I Repeat Myself-Or Welcome to the Department of Redundancy Department

I feel like I repeat myself over and over. I have no one to blame for this but myself, or maybe it is just part of a general theme of my blog. I think that I have a bad addiction to this. I am drawn to it like a moth to flame.

If you consider the various possibilities of what I could be addicted to this is not so bad. I am using my mind, I am thinking, considering, mulling over and learning about myself and the world around me. You are never too old to stop learning.

When I was in elementary school I was easily one of the better athletes and top students. Things came very easy for me, life was good.

In 1980 the school district decided that they were going to bring mandatory bussing to my school. My parents and I drove out to the school it looked like we might be bussed out to. It was a 30 minute car ride and that was during the middle of a Summer day. I remember being unhappy about the prospect of being bussed anywhere else as I had just finished the 5th grade and I had been looking forward to being a sixth grader.

Sixth graders were cool. They were 12 and they ruled the school. I remember watching my friends older brothers and sisters graduate. As part of graduation they used to do this stick dance that I thought was pretty cool.

During the last week of school the grass was termed off limits to anyone who was not in sixth grade, it was their territory and a special privilege. If you ventured onto the grass and were caught you could expect to be “canned.” It was a special punishment in which you were stuffed into a trashcan, a dirty trashcan.

By the time I was ten years old my best friend and I would spend that last week daring the older kids to catch us. We would waltz out onto the middle of the grass and taunt them. Stupid older boys who were too dumb and too slow to catch us. We laughed as they chased us around in circles, we were Hermes Incarnate, winged feet and fearless.

We watched as they picked off the slower kids and “canned” them, but they never got us, we were too smart, too fast and too good. And yes we were just as cocky about it as I sound here.

So by the time the bus situation developed I had been looking forward to a number of things, not the least of which was the opportunity to be on the other side of the fence where we would rule the school and the lawn.

As things turned out my parents enrolled me in magnet school. It was called Sherman Oaks Center for Enriched Studies It still required bussing, but it was supposed to be a better education and it was much closer than the school I was supposed to sent to.

It was also from 4th grade through 12th grade. I was angry with my parents. I went from being within a week of being a BMOC to learning that I was back walking among giants, because at 12 I was barely 5 feet tall and some of the high school boys had beards and were as tall as my father.

Not only that but I soon learned that I was still a good athlete, but nowhere near as good as I had been, the competition had been increased dramatically. Not only that, but in the classroom I found that the competition had changed too. We were placed in classes based upon ability, so in some areas I was placed with students who were two and three years older than I was.

For a boy who really hadn’t hit puberty yet it was a learning experience in so many ways.

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