The GED

THE GED. (General Educational Development). There. I did it. I have not seen this old yellowed piece of paper since disco was still hot & White Rabbit was open. 1978, so over 40 years! Used to go there a lot, polyester shirt with city scenes on it from K-Mart out on South Padre Island Drive at Everhart, and KISS type boots. I won't bore anyone with the details, but have written about my schools I went to, got passed around like military kid almost, Cathedral 1st-6th, Corpus Christi Academy 7tn, Incarnate Word Academy 8th, Saint Josephs 9th, Miller 1 semester, W. B. Ray rest of 10th thru almost...almost graduate.

The W. B. Ray years 1975-almost end of 1977 is on my site now same file.

But getting there. Watched a lot of kids that I had went to a number of schools with walk across stage in gowns, get rolled up piece of paper, momma by my side. Dad didn't attend, why should he? Late brother Tommy too, wanted no part of it. W. B. Ray had astromically high drop out rate in 1977, I was not one of them, I just skipped too damned much. But was on Principal's A & B Honor roll more times than Tommy was when he went to Ray!

By now everyone knows how my dad conspired with Mister Hernandez at 610 Naples to use their address since I could not legally transfer. We had lived at 642 Naples a few house down 3 years, but I knew Danny since 1st grade. So used fictitious address to go to Ray, as after 3 years use of 642 Naples, Lloyd Remple wanted $600 month now, not $300 month, so we kicked back to stone age 723 Doss. But using the fake address.. it worked then, probably not work now who knows.

Anyways momma glared at me with steely eye stare at the ceremony, THE LOOK as you know only momma's can give when they really, really, pissed off. Each time I would clap loud for one of my friends on stage, she would clap but here it goes....THE LOOK. I promised her would do it right and months later, studied up to go take my GED. I knew everything, all teens know everything.

So figuring a GED would lead me to riches, untold wealth for humble & honorable me like my immensely wealthy Nigerians promise me with emails, but this was before emails, I set up appointment to go take the test. The building at the time was way out Airport somewhere in Selenaville. I think it was Del Mar west campus? Dressed up nice, wore shoes, not slaps, not barefoot, DUH, even had tie. And had taken a shower outside at old house on 723 Doss. We had a pipe with curtains out there to take shower, even with cold weather, but in summer, was quite nice, in winter, nuff said.

The room was full, maybe 30-40 people, didn't count them, was deathly silent, and they passed out tests to do. I finished mine, and you wait for results maybe there oh, 2 hours max. The lady came up to me and told me I 'passed with flying colors' and 'was second highest grade in class' how about that, something to go back to tell momma.

Drove back home, momma washing clothes outside or something, I had my head hung down, said 'well I took the test' all nonchalant not looking at her in eye, she said 'how did you do?' I paused a few seconds seeing concern on her face, and said 'I PASSED' she dropped everything came over gave hug. Really happy momma. Yea, I thought about tellher I fasiled, but she had heart problems. And often used little money to get dog & cat food as opposed to heart medicine. Actually I hadn't really done anything, just gotten a GED, making up for screwing up my senior year at Ray.

Was it a major accomplishment? Sure. I know a number of people who never even got a GED. Good people just unfinished business you know. If you have read some of my other stories, it was not easy, had to do homework by Coleman lanterns or flashlights, wash hair outside, run inside back door to stick head in open oven door to dry (caveman blow dry!), struggled to keep clean clothes, even taking showers at Ray, downtown at little bathroom in front of Coliseum, and 10th floor restroom at La Quinta. So everything was a struggle. And I was also working different jobs to help family, then sleep in classes. Only a handful of teachers knew my dire predicament. And I will ever be grateful to them for staying silent, as if they spilled beans, I was expelled, and then that was it since would not go to Miller if they paid me.

So no choices, go to Miller NOT, or just stay working different jobs, but no high school diploma. But it was OVER. OVER....12 years of school. And now fixing to get married!

PHOTO #1. Although our old house at 2009 Antelope was destroyed by Celia in 1970, we all used this address still. House was there, hole in roof, caving in, but we still used this address, mailman would put our mail in 723 Doss mailbox was next to us same property. Never really noticed this said 2009 Antelope but have not seen it since 1978 either. Am going to frame it. Why? Guess so don't lose it again. It was in box with all those vintage photos from 40s, 50s of family, so brother Tommy had it all these years.

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Photo #2. Well at least I got some cool photos out of the deal before D. E. Funk kicked me out. I also was able to attend my prom even though kicked out, boy, that was uncomfortable. And then again in 1978 future wife Cindy Sullivan's prom in 1978. But this photo is from 1977 and what "should have been". I might have well been holding a bong from Dirty Dave's at Six Points not blank piece of paper. Had shoes on. Can't believe my hair was that short either ha ha.

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Photo #3. Since I got to go to two proms, this is 1977 prom photo with me & a sweet girl named Lorraine. Her & mom handmade her angelic dress. And it got torn in my brother's 68 Chevy with springs sticking up out of seat and no back glass. My 70 Javelin had been totalled out in front of White Rabbit a few months before when drunk lady Elda Gonzalez I think her name was, pulled out in front of me headed home from work late at night. So had to drive Tommy's car. And I had already been kicked out of Ray, so I sort of look like Grumpy Cat here.

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Photo #4. At the risk of repeating myself which I often do, even when talking to myself, this was 1978 prom, but this was Cindy's prom at Ray, not mine. She was pregnant here with our first kid. Funny how times change, back in 1970s if you pregnant in high school, people look at you like having Cujo or Rosemary's Baby. Now....in the high school my boys go to, and many others, they have day care in schools for kids who have kids! Go figure.

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