Changing seasons

[Response to an old teammate’s email.]

Hello, old fiend. Yes, I am doing well. Psychologically, anyway, and Diana is good, except for a few pains and inconveniences. However, I have had pneumonia for 4 1/2 weeks. I shipped Rosie off to the Doggie Dude Ranch yesterday, as I can’t perform my duties as a dog dad in this condition. I have also been hampered by an injured left hand. I cut it on a broken toilet I was moving in the garage. After I cleaned up the rug (I didn’t notice the blood until I got upstairs) and secured Rosie, I drove to Urgent Care, where the guy on duty sewed ten stitches into my index and middle fingers. It’s been a week now, and they’re still a little sore.

Thanks for the spring training update. I look forward to seeing you out at the old keystone corner. Thanks for the forgotten memory, too. I advised you to buy baseball pants because I was so glad to be able to buy them after I started playing ball again. They’re much better than the old flannels. That screen saver from 2010 sounds terrific. 2010 is taking its place amidst our nostalgia. If I remember correctly, it was a good year for our Medigold team, one way or another.

I am really looking forward to reading Nancy’s book, A Redhead in Japan. It will be like spending many hours with a good friend. “Many hours” because I’ve always been a slow reader, around 250 wpm through college. After getting hired as a speed-reading teacher, I improved to 475 wpm.

That was near the average of my students’ speeds before they took my course. Ha ha! It never became an issue, though.

But one day in the cafeteria of a toney Shaker Heights, Ohio, girls’ private high school, one of my fellow teachers called me out as a fraud. I guess he was right. He didn’t even know about my slow reading speed, but he had a “sixth sense” and detected an imposter.

The accused: The traveling speed-reading teacher, a low-life easily identifiable by a catch-as-catch-can wardrobe and current residence at the Turfside Motel. Missing and broken front teeth from an auto accident, and inadequate follow-up dental care for several months, added to an unsavory image. Mr. Reading Techniques wasn’t exactly blending in with the faculty.

No one who is a fraud enjoys being detected. This can be a tense and dangerous moment for a perp. Fortunately, at that time, I didn’t really care about this insult to my character. I was just trying to get by.

So I didn’t respond, and nothing came of it.

I was not at the cutting edge of education science and philosophy in 1971 and 1972, and eventually I did move on. But I do still value my time as an educator. You know what they say: “Those who can’t, teach!”

I’ll pass on your greetings to Diana. It’s good to hear from you, Bob.

Best to Nancy,


Thank you for reading this blog. Your comments are welcome.


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