Soundings: All is not fair

By Kerry Temple ’74

Basketball is a messy game. It is even messier for 9-year-olds who can’t help but double-dribble, who swarm to the ball like moths to a porch-light and who take too many steps when none is allowed.

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Soundings: Olympic ideals

By Kerry Temple ’74

I grew up under the cloud of Cold War hostility. The Olympics became a staging ground for international rivalries, with U.S. athletes doing their patriotic best to beat Soviet bloc countries and show which political and economic system was superior. Athletes, whether they liked it or not, bore the weight of global power posturing.

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Soundings: The Syllabus

By Kerry Temple ’74

Back when I was an English major and when I thought I might teach, I played a little game. I tried to come up with a list of 10 books I would use to teach students what I wanted them to know about life.

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The little things we do

By Kerry Temple ’74

Life often calls us to speak up, to stand up, to show some gumption, to overcome those little fears that would have us shrink from danger, discomfort or conflict. To go against the crowd, the current, the way it’s always been. To not ride along. To not perpetuate the gossip, to not just look the other way. To stand firm on one’s own conscience. To say no to peer pressure, to groupthink, to those in power. To the trappings of riches, the righteous desire to retaliate.

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Soundings: Summer's game

By Kerry Temple ’74

Baseball is still, to me, a game of fathers and sons, of boyhood dreams and human heroes. Those are the stories I read; those are the players I choose for my fantasy team.

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Soundings: Summer’s curse

By Kerry Temple ’74

I really should have known better. It was foolish of me. But the day’s yard work was done and I wanted to protect the kids and I vowed to shower right away. I’d had some good luck in recent years with a skin wash to stop it. I’d be fine.

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Soundings: Summer's ritual

By Kerry Temple ’74

There is not a time I cut the grass that I do not think of my dad. It was a chore we shared. Looking back, it was also a measure of things and ways and rites of passage. And now when I mow the lawn each week, my idle mind follows those old passageways that always carry me to a smile.

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Time for reconciliation

By Kerry Temple ’74

This past spring, as the papacy of the Roman Catholic Church was historically passed from Pope Benedict XVI to his successor, Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Argentina, Vatican analysts and the international media could not help but delve into a trouble that had persisted for two decades — the sex abuse scandal which first erupted in America in 2002 and had haunted the Church in the States and elsewhere ever since.…

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Of putative interest

By Kerry Temple ’74

For decades Dick Conklin ’59M.A., who directed Notre Dame’s news and information operation and was later the associate vice president for University Relations, dispensed memos with “Of Putative Interest” printed across the top. (He relished fancy words.)

So, too, will I suppose this note to be of interest to you. It should be, if you are reading this magazine.…

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Much more than school

By Kerry Temple ’74

The letter went out in February 2013. Signed by Rev. John Jenkins, CSC, it informed the parents of Notre Dame students that costs were going up again. Even though it pointed out that Notre Dame had kept the annual increase in student charges at 4 percent for the past four years — matching the lowest growth in half a century — the stark numbers were stunning.

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Soundings: Summer Song

By Kerry Temple ’74

Summer is baseball and fireflies, kick-the-can and running through the sprinklers. Seemingly endless afternoons at the community pool, a well-equipped foray to the Lake Michigan beaches.

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Soundings: Dick Conklin, Notre Dame Giant

By Kerry Temple ’74

Dick Conklin died this past Tuesday (May 28). The news of his death came as one of those sudden blows that stops you in your tracks. And so you sit and stare out the window, and one of the reasons you do is because it is hard to imagine Notre Dame without Dick Conklin.

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Stories to Share

By Kerry Temple ’74

About a year ago I received a manuscript from Mel Livatino, a stranger to me. He said Joseph Epstein, a very fine writer who had published perhaps a half-dozen essays with us, had recommended Mel send the manuscript to Notre Dame Magazine. It seemed like a Notre Dame Magazine kind of story.

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Soundings: In the game as in life

By Kerry Temple ’74

Their season was done. The five second-graders came to the bench, replaced by five teammates who would play the game’s final period. As the head coach gave final instructions to those entering the game, I thanked the others for a good year, gave them high-fives.

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Soundings: A little story yet untold

By Kerry Temple ’74

Some years ago, before I was editor of this magazine, I wrote a shortish piece that the editor, Walt Collins ’51, rejected. I reworked it several times, and each version got a thumbs down from the bearded journalist I greatly admired.

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Sunrise at Notre Dame Poster

By Kerry Temple ’74

Sunrise at Notre Dame, artwork by Cap Pannell

Dear Reader,

Last fall an alumnus called and asked us to make sure he would continue to receive the magazine. We assured him alumni receive the magazine free for life. Well, he said, a few years ago he had told us to stop sending it — that he and Notre Dame were parting company.…

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Soundings: The Morning Routine

By Kerry Temple ’74

The kitchen is dark when I enter it on these cold winter mornings. So I flip on the light and head first to the cupboard where the bowls and plates are stacked. I pull out three Corelle plates and three Corelle bowls. Then one day, looking at the table waiting — paper napkins, forks and spoons and juice and bowls lined up at the ready — I realized I had become my father.

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Soundings: A male point of view

By Kerry Temple ’74

A male point of view on co-education is similarly inadequate. We all experienced it differently, though most were hardly impacted. There were sightings in the dining halls and an occasional woman in class, but few opportunities for real interaction.

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Soundings: You don’t know

By Kerry Temple ’74

You are eating lunch at Legends on the Notre Dame campus. Televisions are mounted all over the place, and every screen — doesn’t matter what channel — is showing Manti Te’o. The whole episode is almost too incredulous, too bizarre. Parts could almost make you smile, except you feel so bad for Te’o right now. So you scratch your head and wonder who you can believe. And isn’t that the essential thread of this whole saga — what’s true, who’s telling the truth, what is the truth?

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Soundings: Post-game wrap-up

By Kerry Temple ’74

Notre Dame lost a football game last night. It was a big game. And Notre Dame got bludgeoned. But today, sipping coffee on this morning after, I’m looking back on what we all had all season long as the party partied on from one week to the next, a new gift opened each Saturday, a different surprise popping out of the box — road wins, overtime victories, close calls, rivals vanquished.

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A Season to Remember

By Kerry Temple ’74

Last summer we put together an issue to celebrate 125 years of Notre Dame football. It was mostly written in past tense. The subhead of the main feature asked: “Have the tidal shifts in college football finally doomed the independent Irish?”

We then put football in our rearview mirror and headed for our autumn issue. It had lots to do with Ireland but hardly mentioned the football game in Dublin. And a September win over Purdue had me saying to my father-in-law as we left Notre Dame Stadium: “That doesn’t look to me like a team that could beat Michigan or Michigan State.”…

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