In my possession is a Bachelor of Science diploma from Memphis State University for the degree in Journalism I earned four years after I graduated from Lee High School. It is in the company of a diploma for the Masters of Liberal Arts that I earned from Texas Christian University early in my Air Force career. One more diploma for a bachelor’s degree in Information Systems Management, earned from the University of Maryland later in my life when I was finishing up an assignment in England, rounds out the true ties I have with schools of higher learning. Just for grins, I have a diploma from DeVry Institute of Technology as well, but that was a correspondence course I completed in Home Electronics, but they do not have a sports program.
I did not attend or graduate from either Auburn University or the University of Alabama as many of you did. I do have my favorite of the two, but I am basically saying “I do not have a dog in this fight.” That was what I had to keep telling myself as I watched an incredible ballgame on Saturday night. The upcoming match up had been the topic of discussion for at least the last week on Facebook and I have been the recipient of several emails from many of you touting your support for your team. It is great to live in a country and have so many friends who are such fans of the sporting contests we all seem to enjoy.
I have decided that my favorite game is basketball, mainly because the team I support the most, the University of Memphis, has a high level of competition in that sport and I enjoy contests where I think my team has at least a chance of winning. On Saturday I attended the final home football game for the Memphis Tigers, and the team put in one of the worst performances of the year and was humiliated by a team they were supposed to beat. On Sunday night the basketball team goes up against a team that humiliated them already once this year, but I still have hope that they can put in a good game and at least have a chance of winning a game that they are supposed to lose. That is the way you are supposed to feel when you start watching a game.
That was what made the football game Saturday between Alabama and Auburn such a great game to watch. It does not matter what year it is or what the win-loss records of each team are, you know that when the first kickoff ball leaves the tee, it is going to be a contest worth watching and that either team always has a chance to win.
I am honored to be associated with so many of you who have ties with the teams. I am honored that so many of my classmates went on to earn college degrees, no matter how long it took some of you. I get a kick out of the rivalry, and am glad that it is done in a spirit that really does not cause bad feeling among you. Keep up the rivalry, but keep up the friendships too.
I am working on another book, looking back at things that have happened in the 50 years since the Class of ’64 graduated. It will be a sequel to “A Million Tomorrows…Memories of the Class of ‘64” and I will be working on it until June of 2014, the 50th anniversary of our graduation.
Looking back at my journal entries, I found that in 1963 I listened to the Iron Bowl on an AM car radio while riding in a car from Memphis to Huntsville, following a Thanksgiving visit to the Bluff City back then. This year I watched the game on a 48” High Definition color LED, stereo speaker, set. The reality is that it did not matter how I followed the game, it is a state of Alabama tradition that most of us enjoy, and this year’s game was one of the most unforgettable ones I have ever seen.
I doubt if any of you remember, but in 1963 Alabama lost to Auburn by a score of 10-8, according to my journal. It was obviously not as an unforgettable game as the one played Saturday night. That game will be remembered for years.
Congratulations and condolences to all of you, it was a great game played by both teams.
Memphis, TN - I returned safely from a trip over the river and through the woods to spend Thanksgiving with family. I hope all of you had a safe and fun holiday as well.
I still encourage you to share some of your adventures and thoughts with you classmates by emailing me your news. Remember, not everyone uses Facebook.
The Video of the 2000 Reunion
of the Lee High School
Classes of '64-'65-'66
This week we continue featuring segments of the video tape made at the 2000 reunion and supplied by Niles Prestage, Class of '65. It will be broken down into approximately five minute segments and continued each week as permitted. We hope you enjoy these visits back and the chance to see some old classmates who are no longer with us.
From Our Mailbox
No mail this week.