It takes a lot of courage to attend a reunion of people you haven’t seen for almost 30 years. Not only do you fear being in the awkward situation of forgetting someone whom you should remember, it is difficult not to be plagued with adolescent-like angst over how others may react to the inevitable change in your appearance. But Cheez Willms, our inimitable Master of Ceremonies (MC) for the 1975-80 Grebel reunion, helped us see past our fears by, of course, exaggerating them.
Cheez mused in his opening monologue,
As you look around at all the wonderful people you haven’t seen for 30 years, you wonder to yourself - did I actually used to be attracted to that person?
Cheez, as only Cheez can do, disarmed and charmed all 80 or so brave souls who attended "That Seventies Talent Show." By the end we forgot we were older, fatter, balder, and more wrinkled than we used to be.
From witnessing John Moyer’s rendition of Robin Jutzi’s rendition of Doctor Hook’s raucous “Cover of the Rolling Stone” (which Robin righteously reformed to "Cover of the Gospel Herald") to listening to the aching beauty of Sue Schultz’s voice, telling us once again of aging lovers, unbroken circles and sinking ships, we were transported back to the wacky, carefree and slightly irreverent culture that marked this era. Even Grebel President Henry Paetkau, who spoke during the show, got into the spirit of the era and had us laughing about light bulbs. "That Seventies Talent Show" was assuredly a hit with everyone - even for people from diverse backgrounds (like the Scottish). We hope the next celebration of this era will draw even more hardy souls!
Kathleen Cleland Moyer (‘81)
Ode to Stone Crones
Lithe Young Things they were - all four –
Whenst Grebelward they came
In ‘76 began to seek
Their fortune and their fame.
How did John Rempel know that day
He matched the roommates so,
That the four would form a Sisterhood –
Together they would grow.
For they tossed and turned and gonged within
The nurtured Halls of Grebel
They talked and dreamed ‘til late at night
And worked (when they were able).
The Community of Grebel there
Did these Souls so inspire,
That when the days of school were done,
Their friendship did not retire.
For as they paired, traveled and toiled
and brought forth babes assorted,
Their camaraderie was never lost
Though sometimes was contorted!
And once their Progeny was raised –
At least beyond the breast,
They gathered far from family life
to share, and play and Fest - pah.
They soon established plans to meet
and act out Lives Unlived
Their Forties turned into a blur
of Themed Derivatives
Freedom Forty Four they called
One such wild retreat
And in a potter’s studio met
To sing and drink and eat
As Catholic Saints they rev’rently came
– Sts Lucy, Germaine and Zita
And one showed up as Sister Patti –
also known as St. Rita
In an attempt to cleanse their Souls
one glorious autumn day,
They apprenticed to a Soap Maker
and learned her scented trade.
On Summers Days they frolicked
as Mermaids in the Sea,
In Winter they were LumberJacks
– Olaf, Jean Paul and Guy
One spring they morphed to She-Bears
Coming out of hibernation
They prowled the woods of Grey County
Slurping honey with Elation
They re-in-acted Wedding Scenes
with Bride and Bridesmaids Three
But no male members graced the Fest
of this Wedding Party!
Of all the Crafts they mastered
(its true a lot were duds)
One made these women Business Pals
Instead of just Good Buds
They made and sold fine RHUbarb stones
Which brought them Wealth and Fame.
They called their labourers “Stone Crones “
it became another Game.
And with their Thousands earned they plan
To travel forth as One
And holiday together
In Bay of Fundy sun.
Now the Stone Crones look ahead
To turning-50 time,
you’ll be glad to know thus ends
This self indulgent Rhyme
So Thanks, oh Grebel birthplace of
Our Sisterhood so strong,
And celebrate our Timeless Bond
With joy and drink and song!
Poem by Chris Regier and Wendy (and friends).
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