REPORT NUMERO SIX-O

or

déjà view AND THE REAL HONKY TONK

 

The report you're about to read is true. The names were changed to protect the innocent. Then changed back again because there are no innocents.

10:19 AM: a call comes in about the existence of previously published information on a proposed College Reunion being planned by a questionable group of presumed alumni.

10:31 AM: My partner and I begin checking it out. We discover 5 such previous Reports, all containing material we soon establish as being totally subject to the Principle of Uncertainty1. In the course of our investigation, we uncover cryptic references to icons, dogs, Dux, tchotschkes, Officer Krupke, the F.B.I., gravel pits, Peabodies, Bumperstickers, Rallies, HornBands, Group Photos and a detailed schedule of ostensibly planned events.

11:00 AM: I say to my partner: “Nobody in their right mind would believe this stuff.” He agrees.

11:01 AM: We close the case and go for donuts.

Fact is: REPORT NUMERO SIX-O IS THE ONLY ONE WITH CURRENT INFORMATION, FOLKS ! – until something better comes along, that is. Previous Reports are now archived and available at a different part of the website. (Process Literature 101; 3 credits). Dig them up here.

As for the validity of this one . . . “Student: 'What keeps us from giving up?' Teacher: 'Fiction.'” (Philip Whalen). . .

Prologue

WHEN in the Course of human Events, it becomes necessary . . . for a bunch of crazies to initiate, plan and organize a Reunion in celebration and commemoration of an institution and experience, the existence of which has brought new meaning to the word “huh?”. . . it also becomes desirable for those who feel irresistibly compelled to participate in such madness to give aid and comfort to those on the organizational-logistical front line. WANT TO HELP OUT - INITIATING, ORGANIZING, PLANNING . . .? LET US KNOW !

WANT TO come early and help out with the final preparations . . .? That’d be great, TOO. Mention it on your registration form or get in touch with one of us. (We’ll even throw in a bottle of Mt. Agassiz Rejuvenatin’ Elixir – guar-an-teed to give all your tired cells just the phenomenological jolt they need.)

Chapter 1

Ahhhh, Spring.

Right! (April IS the cruelest month.)

Dark and REALLY stormy morning at the Notch, torrential freezing rain and sleet coming over from St. Johnsbury. Long Hill and Main Street, Bethlehem are already flooding. Snow is predicted for tonight and tomorrow . . .

And since nobody out there offered to trade us a tropical April group time-share for a North Country week of mud, snow and unforgettable meteorological ambivalence, we thought we might as well hold another round of Reunion Planning Sessions. So we do: April 8-9, in Bethlehem again, at Judy Wallace’s. Attending die-hards were: Judy, Howie Lyhte, Veronica Hartman, Marilinne Cooper, Holly Wilkinson, Natalie Woodroofe, Ned Depew, Carol Lavender, David Goldblatt, Evan Haynes, Judy Zweig, Nancy Wallace, Mark Chain.

Actually, we begin at Peabody Lodge at high noon, re-checking the spaces and rooms, and talking with Bill Walsh about logistical concerns. We finalize most event-locations, measure for the stage, locate the poets’ reading niche, consider where artworks can be hung without being in danger of damage from rampant food or drink, confirm meal organization, briefly consider an expansion of the winelist . . .

The meeting continues at Judy’s. Holly arrives in a yellow slicker and her third pair of boots of the day. Judy starts a fire in the fireplace. We start in with the question of Publicity, i.e. do we want to pursue getting out any national articles/press releases for the purpose of increasing the chances that more former College people will learn about the Reunion? We decide that one article, currently being written by Melanie Hamilton, can be put out - forwarded to a New York AP contact via Nick Howe when it’s done. We also agree that Natalie will contact a reporter we know at The Courier about doing a local article - in case there are former College people still around here who haven’t gotten the word yet.

Of the 2500 or so former students, we’ve made contact with about 600 so far - thanks to Melanie having come up with the master list and George Banks and Judy Wallace having spent months researching names and addresses, sending out about a thousand postcards, and making a lot of phone calls.

Ned is going to try to contact Ira Glass of THIS AMERICAN LIFE (Public Radio International), to see if he has any interest in doing a show or segment on/at the Reunion.)

Contact MARILINNE at mcooper@landmarknet.net for anything else regarding PUBLICITY.

Natalie and David give Registration and Finance updates:

As of this writing, 125 former College people have sent in Registrations, and around 230 people are signed up for meals. To check out the list of names of those who have already registered, click here .

We’re about halfway to covering planned expenses (the budget having been based on ca. 250 registrations).

REMINDER: REGISTRATION FORMS TO NATALIE; CHECKS TO DAVID (payable to “F.C. Reunion 2000”)

And if anyone really needs Financial Aid, contact David, 47 Grove St., Littleton, N.H. 03561.

We will periodically post updates on available HOUSING. You CAN get there from HERE.

TIP: Remember the little rental cabins on Rt. 302 in Bethlehem – the ones with the pointed roofs at the corner of Cherry Valley Road ? . . . well, there are 20 cottages, and when Ned inquired on Saturday about booking one for August, he was told they’re already ALL booked!! And remember the Horse and Hound? It’s all booked up already, too! So . . . If you’re planning on coming and haven’t booked a room yet (and don’t want to end up involuntarily camping out) . . . better book soon, folks!

Next on the agenda: a discussion regarding College archives, memorabilia and ongoing exhibits. We decide we’d rather see our memorabilia kept in Franconia than at/by the N.H. Historical/ Hysterical Society in Concord. VERONICA will be getting in touch with the Franconia Heritage Museum to see 1) if they are interested in receiving and cataloging College memorabilia, 2) if so, do they have the capability to maintain (i.e. preserve) it, and 3) would there be any costs to us involved.

The question of the REUNION GROUP PHOTO is taken up again and it we decide to investigate digital photos. Ned, David, Natalie and Mark will make inquiries and report back. We’re now also considering having several “era” photos done, in addition to the one large group pic. We hope to make a final decision at the next planning sessions (sound a little familiar?)

PHOTO EXHIBIT: If you have old photos you want to loan or give to the Reunion, bring them (or copies) in August (name & other info on back of photo, please). Judy & Nancy will be organizing this.

THE BOOK: Ned reports that, so far, he has only received 4 - that’s right, read my lips: F O U R text submissions for The Book. 20 pages, people! And that includes a 4-page cartoon spread! C’MON - there’s not likely to ever be another such tome. And what are you gonna say when your grandkids or neighbors ask about your College years and you don’t have a Jeerbook or anything to show! More book info can be found at bookinfo. SUBMIT, SUBMIT! And if you can’t bring yourself to submit, at least send something in - anecdotes, photos, recipes, old evaluations, maps to buried treasure, directions to Dr. Hooker’s . . . almost anything will do, people. Contact NED pronto (we have a printing deadline) at ned@wizvax.net.

IDs and NAMETAGS: We decide to do a digital trial run at the next sessions to see how it comes out. We’ll keep you posted.

REUNION CHAT ROOM: Ned’s going to check into setting up a link from the Reunion-site. More on this as it develops.

POETRY READING: any others out there who want to read? Get in touch with Adelina at AP490005@BROWNVM.brown.edu.

ART EXHIBIT: Any others out there who want to show their art? Contact VERONICA at vhartman@mix-net.net or EVAN at ewh1@maine.rr.com.

TALENT SHOW: Aside from planned bits by Mssrs. JEFF GREENFIELD (MOOSE) and FRANK MULLEN, there will also be an “open mike”. Contact Frank at KnoxMullen@rivnet.net.

THEATRE EVENT: So far, no one has sent in any “scripts” or suggestions, so nothing is happening with this yet. We decide to get in touch with some of the former Theatre People, to see if anyone wants to handle this. If anything does get organized, it will take place Friday evening following the Talent Show.

SEMINAR GROUPS: Sign-up sheets can be spontaneously posted at the Reunion by anyone wishing to initiate discussion on topics revolving around themes of personal/societal relevance, value, etc. of the Franconia experience. Space will be made available for this. If anyone wants to initiate such a group in advance, contact JUDY at jwallace@ncia.net.

TRIVIA: MITCH JURECKSON continues its preparation. If you have Trivia questions and answers, send them to him at MJureckson@aol.com.

TIME CAPSULE: Don’t forget to plan on bringing some [not too large] item for the Time Capsule. Any questions, contact OLIVER DRERUP at odrerup@cmhc-schl.gc.ca.

IN MEMORIAM BOARD: To date, we’ve learned that some 60 former students have passed on. Aside from the Board at the Reunion, Howie will be posting a list of their names soon on a separate page of the reunion web-site. He also promised not to use the phrase "metabolically challenged" anywhere on the In Memoriam Page. If anyone knows of a former College person who has died, contact NATALIE at natw@together.net or HOWIE at howie3@ici.net.

Also: Anyone who wants to initiate a “memorial get-together” during the Reunion, in the name of the one or other College person who’s no longer with us, will be welcome to do so by posting an invitation on the Seminar sign-up sheet at Peabody.

The DOOBIEUS ACHIEVEMENT AWARDS: Ah, yes. Some suggestions from the Planning Group: Most Likely To Succeed Who Didn’t, Least Likely To Succeed Who Did, Best Dressed, Least Dressed, Largest Ego, Most Proletarian, Loudest Stereo, Loudest Roommate. If you happen to still have a suggestion, contact MARK at mchain@yahoo.com. (Really last call.)

REUNION [PRINTED] PROGRAM: The plan is for you to find this in your Registration Packet when you arrive. Tentatively, it will include: Names and addresses and/or email addresses of any former College person who wants it to appear, a list of names of those who have passed on, a Schedule of Events, and a map of the Reunion and Event sites. It will all be printed on acid-free paper (except, possibly, for the lower rightt-hand corners of some of the odd pages . . . thus making leafing through the Program a trip in itself.) {Note to the humor-impaired and the enforcement-inclined: It's a joke.}

If you want to be listed in the Directory of Names, but won’t be at the reunion, contact NATALIE at natw@together.net - soon.

The REGISTRATION PACKET will tentatively include: Your ID/Name tag, official meal tickets, Reunion Book, Video voucher, Group Photo(s) voucher, a Map of the area, a list of Area Excursion Sites, your Program, your [updated, fill-in-the-blank] Franconia College Diploma and - for those of you who registered by April 1st: your limited edition Reunion T-shirt.

Discussion continues on whether to package Registration material in brightly colored bags labeled Prozac (or Viagra), in folders disguised as NASDAQ portfolios, or in plain brown paper sacks.

Side 5

So that was Saturday’s session. Which then continued with a few of us in the evening after wonderful food and not at all too much wine . . . which is maybe how we more or less suddenly came to realize that there probably will be so many people at the Reunion that we better rethink the space-logistics . . . fast.

So, on Sunday, we come up with the following SCHEDULE CHANGES so that no one will miss out on any of the events in the “Core Room” because there isn’t enough space for meals for more than 300 people AND events at the same time.

So hearken to these changes, folks (written in soapstone . . . as always. Venues remain as before, unless noted):

FRIDAY:

6:30 - 9:30 PM TALENT SHOW & THEATRE

SATURDAY:

10:00 AM - 12:30 PM ROAD RALLY

12 NOON - 2:00 PM PICNIC LUNCH & ROAD RALLY AWARDS * at PEABODY/ECHO LAKE *

2 - 4 PM POETRY READING

4 - 6 PM GROUP PHOTOs

6 - 8 PM BUFFET SUPPER

SUNDAY:

12:30 - 1:30 PM WALKING TOUR (originally scheduled for Saturday)

[THEATRE EVENT - if it happens - will be Friday evening]

 

Chapter 11

So what else did we do on Sunday? (You mean after bagels, spreads, fruits, coffee . . .?)

We re-check the BUDGET: Like I said: we’re about halfway to breaking even. So keep those registrations, checks and card numbers coming in!

And thanks again to all those who have sent in donations in addition to their registration.

Still occupied with thoughts on weather, potential number of Reunion attendees and space, we decide to arrange for a canopy to cover the outside deck at the Lodge. We’ll also see about setting up a party-tent as an extension of the deck.

We continue the discussion about the TIME LINE: looks like we’ll be having about a 30’ long, interactive, fill-in-the-blanks TimeLine of College history . . . up on the walls at Peabody (maybe a fold-out version in THE BOOK -- just kidding, Ned.)

And lastly, for your viewing and informational pleasure . . .

REUNION WEBSITE UPDATE: See for yourself at the good ole FCY2K Home Page. Where you'll find all the new stuff mentioned above, and more.

Remember: IF YOU’RE GOING TO RELY ON ANY OF THE REPORTS WE BEEN PUTTIN’ OUT, THE REPORT YOU’RE JUST ABOUT TO FINISH IS THE ONE TO USE. (And good luck to all of us.)

NEXT PLANNING SESSIONS ARE SET FOR JUNE 24-25, again in BETHLEHEM at JUDY’S.

Till next time - Be well all.

Mark and Howie, for the Planners

1 You’re really looking for a footnote?? (We ARE the footnote!)