ROOTS & WINGS '96

BILL HILLMAN ADDRESS AND PRESENTATION

(opening preamble, song lyrics, video script)

TO THE STRATHCLAIR COMMUNITY SCHOOL 
GRADUATES OF 1996


OPENING COMMENTS - LIVE PREAMBLE

The Grads of 1996...Special to you ... and special to me Why...

Well...I’ve followed the progress of many of you kids from birth and you are GOOD KIDS...I sincerely LIKE every one of you and...I even taught some of your parents in high school... now adults whom I regard as special friends.

You were the class my first born started school with...

And there’s one more thing that makes this day special...

35 years ago I stood in front of another graduating class - mine... The class of ‘61...in the basement of the United Church I gave an awkward, embarrassed, ill-prepared speech to my fellow classmates... You’ll see tonight that some things never change

But there’s another thing which makes this class special:

According to the Chinese Horoscope... All of you share a Chinese Astrological sign with me....

We are all HORSES...

Parents ... I don’t have to tell you that your horse is -- sociable -- fun-loving competitive... but also somewhat impatient... and hot-tempered.

Your horse is also independent and rarely listens to advice so there will be very little lecturing in my address tonight

Looking over what the rest of the year holds for the Horse I found the following information:

You should know that the horse is emotionally vulnerable now... ...so treat them with kid gloves

...and I have some good news for you parents who might be saddened by the thought of your offspring leaving home...

You’ll be pleased to know that a job change now would be of little benefit AND it is an unfavourable year for the horse to move from home!

It is also recommended that the horse eats lots... gets lots of rest... avoids overwork... becomes very active in sports... and uses nervous energy to develop many new leisure interests and acquaintances.

What can we interpret from this... well the Horse won’t be leaving home this year after all ... ...so stock up the fridge... ...and expect a lot of late night friends over... ...to socialize.

The Chinese horoscope is also very good at suggesting compatible mates.

The Horse is very compatible with the DOG...the GOAT...and the TIGER

So I took the liberty to look up the types of people you might expect to come calling on those late night visits:

Dad ... When the doorbell rings -- the type of guy you can expect to see on your doorstep will likely be one of the following types:

Michael Jackson

Rush Limbaugh

Elvis

Bill Clinton

Mick Jagger or

Mikhail Gorbachev

Mom... ...according to the horoscope... ...you might expect to see one of the following types waiting for your son:

Madonna

Marilyn Monroe

Whoopi Goldberg or

Queen Elizabeth II

Well, just in case you feel a little apprehensive after listening to all this Oriental mumbo jumbo I think it is time to debunk it and put all our minds at ease.

I might remind you that Chinese Astrologers insist that the two Animals which are ALWAYS INCOMPATIBLE are the HORSE .... and ....the RAT They are TROUBLE...They never get along....Disaster!!!

And since this is actually the Year of the Rat...

I would like to ask all the Rats in the room to stand

[WIFE SUE-ON STANDS]

I rest my case...

We are celebrating 30 great years of marriage this year.

OK ...now that you all feel a little better about what the future may hold for your grad...

I would like to share a gift I made for the people we are honouring tonight...

SING THE SONG "ROOTS & WINGS" WITH 12-STRING GUITAR ACCOMPANIMENT


(MEMORIES OF THE CHILD GROW)

ROOTS AND WINGS

Words and Music by Bill Hillman

Eighteen years since your mom and dad drew a furrow

To mark your journey on a long road through tomorrow

Now mama’s missin’ nights rockin’ her baby

Daddy’s missin’ long walks with his buddy

Memories of the child grow roots and wings

Rag dolls and teddies in the backroom long forgotten

Star Wars figures and little kid books never brought down

Old dog pining for his little companion

Tree fort lying in the back yard abandoned

Memories of the child grow roots and wings

One last time let’s raise our glasses together

Time to start new journeys through tumbling seas and weather

You’ve put aside childhood games and playthings

But wings spread wide from little child dreamings

Memories of the child grow roots and wings


START THE VIDEO


VIDEO SCRIPT SPACE ODYSSEY - 2001 INTRO NATURAL AUDIO...STRAUSS

(Memories of the Child Grow) Roots and Wings Words and Music by Bill Hillman ...SCROLL THE LYRICS ON COMPUTER ANIMATED PROGRAM

VOICE OVER:

Memories of the child grow roots and wings.

This is the phrase which grew out of my reflections while shuffling through my own memories of this very special group of grads.

In fact, the idea seemed so appropriate I wrote a song around it.

You’ve heard the song by now, and you are about to share many of the grads’ captured moments in pictures later on this tape.

Just as you grads and your families have amassed a grab bag collection of memories, moments and mementos...so too have your teachers.

In fact, some of you have probably spent nearly as much time with your teachers over the last 13 years as you have with family members.

1983 FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL FOOTAGE AT MAPLE GROVE FARM SUE-ON KISSES JA-ON GOODBYE AT SCHOOL BUS - BUS DRIVES DOWN HIGHWAY 354 LEAVING MOTHER STANDING ALONE (40 sec)

VOICE OVER: Because I have the unique distinction this year of being both a teacher and a grad parent I thought it appropriate to start our journey by rummaging through our treasure chest to dig out and polish up a few school apples...from the teacher. So let’s open this chest of home and school memories...memories from which will grow...your roots...and your wings.....

MOOD MUSIC BACKGROUND: MARK KNOPFLER'S THEME FROM THE MOVIE "LOCAL HERO" WITH KEYBOARDS BY ALAN CLARK WHO PLAYED ON HILLMAN ENGLAND SESSIONS

KINDERGARTEN FOOTAGE:(2:30m) KINDERGARTEN CLASS AWAITS INSTRUCTION...MRS. PARKER...MRS. WADDELL...MRS. GLENN

VOICE OVER:

Stardate 1983

First day of school...Kindergarten

I’m sure you all have your own special memories of that day in September 1983.

The day that started the long journey which has taken you to today’s crossroads.

You know after almost 30 years of teaching it seems more and more obvious that writer Robert Fulghum was right...that no matter what the level of learning we are at in life, we are really just expanding on the basics of Kindergarten.

All we really need to know about how to live and what to do and how to be we learned in Kindergarten:

We learned to:

Share everything -- Play fair -- Don’t hit people -- Put things back that aren’t yours -- Say you’re sorry when you hurt somebody -- Wash your hands before you eat...and...Flush

Warm cookies and milk are good for you -- Live a balanced life -- Learn some and Think some and Draw and Paint and Sing and Dance and Play and Work every day some.

Take a nap every afternoon

When you go out into the world, watch out for traffic, hold hands and stick together

Everything you need to know is in there somewhere... The Golden Rule...and love...and basic sanitation Ecology...and politics...and equality...and sane living

But always remember... when you go out into the world ... watch out for traffic... hold hands and

...stick together


TEACHER CAMEOS

- A MONTAGE OF TEACHERS "DOING WHAT THEY DO"

VOICE OVER:

Most of you acknowledge some debt of thanks to your teachers... but you probably aren’t aware of just how they have been touched by you.

We have fed on the vitality of your youth... your enthusiasm and thirst for knowledge and life have rubbed off on all of us.

I believe that anyone who stops learning is old...whether at 8 or 80 and anyone who keeps learning stays young.

I feel that the greatest thing in life is to keep your mind young ... and we draw upon each of you for such inspiration.

As teachers...and parents... we have shared your growing pains as you have grown into the adult world. We have been there to share it all:

Your sense of wonder at the excitement of world around you ... ...and your boredom

Your desire to please and work cooperatively... ...and your fits of rebellion

Your quest for knowledge... ...and your moments of “turn off” and cool “blaseness”

Your social growth into the grown-up world... ...while still grasping the innocence of childhood

Your joys... ...and your grief and sadness

Your times of loneliness and solitude and individuality... ...and your rowdy exuberance while you try to fit in with “the gang”

Your setbacks and failures and... ...your achievements

These are a few of the faces that you will remember from your years at Strathclair Community School...from 1983 to 1996. There have been many more along the way... and I apologize for not being able to catch them all on tape....

To assemble all of our associates into a two-minute cameo bit would have been a job better suited to Superman or some other such silly caped superhero in a funny costume... VIDEO OF COMIC POSTER - BILL HILLMAN IN SUPERHERO COSTUME -- "IT'S HILL MAN"


THE GRADS

STAR BABY ANIMATION..."GOOD LUCK S.C.S. GRADS OF '96 (60 sec) (ANIMATION BY CHINA-LI HILLMAN & ROBIN HILLMAN)

Grads -- it is your achievement we honour tonight.

You young men and women represent the culmination of 13 years of effort.

And you people here tonight are in for a special treat.

Not often are we able to document such achievement in a way which shows the remarkable transformation brought about by your teachers and parents.

Thanks to the wonders of technology I present to you the

...polished...

...self-assured...

...highly educated...

Graduates of 1996!

RECENT VIDEO OF THE "POLISHED, SELF-ASSURED, HIGHLY-EDUCATED" CLASS OF '96 -

- BUS ARRIVAL AND PILE OFF (5 min)

- RAGTAG, TOY CARRYING, PIG-TAILED GROUP ARRIVING ON BUS AND ACTING AS A "TYPICAL" RAMBUNCTIOUS KINDERGARTEN CLASS

- INVASION AND PILLAGING OF SCHOOL AND KINDERGARTEN ROOM

- HUMAN PYRAMID IN FRONT OF SCS CRYPT

- BUS DEPARTS INTO SUNSET WITH STEPHEN RUNNING AFTER...LATE AGAIN

- NATURAL AUDIO


THE GRADUATES OF 1996 SPEAK:

[ANIMATED INTROS COURTESY OF CHINA-LI HILLMAN (age 10)]

EACH GRAD DOES VOICE OVER BEHIND 20-30 FAMILY ALBUM PICTURES ON VIDEO

Aynsley Leith Waddell

Susan Gail Creber

Melissa Ann Glenn

Jeffrey Gordon McDonald

Heather Jacqueline Hulley

Reagan Ryan Morris

Kent Stewart Tolton

Robin Leanne Young

Stephen Alan Johnston

Randy Lee Woywada

Nancy Theresa Peterson

Ryan Larry Andreychuk

Karla Anne Robertson

Marika Johanna Friesen

Kenny Kempthorne

Maarit Katarina Porala

Amelie Schmidt-Venzen


CLOSING SEQUENCE:

GOOD LUCK ANIMATION - REPRISE

GOOD LUCK WISHES(PHOTOS & VOICE OVER) FROM FORMER SCHOOL MATE:

William Ja-On Campbell Hillman


ROOTS & WINGS

MOOD MUSIC

"SOMEWHERE IN TIME" SOUNDTRACK Rachmaninoff - Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini

GOOD LUCK KIDS

BILL HILLMAN

 
Take me back to the
Hillman Eclectic Studio Homepage