No, I wasn't tripping when I talked about the tree
I really do include things in the little photo icon thingys. Sometimes. If you click on the photo, you might find something there. Sometimes they coincide with the picture, sometimes not.
This past week, A took the subway, alone, to the boathouse for rowing practice.
He trained. He ran across a bridge. He worked out on the erg. He loved it.
This week, we have been studying more about The Great War (WWI) [note: part of my "gimmick" to teaching history is what I found worked well when I was a student. It was a trick employed by an educator or two at my former British school, and a certain history professor at university: I study the material very, very thoroughly, then I tell it, as though it were a campfire story (As if I had been there, or as though I were talking about my friends; and yes, I could probably even tell you the favorite foods of the characters in question].
The surprise of WWI is that we, the United States, took the side of the guys who might be considered politically incorrect today (that is open for debate, of course, but we basically took the side of the guys who supported the Serbian terrorists). And when I gave the backdrop to General Pershing, A was totally, I mean, completely and enthrallingly, taken with the story of Francisco "Pancho" Villa. In every war, on either side, there is a national hero, I began. I admit that the Pancho Villa story is a very, very good action drama. "But why isn't Pancho Villa mentioned so much in school history books? He actually invaded our country. And there's hardly any record of him anywhere." I could not give A a good answer.
Anyway, as an educator, I decided to do my African-American History duty in our WWI studies. I'd like you to read about and write up a presentation about the Harlem Hellfighters. A did some research. "Wait. This says that these guys 'suffered heavy losses' and fought the longest, 'more than any unit in combat.' Did they die first? Before everybody else?" It's possible, I said. "And wait. They were originally NATIONAL GUARD?" That's possible, too, I said. A got so into it, he actually started looking up the names of the possibly living members of that infantry. "Can I call this guy?" he asked me when he found a name listed in the phone directory. Sure. But you have to be prepared with what you might want to say. Are you writing an article? An essay? What? And remember, he will be VERY VERY OLD.
After some thought, A rang up the number.
(S&*t, I thought, he's just like me)
Ring. Ring. Ring. Ring.
Give it some time, I said. If he's still alive, he's incredibly old, with old legs. He can't just run to the phone.
"Okay," said A. "I am a little nervous."
It's exciting, isn't it?
Ring. Ring. Ring. Ring. Ring. Ring.
..................to be continued................