We must have had some sort of decent field trip when I was in school.
But right now I just can't seem to remember what it was.
Oh, we went to Thomas Edison's home in fourth grade.
And my general science class walked across the street the high school was in Wakeman in those days to the water treatment plant when I was a freshman.
Coach Ferres took the basketball team to Bowling Green once.
And my world history class went to the Cleveland Museum of Art when I was a sophomore.
But other than those things, probably the highlight of my school travels was our 1961 eighth grade class trip. We went to Columbus.
I know we did the State Capitol and Legislature and all that. But the actual bus trip itself was more memorable.
Vern Weisenberger took us on Bus 1: his big, new 66-passenger snub nose school bus (board owned). It was May, and we had all the windows down. The eighth grade girls were cute and flirty. Fabulous!
The most memorable thing of all, however, was when we stopped at White Castle for our so-called meal.
Prior to that day, so long ago when Eisenhower was president, my idea of a hamburger was what I got at home or in the old Wagon Wheel restaurant in Wakeman: a substantial patty of ground beef on a bun big enough that a boy had to hold it with both hands.
Then we stopped at White Castle on our class trip.
I guess we should have known the burgers there would be a little different when we saw the price something like a nickle apiece in those days.
At any rate, the bus pulled up in the corner of the White Castle parking lot. A couple of teachers went in and picked up our order. As they started passing the little sandwiches back through the bus, we were astounded: unlike any hamburger we had ever seen in Huron County, they were about the size and thickness of a half-dollar, each dressed with a single little pickle. Some of us peeled back the tiny bun to look at the meat. It was gray and unappetizing.
So imagine our excitement when these goofy little White Castle hamburgers turned out to be so delicious! To this day, I have a hard time driving past a White Castle without grabbing half a dozen of them.
This all came to mind a couple of weeks ago when I was working with some out of town visitors in Cleveland.
Three of them were involved in a business deal. But the main player in the transaction a big, gregarious guy who was apparently born with a smile on his face was suddenly laid low by a stomach ailment. The rest of us went to dinner at a very nice restaurant, but the man who had previously been the life of this working party spent the evening in his hotel room more precisely, he spent it in his hotel bathroom.
While we were gone, the man's business partner came up with what he considered a surefire cure for his nauseated friend: White Castle.
From claimed personal experience and with absolutely no medical credentials he asserted that a bag of White Castle sliders would "cleanse the system," and bring his pal back to full smiling status.
Does this sound like something you would go for? After spending two hours unable to keep food down you jump in a car and go for White Castle?
But the sick man and his two business buddies did exactly thatran out and got a 30-pack of little gray burgers with pickles, onions and tiny steamed buns.
The goal was 10 apiece, but one of the men who had just had a steak dinner was only good for six.
The sick guy had 10.
And the next day he all three of them for that matter looked and acted as if had just returned from a health spa, all smiles and good spirits.
Isn't that something? In 1961, it was just a cheap lunch for a bunch of eighth graders from Townsend Junior High.
But 46 years later it has turned into the Miracle Cure for Stomach Flu: take 10 White Castles and jump for joy in the morning.
I guess we will deal with the clogged arteries later.