I was always sort of ambivalent about homecoming. I never really understood who was supposed to be coming home, or why we were celebrating it. All I knew was that it involved a football game, a queen, and a dance. And that was good enough reason to celebrate, I guess.
This morning was my own homecoming to my alma mater, Kentridge High School in Kent, WA. The principal at KR had kept it a secret from the staff so it would be a surprise, though. When he introduced me and I came out on stage, the reaction was… well… a bit like my reaction to homecoming.
There were only a couple of teachers there that I had as teachers 17 years ago (one other, Mr. Walrond, my art teacher that I loved, was gone today. Although I thought a guy in the darkness of the back row was him and I kept making comments to him back in that direction. Turns out that after the lights were out of my eyes, I realized that it wasn’t him, it was the only other African-American teacher at the school. Oops. I felt like an idiot.) (Whoa, that was a long parenthetical remark.) Anyways, no one else really knew me, so the whole surprise was a bit forced. I didn’t really feel like I connected with anyone.
So there I was on stage, with an enormous screen behind me, and a hundred educators to entertain and inspire on their first day back from summer. Surprise! I’m not sure it worked too well.
I opened it up afterwards for questions and to get a feel for what people would take away from the talk, which went much better. And the curriculum coach asked for some more info and examples, so that’s good. A few people came up and complimented me afterward, too.
But for the most part, I felt like most of the dancing I did at this homecoming was by myself. A few people might have picked up a couple of moves, but I didn’t feel like I really worked the dance floor.
Oh well. Maybe at Prom. (Whatever “prom” means.)