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South Eyes

Thomson High School's graduation ceremony was a picture-perfect production Friday night. It's amusing, considering all the stress that went into getting there.

I was at the school on Thursday when teachers were grading papers and averaging scores that determined the fate of a few graduates. I'm sure that's why some of them were smiling so big as they walked onto that Brickyard field -- they had made it literally by the skin of their teeth. Every one of them should be proud, and we at The Mirror are happy for them.

I'm sure quite a few school officials were "sweating it out" all day on Friday up until the graduation ceremony. It was raining most of the day, and I was not too happy with the memories of last year's ceremony having left a deep impression on my mind. I can only imagine what those in charge were thinking, and those in the graduating class, and their family members.

The school officials answered a multitude of phone calls inquiring about the status of the ceremony. (Plans were made last year to have a "rain date," which is why the ceremony was moved to Friday instead of its traditional Saturday event time.) I don't know who their source is for weather predictions, but we all need to find out.

About a half hour before the ceremony, it was raining, and officials announced the ceremony would be postponed 30 minutes. I remember looking up at the dark clouds in the sky and wondering who made that call.

One of the board members commented that the graduates wanted to go ahead with the ceremony because many of them had already made plans. I remembered last year's situation being the same way, but that didn't stop the complaints the week after the rain-drenched ceremony.

Thankfully, it wasn't me making the call Friday night. As if they'd been programmed, those overflowing clouds rolled on past and the rain slowed to a light drizzle as graduates crossed Main Street to get to the Brickyard. Simultaneously, a host of NJROTC students and staff members laden with towels "attacked" the wet seats on the field and all evidence of rain disappeared in a few moments.

Board members sat in their seats at the front of the arena, looking as calm and collected as if they were sitting in their recliners at home -- although they were dressed in their Sunday best.

And that's how the entire ceremony went -- no one's voice waivered with nervousness, no one tripped, and everyone smiled. And although some of us had eyes wet with tears, all of our heads, clothes and seats were dry as a bone.

The Class of 2010's slogan was "only one class can be a perfect 10." It appears they are blessed.

Web posted on Thursday, May 27, 2010

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