Brace Yourself!


Happy Friday, All!  I am feeling it pretty strong this morning … so … T.G.I.F.!!  Yes, I am feeling an integral part of this journey as well and very happy to have each of you in my life!  Thanks.  Now, I don’t know about you but I believe that we each are “made up” of  our experiences with others as well as our outlook on what life’s experiences mean to each of us.  While I am sure we each differ somewhat, I think that we can agree on that.
How many of us are … or have been told that you … just like “your father”!  So, in some ways, I guess “we” could say that we are somewhat like “each other”!  I know, I am a bit far out there today, full moon having just passed but I am still feeling the effects.  Next month will be my birthday … Moon Child that I am!!  So, let me start by giving props to one of my first favorite “teachers/instructors” since I have been living in South Florida.  It is her birthday today … and I want to wish Lydia aka “Spin Time” aka OtfLydia … a very Happy Birthday.  I personally had the pleasure of having her as an instructor in a pilates yoga class often preceded by a boot camp class.  I was a member at “24 Hour Fitness Shaq” in Pembroke Pines and while working during the evenings, I took advantage of my mornings and often spent them at the gym.  It was because of Lydia … She continues as an instructor of spin, yoga and Orange Theory Fitness classes.
Many of you know that I attended a boarding school in New Hampshire, some of you were there when I was there, too.  So, I played three sports my first year at St. Paul’s School some of you may also remember.  I played football, basketball and ran track though I thought about baseball a few times.  I had a coach there named Maurice Blake.  He also was the athletic director there as well as the football coach and basketball coach … both boy’s varsity.  He and his wife, Mrs. B as we had come to call her, have been together in New Smyrna, FL during his retirement.  They anticipate moving back up to New Hampshire to be closer to “Big Mike” Blake, their son, and his family so they can be more secure as they both are in their early to mid 90’s!  Due to Coach Blake’s regimented coaching with a touch of “stories” included, I played sports throughout my years at St. Paul’s School, Concord, NH.  Thank you Mrs. B and Coach Blake!
Also because Coach Blake gave me such leadership opportunities, I embraced basketball, played it at Princeton with Armond Hill under Coach Peter Carrill and even coached it myself for 5 years at White Plains High School, White Plains, NY.  So, as I watched the NBA Final Game 1 last night, I noted a dedication to a man who has earned his place in sports history, in particular, basketball.  His name is Stuart Scott (RIP).  A segment was dedicated during the game last  night in his honor, as he was not only noted for coining the phrase “Boo ya!” when a player did something spectacular in  an NBA contest, he was also known for battling appendiceal cancer (cancer of the appendix) and still … still anchoring Sports Center broadcasts for ESPN and working out daily … until he expired.  That’s is the sign of a truly dedicated person … someone I admire and look up to, too!
If I haven’t told any of you thank you lately, for being a part of my life …. here it is!
Thank You!
John I. Cook, Director

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