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January 08, 2007



Thank you for your extremely kind words, Terry. It would be an honor to contribute a piece from time to time to your exceptionally fine paper. Let's grab coffee and talk about it one of these mornings when you're free.

The incongruity of erecting a totem pole at an English- style boarding school in Delaware (where the architecture resembles that of Princeton, Bryn Mawr, or a Scottish Manor House) was part of the appeal. In retrospect, I'm surprised it was allowed to remain as long as it was.

Terry Cowgill


A totem pole at St. Andrew's seems somehow incongruous. Sort of like a picture of Richard Nixon on a student's wall at Haverford.

I went to a school very similar to St. A (about 10 years earlier than when you were in H.S.) and I don't think I ever saw any multicultural displays until my sixth-form year, when an Egyptian classmate (the only Arab in the school) taught us all how to pray toward Mecca.

I am enjoying your blog. Thanks for leaving the link on my own blog. You write exceedingly well. Please consider writing an occasional column for us at The Lakeville Journal.


Perhaps I should post a full headshot of our former headmaster alongside Sam the Eagle and the bird at the top of the pole and let more objective eyes determine which was unconscious inspiration for the artist.

As for finding the pole, it was brutally heavy and if I were the maintenance staff I'd have taken a chain saw to it. Probably it was scooped up by an excavator and trucked away with the contruction debris from the new art center. Still, any leverage you have in that regard, Charlie, would be a welcome resolution.

Charlie Crystle

Perhaps we can launch a campaign to locate the totem pole. I remember when JBOB (headmaster) would come up to the music room at 9 pm in his robe, yelling at Theo, Dave, and I to stop playing that damn music. Ironically, they named the new music and arts center after him. Gag.


22 years on, I'm impressed too. It was a real treat to find these photographs among the files in my attic. I've often considered carving a sequel, though out of basswood this time, like the best carousel horses. Theo is in Oakland so I'll need another conspirator. Perhaps my children...


I love the totem pole! A real work of art. So cool that you made that in high school.

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