Marsha Canham's Blog

September 14, 2010

A little rambling, which leads to reminiscing *lol*

Filed under: Caesars Through the Fence — marshacanham @ 1:20 pm

Yes, still typing typing typing.  The weather is changing, however, along with the colour of the trees.  Seems we went from being 90 degrees for the past two months, to 50 overnight and it’s stayed there .  The munchkin’s summer sports are finished, no more baseball games, no more soccer–I may get to see them more now *g*.  I did enjoy watching both of them.  Something about watching the grandkids run around a soccer pitch or slide into home plate keeps you young.  My grandson looks so much like my son at that age…and he’s been the spitting image of the Clone since he was born, it’s kind of spooky at times.  Even he has looked at pictures of his father at a similar age and asked me:  Grammy, I don’t remember playing pool there, when did you take that picture of me?  I mean spitting image.  His growth pattern is the same as well.  The Clone started out short…really short…and I don’t just mean because he was a toddler.  He was the shortest kid in kindergarten through to about grade five, then suddenly shot up like a rocket and stopped an inch shy of my father’s height at 6’4″ by age 14.  It was hell on clothes and shoes lol.  So far Austin is following the same pattern.  The parental units used to worry that he was so short when he started school, then on up through grades 4 and 5, still short, they were still panicking.  I kept saying wait, wait….it will happen, he’ll end up being tall like his daddy and the Chief.  Hah.  Did they believe me?  Noooo.  Was I right? Yessssss.  He put on a growing spurt over last winter and this summer and comes up to my chin now and I’m 5’9′.  He’s going into grade 7 as one of the tallest kids in the class.  I’ve noticed he even walks with a bit of a swagger now *g*.

Reminds me of an amusing story of my own youth.  Going into high school, I was one of the tallest girls in class.  I think I reached my current height by the time I was 14.  We had a small clique of goofy friends who hung together.  Most of us met in music class in grade nine and stayed together through grade 13, since there was only one music teacher, Mr. Foster.  He was a great guy, didn’t mind if we horsed around as long as we knew the music when it came time to play.  Anyway, there was myself and about four or five others who formed the *core* group, with others who came and went as the classes changed, friends changed.  I remember John Hogarth, Dickie Barclay, Brent Hobson (oy, the trouble we used to get into in Mr. Freedman’s class and Mr. Wilson’s class LOL but that’s another story) and Carlo Vanini.   Now, Carlo was a lot of fun and sat behind me in music class.  He’d been playing the trumpet since way before high school, so he came into the grade 9 music group as somewhat of a guru.  Our version of Ravi Shankar if you will, but Italian. (this was just when the Beatles were dominating the charts, flower power was in full force, Yorkville was the place to be in Toronto, and we got sent home if our mini skirts were too short…and yes, teachers would measure the gap from knee to hem)  Anyway, we had Carlo, our mini guru, and I say mini because he barely came up to the height of my armpit.  When he stood up to do a trumpet solo in the band, it didn’t really make a difference because you couldn’t see him anyway, you just saw the trumpet and heard great music. He stayed that height clear through to grade 13,  and while some of us changed a great friendship into actual dating, it just wasn’t in the cards for Carlo and I to date each other.  He knew it, I knew it, so we just held on to the friendship part.  Vanity, when you’re a teen, can cause you to make so many foolish decisions.  I just couldn’t see myself dating someone who would talk all night to my boobs.

Despite the fact all of us vowed to be bff’s, we all drifted our own separate ways, some heading off to university, some to York U, some to U of T…some to universities out of the province entirely.  We all scattered, finished school, got jobs, got married…

Some years later our high school had a reunion.  I was married by then but the full drifting apart thing hadn’t quite happened yet, so a few of us from those halcyon years of revelry and good times still saw each other occasionally and kept in touch.  A group of us agreed to go to the reunion, which was amazingly good fun seeing all those familiar faces again.  Lots of squealing, hugging, laughing and catching up.  I saw four or five of the old gang and after doing the squeally, huggy thing, they all asked:  have you seen Carlo yet?  He’s here somewhere.  So I kept walking, searching.  It was held at the Toronto Armory, so it was a big place, with 25 yrs worth of students crammed in, squealing and hugging…but we established our little corner and kept sending people we recognized over to it.  All of a sudden, mid laugh with someone, these arms go around my waist and I’m lifted into a huge bear hug.  It took me a full 30 seconds to realize this 6ft+ tall, muscular guy was….Carlo Vanini.  He had, apparently, been a very late bloomer and hadn’t had his growth spurt until after he left high school.  But talk about a hunk!  And talk about the foibles of hindsight.  I think if all us girls had known he wouldn’t be talking to our boobs forever, he would have had more dates than he could handle LOL.

Moral of the story?  Vanity thy name is teenager.

Alternate point of the story?  Well…as goofy as some kids think it is these days to buy school yearbooks and have all their friends sign them…if they still have yearbooks, that is…do it.  Buy it. Sign it.  I was cleaning out my bookcases the other week and came across the five I bought from grade 9 to grade 13, and I lost myself for a couple of hours looking through the pages, having all these cool memories come flooding back.  I even found myself doing the dramatic movie version of running my fingertips over a few of the autographs and silly little sayings people wrote, wondering:  What happened to them all?  Where are they now?  Scarlet Heights, class of ’69.  Definitely salad days.



  1. What great memories. Yes, I remember the vanity thing. I wonder where some of my old friends are now. Several I’ve managed to keep track of…one young fellow in our group in particular, was very shy. A quiet, sweet boy whom we all considered our Carlo. Lost track of him after high school. Then one Saturday morning I became very ill…managed to get to our local clinic and came face to face with Dr. David. LOL. He had me rushed to the hospital and removed my appendix, just before they burst. That old friend probably saved my life. Hmmm…I wonder where my year books are?

    Comment by Jill Metcalf — September 14, 2010 @ 3:55 pm | Reply

  2. Love the story.

    Comment by darkhorsebooks — September 14, 2010 @ 11:52 pm | Reply

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