Tomorrow morning, I am leaving on a 10-day vacation to the Southland. I want to wish you all a Merry Christmas and I will be back with you sometime in 2004, the Good Lord willing. So don't look for e-mail. Don't even SEND me e-mail when I'm away. That means you too, spammers.
I want it recorded to the world that on December 19, 2003, I saw a PROM magazine at the supermarket checkout. Sweet Jesus! I'm sure even the most airheaded and vacuous teenage girls know that it's too damn early to be thinking about "Prom" (as it's now called, somewhere during the last generation, the "the" was dropped), and all the extracurricular activity that goes with it.
Were I still teaching high school students, I would have taken a poll of the teenage girls in my classes to see if they are of the same mind as me - that it's TOO EARLY to be thinking about the Prom in December.
Congratulations if you can read this. The Christmas elves reminded us in the (St.) Nick of time that our domain name was up for renewal, and we have done so. You should be able to read this again in a day or so. Meantime, you may want to resend that e-mail... but only if you're not selling me something I don't need or you're not one of my long lost friends from Uganda wanting to siphon money through my bank account.
As one of the beneficiaries of this weekend's concert performances by Bruce Springsteen and The Max Weinberg 7, the Asbury Park High School Marching Band will step out on its next performance with an entirely new set of band instruments and drums, as well as a nice monetary donation to the program. APHS Band members will attend this weekend's performances and solicit further donations in the hopes of purchasing new uniforms.
The APHS band actually disbanded in the early 1990's when its longtime director Dorian Parreott Sr. retired. I've known Dorian for years and more recently as a member of AFM 399, and remember the glory years of the band program back when I was a high school student. However, the program had been in decline for several years prior to Dorian's retirement. Two years ago, James Dinella was hired and charged with resurrecting the marching band, and this just-ended football season marked the first time APHS fielded a halftime show since the Parreott days.
As an elementary band teacher, I feel it's critical that the students who take the time to learn instruments have a decent place to go when their time is up at their current school. Thanks to Bruce Springsteen and his friends, the kids in Asbury will have greater pride and a better sound playing on their brand new instruments, and hopefully down the road, new uniforms. Who knows? One of them could be the next Clarence Clemons or Max Weinberg!
We try desperately to steer away from blogs that take excessive liberties with language as I am, after all, a teacher of very small children who should not be exposed to bad language. A bad word once in a while isn't going to kill an otherwise entertaining blog. However, should one of these blogs ever turn into a filth-fest, it will be removed... and it has happened in some cases. Just be warned, fellow bloggers. Language originating from this blog will be always on the safe side. Thanks... --DM