Niagara Gazette

Columns

September 3, 2013

BRADBERRY: Men, kids head back to school, football again

Niagara Gazette — Though tomorrow marks the first full day of school here and the first day of the new NFL season when Baltimore meets the Denver at Sports Authority Field at Mile High, 12 hours earlier, in Niagara Falls, and at thousands of schools around the country millions of mothers and far too few fathers will have escorted their children back to school to kick-off the new school year.

I recall a few years ago, while impatiently sitting in my car, stuck in traffic behind a long line of big yellow school-bus limousines early one morning watching with muted fuss as some very excited moms and more than a few very reluctant children navigated their way from the long hot summer, to the first day of the new school year, very few men were there with their children; most, I assumed, were at work.

But, I wondered, would they participate if they could, would it matter?

Since it was obvious that I was going to be there for a while, I decided to relax and observe, maybe this was a teachable moment, there was a chance that I might just learn something, so I sat back and watched.

It reminded me of my own experiences on the many first days of school that I have encountered as a student and later as a parent; it especially reminded me of my first day of kindergarten at Our Lady of the Rosary way back in 1953, seven years before the birth of the Buffalo Bills, but that’s another story for another day.

Recalling the challenge of getting ready, trying on new school clothes and the excitement of shopping with my parents, and my siblings a few weeks before school started, I fondly remember the fun of shopping downtown; there were no malls and big-box stores on the outskirts of the city; dad would not have shopped there anyway!

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