As promised, the continuation of my previous post: https://tenaciousbitch.com/2013/07/20/the-story-of-the-pink-elephant-and-my-high-school-reunion/ about my high school reunion…
Photo stolen from Jennifer Sowards Parsons 🙂
that almost wasn’t. I’m happy to say it was a lot of fun. We actually had 40-50 people show up, which was a nice surprise (i.e. the photos below)! However, there were so many cameras flashing, we didn’t know where or WHEN to look, so they caught me sans smile a couple of times…I’m in the back row with the gray/white dress.
Photo above stolen from Laura Stapleton….
Photo above stolen from Karen Wigglesworth.
Though there was a good crowd, sadly, I learned one of our classmates has such acute anxiety about driving that she didn’t attend, and she only lives a couple of hours away!
While dining on Tascali’s delicious Italian grub, we caught up on our families and our careers, etc. Additionally, the fact that one of our distinguished alumni who didn’t attend is now the Chief of Police was interesting. And another classmate who is a police officer actually pulled a guy over the Friday before the reunion just to tell him that he was going to the reunion! LOL… I thought that only happened in the movies! The cop was also a no-show as well, and I was all set to make jokes about Barney Fife and such!
Anywho…the next day, I decided to troll around town revisiting scenes from my past. The first place my SUV landed, almost as if on auto-pilot was:
The original site of HEHS (photo stolen from Brenda Runyon :)), which isn’t a crackhouse after all. It’s home to several board of education offices and an alternative school. Wonder if the back hallway still fills up with smoke when the incinerator is grinding away? And does the 2nd floor hallway still exude the odor of pinto beans as it seemed to do 24-7 back in the 80s?
Next, I drove down 10-12 blocks from the old HEHS building…to the institution of higher learning where I earned my BA in English in 1988…
And, yes, ’tis the same Marshall that is the subject of the movie…
We are Marshall, starring Matthew McConaughey and Matt Fox. I attended the premier with my mother (photo of us below at my parents’ house before the debut of WE ARE MARSHALL).
Sadly, we lost Mom to cancer six months later. God rest her soul.
I also noticed some changes around the student union. For example, this lovely brick walkway depicted in this photo below didn’t exist when I went to MU.
The summer before graduation, we had a drought. Not one single drop of rain from May through October. I remember walking across campus along the dusty trail running through the grass where this walkway is now – toward the student union to grab lunch, and I don’t think the sands flanking the Nile were any hotter.
After that, I got misty-eyed looking at this icon not far from the union…
You can’t see the Greek Letters for the thick clump of trees, but this is the Alpha Xi Delta House, my mother’s sorority where Mom lived for 2 years. And my cousin Shauna (mentioned in https://tenaciousbitch.com/2011/08/29/blog-30-%E2%80%93-an-ode-to-barboursville-and-the-days-of-yore/ – a tale about my unfortunate incarceration) and my cousin Jillian are also alumni.
And I had to stand on the corner of 16th and 4th and sigh while GLARING at this atrocity. While I’m sure their pizza is good, I can’t believe the food is anywhere near …
as good as its predecessor – HULIO’S, mentioned in this post: https://tenaciousbitch.com/2011/09/28/blog-34-the-date-from-hell-and-then-some/.
After grumbling at Husson’s for a moment, I decided to head home to Ohio, but first…I started LAUGHING a few blocks away at a memory spawned by something so innocuous…
I know. Speedway? Back in the late 80s it was a SuperAmerica that got robbed several times, but it wasn’t your usual B & E or something.
When I was a senior at Marshall, I met my now ex-husband, Ashe, who is the subject of this post: https://tenaciousbitch.com/2012/09/07/post-75-about-ashes-logic/ … I waited tables, and Ashe worked the door (or bartended) at a bar called The Rock n Roll Cafe, not far from Marshall. I gave him a ride home one night, and we stopped at this location, i.e. SuperAmerica/now Speedway.
While standing in line to pay for a six-pack of Rolling Rock and an 8-pack of Pepsi in the bottle (yes, the 16 oz. bottles made with REAL SUGAR), I saw Ashe lumbering by with a 12-pack of Bud-Light on his shoulder. Then, he waved with a beguiling smile at Robby, the clerk, saying, “Thanks, Robby. Have a good one.” And he walked out WITHOUT paying.
Robby glared at him and mumbled, “Asshole,” and let out an exasperated SIGH, but he didn’t try to stop him. He didn’t call the police or anything. Keep in mind that Ashe was 6′ 5″ tall and weighed about 300 pounds, so maybe Robby was afraid to do anything. I don’t know. I was shocked.
Then, I watched in shock as Ashe swaggered outside and over to my beat-up Nissan. He set the beer on the hood, cracked one open, leaned against my car and took a big slurp as if nothing had happened.
No one else in the store seemed to notice. I gawked at an obviously annoyed Robby for a second, handed him a 20-dollar bill, got my change and left.
Ashe acted like it was a big joke. “It’s okay. I know the manager,” he said laughing.
“Ashe, that beer might only cost like $6 with tax, but you could still go to jail,” I said.
Ashe just shrugged.
“You need to go back in there and pay for that!”
Ashe shook his head. We argued bitterly, but he didn’t budge. All I had left was $40 in tips that I HAD TO USE for my electric bill, or I would’ve paid it. I steered clear of Ashe for awhile after that not.
Apparently, Ashe did this frequently, according to my brother, Ben. Only most of the time, Ashe would merely saunter across the street to the brick house pictured below where Ben lived in the first floor apartment at the time.
Ashe crashed on Ben’s couch one night in April of 1987 and kind of just never left until they both moved to Orlando in August of ’88.
About four months after I witnessed Ashe pinching that Bud Light, Robby got fired. And I would imagine Ashe was clearly visible on the video from inside the store that ended Robby’s tenure at SuperA, but the cops never showed up at the Rock n Roll Cafe or Ben’s door looking for Ashe. And no one ever called either. Ashe wasn’t dumb enough to steal anything else after Robby was terminated, thank God. And to my knowledge, Ashe never did anything like that again.
And as a side note, 5 years earlier, a Corvette ran a red light just as I entered that intersection and hit me, and I wrecked into the porch of the white house next to Ben’s apartment (photo above) and totaled my mother’s Buick. Fortunately, no one was injured, and, thankfully, her insurance paid for a new car. Even still, I always thought, perhaps, that intersection had some bad mojo going on.
And, last but not least, as promised, a photo of the pink elephant from Post #103:
I called the Locksmith located in the shadow of the pachyderm. The employee who answered didn’t know why the pink elephant had been erected there. But I wonder since people constantly FORGET their keys and lock themselves out, that the elephant, who allegedly never forgets…will be there for you. I left a message for the owner of the Locksmith’s shop and the dry cleaner next door, but as yet, no one has called back.
Over and out from f*cked central…
TenaciousBitch and her band of truth-spouting hippies…
© Tenacious Bitch 2013