July 11, 2011

Springfield, NJ. June, 1966

How happy do I look on this afternoon of my high-school graduation? Rebellious youth smack dab in the middle of the 1960s. That hat! I love that my brother is smirking (smirking? with that jacket?), no doubt delighted that my parents were forcing me to do something that I clearly did not want to do. I recall my mother arguing, “We paid all that tuition? You’re going!” -- an argument that made little sense to me then or now. At least I can look back and smile, see the humor in the “wood”-paneled station wagon, the streets of suburbia, the hair. Seton Hall Prep as it turns out was a good school for emerging alternative types like me, in spite of its Catholic foundation. (Organized crime fans may like to know that SHP provided the inspiration for Anthony Junior’s high school in the TV series The Sopranos.) At one point, several of us wondered if it might have been a covert school for young homosexuals, its secret mission known only to the parents and the school’s administration. (Years later a strict headmaster, a priest for whom the school gymnasium had been named, was hauled up on gay pimping charges in Montreal. Just saying.) I still keep in touch with a few friends from those days. And I’m always happy to learn that we renegades all continue to follow the unconventional paths that we started along way back then.

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