Last week the 8th grade made some delicious red currant lemonade and garden pizza. So wonderful to be with these great kids. Thanks to all helpers especially Chef Clayton.
Last Wednesday's first Biodiversity day was an exhausting, smash hit. See article in DNAInfo and some photos.
Special thanks to Carolyn Dean and all our outside partners and parents for mentoring our students.
Friday's Recycling Luncheon also went very well with fresh garden salad a hit!
I left it in time to see the high energy Performances of Stone Soup and Broadway hits. Well Done.
Then... Saturday we roasted and roared as our 7-8th grade Girl's soccer team took the City Championship! Well done again.
This week is almost dedicated to getting the 1st Grade Tree Field Guides done. Monday morning after drop off, I will be working at in in the Conference Room. Anyone who wants to help meet me there. If you would like to come at another time, let me know. I will set you up.
If possible I will try to take some classes outside for planting and other adventures. Stay tuned.
Wednesday night is Garden Night, 5- dark.
Below is a piece written by my life partner Deb, about the death of Mohammed Ali, a kindred spirit. It reveals a bit of our family story:
I was this close to driving to Louisville this weekend to attend the funeral of Muhammad Ali. His courageous conscientious objection to the Vietnam War and to the racism and bigotry at home gave so many of us who were teens or young adults at the time the support of a champion to voice our own objections.
Muhammad Ali also made me laugh. When he came home from the 1960 Olympics, the gold medal winner, and tried to eat at a restaurant in downtown Louisville, he was told, “We don’t serve Negroes.” He responded, “Well, I don’t eat them, either. Just give me a cuppa coffee and a hamburger.”
But when his identity as a black man, his livelihood as a world champion boxer, and his faith as an American Muslim were all challenged, he offered up power, conviction, and a profound connection to all the people of the world:
“My conscience won’t let me go shoot my brother, or some darker people or some poor, hungry people in the mud, for big, powerful America. And shoot them for what? They never called me nigger. They never lynched me. They didn’t put no dogs on me. They didn’t rob me of my nationality, and rape and kill my mother and father. Why would I want to—shoot them for what? I got to go shoot them, those little poor little black people, little babies and children, women; how can I shoot them poor people? Just take me to jail.”
Pete and I gave our oldest son Jamal the middle name “Ali.” He was born in the early 1980’s when Lebanon was being bombed and the Palestinian children’s chorus toured the U.S., raising money for schools and medical care for refugee children in their war torn territory. We knew that an Arabic-named blue-eyed blond would get more than the usual attention in the U.S., but we also knew that there is something in a name.
Years later, under the Bush administration, a “draft registration” was enforced. Failure to comply could result in a jail sentence and, at the very minimum, being banned from receiving any federal funds for loans, scholarships, employment, etc. Jamal Ali did not register. He would not sign on the dotted line. He received threatening letters from the Justice Department. But he did not comply. Like many of his brave forbears, he burned the letters, ignored the threats, and said, “I don’t want their lousy money.”
This weekend, I wanted to bow my head to the great and gifted Muhammed Ali as he made his final tour of Louisville. I wanted him to know how much he meant to our family; how much we loved him; how much we cheered for him. This little story that I am sharing with you is one way for me to do that. I hope it encourages your own moments of storytelling, reflection, and renewed commitment to an America that is truly just and rainbow beautiful.