Tuesday, May 8, 2018

First Dunk 2018

A week ago, we were still enduring "endless March" with high temperatures only in the mid-50s. As I mentioned to a number of people at the time, we would wake up one morning soon and every day would be in the 70s. Sure enough, that is what has happened and this afternoon, with the pool already at 71 degrees, it was time for First Dunk 2018. Not the earliest First Dunk ever; that was May 4, 2016. Not the latest either; that was May 20th last year.
Anyway, summer has begun...at least for me.

Sunday, November 5, 2017


  Since summer does to want to seem to give up this year, I have been continuing to take afternoon bicycle rides. Virtually all of the routes I follow take me on some portion of the nearby Greenbelt bike path.
  Most of the people I encounter on the path during the early afternoon are other bicyclists and I've started referring to them as MoCABs (for Men of a Certain Age Bicycling)," that age being about the same as mine. (I presume, as we are all out biking in the afternoon, that we are also all retired.)
  There are two basic types of MoCABs and they are pretty much in equal numbers. The old school guys wear shorts and tee-shirts, ride bicycles they have probably owned for thirty years, and are out to enjoy the fresh air.
  Then there are the gents with their shiny new bikes, who are decked out with their helmets, elbow pads and knee pads, water bottles and backpacks. None of them appear to be training for the Senior Olympics, though they are certainly equipped for it. More than likely, they decided to take up bicycling for exercise, went to buy a bike and got sucked into getting all the safety equipment and gear necessary for the Tour de France. I applaud these guys for getting out for some exercise, but I have to ask, "Are you having fun?"
  Since we encounter one another going in opposite directions, there is no conversation among MoCABs. Some nod or smile, but many just stay focused on the path ahead. Some take a leisurely pace (as I do), others are pedaling furiously. One guy I passed, riding a new multi-speed bicycle, was pedaling away, but not moving at a speed that justified his efforts; clearly, he was not quite sure how to switch gears.
  Perhaps there is a secret meeting place for MoCABs where, after an afternoon of riding, they gather for a beer or a cup of coffee.  If there is, I haven't yet been invited to join. Maybe because they are all going in the opposite direction...

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Swimsover 2017

  It has remained warm enough over the past couple of weeks that I've been able go in the pool almost every day. In fact, last Tuesday evening, I was able to take a post-volleyball "midnight swim" (the latest in the year I've ever had one). But the calendar has reached mid-October and the "seasonable" weather is finally catching up to it, so it is once again time for Swimsover.
  This afternoon, with the air temperature in the mid-70s and the water at just about 70 degrees, I took my last swim of the season. Tomorrow, the cover goes on and we begin the countdown to First Dunk 2018.

"Come on, Froggy, can this really be the end!"

Monday, September 11, 2017

The Hofstra Unispan

  Way back in Batman Family #6 in 1976, I wrote a story about Robin battling the Joker's Daughter on top of the Hudson University Unispan, an enclosed bridge that spanned Interstate 24, connecting the north and south campuses.

  Said structure was modeled on the Unispan at Hofstra University, my alma mater. Not coincidentally, it also spans Interstate 24 and connects the north and south campuses.

  Every dozen years or so, someone at Hofstra would stumble across the comic, decide it was newsworthy, and would get in touch with me for a story. On one occasion, I was asked if the use of the Unispan was a coincidence. When I replied that I was an alumnus, his response was, "Really?"

  Now, some four decades after I put the Unispan in a story, Hofstra has put me in the Unispan. A mural running along both interior walls shows highlights of the school's 80+ year history, including a couple of dozen notable staff and alumni. I was astonished to find out that I was among them.

  The caption reads: "Alum Bob Rozakis '73 is the author of more than 400 DC Comics books, including one that paid homage to Hofstra's Unispan connecting North and South campuses by depicting a fight between Robin and the Joker's daughter atop the 'Hudson University' Unispan."

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Another CTY Summer... with a Twist

  I'm back to my annual stint at the Writing & Imagination instructor for Johns Hopkins' CTY (Center for Talented Youth) program in a couple of days. This year, however, I will not be making the trek down to the Washington College campus in lovely, bucolic Chestertown, Maryland, the site I've been going to since 1996.
  Last summer, due to a drop in enrollment, there were not enough students to run a second-session WRIT class at Chestertown, so after three weeks there, I packed everything up and moved to the Lafayette College site in Easton, Pennsylvania. (Overnight, I went from being the wise old sage at Chestertown to the new kid on the block at Easton.) Despite the change in venue, there was little difference in how the class went and the students were just as productive as they would have been in C'town. (An amusing note: One of the girls in my class told me she had wanted to take the course at the Chestertown site, but had to come to Easton. So, she would have been in my class even if there had been one in C'town.)
  When it came time to re-up for 2017, I expected that I would again be splitting my time between two campuses, but asked for both sessions in the same place if it was available. Initially, it wasn't an option, but someone else's situation changed and I was offered all six weeks in Easton. So that it where I will be.
  It will seem odd not to be at Washington College. (I've spent more time living in their dorms than any of their four-year students do!) There are people I'm used to seeing every summer and I know the campus and town like the back of my hand.
  On the flip side, however, Easton is two hours closer to home and the route takes me within four blocks of my son's house, meaning Papa can drop in and visit with Alex on the way back and forth.
  I'll do a bit more exploring of Easton and the area this time around and get to know the new set of staffers a bit better. Regardless of the site, I know the class will be creative and productive and a lot of fun. So, as I say every year, "Bring on the kids."