It’s hard to believe that it’s been 10 years already!
It’s so nice to read these GryphoNotes when they come in my mailbox. While so much has happened in these past years, I still feel like Ramapo High School is as much a part of me today as it was back in the days that I roamed its hallowed halls. Although I’ve “left [it] far behind,” Ramapo has left an indelible mark on me.
Who could forget Mr. Scarpulla’s gym class? You all know that I wasn’t much of an athlete back in those days. I was severely pigeon toed, which made running a pretty scary endeavor. You may remember the big football game against North Rockland where I took a couple of steps to avoid a vendor in the stands, and took a nasty spill down the bleachers. As the ’Box would say, “Your friends, they watch you stand around, they watch you crumble.” In this case, there were 4,500 friends in the stands to watch me crumble and then tumble down the wooden steps and into a heap. You’ll all be happy to know that I’ve since had some surgery to repair this condition, and the doctors have assured me that once the creaky metal braces are removed, I’ll be able to run like Jackie Joyner Kersee, only considerably more effeminately.
Other than my surgery, plenty has been going on in the life of this Gryphon alum! As the ’Box so eloquently puts it, “Won’t you look at where we’ve gone?” I’m still living here in Rockland County. Home is where the heart is, right? Also, home is where your parents live, which also happens to be where I live while I sort some things out. I made what I considered to be a pretty wise investment in my own Internet company back in 1999. Unfortunately, it went under due to some pretty shortsighted goals and critical mismanagement. In hindsight, spending all that money on these stress balls with the company logo probably wasn’t the best idea. On the bright side, with all the squeezing that I do, I’ve been stress-free since June of 2001. I’ve been employment-free since then, as well. The ’Box put it best in this situation: “Maybe I should have made my own mistakes, but I live with what I’ve known.”
Speaking of the ’Box , contrary to what you may have heard, the ’Box did not break up. While it is true that they have not produced a new album since 1998’s critically underrated effort, Happy Pills, they have merely been on hiatus since then. In fact, according to my last correspondence with lead singer Kevin Martin, the ’Box will be playing some minor tour dates in and around the Chicago, Illinois, area and that he’d contact me when they were ready to go. He also sent me a demo tape of some his solo stuff, which is also awesome. It’s really ’Box-reminiscent, but he’s grown some as an artist. Hopefully, he’ll play some at the upcoming ’Box shows. Anyway, it’s all summed up in the most recent edition of my monthly newsletter about the band, Shadow ’Box, which I’ve attached for your perusal.
I’m sorry I haven’t updated you Gryphon alums more often. As the ’Box might be inclined to muse, “Maybe I didn’t mean to treat you bad, but I did it anyway.” Trust you’ll hear from me much more frequently going forward. And if you’d like to receive your very own copy of Shadow ’Box, please send along your e mail address and it’ll show up in your inbox before you know it.
I’ll see you all at the next reunion!