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Only a few days until Reunion Weekend 2009. This summer's first big big blockbuster movie was something called STAR TREK. When I first came to Simmons to teach Professor Dorothy Williams' Communications Media course I had a microphone, some TVs, slide and 16mm film projectors. I ventured a visit to Greenwich Village in Manhattan and returned with several large and heavy metal cans which looked like big pizza plates. They contained 16mm prints of some episodes of the STAR TREK TV show. Paramount, it seems, didn't value the series enough to actually take the time to file the copyright papers on it. It wasn't actually illegal to buy these prints. STAR TREK and a paperback on the behind the scenes making of the show became staples in the course.
I am shown above in black and white lecturing with images from the KUNG FU TV series and wearing Vulcan Mr Spock pointed ears. That is how some returning alumnae remember me.
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I began the day flipping through the pages of Microcosms - our yearbook. 4s and 9s, or however one indicates the possessives of numbers - 4's & 9's. I'll have seven reunion classes returning to Simmons. Eight when we count the one-year-outs 2008.
If this is the first year back for a member of the class of 1974 then she will remember me looking like that first portrait up there. The rogues gallery suggests the passages of Time. Some may remember that I played Father Time in a Gillette in-house commercial long ago.
The wonderful class of 2004 will be particularly well represented at Reunion, I am told. During the last five years the back yard to the Main College Building - then part parking lot and once part tennis court, and long ago archery field - has been transformed into a curious green space with strange geometric curved walkways. Something to behold.
The wonderful class of 2004 will remember, I am quite sure, sitting there for Commencement when the skies opened up with such fury that the downpour forced the end of activities, dare we say canceling of Commencement Ceremonies. Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi, who as Democratic leader of the U.S. House of Representatives was the highest-ranking woman in the history of the United States Congress, was speaker.
Legend has it, second hand be assured, that upon witnessing the ensuing chaos, she commented that it was as well planned as the exit strategy for the war in Iraq. A clever turn of phrase.
I shall be waiting out there on the Green on Friday on Reunion Weekend (unless it rains) to greet again my friends from the many classes. Hope to see you there.
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Catherine Chalpin, Class of 2009, captured the olde professor, hiking up his skirt, descending the stairs from the Commencement stage at the beautiful Pavillion. I love the process of art. The artist & her subject. The swing of the water bottle is in sync with the swing of my Simmons blue & gold tassel.
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Faculty and friends said farewell to Cheryl Welch out on our Lefavour third floor patio on a beautiful spring afternoon with the sky clouds reflecting above.
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Today is Saturday of the last week of the semester. Commencement is Friday. It seems like something is scheduled or something is due every hour of the day. Wonderful things. But so many. Yesterday morning was beautiful. I took a short walk away from Simmons to the Museum School Sidewalk Sale. An alma mater of mine where I studied for about 15 or 20 years, one class at a time.
Table upon table of arts and crafts wrapped around the front of the building and serpentined down all along the side. I met friends, bought some pottery & rings made from bottle caps, and most delightfully, had my portrait done in water colors. The young artist asked me to arrange my face in any expression that I liked. I could not help but smile. And smile. And Smile.
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the Sidelines Literary & Art Magazine launch
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