Thursday, July 20, 2006

40 Candles

Whoever suggested that Neosho and Thayer be matched up for a week together at Green Valley Bible Camp is to be commended.

In Junior High, I remember seeing this hot-shot basketball player from Thayer hoopin' it up on the cement slab halfcourt. Later on that week we bumped into each other at the dinner line. My perception before our introduction was that he was probably stuck up...being a 'baller with the highschoolers, and all. After we talked, those perceptions went out the window in a hurry. I actually liked this guy named Mark, We even laughed at the same stupid stuff.

As the camp sessions ticked through the years, we became steadfast friends. We even decided to become college roommies-complete with a fallback plan. If we didn't like OCC, we would backpack Europe, then go to SMSU. That was never an issue. We met other guys like Darrel, John, Todd, Barry, etc......and fell into a good groove, complete with a great college experience. We are all still good friends to this day, but that is for other posts.

This is a milestone year for most of us buddies (except Wib, who is "old plus 2"). More importantly, today is Mark's 40th birthday.

Here's a fond few moments that stick out in my mind over the past few decades:

Our first week in college.
Spilling Skoal juice on his head (he did manage to keep his cool, but I did pay for that many times during college-and until I managed to quit the habit.
Going to see Bruuuuce.
Going to Thayer and browsing through "the suitcase". These were his Dad's WWII momentos.
Going to Neosho and playing bball with Mark at the Rec Center. He spotted me 7 points, and still won 10-8.
All of our Colorado trips (Winter and Summer), and the creation of the now-defunct: Stumpers Mtn Club.
Bruuuce cruises.
That incident which will remain anon at Lake Hefner with Darrel and Barry.
That firecracker-under-the-car incident at Hafer Park which is not anon to a select few, and could have been life-threatening to us scrawny guys.
Mark getting married, with Cheech Marin officiating.
Mark skiing behind Wib's boat at Arcadia...waving to us...then promptly falling in the 6" deep nasty, muddy water.
Going to Normandy, and hearing Mark babble: "Parlay Voo, Uhhh, Hubba Hubba"
Mark stepping in dog poop in the Parisian park by the Eiffel Tower in Paris. (See picture).
Sharing our WWII books/DVD's.
Meeting up with the Landes' at Laura's in NC, and playing with Zach.
The Duke game.

This list could go on and on.

Here's to my favorite "hairless executive", fellow WWII buff, and supreme Cards Fan.

I love you, maaaan.

1 comment:

Mark Landes said...

Love ya Bro....thanks for the jog down memory lane. Lots of great memories. Thanks for having such a positive influence on my life. We got in from FL yesterday. Back to work today. Darrel handed off the WWII books...already diving into one of the Winters books.