Funny Thing, This Life

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…”

Today, two things happened.  First, let’s talk about the good.

I’m an uncle!  I am beyond excited!  My brother-in-law and sister-in-law had their first child, and that makes me an uncle for the first time!  Little Finley was born this morning, and she weighed in at just over 7 pounds.  I can’t wait to meet her and watch her grow.

My wife was able to keep me updated on what was happening, even though I’m in Minneapolis, while she is home in Nashville, and the baby was born in Georgia.  Technology makes communication easier than ever (yet we, especially me, are becoming even worse at it).  Finley, welcome to the world.

As we welcomed Fin to life, we also watched as Mrs. Tripp said goodbye to this life.  Mrs. Tripp was my 6th grade English teacher.  Then she was my 7th grade English teacher.  She always said it was because she liked us so, and I can’t argue with that!

I last talked with Mrs. Tripp for a few minutes on Veteran’s Day, as I had made my way back to my old high school to hear a beloved coach tell his life story as an American veteran.  She greeted me like she had so many times during my years in middle and high school, “Mister Minnigan….”

I remember diagramming sentences.  I remember getting more because we acted up in class.  I remember giving the wrong answer and finding out that “alright” was “all wrong.”  I remember her nails on the whiteboard and her complaining that it didn’t have the same effect on students as nails on a chalkboard.  I remember she loved us.

I was lucky to come across many teachers that loved the students.  There was something about Mrs. Tripp that made all the students love her too.  Thank you, Mrs. Tripp, for showing me how to learn, how to live, and how to love.

I’ll part with these two images.  The first is Mrs. Tripp with one of my friends, Mason Graham.  I know she meant so much to Mason just like she meant so much to all of us.  The second is a happy birthday message from the faculty at school from just two weeks ago.  Some of the faculty were even once her pupils.  They were asked to sing softly so she could take it all in.  (Sorry for my dangling participle, Mrs. Tripp.)  I’m told she paused it many times and watched it over and over to see all the faces.  Thank you for loving the hooligans and shenanigans, Mrs. Tripp.

Happy Birthday, Cindy! from BA Communications on Vimeo.

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