Garden Road - March 3, 2015 In first grade at Wayne, the school bused us out to Allerton for a year. That was just part of the pattern back then—kindergarten at the elementary school in Corydon, Allerton for first grade, back to Corydon for second grade. After consolidation, many of the small town high schools became dumping grounds, of sorts, for lower grade levels. The Sewal high school building, where my grandparents Gerald and Denise Selby graduated from, served at one point as Seymour’s junior high, before they tore down that brick building on the south side of what was once a bustling little metropolis, where my great-grandfather worked as a doctor.
The last high school class graduated from there in 1959. Former English and social studies teacher Elna Langford Tucker was valedictorian one year, before retiring from teaching after a long journey in 1989. She passed away in 2008, but not before beginning a scholarship program in her name for students at Truman State University. According to Truman State’s website, Tucker entertained herself as a young girl by lining up chairs and using the family’s farm dogs as pupils. That prepared her for her future career teaching human children. Mar 2, 2015, 08:59
Based on the expressions of the people in this photograph, you would think the Falcons’ game with Moravia had gone horribly wrong. Wayne won their last regular season game 79-66. With arms crossed, future number 44 Grant Selby frowns. Behind him are his great aunt and uncle, former Wayne teachers Gayla and Denny Alley. Below Grant: 1,000 point scorer and 2014 Wayne graduate Dillon Lain, with Wayne senior Dally Veach. Photo by Jason Selby
As the high school basketball season winds to an end, I think back to my brother Grant’s senior season at Wayne, when I was a sixth grader at the elementary school. Grant’s junior year, he rarely played on the varsity team. But over the following summer when he was not helping my dad put up hay, he spent hours shooting on our basketball hoop at the farm while I rebounded, sometimes reluctantly. At the time, I did not get as much out of it as he did.
There had once been a puddle where the hoop stood. After a thunderstorm, my siblings and I sat recumbent in the water and formed tribal sculptures in mud. With evening coming on and the sky dark with clouds, the night lamp at the corner of the machine shed shone down on us, as the rain gushed from the drain spout into an eroded divot. It seems more like a dream than memory, but I know we were all once there, splashing barefoot in the water. Feb 23, 2015, 08:46
Garden Road - February 17, 2015 I must extend another congratulations to my wife Jennifer. 'Crab Creek Review' decided they should publish one of her poems. She is putting together quite a portfolio of work, as Crab Creek is a nice publication to add to her other credits. Jennifer is also the editor for my work. She says that she is going to write a book called 'The Editor’s Editor.'
Since we’ve had a spell of cold weather and snow, I thought I should write about one of the hottest summers from when I was growing up. It was 1988, before we bought an air conditioner for the window in the utility room, which once looked out upon a green ash tree growing from the cave—an old survival shelter from the 1950s. Once we had air, we set up standing fans to cool the house. Before that, on warm, humid nights it was difficult to sleep. Your body temperature is supposed to drop while you slumber. In such weather, that can be physically impossible. Occasionally, we would try to sleep in the living room in a brown floral hide-a-bed couch, believing it might be cooler in the larger space with more windows open. I crawled under the sofa when my mom extended it into a bed, and pretended it was a tent, watching Marty Stouffer’s 'Wild America' from underneath the exposed springs. Feb 16, 2015, 13:34
Garden Road - February 10, 2015 Routine is the process that allows us to go about our lives in the most efficient manner possible. Blindly, sometimes, and without appreciation for the moment. If you don’t need to think about everything, your chores get done sooner. It is why change is so difficult. When my family moved to our new house, I felt lost for around the first month. I always reached for the wrong drawer to grab silverware. Those are a few seconds of my life I will never get back.
Every morning, I drink a cup of coffee processed by my black Keurig machine, though I own a grinder and a French press, all Christmas presents from my family. The French press rarely gets used, even on weekends. I clean the Keurig only when the water stops dripping out. It is not laziness, mind you, but efficiency, I tell myself.
A former boss of mine, once a barista in Cedar Falls, tipped me off to the superiority of the French press—that grinding your own African beans created the best flavor, outside of civet cat coffee. Feb 9, 2015, 12:30
Garden Road - February 3, 2015 My wife Jennifer and I recently took personality tests, with pro bono results based on the analysis of renowned psychologist Carl Jung. For laypeople unaccustomed to psychological jargon, Jung is the saner alternative to Freud. The test only took 12 minutes, and was more worthwhile than a Facebook quiz to determine what character we are from 'Star Wars,' or how long we will live.
I am, apparently, an INFP, which stands for introversion, intuition, feeling and perception. The part of my personality that comes closest to the dark side is feeling, which is almost equal to thinking. The website lists mostly positives about each personality, like a fortune cookie, with relatively fewer negatives. Perhaps if you pay more for the premium service, the kind folks at '16 Personalities' based out of London might list in greater detail the things inherently wrong with me. Feb 2, 2015, 09:26