Forget the Whales: Save the Date!!!

“I had nothing to do on this hot afternoon
But to settle down and write you a line
Ive been meaning to phone you but from minnesota
Hell its been a very long time
You wear it well
A little old fashioned but thats all right”

You Wear it Well
Rod Stewart (before he sucked)

Point of disclosure:  relatively speaking it’s not hot at all at the moment.  For that matter, I’m not writing you from Minnesota, either, but from the dusty, sometimes boring paradise that is eastern Washington in the summertime.

But nonetheless, that’s a fine song to start out a long overdue email to our class with, don’t you think?   Back in the days before Rod sold his soul to the Grammys, not many bands could evoke nostalgia the way Rod Stewart and the Faces could.


But to quote Elvis Costello:  “Let’s talk about the future now we’ve put the past away.”

(at least, momentarily)

FIRST AND FOREMOST:   As some of you on Facebook already know:   I am currently gaging interest in a Mariner High Class of 1976 alumni event — not a reunion, per se, but just an informal opportunity to come together and share some laughs and memories.   Details are still in development, but I can tell you the date:  Sunday, September 27.   If you have suggestions for a venue, or any other suggestions for how to have a fun little get together — or even want to host it — please drop me a line.  Several of our classmates have had similar little get togethers, facilitated by the Internet, and all seem to have had a good time.

I can’t promise you a good time, but I’m thinking it’s a safe bet.

SO: if  you’re interested in any remote manner in helping to pull together a little fall weekend get together — I’m thinking by late September it might still be nice enough to have a picnic at Forest Park? — please drop me a line.  I’ll be on the road for much of late August, but will start planning in earnest come September 1.

By the way, I’ve been playing around with studio portraiture again for the first time in about 30 years — and if there’s sufficient interest will be taking portraits of everyone who shows up so we can post them to the blog.  Here’s some of the work I did for our local Starbucks (   I promise to make you look 20 lbs lighter and 10 years younger — all that, and free for everyone who shows up — who could turn THAT down? 

Speaking of the Internet in general, and Facebook in particular:  the velvet revolution takeover of Facebook by our generation continues unabated — our kids and even grandkids are fleeing the site in droves, certain that the internet isn’t big enough for the two generations to co-exist on the same site.  Which is fine — us middle aged folks clearly have more time to take silly quizzes and play “Mafia Wars” — I’m sure that’s what Tim Berners Lee had in mind all along, when he “invented” the web.

A benefit of this mass migration of middle aged minions to Facebook is that it has become easier than ever to track down our missing classmates, and in recent weeks we’ve added a few more folks to the rank and file of the officially found:

- Diane [Reed] Vorhees
- Sheila [Kennedy] Barker
- Allen Hatchell
- Tammy [Wilde] Irelan
- Kim [Turnupseed] Thompson

And possibly a few others that I’m overlooking — I am clearly going to have to start recording the date that I first put each person on the mailing list because with 103 names on it at present, I can’t keep it all in my head anymore.

What else is new?  Well:

- two of our more far-flung classmates are considering moves back to the great Northwest.  In each case, they may have finalized those choices in time to show up for whatever event we have on Sept 27.  More details will be provided in the near future….for now, keep your fingers crossed.
- I’ll be chairing an IEEE workshop on Social Intelligence in Vancouver, BC on August 31 — and potentially another one in Chengdu, China in mid-December.  Funny to think that my interest in social networks was largely kindled by efforts to track down old classmates!  Now, it’s a significant part of some of my research activities, so I definitely owe y’all a thanks for giving me good incentive to explore a technically fascinating area of computer science…..
- a few of you have offered to open up your hearts to become my first interviews for the Class of 1976 blog (  Some day soon, I’ll have enough time to take you up on those kind offers.
- it’s been a huge amount of fun to watch old friends find each other on Facebook — and it’s interesting to see how little attention is paid to the old cliques and categories.  I must tell you all, that in comparison to my wife’s class (Everett High, class of 1977), our group of folks seems to be far more egalitarian.
- My youngest son is getting married in two weeks.  I know that has nothing to do with the Class of 1976, but sometimes you gotta pay the piper, even if it’s only to tolerate his diversions.

that’s about it for now, folks.  I’ve got to go to a retirement party for a long-time mentor of mine, so had best leave the computer alone ’til later tonight.

But because it’s been a while since I nagged, please remember to review our class mailing list, and if I’ve misspelled your name, let me know.  Some of you folks — you know who you are — have added several last names in the past couple of decades, so keep me honest on that, too!

And if you know of someone who is NOT on the list, but is in your life…encourage them to drop me a line asking to be added.  I’ll be happy to put them on the mailing list, and will continue to balance their privacy with their desire to stay in touch, to the best of my ability.

Your self-appointed ninja of networking,
Scott Butner
MHS Class of 1976
Richland, WA

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