Every time we get to telling old stories, my friend John always seems to remind me of my career aspirations from way back in the day when I was an eighth grader with a fondness for wearing black concert t-shirts. As a representative from the percussion section of the Mighty Mustang Marching Band of Capuchino High School, John was visiting our junior high school on a sort of recruiting mission to get drummers to join the band. When John inquired as to whether or not I was interested in becoming a member, apparently my response was roughly equivalent to a snooty hell no because I said, “I want to be a concert pianist.” As fate would have it, I never quite made it to Carnegie Hall but I did however join the band during my sophomore year. I had a great three year run in the percussion section.
Springtime of my junior year, my friend Traci asked me to play the piano for the vocal tryouts for our high school’s upcoming musical production of Grease. I told her that I was good for the tryouts and no more but I enjoyed it so much that I forgot to quit once the auditions were over. In fact I ended up playing keyboards for the show and I would indisputably rank the entire Grease experience as my most cherished high school memory.
I guess what I am trying to get at here is that my life has been enriched by my friendship with John and Traci. A lot of who I am today is directly attributable to their influence and good taste — case in point being my bookshelf and dvd collection that is peppered with their picks.
However, the best thing about being friends with John and Traci is being granted a veritable backstage pass to their unbelievable energy and creativity as well as their boundless generosity. Not only do they have a social schedule that would make the most active teenager envious, they always seem to find time to get involved. For the past three years this affable couple has captained Team JP Rocks in the Walk to Defeat ALS. It was through their efforts, as well as those of every single member of the team, that the group was able to exceed the stated goal in terms of fundraising.
So on behalf of Emma, Fehmeen, and even the exceedingly charismatic Italian American Man Servant, I would like to thank everyone who made it out to the walk or who contributed to the cause on my behalf. Much love to Traci and John for their tireless efforts in the fight to bring an end to this disease and thank you both for being my friend for all these years.
Concert pianist. What the heck was I thinking?