I got too believe - even the Pope has a bad day, once in a while!
I attended Bishop Gibbons High School because, and I quote," ..He's one of those boys that needs discipline and a hard hand to over see it..." Well, I can assure you , that the Order of the Irish Christian Brothers could kick ass and take names. All in the name of God of course.
The students were all boys and ran the gamut from little weak momma's boys right through socio - paths.
When I attended you had to wear a suit or sport coat and tie. We all had cardinal and gold book bags, representative of our school colors.
Oh yeah, my friend Nick Marino attended too.
When I first started we rode a regular school bus but the numbers went up and the home district, Mohonasen, had to re - route some buses. We ended up riding in a small van - yes - the short bus! This actually worked out to our benefit because we were the driver's first run. He'd pick us up early and drop us off at Mike's Diner, now the Blue Ribbon. We'd have coffee and a couple of cigarettes and walk to school.
This daily activity got me my first head smack from Brother Murphy my homeroom teacher. Apparently he watched us walk in to school from his classroom windows where he had seen me taking my last puffs on a cigarette.
As I entered the room he cuffed me good upside the head. It hurt and I recoiled away from him bringing up my hands. I thought it was another kid. When I saw it was Murph I couldn't get my hands down fast enough.
He walked up to me. He was a small man but tough. "You made two mistakes my laddie. Do you with your veritable desert of a mind know what they were?" I shook my head no. He swatted me again. By now all the other students were in their seats watching. "Does your mother, the fine Miss Dorothy, know that you smoke?" I didn't respond because I didn't have a clue how he knew my mother's first name. "Did I deaf'in you boy?"
"No, sir," I answered.
"I'm your equal boy. Don't call me sir. Anyone know his second mistake?" He asked the class.
" He raised his hands to you, Brother." One of them answered.
"And young Mr. Di Lella, how would you be knowing that?"
"I did it once," he said.
Brother Murphy told me to take my seat. He then lectured the class, mostly for my benefit, about how if a man or woman of the cloth ever struck it you, that you are to take it like a man as God meant it.
He leaned over my desk and told me that if I ever did either again that I would sorely regret it!
What did I learn that day? Not to smoke outside of Mike's in the morning!