Monday, January 22, 2007

A Losing Season

[Note from Norma. This is my first attempt at a slide show--needs a little work, and I'm not real techie. I think if you click on "view all images" you can see the whole photo instead of having a head chopped off. And I'm missing a few photos. I'm working on it!]

Contributed by Lynne

The fall of 1956 in our town was typical of most small midwestern villages of the time. Trees had turned, air was chilled, school had started. We went off to our senior year expectations high. After all, our Mounders had won 'em all in '55.

However, as the record shows, '56 was a different kind of football season. We learned how to lose and I learned to love football. Football became a life long love affair. (I admit here to not fully understanding the game until the early '70's when a dear man explained it in detail--many times!) If memory serves, the worst game was against Polo in the pouring rain--40 to zip. I stood in the rain ruining a new jacket and a pair of saddle shoes, a near tragedy to a 17 year old girl.

As a older lady dedicated to physical fitness, I walk behind our old high school. The track is still there and in quite good repair. Spring, Summer and Fall will find me there and in the fall my five mile walk takes me back fifty years. All it really takes to trigger this flood of memories is a whiff of wood smoke and "my eyes have a mist of the smoke from a distant fire."

The bleachers are gone, the lights, the goal posts and the announcers booth. But, if you listen you can hear the band squeaking and squawking their way across the football field to form the "M" formation or hear Chuck Wean calling the game, the sound of a ref whistle, hearing the student body, parents and villagers as Sara Y. and Nancy G. extol us with "Rickety, Rackety Shanty Town. Who can hold those Mounders down? NOBODY!

"Though much is taken, much abides." Maybe it wasn't about winning after all.


Anonymous said...

Murray sez:
Back then it WAS about winning. But now it's all about the memories of the good ol days growing up in a friendly small town where everybody knew everyone. Too bad our grand children will never know what that was all about. It never got any better than that!

Norma said...

It's interesting, but I can remember the winning season of fall 1955, but not the fall of 1956. Even in the 50s I can remember feeling sorry for the small towns that had lost their industries and retail stores--never thinking that would eventually be the fate of MM.