A couple of weeks ago my old pal Roxanne tracked me
down.  Roxanne and I attended an
alternative high school together waaaaay back, when “alternative” meant
something like “creative free spirit” instead of “delinquent” like it does now.  The program was called “New School,”
and in practice it created a small, close community with lots of personal
attention.  We didn’t just take classes,
we completed “learning contracts.”  We
didn’t get grades, we got anecdotal evaluations that described our
accomplishments in a full paragraph rather than a single letter.  New School rocked, and immediately after I
graduated, it folded.  Pity.

Roxanne was and is a gifted artist.  She sent me this pic of a recent
project.  These bees are made out of cut


Cool, eh?

She also sent me this pic, which she unearthed from her dusty
attic.  New School involved a lot of
off-campus trips we called “retreats.”  
Here’s a group of us during the 1981-82 or possibly 82-83 school year.  Which grubby 16-17 year old do you suppose is
moi?  (You can make the picture bigger by clicking on it.)


I’m in the middle, with the enormous owl glasses, holding some unidentifiable object that apparently was important at the time. 

Roxanne is standing next to me, with the frisbee.  And, in contacting me, she also reconnected me with Doug, the guy in the back with the cup.  He’s my new best friend, because he lives in London now and says I can stay in his guest house.  Helloooo, Doug!


25 thoughts on “

  1. I would never call you “grubby”….but you sure fit well there..   New school was a great launching pad.  It’s alot different now but not in the good sense.

  2. That’s one lovely art work.  Does she make a livng as an artist?  You all look so happy and non-conformist in that photo.  I’ll guess the one holding the Frisbee.

  3. Wow–and all I could create in art class (they made us take at least one semester of it in junior high and high school) was some lame-ass tissue box. But hey, I got an “A” because I was willing to wash dishes and make those flower placeholder-thingies. (The art teacher was also a wonderful cook, and it was a lot easier to volunteer to wash dishes than to fail miserably at whatever-the-hell figure I was supposed to be drawing. Sigh…why couldn’t I be good at creating stuff like that? I could be selling it, instead of dealing with out of tune choirs and divas who think they’re the next Leontyne Price. I have met Leontyne Price, and they were no Leontyne Price.I’m sorry, I cannot figure out which one you are–I’m tempted to say the one in the front. Apologies in advance if that’s a guy.

  4. Are you going to let us know which you are ?  How cool that you were able to attend school there before it folded.
    And your friend’s artwork… absolutely incredible !!

  5. Wow, Roxanne is one talented gal!
    I give on who was who, but the fellow in the striped tee is a dead ringer for my old high school buddy Joe P. Spooky.

  6. Love the paper art!  I went to one of those schools for a little while, too, but mine was even less structured than yours, and I was younger at the time.  I think it was 1969 or 1970.
    So maybe you’re the one in the second row, with the glasses and the headband? 

  7. In the middle, with glasses.
    RYC – The IEP meeting went better than I anticipated.  It stayed mostly positive, which is, I think, a first.  I was not pushed over, nor did I have a nervous breakdown.  I think we will make it to the end of the school year (fingers crossed).

  8. Paper work is gorgeous. Around here it would have to be in a plastic container to keep dust off.
    You…in front with the frisbee.

  9. Wow – beautiful. How fortunate you were able to find such a neat place. And I have no idea what you actually look like now, so I won’t even venture a guess. Besides, I see no rabbit ears or fluffy tails anywhere.

  10. That is an amazing piece of art! I think my daughter has the same issue as your Little Bit – I have given up feeding her solids for the most part because she just pushes it away. She’s happy with her bottle and I figure, when she’s hungry, she’ll eat (I hope…).

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