Sunday, May 9, 2010

Five Dollars Five Can Ya Give Me Five Wouldja?

I did the best thing ever this weekend.

I attended the auction for my beloved Newton School (K-12 in one little building!). Word on the street is that the asbestos guys are coming in tomorrow and then, soon to follow, the bomb squad.

I don't think they really go by "bomb squad", but when you go around blowing up buildings, you need to be prepared for the fall-out, no?

Let me tell you something - it's a well documented fact that I am not a morning person, but there's nothing like a nostalgic auction to find me bright eyed in the early morning hours.

I was so sure that the place would be flooded - Flooded! with people.

There were plenty of people there...but no floods.

Lucky for me, my pals Cheryl and Mrs. Chillingworth were there.

And our beloved science teacher, Mr. Short.

He's a genius. He made me love science. He taught me everything I know about Biology, Chemistry and Physics. He was it. He was the only college-prep science teacher at our school.

He was also my mom's science teacher...he went way back. And he had the endearing/unnerving characteristic of accidentally calling his current students by the names of their much older brothers/cousins/uncles/dads. He never called me Nancy, but I wish he would have.

We ran into a couple of other classmates, and bonus! I got to chat with Kara and Barbara. (Kara - we need to talk for real one of these days. Enough of this passing-in-the-halls business!)

As for the auction - I wanted to buy the whole place up. It was flying out the door for a song.

I wanted to buy the box of apothecary jars and bottle up the scent of the floor varnish and pencil shavings and grey paint and stow it away for safe-keeping and impromptu sniffs.

I wanted to time travel back, just for one day, and live that life. Slam that red locker shut. Slide my hand along the slick wooden banister. Stomp on the noisy square in the lunch line. Eat that rushed toasted cheese sandwich. I wanted to pass notes. Have a crush. Learn a little.

I wanted to fold those 13 years up and carry them in my pocket.

But since I couldn't do all of that, I bought a door for $8 and a periodic table of the elements.

I had lunch with the girls and laughed my too-loud laugh, too many times.

I didn't shed a tear, but I sort of wish I would have.

It's sad to me, that they are replacing so much with so new. Who wants new? Not me. I find it all unnecessary, to start from scratch. But then again, I'm no expert on building codes and public schools and such.

My era is ending. I bought one of the loud clocks, and with it, the right to wax nostalgic about my school, forevermore. Yep, I'm that lady now.

Newton, you were good to me. I wouldn't have changed a thing. Except for maybe band - I do always regret quitting band.

ps- Pics mostly courtesy of Cory. Thanks, Honey! And sorry for not using any of the 12 compelling fire extinguisher shots.


  1. Oohhh....ouch! During my 10th high school reunion, they did a little monotone slide show. Here's Mr. so and so...and this and that room...isn't it lovely. At the end of it all...our former class VP announced..."Oh, and by the way...they're going to blow up the school." Hmm...what was a semi-cool midcentury now some ultra high tech high that looks like a neon movie theatre.

    Your school looks really pretty.

    Wonderfully old.

    People are just nutty. Are they rescuing the floors?

    I'm glad that you were able to revisit your past...and bring a little home with you!

    Happy Mother's Day!

    Julie M.

  2. What a neat piece of you school history to bring home. You have the memories, for sure, but to have some tangible items are really great. (especially and 8 dollar door)

    Glad you had fun...You deserve it!

  3. Fabulous photos. And I love the beads on you. I'll take old over new always.
    My husband said I watched FNL with a smile on my face the WHOLE time.
    Clear eyes full hearts can't lose...

  4. That is so great that you can have a piece of your childhood like that. I went back to my hometown last year and was sad to find that they had torn down our old elementary school and built a new one. I have such wonderful memories of the old school. I'm sure a new one was needed, but they could have consulted me first!! :-)

  5. How fun that you did that!!! Oh that door and what fun to go with friends...your school looks amazing though:)

  6. OH NO! This is the first I have more Newton? But where have they shipped the kiddos off to!?

  7. Great pics Cory. I loved the one of you walking down the locker lined hallway and of the Amish gentleman. Great shots!

    You brought me back. I went to an old high school just like that one. As you were talking about it I could actually smell the mustiness and remember all those very same things. Doesn't it feel like a MILLION years ago.

    Ya should have picked up another door for ME! I could use an $8.00 old door. I need a headboard...that would be perfecto.

  8. this is the type of entry that needs to be in a magazine or features section of a newspaper. highly enjoyable!

  9. Loved the pictures.
    Loved the memories.
    Would have also loved the fire extinguishers. :)

  10. I get very sad to go to my high school...I feel like those were years I wished away!! How fun you got to buy little pieces to remind you of the good times there! :) Sounds like the perfect way to spend the weekend!

  11. ohh that sounds like a wonderful auction, I would have been all over those roll down maps schools had and that pencil sharpener is swoony....and it seems school black boards with their original green color really tug at my heart strings, glad you had a good time and I think old needs to stay, who said new was cool?

  12. Sounds like fun!! There is something nostalgic about those loud clocks... the ones in our school made the loudest clicks 2 minutes before each hour!

    Are you excited for the Extravaganza? I can't wait! Sitter is all lined up and my comfy shoes are staring down my cowgirl boots... it will be a last minute decision I'm sure!

  13. I can totally relate - I was called Jackie for most of my school life. I had three or so teachers that were my mothers. When I was a sophmore our school got condemed and we had to share a school with the middle school. I went to school from 6 am to noon for the rest of my high school years. It was insane!!! They brought in trailers and we had classes in them too - so nutts! I love all that old stuff and what a nice thing for you to have a piece of your past like that. Very cool.

  14. did you pick up a wooden teacher's desk for me?
    as soon as i saw your title for the post... well, i knew in my heart you picked up the periodic table. you are a hoot!

  15. Girl, that brings me back. I can close my eyes and still smell the old wood gym floor in my JR High and hear the lockers slamming shut. Ahhhh...brings me back.

    How awesome you found a periodic table! I have been scouting for one for Annie for months with no luck! So sorry it took your school being demo'd to find one! Who says its "progress" anyway??

    Great finds...~mary~

  16. Was fun seeing you there! I brought home a set of those red lockers and we tore up enough old flooring to redo a room in our house!

  17. My alma mater is no more, I have a really hard time looking in that direction when I'm home, but I kind of have to, my best friend still lives across the street. I'm still trying to decide what I would have grabbed had I had the chance. Something from the home ec room I think, I spent alot of time in there, probably should have tried some college prep classes:)

  18. funny how what i didn't appreciate when i was in highschool i surely appreciate now
    LOVE all those gorgeous glass beakers, lockers--were they red? , and the pencil sharpner
    gorgeous school

    love your posts my friend

  19. Oh. I. Love. This. I got to go back to my grammar school a few years ago, and I drank in the goodness of it all. The sights, sounds, smells. Everything looked so small. My beloved fifth grade teacher, Mr. Rabeckis had passed. My mentor, the librarian, Mrs. Ligda was there and remembered me. I recreated the vomit scene in the hall. Good times. Now, do tell - when do we get to see these treasures? I'm curious as to what you paid for them too-if it's not too much to ask. I too went to an auction - and I got so anxious I almost threw up - but I won the prize banty hen and her six babies.

  20. Awwww I miss traditional school rooms. I love the picture of the pencil sharpener! I can faintly remember the smell of the pencil shavings! Do you remember that?

  21. nothing can ever replace the treasures of old... so glad you were able to visit your past. e.

  22. in my past, there was a cartoon indian too. We were the Redskins, despite attempts from the government to change us to something PC. I'm glad you got some good loot...did they have those library index card thingies from the dewy decimal system? That would have been AWESOME.

  23. Now please show me your loot!!! i enjoyed seeing the old school & even though I didn't go there, I {before kids!!} would go to some of Darcy's kids events there; parties, school fair. I loved that brass handrail and the doors. Darcy got 2 pairs to make a built in pantry. the price was so cheap and she needs storage {farmhouse woes}
    I'm so happy you purchased the periodic table of elements!! I do wish we could sit and chat longer---I must come to your neck of the woods.

  24. I too went to a school quite similar...and now they are tearing it down as well....and where am i? 50 states away and can't get to it before they do. how i wish i could walk away with some "treasures" like you. please do show what you will do with your $8 door and other finds.

  25. WAIT... I think this looks like Newton, like Pleasant Hill, Ohio, Newton. Am I correct? I live like 20 Minutes from there... you should have stopped on by. If fact, why didn't you? Cause I didn't invite? Well now you know that rule doesn't stand at our house. :)
    My dad and grandpa are auctioneers. I LOVE the sound and sights and foods of auctions. I just was telling someone at a Haiti Benefit auction that listening to auctioneering is like a genre of music! Growing up in it, every Saturday, I LOVE it! :) Call me crazzed!

  26. Ooooh! Is that door for the guest bathroom? Hope so! I'm not a high maintenance guest, but I do draw the line at some point.

  27. Love it. Love it.

    Not sure why this is the first time I've ever read through your blog.....?!
    I must've missed the bus on that one, but EBF brought me up to speed with these simple directions....Facebook page. Click the link.

    'Would ya' email me your address at some point - I have something to send your way.