I’m reaching the age where big chunks of my earlier life slough off like old scabs, and my high school days were one gigantic road-rash strawberry the size of a Winnebago. I’m not going to bore all of you with tales of Lewisville High School in scenic Lewisville, Texas, save to note that I no longer receive invitations to class reunions. I can’t figure out why: all I did was state, very publicly, that the best thing about the school fight song was the lyrics. (This was actually pretty sedate, compared to how I felt while I was there. I was nearly suspended for suggesting in the school paper that all we needed around the school was a canal, and life there would be identical to a rather popular John Carpenter movie of the time.)
Even with this, and a still-unfulfilled oath to recreate the “Dick Dent” scene from Sid & Nancy with my old newspaper editor, the cliched seeds of my horticultural future came from those days in the early Eighties. My old sponsors in the Future Farmers of America would have seizures if they saw what I was doing these days, but I actually want to thank them for the experience and for everything I learned back then. Best of all, I learned just enough to avoid being voted “Most Likely To Run a Grow House in Lake Dallas,” so I’m happy.
This isn’t to say that I haven’t heard from the school in recent years. A couple of years back, I received a solicitation from the school district, asking all of its alumni to pay back into the Lewisville Independent School District to help teachers afford such basics as paper for exams and science equipment. I understood all too well, as we had similar cutbacks during my time because the school needed to re-sod the football field. I very kindly offered to make a very large contribution, under the proviso that all contributions were to be matched with equal cuts to the high school football program, which is supposed to be self-sustaining. I never heard from them again.
All of this came to a head last night, when I received an invitation from an old friend to attend the last-ever Lewisville High walk-through. Apparently, the school’s condition is so bad that the school district figured that demolishing it was cheaper than trying to bring it up to current code, so former Fighting Farmers are encouraged to come out this next Sunday afternoon and view the place one more time before it’s torn down. I’m sorely tempted to join the party, but only if I can help out with the demolition as well: