Where Will You Be in Five Years

50th ReunionIn August 2015, the high school classes of PHS, THS and SJHS held their 45th class reunion. The weather was spectacular and members of all three high schools traveled back to The Berkshires to laugh, reminisce and enjoy good times together. We parted knowing that our next reunion, would be the milestone golden reunion.

I’m sure if anyone had done a poll asking alumni where they would be in five years, they would have responded with something like, I hope to be alive and back home in Pittsfield for the 50th. No one would have answered, stuck at home, avoiding a novel coronavirus, wondering if we’d run out of toilet paper, watching our nation’s cities with protests, reminiscent of the 1960s, seeing unemployment inching its way towards that of The Great Depression and wondering if our retirement savings wouldn’t vanish with another economic collapse. No, none of us were thinking those things.

50 Years Later

Here we are, 50 years later, Sunday June 7th 2020 is the same day of the week it was when we all graduated in 1970, except this time nothing will be like it was 50 years ago. In 1970, the high temperature of the day was 73 degrees, visibility was over 24 miles, winds were blowing at a gentle 5 to 6 miles per hour and the sun was shining brightly.

The 70s

1970 was the year the U.S. Military invaded Cambodia and Laos, George Wallace led a major backlash against racial integration, the Environmental Protection Agency was created under Republican President Richard M. Nixon, an explosion aboard Apollo 13 forced the space craft to make an emergency return to Earth, the first Earth Day to stop pollution was celebrated, Bobby Orr scores an Over Time Win leading the Boston Bruins to a 4-0 sweep of the Stanley Cup over the St. Louis Blues, Casey Kasem debuted “American Top 40” on the radio, you could buy a gallon of gas for 36 cents and life expectancy was 70.8.

We’re Getting Older

That last statistic, life expectancy, weighs heavy on the Class of 1970 for most of us are turning 68 this year and due to COVID19, our 50th Class Reunion in October has been cancelled. The class leaders are hoping it can be held in either the summer or fall of 2021, but for now, everything is up-in-the-air.

50 Years Earlier

All of this is quite a change from June of 1970 when the number one song playing on radios everywhere was “Everything Is Beautiful” by Ray Stevens. 50 years later, things simply don’t appear all that beautiful at the moment.

Speaking of radio, I would begin my radio career in the 10th grade of high school when Dick Taylor WBECthrough a new Junior Achievement program, I would take my first steps into a commercial radio station. I would pass my FCC broadcast license exam six months later, landing a position as a commercial broadcaster.

53 years later, I still am broadcasting on the radio, from my home in Virginia over 105.9 WMEX-FM in New Hampshire and streaming over the internet on TuneIn radio.

I started this media mentorship blog six years ago, writing and publishing articles about broadcasting every Sunday morning.

2020 Graduates

The Class of 2020 finds their graduations being held online, or as a drive-up, like getting a takeout order from a fast food restaurant. The most positive spin on these aborted high school graduations being a lawn sign that read, “They closed the world for us. Congratulations Class of 2020.”

The Clock is Ticking

The Class of 1970 has waited 600 months, 2,609 weeks, 18,265 days, 438,360 hours to celebrate its Golden Reunion, but who’s counting.

Sadly, we have been counting the classmates we’ve lost over these 50 years, 111 for all three high schools, from a three high school graduating class of 891, including the first graduating class for Taconic High School.

We’re Baby Boomers. A generation that was so big that Pittsfield needed three high schools to accommodate us.

We may have been separate back then and even competitive, but today we are one.

Stay Safe Everyone and we’ll see you in 2021.

 

 

7 Comments

Filed under Education, Mentor, Radio

7 responses to “Where Will You Be in Five Years

  1. Don

    Congratulations! I, too, graduated June 1, 1970. Sue, my bride of 49 years, received her diploma a few days later. Four children and 10 grandkids. Life has been great! We are blessed. Sure, we’ve hit this roadblock and life has slowed, but eventually we will work our way around it and get back to normal. Thank you so much for your blog each week. I really enjoy it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Congratulations Don on your 50th high school reunion and your 49 year marriage, kids and grandkids. You have a lot to be grateful for.

      Thank you for being a weekly reader of this blog.

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts in the comments as well.

      Stay Safe.
      -DT

      Like

  2. ds52

    Fun memories and pertinent comments .. how lucky are we! I drove my Mom the other day to Onota Lake to walk – we went by the brand new Taconic High School … how sad that Pittsfield’s early elementary schools have outlived my ‘alma mater’ .. (although my main memories are getting off the bus … in the front door and out the back door to spend the day at the lake.

    Liked by 1 person

    • LOL…that’s funny, about getting off the bus, going in the front door and proceeding right out the back door headed for the lake. I wonder how many others did that. THS was certainly conveniently located for a day of hooky at the lake.

      Thanks for sharing that memory!
      -DT

      Like

  3. Another excellent post. It’s amazing just how much things have changed over even the last 10 years, never mind 20, 30, 40, or 50, as far as radio is concerned. While there might be stations than there were back in 1970, the thing is that more people have more choices now (2020) than they did back then. In other words, times have changed, and aspiring broadcasters and/or other media professionals need to change with those times if they want to succeed. Again, thanks for posting.

    Liked by 2 people

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