Saturday, June 03, 2006

Kiss Vs. the Graduate (published 6-3-2006; article #17)

The Knoxville Civic Coliseum ( was the site.

The year was 1979. Kiss ( was in the house! Two buddies and I stood only a few feet from center stage. We were there! What a show! The rock vibes were rolling from the speakers. Simmons, Stanley, Criss, and Frehley were in true form! What a performance! One very stout and tall friend hoisted me up from time to time, so I could take pictures above the crowd. What shots I took! Great shot of Simmons breathing fire! The house was packed. We were there! What a memory! I was young and felt great!

The year was 2006. Gibbs High School graduates were in the house. My niece, Trina "Biscuit," was graduating (the only National Merit Scholarship Finalist in the class, I might add). A score of family was seated to stage left. The commencement music did not rock. The speakers were adequate but not on a roll. I tried to stay awake. I was old and sick, still fighting varicella-zoster. Still yet, when Trina "Biscuit" walked across that stage, a chill of pride and sentiment ran down my back. Was this the little girl whom I used to “walk on the ceiling?” Congratulations, Trina! Yours was not a ceremony of mediocrity. Good luck and Godspeed in the future!

The Knoxville Civic Coliseum hasn’t changed; I have. I miss the thrill and fire of the concert of youth, but I relish the love of my dear, long-suffering wife and of those around us. Have I graduated?

What say you?


Gwyn Calvetti said...

Congratulations to your niece. Yeah, we don't get any younger, do we? Awesome photos, they rock, too!

Sonya said...

You can't wiggle out of this one brother-in-law. You are the Appalachian Irishman! There was only one national merit finalist & only one Trina in Gibb's graduating class. You can no longer deny it! ;)

MYSTIC said...

Congratulations to your kin. The Clan is proud of her. From one Irishman to another...Did you expect less than her best? The buttons should be bouncing off the wall...As a lay preacher..God Bless you and yours. Glad your health has returned.

M. Fearghail said...

Sonya, do I know you? With whom do you have me confused?

Mystic, thanks! I was 14 years in fulltime ministry, including five in Russia. God's blessings!