Sunday, April 13, 2008

Pivotal Moment

I just got an email from a guy I went to grammar school with, Frank G. He'd stumbled on the blog looking up an old ice cream parlor in our old neighborhood. And that was great. He reminded me of Bob Testani, who wasn't one of my best friends, but with whom I hung out sometimes. And in thinking of Bob Testani I was reminded of a night maybe 40 or more years ago. We must have been 14 or so and for some reason we were at Bob Testani's house. I think it might have been the only time I was ever there. And Bob introduced us to his father, who, maybe by Bob's prompting or on his own, suggested we all go to the basement and he would hypnotize us.
I didn't believe that for a second, but we did, maybe five of us all told, and in short order Mr. Testani had one of us acting like a chicken, someone else hopping on one foot and so forth. Pretty amazing demonstration.
But it was also a pivotal point in growing up for me. Because in seeing that Mr. Testani could do something so unusual it popped my head open with the idea that maybe all the kids parents could do something unusual--or at least that they all were real people who might do real things that kids like me never knew about. And in that moment everyone became an individual for me. I didn't realize how important that moment was until this morning when I read Frank's note and he reminded me of Bob Testani. But now I do and my whole body is shivering. Fantastic. What a moment!
So thanks for writing Frank. And thanks for the great great lesson Mr. Testani. Hope you're doing well wherever you are.

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