I read in the paper yesterday that one of my classmates passed away. We were in school together from grade one until we graduated; there were sixteen of us in my class. I haven't seen him since the day we graduated, about forty-nine and a half years ago. Regretfully, I never knew the man Clair became, but the boy he was taught me one of life's best lessons.
One year (while it was still politically correct) Clair drew my name for Christmas. When I opened my gift, it was a beautiful scarf. I thought it was the perfect gift and wondered how a
boy could pick out something so wonderful. It was years later that I realized that his mother and two older sisters most likely made the selection but by then, it didn't matter; Clair had his permanent, special place in my heart.
After the gift exchange, I started studying Clair, secretly I hoped. The striking thing I noticed was how easily he used humor to ease awkward situations. That strategy has helped me cope with life since I learned it from Clair.
Thanks, buddy. And I'll catch your next lesson up yonder.