Skip to main content

Take A Lap ... Make it Wide!

Forier High School had three coaches that ran the sports program: Mook Clavier (Cluh-veah), Coach Didier (Did-e-yay), and Stanley Richard (Reee-shad). For purposes of this writing, I'll focus on Coach Richard. Richard was my coach for the majority of the time I was in school and one of the most colorful characters I have ever known.

He was shorter than the rest ... about 5'8" and built like Mr. Universe (he was actually Mr. New Orleans one year, I believe). He also had a speech impediment that could have been caused by his missing upper dental plate or the apparent head trauma that must have plagued him when he played sports as a youngster.

Every day, before cleass we would have roll call. Coach Richard could not pronounce any names correctly and his ability to maintain information was limited .... so he spelled them out. My friend Wayne's last name was Lassen (which he pronounced "Layyy-Thun"), I was "Mum-boig" and two guys who were named Schmidt and Smith were both called "Smitt". Whe he called out their names it was always: "Smitt"! "S-C-H-M-I-D-T" ... "Smitt"! "S-M-I-T-H".

We had regular PE workouts which meant running laps ... lots of laps. The elaborate equipment we used for this consisted of empty wooden soft drink crates that cornered the dirt track. From the coach's office that overlooked the field, Coach Richard would yell into the microphone ... the one probably used today in Mc Donald's Drive Thrus ... in the most garbled tone you can imagine. We never knew just what he was saying but after years of careful traslation we think it was: "OKAY ... EVERYONE ... TAKE A LAP ... MAKE IT WIDE .... FIVE TIMES AROUND THE COKE CASES" (or , "otayebryuntakalapmayitwhydfitisarounddacokecattheth").

I also remember a health class we took with Coach one day in which there was a movie about drunk driving. It was one of those sappy dramatizations that was probably shot 20 years earlier and had Eddie Haskell lines like "Gee, Mr. Smith, I don't know what had come over me when I could not retain control of my vehicle." You know ... stuff all kids say. Well, in the film, the lead teenager gets killed in a crash while drinking and comes back as a ghost to see what has happened to his family after his death. After about a half hour or so of watching the "ghost", Coach Richard stood up and turned off the projector. He flipped on the lights and said, "I WANT EVERYONE TO KNOW THAT THE BOY IS DEAD ... THEY CANNOT SEE HIM."

He turned on the projector, everyone thanked the coach for his insight and we watched the rest of the show.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

SAMMY: The Novel (An Overview)

I finished writing Sammy:The Novel. 

So ... I called my good buddy and excellent writer, Dave Scheiber, to help me write an overview to pique the interest of publishers. The stuff that Dave wrote made me want to read my own book! We combined our efforts and here's what we came up with:

SAMMY (An Overview)

Sammy Levine, 86-year-old resident of Star of David nursing home, was not happy with his daily existence and dreamed of taking one last trip with his wife Esther (presently residing in an urn on the third shelf in his room). Sammy was careful about not exposing his plan to anyone, especially his son, Barry, who dutifully visited regularly and tried to make sure that he lived out his remaining days comfortably.

Through a carefully choreographed plan, Sammy managed to access personal information on three recently deceased residents from the nursing home’s computers. Then he applied for and obtained three new credit cards. Armed now with available cash and credit, he loaded up Esth…

Close Call

I was just putting the finishing touches on my new novel, Sammy, which will be available to order in November (shameless self promotion!) ... when I started thinking about some of the characters in my past life. One character I've actually written about in the past just popped into my head. It's a repeat story but I hope you enjoy it ... again.

When I was a Freshman at LSU, our dorm was set up like a suite with two adjoining double rooms and a common kitchen and living room. "Suite" really makes it sound much fancier than it was. Actually, living room makes it sound much fancier than it was. The walls were cinder block and the living room was about 100 square feet. I don't think four of us could even stand up in there at one time.

One of the four guys in our suite was the place kicker for the LSU Tigers. His name was Phil and he was from Bogalusa, Louisiana. He had the bed next to mine. Phil was about 6'8" and weighed well over 300 pounds. He was a big …

Princess Grace's Diary

We surprised our little princess, Grace on Friday with a last minute visit to Savannah. She and her BFF Stella had a joint princess birthday party.

It was of course no surprise to Deb and me that the trip had a few surprises for us, too.

It started out with a light show at the airport (we chose to fly rather than drive the 12 hours back and forth for one day). Lightning strikes were coming fast ... so the tarmac was closed until it settled down. We had to get to Atlanta in time to catch what had become the LAST flight of the night to Savannah at 11:20 PM.

We made it ... barely ... and fell asleep at 2 AM.

Up at 8 and out the door via Uber to The Landings (a mere 45 minute drive) and just in time to see this adorable duo.

Big brother Cole was  one of the "hosts".

Pony rides were there for the guests.

Matching Princess cakes (of course).

Lots of fun.

At about 2, Deb and I headed back to the airport with Nikki driving and made it in PLENTY of time to find out that there were n…