In my Zoomthusiasm post, I mentioned the gift of gathering with college friends who hadn’t been in the same room all together since college. Being on the same screen was not quite the same, but pretty sweet to see every one and catch up. We began with this question:
“So, what have you been up to these last 46 years or so?”
It was no surprise that the work we all did as lawyers, teachers, artists and more kept the thread of our youthful humanitarian vision spooling forward unbroken. Sometimes late at night in those smoke-filled (not tobacco) dorm rooms, we would wonder if we would sell out to the “Establishment” once the mortgages and jobs and kids came along.
And I’m proud to report that none of us have.
In those years we shared, roughly 1969-1974, we were watering the seeds of the feminist movement, the gay rights movement, the ecological movement, organic food and leaner diet, alternative education, tending the saplings of the Civil Rights movement and social justice. And so much changed as a result. (Like those smoke-filled rooms finally legal!)
But not enough. And more than ever right now, not enough. Backlash after backlash to the point where police are openly murdering black people without consequence (and stepping back when armed white militia enter government buildings) and the President urges people to cheat when they vote and calls those who died in the Armed Services “losers and suckers.”
After our happy reunion, I exchanged some poems with one of my old friends and included some 6-Word Bios (look it up, it’s a thing.) And came up with some to describe us, what we dreamed of them and where we are now. As follows:
“It’s not what we expected.”
“We have done what we could.”
Or a bit more forcefully, with one extra word.
“ WTF? What the hell happened?!!!!”
And finally (with one less word):
“It ain’t over yet. Onward!