The local kids took the long walk from grade eight into high school last night. Not as fancy as the commencement exercises at some remove in the future, but still worthy of a night out or at least a trip to the local Dairy Queen. They looked really mature in their ceremonial attire, and appeared quite grown until the "cutting up" during speech making began. But there wasn't much of that. And besides, who can blame them for fidgeting during a long event more boring than death?
It was quite the slice of life in my little town, at this event maybe more than any other I've seen so far. The grandparents came, the siblings came, the parents and extended friend-trees came. We all sat together sweating like the dickens in a gymnasium borrowed from the high school for the occasion. It was a hot day. The evening breezes could not penetrate the chiffon and hairspray to any useful degree, leaving us fanning ourselves with programs as if we sat in an Atlanta church in August. Some of this useless swatting of air was to overcome the noxious perfumes that some women feel compelled to wear whenever they leave the house. Why must they punish the rest of us for their olfactory puritanism?
Anyway, it all went well. The kids looked great and were so excited to be moving on. Admittedly, the ride gets bumpy from here. However, In my opinion, as a group they were remarkably accomplished. I'm actually feeling positive about the human race today. If we can just teach them to think about others as well as themselves, I think we may be ok.