Posts Tagged With: childhood

My Fightin’ Cardinal Classmates from Glendale High School!

Recently, I met with two former classmates from high school for an evening of dinner since one from out of state would be in the area to visit. I had invited one individual, one who I had ran into the comic shop, but I felt it was going to be a real odd situation since we hadn’t seen each other in years. Truthfully, it was refreshing. I didn’t make much friends in high school, but they were good, no I take that back, they were great friends at the time, and now with Facebook, I’ve talked with some, and some I never talked too again, attitudes have changed. Back then, we were all trying to figure things out in high school. We were not kids, and we were not adults at the time. We did not know if we were old or young. We all made mistakes, lots of them, at least I did. I went to Glendale High School in Glendale Arizona. Glendale high is the longest active high school in Arizona, and the Cardinals is the mascot.

I have about 15 friends on Facebook from high school that I have chosen to connect with on Facebook, and though we probably didn’t talk much then, it is good to know they are open now. So anyways, what are my memories of these people? Hopefully I won’t embarrass any of them.

Adolph B: I can’t remember where I bumped in to Adolph several years ago, but we just started talking about Comic Books and since I often spend time at a place known as Drawn To Comics in Glendale, I told him to stop by. We see each other often and talk. He has a daughter now, but what do I remember about Adolph in high school? I think when I met him in high school I asked him if he had any relation to a Henry who I had caused mischief with the previous summer. Anyways, I know he played on the Football team, and he was better his Jr. year than his Sr. year.

Andi S: Oh I had a lot of fun talking with her in high school. It wasn’t till our Sophomore year, maybe Junior year in which we shared a class together. It was English class with Mr. Leo Sears. (He now runs a FILM Festival in Hawaii) Her and I talked baseball a lot. She loved the Atlanta Braves, I was a Florida Marlins-Seattle Mariners fan. Florida beat Atlanta that year for the NLCS and won the World Series, and she would be like “FLORIDA bought their RING!” I agreed, they did, but they had one. I remember one time just arguing with her, and I challenged her and I was like “” She replied “What are you gonna do?,” I was like,Don’t worry what I am gonna do, but when I do it, you will know..That memory still has me laughing in my head. She lived about two blocks from my home so I’d see her in my hood from time to time. Anyways, she still keeps her ties to the area even though she is always competes in the World Series of Poker Tournaments.

Fernando S: Wow, Fernando, man, I was a freshman, he was a sophomore, we had Intro-tech class together. I watched him do a radio cassette tape and I was super impressed because he was good at it. He also introduced me to “Lighter Shade of Brown” I ran in to Fernando again in college and often got together from time to time.

Jazmin V: My mom worked for the school district, and my mom knew Jazmin, and Jazmin knew me and who my mom was. She talked in Spanish, which at the time was not my strong point, pero when I was around her, also in a class with Leo Sears, I think Communications, and she’d say some bad words in Spanish I laughed because no one understood her but I did, so I’d chuckle.

Jennifer K: Another one I met in Leo Sears class. Communications class I think, maybe English. Wow. We also had a summer school class together, and since we were the only ones from the same high school in that class we’d chat, but yeah, the jokes we’d crack in Leo Sears.

Josh A: So he had a knack for getting on my nerves by calling me “Gilbert Grape” when I had no idea what or who “Gilbert Grape” was. Later I found out it was a movie, but I have yet to see it to this day. He was in two of my classes my freshman year, P.E. and Intro-tech (Fernando was also in that class) His current Facebook posts often make me laugh often making odd requests, but I’m happy to hear he likes Gambit (my favorite X-men character) as much or even more then I do.

Manuel A.: We had a P.E. Class together and we didn’t talk much. Several years ago, he hit me up on facebook and every once in a while I run in to him or we chat about what’s going on in life. He’s very stand up and very direct, if he has something on his mind he’ll tell you.

Marie V: She had the same last name as I, so I would always call her “Prima” which means “Cousin” ! I really have no idea if we are related or not, maybe we are we just don’t know, but she’d sit in back of me in English class. I knew she liked boxing. I still call her Prima to this day! 

Michael B: Oh man, I met him my freshman year, and I called him “Screech” He hated it. I always said he looked like “Screech Powers” from Saved by The Bell. Let me tell you something, if I give someone a nickname, I figure they are pretty cool, because it took me a bit to think of something to remind me of them, so I won’t forget them, but yeah, Michael, sorry for making your life hard by calling you “Screech” 🙂 He also hooked me up with “Doom” on my computer !

Morgan S.: I’ve known Morgan since I was in 1st grade, as he was in my class, even though he was in 2nd grade. See, that class was for super smart accelerated kids and they combined a class together. Eventually we found out that we were both LDS. We went all through grade school together, even if we were not in the same grade or class and I knew his Mom. I run in to his mom from time to time and it is good to talk with her.

Ray S.: I met Ray my freshman year. We would eat lunch together and he was a wrestler. I’d go crazy watching him eat. In truth, I’d go crazy actually watching him, not eat. He was trying to always maintain a certain weight for wrestling. He later went in to the Marines, came back and started fighting MMA. What I tripped out was when he fought UFC Fighter Nick Diaz on a two week notice. Yes, Nick Diaz won, but Ray took it to him. I know his brother Steve (who I met my sophomore year) later started fighting and made it to the UFC briefly. I thought I briefly saw Ray one day at Circle K but I really could not tell if it was him or not, but I know he keeps much of his life private with his family.

Ricardo V: There was a band, more like a group of “Hispanic-Latino-Raza” kids always hanging out and having a good time causing mischief. I hung out with most of them my sophomore year of high school. Ricardo was among the group. I ran in to him in college and we hung out there as well. He’s a big soccer fan.

Sam B.: Wow. I met Sam my Sr. year of high school in automotives class. This class was filled with knuckleheads, or at least we all acted like knuckleheads. The teacher was Randy Espinoza. He would let his students be late to class without marking you tardy if you brought him a “coke” Anyways, Sam, He is Native and he sat next to me. One day I said, I’m not going to say a word to anyone and just flap my arms like I am flying and breathing fire. So in Autos, I started flapping my arms like I was flying, and he was like, “Stop it, this isn’t Angels in the outfield, stop flapping your arms” Needless to say I continued. Oh Sam. Anyways I later learned he was LDS and served a two year mission. I came to know his mother and father. I always loved talking with his parents; his mother would often encourage me to keep up with being involved in local politics as I grew a disinterest in them for a while. She would be like, “we need more brown people in office.”

Tracy S. I know she was in some of my classes as a freshman, but she was always hyper! Not much has changed. She always sat on the opposite side of me in class, and I’m not sure if she was looking at me or something else but I made a funny face towards her and she did one back. Lol. So anyways, we became holmies. Some of the things she says have me rolling, like calling some people in traffic “Butterbags” or “Hippos” for not moving in traffic when they can. She lives in Washington State now. Oh, she loves watching UFC also. She gave me a UFC Shirt from Seattle about a year ago, when I was planning on going to a fight and not being able to make it! Oh, She is A MF’ing SORCEROR!

So those are friends on Facebook from High School and the memories I have about them. I hope when they read what I wrote about them they aren’t mad or embarrassed, but I hope they appreciate that even if it was just for a moment, someone not so close to them had a thought, had a memory about them..

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Sesame Street will always be my Utopia

Though I am in my 30s, I am always excited to learn about new cultures and also share my own. The idea was implanted in to my head, not by my parents, but by a TV show known as Sesame Street on PBS. Sesame Street is something real special to me to this day for many reasons.  Even before I started grade school, I was way ahead of the curve among my peers, I knew my abcs, I knew my colors, I knew how to count past 50, thanks in hand to Sesame Street.

The Sesame Street program I grew up with was so much more different then the program shown now days. These days, one character’s personality seems to treated more important and dominate over the others, but I won’t say who, it is not rocket science, even the young ones can tell you who it is.

Sesame Street than was awesome for some many reasons, aside from being part of my childhood. They would have a letter and number and they would re-emphasize that number and letter throughout the programming and I was always excited to see another one for another number and letter.  There was also a various array of characters, I don’t think there one personality which dominated the other personality of another character.  I picked up on this and it was important as I will mention way later. Some of the actors, or individuals, included Big Bird who was a big yellow bird with orange legs who was friends with Snuffleupagus, who was a brown furry elephant. It has a green puppet monster who lived in a trash can named Oscar Grouch, he was always grumpy with temper. He would try to annoy others or give them a hard time, many times whatever he was doing ended up backfiring on him. There was a clumsy blue puppet monster named Grover who was silly, and I liked his voice. I would come to later learn that it was the same voice of Yoda, who appeared in the Star Wars Saga, and like Grover, Yoda was also a little somewhat silly.  Cookie Monster was a blue furry monster who was always hungry and would find a way to con people around them for the food they had. There was one individual named The Count, who took the appearance of a Count and he loved to count numbers.  One ..! One Apple!  ha … ha.. ha… ha Two! Two apples!  Ha.. ha.. ha.. ha.. and so forth till the set amount of apples or whatever objects he was counting. Part of my inspiration of wanting to study journalism in college is in fact due to Kermit who would do “News flashes” !

There were also human characters on the show who interacted,  people like Mr. Hooper, Gordon, Bob, Linda, Maria, Luis and many others who different backgrounds. I liked watching when Linda came on because she was deaf and I used sign language to communicate, so I was always learning something. She’d teach you words.

Yet, the most important aspect of watching Sesame Street was that I learned was tolerance, respect and it made me well aware that even though the characters were also so different, they all treated each other with respect and dignity.. The personalities they displayed, they never acted as if one was better then the other.  They often met up, they were all good to each other.  To this day, Sesame Street is the place I’d like to live; I wish the world was more like Sesame Street, where no one is judged. I still often think of a place where the “air is sweet” where ‘the sunny days sweep the clouds away.

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Street Fighter 2 was more than just a video game to me, it was part of my childhood


I don’t think there is a video game which made a bigger impact on my life, and still continues to do so, then Street Fighter 2.

Today (July 8) is Video Game Day.

Today kids don’t realize how good we had it with games back in our day. We actually rode our bikes to the mall or corner 7-11 to play the “awesome games” on arcade machines. Yes, kids, we got out of the house and did other things then just play on our smart phones/tablets. I was just coming in to age of memory as the Atari console was fading. I remember Pac-Man, Pong, and Astroids on the Atari.  I was given a Nintendo system in 3rd grade, so when I first caught a glimpse of Street Fighter 2, you had no idea how blessed I really felt, the graphics, the sounds, it was overwhelming. So many memories.

There was always big crowds around the Street Fighter arcade console, which intimidated me. If you waited long enough you could put quarters on the edge of the screen showing people you were next in line. Then if I got lucky, I got to play the winner, who was usually some skilled kid who knew how to properly block and was great at his timing with punches and kicking. I’d go crazy that I’d be trying to learn to throw a simple fireball, or Ryu’s Dragon Punch and my opponent was throwing combinations in every shape or form.  Then I’d lose and it stung your ego when you have just lost in front of so much people your age. Word would get around back to your classmates at school.

The game was complex, you had so many choices of characters, but they were all balanced in some shape or form. What many people don’t know was how much this game influenced the roots of the Ultimate Fighting Championship, THE UFC.

On the arcade, I was never great at it, but I loved it. When it made it’s way to the super Nintendo,  which I did eventually get, this is were I perfected my craft. My brothers and sisters would play hours. One time I was destroying my brother and younger sister all day long, towards the night, my younger sister beat me with Chun Li. Wow, I literally lost to a girl. She would make such a big fuss, and still does to this day about it.

Today, whenever I see a Street Fighter 2 arcade, regardless the version of it, I still dig in to my pockets for quarters. Very few people have seen the huge SF2 video game collection I have amassed. Street Fighter 2, it is a true timeless masterpiece.

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