1966–Fall ’18 Class Letter
Summer greetings to all!
Although I only heard from two members of our class this time around, I hope everyone is enjoying a great summer. I must admit I had to shorten the “mail in” time in due to personal plans.
JOHN BURROWS ’65 and I are doing well and are grateful for family, friends and good health. We are traveling to Lake Como for a week and down to Florence, Italy with friends for a two week trip next week! We enjoy traveling and know we will truly enjoy all of the side trips. We are especially looking forward to the Bernina Express train through the Alps and a day in St. Moritz! Lake Como is known for beautiful scenery and excellent food. We will diet when we return. We are also planning a family reunion with children and grandchildren at Sunriver Resort in Oregon. Time is precious and family time to celebrate 50 years of marriage and John turning 75 seemed to be in order.
PAM KURZ GOODE ’66 ([email protected])
“Having endured a horrible winter and an even worse April (24″ of snow mid-month and 8″ shortly before that!) we were glad to escape to Syracuse, NY to visit our son and his family. And yes… the weather in Syracuse was much better than in WI! We took our NY grandson on a 4 day trip to the Hyde Park area — lots of Roosevelt sites, spectacular Gilded Age mansions like the Vanderbilt’s, Storm King Art Center, etc. We had a great time and also spent a while in Buffalo NY where we stayed in a renovated state mental institution which is now a hotel called The Henry and, yes, they did let us out and no lobotomies were performed (that we know of)!! Now where was I?
We are off next week to visit friends in Northern Minnesota, but not much travel planned for a few months after that. We might take a trip south in the late fall to visit more Civil War sites — a shared interest of ours. Beware, if we are in your area we may turn up on your doorstep! We hope to see BOB FLECK ’65 and RUTH POTTS FLECK ’66 this summer in Green Lake and hopefully a few other old Ripon classmates along the way.
In between trips, we keep busy in beautiful Door County and enjoy spending time with our daughter’s family. It’s nice having two grandsons just a few minutes away!
Hope all of you are enjoying life,
Pam and Terry”
BARRY SIMON ‘66 ([email protected])
“I have seen film of me as a young child on my knees in front of a large radio counsel, rocking back and forth in time with the music playing. That was probably the start. It was in high school where I began to explore the performing arts through the school talent show and short plays.
But it was at Ripon where it became manifest.
I remember sitting at the lighting board at the old church that had been transformed into a theater after the Ripon College Theater burned down. At that moment I decided that instead of going to NYC to pursue theater, I would go to film school and learn the art of movie making that I had studied in the first such class taught at Ripon. As a preteen I had taken out books from the library about movies, perusing them with a sense of wonder since movies were my escape. However, it was this class that taught me that movies were actually an art and that I might be able to make them myself!
After four years at what was then called USC Cinema (George Lucas, Randall Kleiser, John Milius, and Caleb Deschanel–actress Zooey Deschanel’s father–were all in the class ahead of me and John Carpenter was in my class), I enter my long road in film and television. For the last 10 years of that journey I created a company with a partner that turned electronic press kits into a necessary aspect of movie publicity as I traveled around the world for nearly every major studio, directing short documentaries about the making of movies.
Prior to this I was a film and video editor, having been the latter for the first year or so on a new television show, Entertainment Tonight, which brought satellite dishes to all the stations that bought this syndicated half hour Hollywood news show and thus birthed the beginning of satellite delivery of real news, replacing the old “Get the film to the lab so it’s developed, edited and ready for the six o’clock broadcast!” It also started, I believe, the shift from news-as-news to news-as-entertainment. Sorry.
All the while I still practiced one of my Ripon College minors, education. For one year out of Ripon I taught high school English where I learned I wasn’t very good at classroom management, something they didn’t teach at Ripon at the time. Then in my film career, I taught various classes about filmmaking, editing and electronic press kits, classes that didn’t require management since the students wanted to learn this stuff.
While at USC as the editing T.A. (again teaching), I wrote a booklet on how to do negative cutting (a long, tedious process that, I believe, has gone the way of the buggy whip thanks to technology) which found its way to the other film school in town at the time–UCLA. Word had it that it was the “art” film school while USC was the “commercial” one. But negative cutting was still negative cutting and very boring no matter the film’s intention.
Now that I’m retired, I am still teaching as a volunteer with Albuquerque Reads. I have two 5 year old kindergartners who I work with during the school year, teaching them from the alphabet to sight words. Watching them learn to read is a joy beyond words. Not having children and grandchildren, I think of them during my school year sojourn as my “children,” planting seeds that go beyond learning to read, seeds about focus, dedication, attempting the unknown, being challenged, overcoming insecurity and fear, and believing in themselves. They are the future and my hope is that in some small way I help them at the beginning of their life’s journey.
I also returned to theater, becoming involved in local productions. I created and now coordinate the recording of a podcast for the Albuquerque Theatre Guild to promote local productions which educates listeners to the ins and outs of shows, thereby bringing together my publicity and production experience. Plus, I volunteer with the Music Guild of New Mexico, teaching youngsters what an orchestra is andleading to Prokofiev’s “Peter and the Wolf,” which once more involves education and entertainment.
While doing this, my regular current entertainment activity is a monthly interactive game show I, as we used to say in the 60s, “liberated” from a similar idea in another state. It’s called The Liars’ Game and involves three storytellers, two are telling the truth and one is lying. The audience has to figure out who the liar is. And usually most get it wrong.
It’s great fun working with the storytellers on developing their 10 minute tales and promoting the show in a city that has slightly over 600,000 people. So this brings together everything I have been doing since I graduated–entertainment, production coordination, story creation, education and publicity.
The point of this long narrative is that Ripon and the education it gave me has served me well and still does fifty-some years later, except, maybe, barely learning how to use a slide rule in order to pass the Concepts of Science class. I traveled the world, created programming, entertained millions, educated others and continue to do so probably until I can’t do it any longer. I am thankful for what Ripon gave me and has allowed me to pass on.
Meanwhile, when you are in Albuquerque on the second Monday of the month, stop by Empire Board Game Library and play The Liars’ Game. Just maybe you can figure out who’s lying. But don’t bet on it. That’s one class they don’t teach at Ripon.”
Hopefully the members of the class of 1966 are all doing well. Have a super summer! NANCY