grade7I know why I so clearly remember this picture being taken. It was February, 1985. I was in 8th grade and had just woken up at my house in Lancaster, MA, the day after returning home from a week long vacation in Gilroy, CA to attend my cousin’s wedding. I thought it was so cool because

a) I had never been on a plane before and I loved it. There’s a lot of things where “you never forget the first time” applies and flying is one of them. I have such a clear picture of sitting on that plane in Boston and taking off from the runway, plastering my face on the window in wonderment at what was going on. I still do it today.

b) I got to take a week off of school!

Anyway, my dad shot this picture as I was walking back to my bedroom to chill. There’s another reason why it’s so memorable – the next day when I returned to school I would find out that our very popular and funny science teacher had just been arrested for child molestation. Nobody, except the victims of course, saw that one coming. As a 7th grader, you’re shocked, but the complexities of that whole situation were way above our heads. As a parent today, I can’t imagine what would be going through my head if this happened at their school and hope I never have to.

It was also that same day when I got back into school that I discovered that Tracy Pirro was no longer my girlfriend! She had moved on to someone else! Really, an 8th grade relationship isn’t something I was totally broken up about, but still…..that was also a surprise.

Ah, rites of passage. We all have ’em.