Friday, March 8, 2013

My childhood goals for my life.

Todays topic forces me to enter the wayback machine and transport myself to Pueblo, Colorado in the mid-to-late 1950s. Back when Tommy Samberson, Kenny Lockard and Dave Perkins were my best buddies.

Tommy & Kenny were neighborhood pals - Dave was a schoolyard pal but we were forever linked in the minds of parents and teachers by his older brother and my namesake uncle Chuck.  I never got all of the details but my uncle did admit that their shenanigans (good word for those times) left Dave's brother deceased and Chuck headed to the Marines as the better of 2 judicial options offered.  The goal therefore became to keep Dave and I apart lest we emulate the example previously given.  Now you know what happened - Dave and I did everything we could to be pals and "hang out" together.  We competed in everything - even having 4th grade crushes on one Susan Taylor - but Dave had an advantage as he lived closer and I was impossibly shy. Dave and I were closely matched in schoolwork - about 50/50 as to who got done first/got the best grade, etc.  We were dead even re Susan too - she moved to California and broke both our hearts but more on her later.  I often wonder what happened to Dave - I know he became a star quarterback in HS but that's about all I know.  Kenny is a small businessman in Spirit Lake, Iowa and Tommy was killed in a car accident.  Goals? To beat each other and be good at whatever we did.  Simple stuff - we were after all just kids. Cards in the bike spokes, football and baseball junkies all. I moved to California in 1959. Goal accomplished.

Slip the wayback ahead to the 1960's and high school. More serious times as I grew older.  I hooked up with a group of guys on my first visit to Southgate School when my mom was registering me. I stood up to the neighborhood bully - Jimmy Kirk (he smacked me a good shot and I just smiled at him - he then left with his chest puffed out like a real badass while I just laughed) - but I became pals with a couple of guys I am still close to - Dave & Brian. In that 5th grade class I met another Dave. In 6th grade 3 of us were transfered to a different school where we met Rick. We're all friends to this day and of the group one of us never obtained the career focus of the other 4 - never set serious goals like the other 4.  Dave H is a successful architect, Dave W flies for US Air/ American, Brian is a successful dentist, Rick is retired from the Forest Service and a fairly well renowned kumuhulu (he has his own Polynesian dance troupe). And then there's me.  You guessed it.  No-goal chuck never got passionate about anything.  Things came way too easy - no real challenges (beyond getting the nerve to talk to girls - if you are a fan of the Big Bang Theory think Raj - the Indian character) as I thought having the friends I had made me a successful guy.  Oh - I was still painfully shy.  Turns out Susan Taylor was pals with a girl that transferred into our HS late in her junior year - a factoid discovered in a hangout session at our group pal Anne's house.  Charyn - the transfer student - checked with Susan and told me Susan fairly well described me so thats kinda scary - the same at 16 as at 9? LOL Goals? I really wanted to play baseball - unfortunately I was built like a lineman so I kept playing football with the goal of playing in JC and getting a scholarship to a 4-year school. I discovered in those 2 years of JC ball that I was not passionate about football - I was good enough to play on but lacked the requisite passion to make the commitment to move up the ladder to a division I school.  Goal change time. The new goal became simply to graduate from college. Mission accomplished after I discovered I was passionate about Political Science and got my BA in International Relations.  Also got married so goals changed. 

Dreams? Truth is I always only wanted to love and be loved.  Have real friends that matter. I'm a simple guy. I'd have to say those were fulfilled -

Since this topic specified childhood goals the wayback stops here. Sure there's more to tell  Maybe another day. Just not this one.

Now how did the rest iof the gang do?  Check them out - Delirious, The Old Fossil, Grannymar, Padmum,
Ramana, Maria - the Silver Fox, Maxi, Gaelikka, Paul


  1. How better to comment than to suggest a song!

    1. You're getting pretty good at this music stuff - I'll see your song and raise it with one of my own...

  2. You made me think so much of my own childhood: my friends, the challenges, the aspirations. It is difficult to think of you as shy, but your comparison to Raj on the Big Bang Theory made me see a young man finding his way in life and I loved it. Raj is the character that if I had known him when I was twelve, I would have felt a need to mother and protect.

  3. I absolutely loved this story! Little by little, layers of the the onion unfold and I'm delighted at all that is uncovered.

    I can't imagine that dingbat smacking you, though. It must have been like hitting a young bear! Both of our kids went to Southgate. Where did you go to high school?

  4. I enjoyed the onion peeling too.

    'Truth is I always only wanted to love and be loved.'

    The truth is, Shackman, you found the real meaning of life early on, so many waste time chasing rainbows. You give love to, and are loved by many more than you realise, every day.

  5. Fos - halfway throughh 5th grade 3 of us were transferred to Gansberger and in 6th to Longwood. I went to Mt Eden - class of 67. So did my daughter. Funny story - one day Jamie had a substitute teacher - short, stocky guy named Marv Rodriguez, that called roll boys PE style - fast and last name only. At McConvey he paused, looked up and said McConvey - Jamie answered - he then said Chuck or Mike )my "little" bro. She looked puzzled, said Chuck is my dad - he said "See me after class" - dum dee dum dum - Marv was my wrestling coach - at lunch he took her to the wrestling room and showed her my name on the wall of fame. Pretty cool (I made it to state and was team captain my senior year) - also my brother was his son's best friend.

    GM and Fos - there's not much peeling - as I said, I'm a simple guy and I doubt we will get to the dark parts. Thats single-malt talk time.