A THOUSAND WORDS - Alex Waterhouse-Hayward's blog on pictures, plants, politics and whatever else is on his mind.


Saturday, January 27, 2007

I remember exactly what I was doing on the afternoon of September 26, 1960. I was shooting pool in the Junior/Senior rec room at St. Ed's High School in Austin, Texas. The four or five of us in the room were part of the 70 million who were watching Senator John F. Kennedy debate Vice President Richard Nixon. Since our school was a Catholic boarding school we were all proud of the senator and thought Nixon looked terrible. This he did as he waved away efforts to put Max Factor's pancake on his face. The UV light generated by the hot lights of the TV studio made his skin look sickly in pallor.

In my senior year (spring 1961) at the school I was caught reading under a tree and the photo appeared in the annual.

The funny thing is that I remember the date as it was one day after the week of the Bay of Pigs fiasco. It was a very hot Texas spring day, April 20. We had Cuban boys boarding in the school and when we saw Walter Cronkite on TV and found out all was lost we felt ashamed and did not know how to explain to them how our hero had failed.

Sometime in 1977 I took this photograph of the man who ran a pool hall on Fraser Street. He had been at it for over 50 years and was known by all who shot pool. I do not remember his name but I keep his portrait as a link to my youth and that pool hall so long ago in Austin, Texas.


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Al Tomko - Gentleman Wrestler

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