Friday, February 20, 2009
Today I ate breakfast with a group of four or five other retired teachers from my building: a little ritual we started a few years ago and have continued every other Friday throughout the years. Being a breakfast member is very simple. We just show up at Bob Evans, sit at our accustomed table, and eat and talk about everything from old times to new ailments. We share a lot of information while shoveling eggs and pancakes, and we usually laugh and joke quite a bit. This fellowship has become one of the most important events of my ever-shrinking social calendar. I must say I really enjoy such a simple pleasure because these meetings have really solidified our bonds of friendship. The Romeo (Retired Old Men Eating Out) Club has allowed each member both to keep touch with one another and to blow off a little hot air about various subjects. We keep tabs on whose missing a breakfast and try to inquire about unexpected absences. Just as important, our breakfast meetings have become fairly long, leisurely, relaxed affirmations of growing older and enjoying the benefits of aging. The table takes the place of the parlor of old (the only difference, the meal usually runs at least ten dollars) as we run the gamut of politics to reminisces of our teaching careers. One hour most often turns into two. It occurred to me that beginning a day with food, friends, and conversation is very worthwhile. It's ashamed we all can't take the time each day to do so. Little pleasures mean so much to me these days. Maybe I'm showing my age, but I believe face-to-face meetings offer a lot more than electronic or snail mail conversations. Still, it's nice to be living in a time in which a person can use many means to communicate thoughts, both trivial and important. So, I hope to keep writing with, meeting with, and communicating with my friends. Class, let's summarize. Food+Friends+Conversation x repetition = Common Respect. Try your own little group some morning; it's a great way to get a positive start on the day.
Posted by Frank Thompson at 5:31 AM