Tidbits - April 15, 2021

TIDBITS by RALPH SHEALY


CHANGES
 On Easter Sunday, my pastor Ken Freeman mentioned the song, “Rise Again.”
  At that point, I decided to sing the “old” classic the next time I was asked to solo. As it happened, Ken asked me to sing on “Low Sunday,” April 11.
  I found my cassette tape, and practiced the song on Saturday afternoon.
  Sunday morning, I decided to practice one more time. It’s a good thing I did.
  The tape wouldn’t play in either location of my boom box. The cassette part had been acting up, so I thought it had died. So, I got out my ancient tape player, and the cassette would work in that either.
  Obviously, something was wrong with the cassette. The 36-year-old tape had given up the ghost. It had  broken, and it would not “rise again.”
  I hastily started looking for something else to sing, found a tape, practiced it, then it hit me - “You live in 2021.”
  I went to my computer, and pulled up the book-marked “Christian Accompaniment Tracks” website. I found “Rise Again,” purchased it, downloaded it, then burned a CD on iTunes.
  In 15 minutes I had the song, and performed it in church.
  Let’s go back to 1985, when I  bought the cassette of the “new” song, “Rise Again.”
  I had to buy it at the Baptist Bookstore in Columbia. The only other way to get the tape was to order it from a catalog, using an order form (remember those?), and mailing off the order. Who knew when the cassette would arrive?
  Young people may wonder why I didn’t use the internet back then? That’s easy. There was no internet, at least not in Saluda, SC.
  My 34-year-old self in 1985 could not even imagine nor understand how my 70-year-old self could download a song in 15 minutes in 2021.
  My greatest technology in ‘85 was a top loading VCR with a WIRED remote. That’s right. WIRED.
  My, how the world has changed!

BASKETBALL
   I didn’t have to worry about falling asleep during the men’s national championship game last Monday night, because the game was over in the first ten minutes of the first half.
  Gonzaga entered the game with a 31-0 record, ranked number one for most of the year, but the more athletic Baylor Bears blew them away.
  I heard someone say, “Gonzaga will never win a national championship.” This was  based on the type players Gonzaga recruits, smart, good shooters, excellent big men, slow.....
  That got by for 31 games, although they struggled against UCLA in the semi-finals, but in the title game, they were no match for the faster, higher jumping Bears.
  A Gamecock site put out an interesting fact. In the Carolina men’s Final Four run in 2017, the Gamecocks beat Baylor by 20 in the play-offs, then lost by four to Gonzaga in the semi-finals.
  Four years later, Gonzaga and Baylor played for the national championship, and Carolina finished 6-15.
  Someone’s going in the wrong direction.
  I’m not disappointed Frank Martin was not fired. We should throw this Covid year away. I read the Gamecocks missed 27 practices and five games,  because of Covid, and Martin had the virus twice.
  Several Gamecocks have entered the transfer portal. None of them will be missed. Carolina has gotten three transfers to take their place.
  We shall see.

ANOTHER INFLUENCE
  Last week I wrote about the influence Teen Town and Winn’s Restaurant had on the Saluda young people of my generation.
  There was another organization that meant a great deal to Methodist teenagers. It was called the MYF Sub-District.
  The sub-district was made up of the youth groups from all the Methodist Churches in Saluda County, one in  Batesburg, one in Leesville, and four in Edgefield County. Every month, all the MYF’ers from those churches would gather at one of the churches for a program, refreshments and fellowship.
  Every summer, one representative from each church would go to a retreat at Lake Junaluska. I got to go twice.
  Not only did the youth get to make friends with people from other towns and communities, but we got to know the adult counselors.
  Viola Goff is 100-years-old and she’s had a full life in Saluda. To me, she always be our MYF Sub-District Counselor. My mother was also a counselor.
  Another counselor who meant a lot to me was Dot Bradley of  Bethany. She always had a smile on her face, and had something funny to say.
  Any time I’d see Mrs. Dot, I’d still feel like an MYF’er, even though I might be 60.
  Mrs. Dot died last week at the age of 94.
  I hope all you volunteer church youth counselors realize the impact you have on lives.  All of we youth, from 13 to 70 and above,  appreciate it.