Posts Tagged ‘magic moments on Blogfinger’

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Rutherford High School  (NJ) Yearbook.   RHS Dance Band  (Rutherfordians)  on top. I am third sax from the left.  We wrote and put on a variety show. Students volunteered.   Who knew that some of our classmates were talented—their performances were magic moments. Greg Thompson was a photographer for the school newspaper, but this day he was Fred Astaire—a magic moment for sure.   And Carol in the left lower corner: Wowee!


The gorilla suits were my idea–to mock the hoods from Lyndhurst High. It was Sharon and Janie inside.  When they came running down the center aisle, that was magic.   For those of  you who are wondering, we are missing our baritone sax player for the photo.  Yes, you are correct–a sax section has 5 players, with the baritone on the right side end. We’re still searching for him.


By Paul Goldfinger, Editor @ Blogfinger.net   (Former sports editor at the R-Hi)

It begins at a very early age:  we teach children to imagine magic.  It’s in so many of the books for kids, so we can’t be surprised if they engage in magical thinking as they grow older.

But even as adults, we still  have magical ideation to help us deal with the realities and challenges of the world around us.  We use such  thinking to see into the future and foresee perfect moments.

Such moments, even if the magic fails us, tend to stick in our minds.

I recall three such events from when I was 16 or 17 years old,  a senior at Rutherford (NJ) High School:

The first  moment to remember was on the stage with the  “dance band” –The Rutherfordians.  I played lead alto sax.  My sound was admirable and I was competent at sight-reading music, but I had no idea how to improvise a solo, and nobody in the band was advanced enough for that.

We were rehearsing the “Theme from Peter Gunn”–a raucous tune to open our forthcoming show. The music reached a point where a sax solo was desirable, and the boys in the band were encouraging me to do it—“Come on Goldie; stand up and play  it.”  I demurred , knowing that I couldn’t do it, but they persisted, and I somehow envisioned a magic moment.  So I stood up and tried, but it wasn’t there, and I had to sit down—–a failure of magical thinking.


The second took place on a chilly autumn day, on a muddy soccer field.  As a senior varsity player for the RHS Bulldogs, I desperately wanted to do something for the team and to justify their playing me at center forward.

I won a starting position out of sheer good fortune—we barely had enough players to field a team and we were losing every game, and I wished for a magic moment.

It came in the second half.  Our goalie, Tim Krupa, was an amazing all-state player  (who later played for Columbia)  and he could kick the ball a mile. He sent one up the field—high and long, and I raced to catch up with it.  The ball bounced and bounced towards the opposing goal, with me trying to catch it.  I could hear the team yelling from the bench and I really needed some magic.

Here was the magic moment:   I was pursuing the ball while the goalie prepared for our arrival.  It should have been a heroic moment, but just as I caught up with the ball, it bounced off my chest and lamely dribbled into the hands of the goalie.  Ignominy–not magic.


And finally, I was playing on the RHS junior varsity in basketball.  But the varsity coach needed to fill his bench for a big game–So I got to sit on the varsity bench for that game knowing that I was there just for the optics.  Anyhow, late in the game coach put me in.  The game was already decided–we were losing.  I went onto the court, and we had the ball. A pass was tossed to me. I took one dribble, tried a jump shot and then I was clobbered by a nasty foul.

So I went to the line for 2 shots.  I can’t imagine how I could possibly hit even one……but I hit two.  A roar went up from the stands.  And so, a bit of magic, and I am in the RHS varsity basketball record books forever!

But isn’t it funny how such moments stick with us and how, no matter how old we get, we still can experience some  magic moments and failed magic moments, and we still retain them along with the accompanying feelings that never diminish?





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