Scrapbook

So, I’ve created this space to share pictures and information re. the Vanderlips, i.e. our family, the connubial confluence of Vandermays and Phillips. Also find here additional, random tidbits of information and imagery that might not warrant fuller treatment in the main blog section. New additions at the top…

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It’s snowing today (April 16, 2018) and felt it appropriate to preserve this image herein. I reckon this was taken in 2006, on the occasion of another spring storm that featured a mix of snow and ice. The quaking aspen that line our driveway don’t do particularly well in such conditions, obliging one to whip out the McCullough and clear the way.

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Not sure who took this photo (might well have been Wesboy Kevin “Big Man” Williamson) but it remains a classic. In the preppy maelstrom of the mid-1980s, an Irish fisherman’s sweater made perfect sartorial sense… I played a couple years of intramural hockey at Wesleyan. After a solid decade honing not insignificant skating/stick skills on various ponds, ’twas the first time I’d ever played full-rink hockey with boards. Fabulous fun. Senior year I was able to borrow the gear from Brian Grzelkowski (the first Falmouth, ME native I’d ever met) and proper goaltending proved even more fun… I can’t overestimate the amount of hockey I played growing up — most every day after school, every weekend, over the holiday and February breaks — and at least half was played in the streets. Whereas pond hockey never featured goalies (just a pair of boots at either end and a “no-lift” policy on shot-making) street hockey always did. Not only did we get good, we could tend goal while mimicking different keepers of the day: Tony Esposito, of course, but also Gilles Gilbert, Rogie Vachon, the immortally flamboyant Gilles Meloche. If one was at home on skates, all these skills transferred more or less directly.

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Prior to the Vanderlips decamping for Vietnam in 2009 (see Sharon’s blog of that experience here), I made the move to a much smaller wallet. Southeast Asia generally is not “coat country”. It’s far too sweltering for those, meaning the purse-less among us (read: men) are obliged to put such things as wallets and keys in their pants — and a wallet on the Constanza model would never do under these conditions. So I made the move to a billfold with limited credit-card capacity, all of which slipped neatly in my back pocket. Of course, a whole host of shit no longer fit in this streamlined model — things like pictures of my family, my Bull Moose Records card, proof of various road-side assistance programs, etc. Much of that extraneous, excess content sat for many years on my bureau, inside my old, moldering wallet, which I recently threw away — lock, stock and barrel. I saved the pictures however. We keep such things on our phones today, but somehow it’s not the same. See here the wallet-sized imagery I once carried on my person, ready to share with anyone who showed interest.

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Ran back across this picture while gathering image options for my French golf post (see main blog). Sharon took this shot during our 20th anniversary trip, in October 2015. Says a lot about Paris and the French, I think. I’ve seen a lot of metro busking in my day, but a string quintet? Seulment en Paris.

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Ran back across this image recently and felt it needed formal preservation. It was taken in August 1999, after we — the members of Gorham-based True North FC — claimed the Maine Open League Championship at the state Final Four in Presque Isle. That’s the mythic Costello Cup right there, front and center. I was 35 at the time and this was the last time any soccer team of mine won anything of note. Pictured from left (back row) Jimmy Merrill, Kelly Cates, Jason the goaltender (whose name I can’t recall and perhaps never knew), Johnny Merrill, Steve Babineau, yours truly, Pat Mellor, Tony Perry (first row), a mystery man who joined us for this year only, Ward Butler, Bob Strong, George Sherry (a.k.a. “Jij”), Sean “Bullet” Boulet, Pete Grasso, Carl Labbe, and Pat’s dog/team mascot Shiva.

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In the fall of 2013 Sharon and I participated a video/photo shoot organized by the Maine Dept. of Tourism. The campaign was aimed 40 and 50something couples looking to do autumnal things in Maine, like leaf-peeping and ogling covered bridges. Not sure what ever happened to all the video; at least one ad appeared on a NYC bus, we’re told (though we never saw it with our own eyes). This selection from the 2-day shoot was taken by Portland-based photographer Erin Little.

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One thing I was sure to include here in the Scrapbook: the New Year’s Letters we annually share with family and friends. We got into this habit of eschewing Christmas or holiday cards somewhere around 2005. We found it more fun and thorough to receive such cards in December, then volley back with a summary of the prior year. Enjoy, and if anyone has a copy of our 2008 NYL, please send it along so we can complete the set.