Lesson number 1; fishing requires patience and very cool dark glasses and sometims means you don't catch any trouties
His name is Alistair James Young but to me he’s always been “AJ.”. My godson doesn’t get the not so subtle reference to driving fast (think stock car racer “AJ Foyt) but as he’s grown older the nickname has come to suit him like a tailored fire-proof race car driver’s suit). and due o a series of legendary incidents not involving tickets, AJ’s nickname has morphed into “Skippy the Road Warrior.”
Being Skippy’s god father let me channel my inner Huck Finn. I’ve introduced him to: fishing and the concept that sometimes all you do is catch fresh water lake weeds; the joy of running slightly amuck on a speeding ATVgoing up a mountain; plus the manly study of free oxygen reactions.I’ve also had long deep dive conversations about automobiles with the boy.
but one of the most enjoyable things I’ve done happened earlier this year -- his senior high school exploratory trips to college campuses.
AJ on the right in front of my college Prep campus at Las Pulgas aboard Camp Pendleton.
Alistair has an astounding 4.2 GPA and wanted to visit San Diego State University. So off we went to that school for a walk around its hilly campus. the boy wanted to poke around the college but after touring the school’s engineering department he seemed to be very interested in the school’s gym .I took only a few minutes, but I eventually I remembered seeing a sign at the entrance to the gym that read “Women's Volleyball Tryouts” So that’s where I looked for the boy.
As a Godfather, I anxiously awaited as a variety of colleges and universities examined and processed his admission application.It was hard not to press AJ to see if he’s heard from any college. Despite his extremely high GP and sucess in AP classes AJ didn’t get an admitted to either of the two Cal Poly campi. But he did get an acceptance package from California State University, Long Beach.
My godson’ admission to Cal State Long beach comes with a silver lining; he has $19,000 scholarship that covers dorm fees, a food plan, tuition, books and a small transportation allotment.
Alistair graduates from high school in two weeks and looking back 18 years I've had an incredible experience being his Godfather. The takeaway: bonding with a kindred young soul, keeps you young, laughing and helps you remember the adventures in your life that stood out, and how important having a non-blood related, older friend is in learning to negotiate the twists and turns of adolescence.
So, Alistair James, even though you’ll be knee deep in mechanical engineering studies, you know how to reach me and can continue to count on me for the occasional practical joke, home cooked meal and high speed internet during your visits as well asrespite from Dorm life. After all, I’m only 85 minutes down the 405. A wistful Jim Forbes on May 17, 2015.