Dear-diary by domainlawyer

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									Dear Diary, There we were, standing on the steps of Saint May High School. It was September, the beginning of our Sophomore year. Everything seemed new, strange and yet terribly exciting. There were over 100 of us coming from three different parishes. I know you’re thinking we made lots of new friends, but no --- we already knew each other thanks to Club Crozier. Remember how crazy Bernadette was about saddle shoes? Well, Jim Vandeville gave her some mighty competition with his candy apple red shoes. Freedom at last! Haven’t you heard? No one, absolutely no one ate at the cafeteria. The Capital steps proved inviting to quite a few while others headed for Kewpie. And then there was the Epicure - - that was the setting for many odd scenes, such as the day Mike Hayes (known to all as Pinky) returned from lunch with wet pants. “It’s not what you think,” explained Pinky, “You see, Jackie was drinking this coke and --- hey, you so believe me, don’t you?” Although football season wasn’t a winning one it was a fun one. Usually you’d thinks the team would be kidnapped, but Resurrection found our J. V. cheerleaders much more inviting. I’m afraid that because it was so cold the cheerleaders frequently had a little support such as the Howell game where the crowd consisted if four brave souls – Mary Jo, Jackie, Mike Cook and Brian Braman. Mike decided they’d all go to his car at the half and get warm but there was only one thing wrong - he didn’t know how to work the heater. Deciding that this would never do Jackie and Mary Jo set Mike and Brian to work rubbing their feet. As Sophomores, this year would be our first homecoming. We worked hard at everything but somehow our float didn’t turn out. Our skit was a different story, though it was a done over version of “The Night Before Christmas”. Pat Sivak made a great referee, while Nancy Gibbs tried to out-do her by jumping across stage of her p.j.’s on a pogo stick. I’ll never forget the great cheerleaders, Pinky, Mike Lynch, and Bruce Miller were very vivacious, to say the least. No homecoming is complete without some kind of rivalry. Our boys saw to this with the challenge of a fight at west side. The fight was really something, diary, with tomatoes, pumpkins, and eggs flying through the air all at once. Not everything that happened was fun, though. It seemed that this was the year for delinquents. Father Barret found it necessary to have a private talk with the boys … Bruce, as we all know is a great big strapping football player. Evidently his muscles went to his head and he got into a fight with Charlie Davenport. Poor Bruce, I don’t know what was deflating more, his muscles, or his ego. There were two boys , however, who claimed to be very pious. But, as Sister Marie Antoinette said, “Rudy and Barney, I don’t know how you could have broken that statue when all you were doing was praying.” St. Mary’s had a system with rotation periods. Four times a week you had each class and on the other day there were meetings held. I know for a fact that there was never much studying done by those who didn’t attend the meetings. Sister Frances Regina seemed to host quite a few parties, complete with refreshments. This was the first year we had lockers but we never locked them. Jackie and Sandie had quite a contest doing to see who could decorate her’s the best. Speaking of lockers, diary, there was one which gave off a piercing aroma. It never was discovered who sprayed Hayes’ and Finnerty’s locker with perfume.

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There has always been a joke among students about “brownie points” but Sister Julia Loretto surprised us all when she set up a point system. She will also be remembered for her fifth and sixth hour English classes. Most of our class took biology with Sister Marie Antoinette. I’m sure you remember how well she got along with Bruce. And then there was her pet white mouse which she suffocated. Her final biology test was unique in that all the answers were true. One favorite part of Winter was having snowball fights. We liked it so much that we even had them in school. While most people were washing other people’s faces with snow, Bruce and Mike Lynch decided to be different. They washed Jackie’s face with ice cream - - all different flavors. Two boys in our class had a deep love for school and proved it by their prompt attendance. Seriously, I don’t think Chris Scannell and Mike Magnotta were on time for school once on the whole year. Jeanette had always seemed to be a nice quiet girl and when she announced that she was going to have a party we all thought that it would be a nice quiet party. We never dreamed, and neither did Jeanette, that it would be broken up by the police. Many of our class had outstanding and varied talents but Dan Bassar’s talent for eating razor blades could never be outdone. Never let it be thought that we all loved school for we did all we could to skip classes. Mrs. Radigan was forever receiving forged notes from the girls so that they could skip gym class. I’m sure all of you remember Mary Alice McFarlane and her poetic ability. Well, besides that she had a talent for snatching shoes. Poor Darlene, who had to walk in bare feet into the office and claim her shoes. I guess our class had a lot of trouble with losing things. Our J.V. basketball team went to the wrong school in Owosso and had to hitch-hike 2 miles to the right school. All this though didn’t tire them and they brought home a victory. Spring came at last and with it our gift to the Seniors - the Sophomore-Senior breakfast. A lot of class spirit and co-operation welded together to form a perfect gift. Dear Diary, After a reputable sophomore year we needed a new start and that’s exactly what we got. St. Mary became Msgr. John W. O’Rafferty High School. The “Blues” became the “Raiders” and Brother Bernard was our first Christian Brother Principal. We all looked ahead for great things. Newcomers were the bubbly Mike Cawley and Bob Piggot. Because of crowded conditions and the unfinished building we started classes on a half day schedule at “Old St. Mary”. No one will ever forget the sonic booms that shook the red building, the creaking floors and the slanted stairs, the fire escape entrances, and the air raid sirens. Mr. Conn often told his math classes on the 2nd floor to hold their feet still for fear we’d fall through to the basement. The year started with a bang! Pat Nicholson got involved in an automobile collision the first week of school-just the day after she got her license. Colleen Carroll came back from Europe with thrilling stories of her adventures and her arrests. Sister Margaret de Sales broke her arm. Mrs. Bebermeyer’s art class! - - well!

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The fall also brought great tragedies. Msgr. O’Rafferty died and the entire school suffered a great loss. Nov. 22 proved another fatal date. The death of beloved John F. Kennedy broke the heart of every Raider. Football season looked dim. At first we looked good but disciplinary – more dietary – problems resulted in the loss of almost the whole team. The “bad” Juniors left a poor line and hurtin backfield. The record books prove the loss. At homecoming everything looked good. The spirit was tremendous – signs cluttered theted ls, blackboards, ceilings, and the front of the school. At a rally, we had an ambulance for the injured Shamrocks and hung one in effigy. We won first place in floats. “V is for victory- color it ours” made an attractive float. But the game didn’t support it. At half time the 20-0, Gabriels favor, was almost discouraging. Final score was 26-6. Oh, well, you can’t win them all! Remember thetedyride at Rowe Rance? Where’s the snake?? O’Rafferty was ready to move into the new building. The beautiful rooms and spaciousted ls were something no one could adjust to. Getting lost was not unusual. Passing notes under room dividers was the thing. Lunch from the vending machines was another feature. The parking lot was a big problem. The mud hole created quite a ruckus for quite awhile. Once you were stuck –you were really stuck. O’Rafferty had the only quick sand parking lot in the city. Sports continued as usual. Track merits went to record breaker Joe Cyberski. Spring came and the juniors prepared for the Prom. We were determined to have the best Prom ever and most will agree that we succeeded. We chose a Hawaiian theme and called it “Lure of the Isles”. Bernice Esch and her decorations committee did a beautiful job on the cafeteria. Hours of hard work created a magnificent masterpiece. The volcano, palm trees, waterfall, mural, and hanging vines established an unmatched atmosphere. Everything went fine until the next week when we found out that none of the pictures turned out. But still, Francis Park at four o’clock in the morning in the rain is something no one could forget. Cheerleading tryouts that year won’t be forgotten, either. Boat races in chemistry and stalling in Sister Maria Julia’s classes will be remembered. It was a good year in many ways and happy besides the hardships and tragedies. Dear Diary, Joy and sadness are intermixed in the first two years but we finally made it to SENIOR YEAR with few casualties. Those that we did have we made up for by gaining Denny Dalton, Sandy Grundstrum, Dick Smith, and Bruce Miller. Then one by one we received John Brockhaus, Dave Shay, Craig Convissor, Flora de Sales, our exchange student from South America, and Gene Norris. Football season was the biggest attraction of the new year although we got off to an embarrassing start by losing to Waverly. Mr. Pozega said that we had another year to go before we could start thinking about winning some games and pessimism weighed heavily on the student body. Then came the Haslett game. They were so confident of winning that they sent our team a powder puff. That was their first mistake and only one of the many that they made the night of the game. The final score was 7-0 in favor of O’Rafferty. After that they couldn’t be stopped. The Raiders rolled over Howell, Okemos, Mason, and Eaton Rapids. None of the scores was especially high but they showed great team effort and co-operation. We were tied for first place with Holt, who hadn’t lost a game. The unbeatable O’Rafferty spirit was as high as it was for our homecoming game with Gabriels. The girls were decked out in black eyes with signs reading “We’d Rather Fight then Lose” and the cheers poured out of the stadium … We’ll never forget, diary, the heartache of losing that game. 3

Homecoming weekend started off well with the big dance, Sandie Walters was crowned queen with Mary Jo and Evie as her attendants. Then came the bonfire. The whole east parking lot was crowded with kids. Our skit was put on “Patient Place” – 4 doctors, 13 football players with such diseases as a craving for dirt, leather, funny green spots on front of their eyes, blood pressures of 40-0 etc., and 4 nurses were up on a haywagon. We won first place. And then the game, the day was perfect, sunny, just warm enough. The parade fabulous. We held up traffic all the way to Everett’s field. Our Senior float won of course. And then the game. O’Rafferty was confident, you could see it on the boys’ faces. We were gonna win this one, but we didn’t. The final score 13-6 in favor of Gabriels. The sun went behind a cloud and it was a little colder as we drove back to meet the team. We all trudged into the chapel. Now one really could think of anything to say. That night every one danced in the parking lot and then went to Mary Jo’s. Brother Kevin came later and before they went to bed that night ever person was thinking, “Were gonna beat Sexton”. We didn’t but we sure tried, Mike Sandborn and Mike Heiler were both hospitalized from injuries received in the game. Football was over but other things happened during those first 2 ½ months. In the first place we set a new record by going to school a whole quarter without one day off. What is fall without atedyride? Well, our class didn’t know because we had one – one swinging edyride complete with Bruce Werner doing eis famous fire walking act and Ron Spedoske becoming ateuman cigarette lighter. At O’Rafferty there is a tradition that all Senior boys and girls make a closed retreat. Well, there are some Sisters of Charity in Cincinnati, some Christian Brothers in Chicago who wish that the tradition never would have been established … for several reasons. Basketball started soon-we weren’t sure about our team but after our first game (we stomped all over Waverly) we were pretty confident. Mike Sandborn played well as did the rest of the team. Our season didn’t go as well as predicted by our first game but one thing was always sure of praise, the spirit of the students. Several sportscasters said that they had never seen anything to equal the spirit which went on and on even though we were losing. Christmas vacation proved t be one of fun and yet a little bit of sadness resulted from our gaiety. Most of the year there was a standard joke among seniors which never failed to get a laugh. About half a block from school there is a small business building which contains, among other things, a billiard hall which is known to everyone as Rack & Rail & Ron. A certain boy, Spud, seemed to have a penchant for this establishment and spent days and some even believe nights there. Since no one ever saw eim leave except to get some refreshment at Mc Donald’s, it was taken for granted that somewhere in the building he had a blanket and pillow hidden away and used as his bed a pool table. Since this has never been disproved it is still a local belief. I wonder, diary, what was going on at a certain boy’s house on a certain Friday night that the girls weren’t allowed to see … Every year several students go to Chicago for Summer School of Catholic Action. Money was needed for this trip so the senior Sodality sponsored a Mardi Gras just before Lent complete with dancing girls-girls? Any way what was supposed to resemble girls. Mike Cook does have rather nice legs though we have to admit. One of our more pretentious additions to the faculty was an s psychiatrist; namely, Father Fitz. Maybe a 4

better title for him would be priest of all trades. Besides being as psychiatrist, he also offered Mass daily and taught classes. What did we ever do without him? Semester break finally came and we were half-way there. Another of the larger jokes around school and town was about white socks. “Nobody wears white socks! Socks-ala-skin maybe, but certainly not white.” was the cry. It took a while but before too long nobody was wearing white socks. “Samantha is coming soon!” The bulletin boards said. “Who is Samantha?” everyone asked. Well, everyone found out when one day on a little red tricycle, Kathy Glazier peddled around the school selling subscriptions to the yearbook. The yearbook - - our first one! We worked hard to get the privilege and we tried to live up to the responsibility. Oh, the happiness when the finished copy was sent to the printer! O’Rafferty had its singular pleasure when the winners of the Lansing Leadership Awards were announced. We received two - - one for Maureen Holmes and one for Mike Lynch. If you happen to ask any senior what the favorite hangout is I’m sure you’d hear “Toledo,” Yes, Toledo, with its Peppermint Lounge, etc., a short drive from Lansing. Well anyway I’ve heard it’s an interesting place to go. Coach Pozega. The first thing you hear Sophomore year is how he dislikes girls. Every class began with a resume of the news from the night before and if we had an assignment the day was exactly the same. The surprise of senior year was when Coach decided that girls weren’t so stupid after all. Several of us in his second hour class were in a state of shock for the hour after this announcement. Spring came and along with it spring fever. One day four boys decided during fifth hour that Rack & Rail was the place to go. So they went. Bruce Miller was preparing for one of his great shots when Mike Magnotta said, “Bruce.” Not wanting to be bothered, Bruce ignored him. So he repeated “Bruce, Mr. Conn just walked in.” Well, that was one pool game that was over in a hurry. But the boys got a week off along with a few hours of detention. The next Friday, Jill and Mary Jo decided that since there weren’t any formals left in Lansing, they would go to Grand Rapids. So the slipped school, phoning in sick. They were sick all right when they returned that night (they never did get out of town) to find the school had checked on their absence. Senior Play time came around in February and we finally found a play that everyone approved. It was called “January Thaw” and was directed by our beloved Mrs. Seimon. All the seniors agreed that it was the best play ever and celebrated at a party after the Saturday night performance. Just one thing remains a mystery. What was Chris Scannell licking from the floor? To raise money for the play we sponsored an ad campaign, which brought in over $2000. Our senior class seemed to be tops in everything. Senior year is drawing to a close. The prom is just a memory, and then Senior Week and finally graduation. I wonder which of the kids I’ll never see again. One thing is certain, however, we’ll never be able to relive any of the experiences of high school; but we’ll always have them to remember in this diary.

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