. It was great fun and, as Ali pointed out, the only visits I have had since moving out East were from my parents and my other parents. All in all, the afternoon was real delight.

Photo: Me and the Eastmans

Of course Ali, Keri, and I returned to the Big E for all the wholesome goodness that can be found at a six state fair. While there were no Big E-clairs to be found this year, we definitely filled up on carnie food and candy. We took in the impressive sculpture of a bovine biker atop a Harley-looking hog, all made of butter, as well as mutant produce of unusual size. We even stole sights of the whole fair from high above, in the fair’s largest Ferris wheel.

Photo: Butter Motorcycle with Cow Rider from Front Photo: Butter Motorcycle with Cow Rider from Side

Photo: Me and Mighty Large Pumpkins

Photo: View of the Fair from the Ferris Wheel

Most recently, we returned to another annual event of enormous appeal, Marlborough’s Horatio Alger Festival, which hosts a chowder festival with the best bang for your buck that I know of anywhere in the greater Boston area. For $2.00, we had healthy shares of the New England nectar from over a dozen vendors. While our choice failed to take the top prize yet again, at least there was a competition, in contrast to fiasco that Boston claims as its own chowder fest.

Photo: Me and Keri at Horatio Alger Festival

Finally, Ali and I finally made our living arrangements a bit more official than dwelling in the den of iniquity we have made our home for a little over the past year. On Monday, we became formally engaged. That’s right, we’re gonna get hitched, details to come later. In an effort to catch her off guard and truly win her heart, I popped the question with a cherry flavored ring pop. Candy that is. A real rock is forthcoming, to be set in a one-of-a-kind, custom designed piece by a local artisan. It should be a rather impressive sight, once it all comes together. For now Ali’s ring lives in a Tupperware container in our kitchen so as to stay free of lint and other potentially destructive elements. She couldn’t bring herself to actually eat it.

Photo: Me and Ali with Margaritas

So as you can read, much has happened and it kept me at a pace that prevented me from sitting down and writing at length about it. Very shortly, I will be able to settle into a bit more regular routine again and hammer out more frequent postings. Hopefully, said postings will be rich in entertaining detail and include a delicious diatribe or two.