Columnist Of The Week
Are those insidious bumper stickers making a comeback? "My child was student of the month" or "My child is an honor student at such and such school." I've seen some that look suspiciously new. Nothing makes me want to flip the bird faster than when I drive past some show-off parent. I see the little genius in the backseat of the car and I think I'd like to nail the kid with a spitball. Of course, this being the holiday season and all, I just glare at the kid instead.
I think it was the great running back, Jim Brown, who commented about excessive antics and celebrations by today's players scoring touchdowns. He said something to the effect: they should act like they've been there before. Not like they won the lottery. I kinda think the same things about kids whose parents slap on those bragging stickers. What are the parents doing?---telling everybody on the road that the kid had a good month or a good semester 'cause it might not happen again?
Of course, this is probably just good old-fashioned Boyle envy raising its unsightly cranium. None of my kids ever come home with good news --- I'm still trying to figure where I put the bumper sticker they gave me: "My son was made to stand in the corner with gum on his nose."
Good thing they didn't have such bumper stickers in the old days. What would have they given my mother? "My son had his sideburns pulled by Brother John Birch. And my other son had his butt kicked by Sister Mary Veronica."
Boyle-ing Over: Speaking of bumpers---how 'bout that bumper crop of ballplayers who've made the leap from St. Francis, St. Thomas More and St. Camillus 8th grade CYO to high school basketball. I'm sure to overlook somebody---so just let me know and I'll make amends---but off the top of my head there's Justin Baylosis, Anthony Carnacchio, Thomas Kentouris, Brian Boyle, Danny Raphael, and Kevin Kelleher; and also Matt Basmagy and Ryan Woerner. The girls' side is even more impressive. Jill Brady, Katie Pastina, Corrine Howley, Mary Grace Brady, Kristi Lee Moore, Alex Biddescombe, Maureen Carey, Erin Casey, and Samantha Swensen (from St. Camillus) all shined in grade school ball and are now making remarkable strides on the next level. Keep it up!
The frosh have some pretty big footprints to follow. Upper classmen like the Kelly brothers---Brian and Kenny, Jen Lawler, Cait Boyle, Jen Kelleher, Marybeth Raphael, Ryan Roberts, Brendan Fitzgerald, Chris McGuinness, Zack Dunn, Ryan McGrisken, and Sean Mackey are on Varsity or JayVee squads proving once again that Rockaway continues to be a basketball incubator for high school and college programs.
And here's a tip for you hoop aficionados: keep an eye on St. Edmunds Shane Gauvard. Some college coach is gonna look awfully smart when they land this kid. The thing about Shane is, he really loves to play, which means he'll continue to improve (and he's pretty good now---tossing in 33 in a recent game).
***Happy holidays to one and all. Thanks to so many of you who've been so kind and generous with your remarks and letters about Braving The Waves---Rockaway Rises And Rises Again. And a big thanks goes to those who've helped sell the book (and that includes some very aggressive family members). The Gift is Love, The Harbor Light, and Sammy's not only agreed to stock it but have really supported it. Psst...hurry and support these local businesses! Marty Feeney is helping sell books in Broad Channel (sales benefit the BCAC) and Rockaway's Chamber of Commerce has been a huge help.
And though I know a lot of people say they don't read The Wave, I know they're just saying that! Without The Wave's unstinting support, the book would remain a secret.
One last thing, as I say in the foreword of the book, there are still stories to be told and remembered. Many, for one reason or another, didn't get in the book. I urge you to write these stories, record your memories. Somewhere along the line, I think you'll be glad you did.