Thursday, April 27, 2006


Is there a song that, when you hear it, remind you of times gone by or stay with you hours later?

That's what I'm feeling now. Listening to Paris Bennett on American Idol Tuesday evening singing Barbra Streisand's classic The Way We Were took me back 31 years to my junior year in high school and some of the most magical times of my life.

When I was in high school, I was always the new kid. My family moved several times during the five years we lived in suburbarn Houston, so I was never in one school very long. But in 1974, we moved into an apartment in Pasadena, the city made famous by country artist Mickey Gilley's mega-honky-tonk in Urban Cowboy.

After I had been at Pasadena High School for awhile, I got to know a young girl in my speech class named Martha Awwad. She wound not have been at the school except for the fact that as her father was a math teacher at PHS she got an exception from the attendance zone requirment. It wasn't long before we began dating, and it became more serious.

Having to move again, this time returning to my native state of Mississippi, was especially hard for me. Martha had graduated (she was tops in her class), and I was beginning my senior year. She had really caught my heart.

Throughout the past 31 years, the memories of those special times continue to make me smile. So when I heard that lyric last night, a huge smile came across my face as a tear or two came to my eye. Of course, one can never really get those times back --- especially as she is now married with a family in Austin, Texas --- but she will always have a special place in my heart and unfailing gratitude for providing the most wonderful times of my nearly 48 years.

Like the corners of my mind
Misty water-colored memories
Of the way we were

Scattered pictures,
Of the smiles we left behind
Smiles we gave to one another
For the way we were

Can it be that it was all so simple then?
Or has time re-written every line?
If we had the chance to do it all again
Tell me, would we?
Could we?

Mem’ries, may be beautiful and yet
What’s too painful to remember
We simply choose to forget
So it’s the laughter
We will remember
Whenever we remember...
The way we were...
The way we were...


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