In May, Lou Greer informed me that “I have retired as class secretary at Amherst. My final class notes are practically ready for submission. I will actually miss communicating with my fellow Lord Jeffs regularly, but I’m a little tired of being the pestermeister-in-chief. My legacies are not invisible, but neither is associated with me. I launched a sportsmanship award in 1963 that is given in all 27 varsity sports at Amherst. They are the same as the Spater award I endowed at Deerfield. I established an Amherst tradition … passing the 50th reunion baton at homecoming from last year’s 50th reunion class to the following class. It is a physical purple baton, plus a report on the previous year’s program.” .. Perhaps I, too, should impose some term limits on myself after a 10 year run as Class Secretary. So, if any ’55er would like to step up and receive a “green baton” please let me know.
Art Atkinson returned to the European theatre this past summer to conduct lectures and enjoy leisure travel. He also sold his magnificent yacht, Paradigm, to a fellow sailing enthusiast. Art and Mary Jo will continue their nautical passion on Lake Michigan in his dad’s smaller refurbished sailboat.
Along the timeline of life I’ve found that we can keep track of our advancing age via our physical ailments. Nothing much surfaces until we reach our fifties. We pursue our lives with reckless abandon for a half century. Then come the hip replacements followed by various knee surgeries. In our sixties the docs, who we’re getting to know on a first name basis, advise us of upcoming events. Our dentist buddies make hay with root canals and similar expensive discoveries. Of course, most of us don’t have dental insurance at this stage. When we reach our seventies we’re thankful that we have Medicare when prostate problemas surface. To operate or not to operate is our question of the day. Our tickers get in line for repairs, too. My local Scripps Clinic in La Jolla does a landslide business with heart valve replacements and bypass surgery. I, too, was one of their numbers last November. I moo occasionally nowadays since I have a new bovine aortic valve that came to the rescue of my old one. Oh well, our pesky ailments are indeed now surfacing and my 77 year old eyes are getting fatigued staring onto my laptop screen, so I think I’ll take a nap and contemplate my words of wisdom to all y’all when I reach 100 (Ha) .. So far, I haven’t been able to improve on the words of a fellow Dartmouth alum who declared when he became a centenarian that “Most everything goes well with ketchup” .. I also like the defining statement that a friend, who was celebrating a birthday, made to me poolside twenty years ago. I asked him what it was like to be 65 and he replied: “I feel fine, nothing hurts”.
Tom L’Esperance Tel: 760-942-2680 E-mail: email@example.com
Tom L’Esperance, Class Secretary