Monday, May 17, 2010

May 17, 1960 - Graduation Day

Fifty years ago tonight, Doug's dad graduated from Prescott High School. The commencement speaker was Jack Shelley, news director of WHO radio and TV in Des Moines. I would like to say I remember what he spoke about, but the fact is I may not have even heard him.
From that year's diary: "Rode bus home. I got cows. Milked four of them. Took a bath and got ready. Kenny was supposed to be here at 6:30. Jim got here at 8:00! We got to Kenny's commencement at 8:20. Only twenty minutes late."
I should have been used to such tardiness by then. Kenny and I had been dating a little more than two months. I don't think he was ever on time. It was a point of contention as I was always on time or several minutes early.
Twenty seniors graduated from Prescott. Alphabetically, Kenneth Douglas Botkin was #1. Scholastically he was somewhere on down the line. I think he lettered in band and basketball. His graduating classmates were: Richard Bross, Sharon Chilcott, Janet Coleman, Barbara Crill, Carolyn Davis, Colleen Gerber, Mervin Knapp, Gary Krauth, Russell Perry, Ramona Preston, Janette Spring, John Stoaks, Laurie Tucker, Katherine Weaver, Dean West, Dora Willits, Merle Woodside, Sandra Wynn and Phyllis Vogel.
In the way paths cross in later years, Kenny's son Doug and Barbara Crill's son, Rod Coleman were friends when we moved back to Corning in '78. Phyllis Vogel's son, Jason White and my step-son, Mark Schaffer, were good friends in high school and were one another's best man at their weddings.
Sometimes when I read my granddaughter's facebook posts when they are in the throes of teenage romance, I understand the turmoil they are going through. It may be fifty years ago, but when I read my diary from that time it's the same angst: "Had a lot of fun over at their place (Botkin's) but I ruined it by being too truthful. I hate myself. I'm in a rotten mood. Everything was just perfect except for those few dark moments of wrong remarks."
Whatever I said probably wasn't as bad as I thought it was at the time. I sent him a letter the next day - apologizing, I'm sure. We only saw one another once or twice a week. I wonder if there would have been more or less drama in my life then if we'd had cell phones and texting?

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