Friday, May 07, 2004

My Article on Junior High Lunch Time (11-22-72)

In case anyone is wondering (I'm sure no one is, but humor me . . . ) what I was writing about over 31 years ago (many of you weren't even alive way back then), here is a piece I always liked from my own writing, back in '72, when I was 14 (with hair almost down to my shoulders) and in 9th grade.

In retrospect, being a writer / "journalist" for the school paper Spotlight (Woodrow Wilson Jr. High, Detroit, MI), was actually the biggest indication of what I would later do for a living. I didn't have a clue as to what that might be then, or even through high school and on to my last year in college. Strange.

I liked a lot of things, but none enough to want to devote my life to, occupation-wise. After I got through my childhood dreaming of being a baseball player and an archaeologist (!!! -- musta been my ancient love of history), I was out to sea for several years, in terms of having any particular life-goal. I knew I wanted to meet a cute girl to marry when I was old enough, but that was about it.

I didn't even care much for English class. I never learned to type, and still peck away using my peculiar, labor -intensive "four-finger" method to this day (but pretty fast at that). I majored in avocational music in high school (I loved music, but knew I didn't want to be a professional musician). I still didn't know what I wanted to do with my life in college. When that is the case, you do what I did and major in sociology. LOL I toyed with majoring in social work for a short time. I really should have majored in history or philosophy, though, given my interests, and that remains a major regret of my life.

It was only in the fall of 1980, in my senior year, when I started going to InterVarsity and reading folks like Francis Schaeffer and Josh McDowell (I had already been reading C.S. Lewis for a few years), and began attending a "Jesus Freak," non-denominational church and getting serious about being a disciple of Jesus, that I realized I wanted to do something with my life related to apologetics and evangelism.

But this article was way before that, when I didn't go to church at all and was a good left wing, "liberated" pagan, and occult afficionado (Ouiji Boards, ESP, astral projection, telepathy, etc.). That being the case, there is no Christian theology here (I wasn't to be much interested at all in that for another five years), but what it does clearly exhibit is my smart-alecky tendencies and love of satirical-type humor. And that is what I see in myself in this early piece that remains with me today. So without further ado, here is my tongue-in-cheek "editorial" and social commentary on the early adolescent mentality:

"The Lunchroom"

Some people think that you go to the lunchroom to eat, but this is only partly true. A lunchroom is the place where many weird things happen. It is the place where you get hit in the head with a stale bun. It is the place where you have to bum money to buy your lunch. It is the place where you suddenly feel mashed potatoes seeping into your pants after you sit down.

It is the place where your stomach aches almost instantaneously after you finish the last bite of your coleslaw. You may have heard the screeching sound of the cashier saying: "Put that bun back."

The lunchroom is a good place to watch the Olympics. There is always someone attempting to break the world discus throw record. You also see excellent acrobatics when someone comes dashing by you, running from the lunch lady.

After you finish your food (if you eat it at all) you feel content and ready to go to your next class. But if you get a slight case of indigestion when you get there, don't blame the people who make the food, blame yourself for buying your lunch!

LOL I remember getting more than a few compliments on this, around school (a one-time event, with regard to my writing), making me feel about as "popular" among my peers, as I ever would, at that stage of my life (which was only moderately at best). If I made people laugh, and they liked my writing, then I was happy.

In that respect I was very similar already to how I am today. Now I also like to make people think a bit about the things of God in my writing, and share the Good News, and the truths which I have discovered in the Catholic Church and in Christianity, generally-speaking.

Thanks for reading! I may occasionally reprint a few more examples of my ancient writing, if I deem them worthwhile at all.

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