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The Mass Media

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

Thank You, Kind and Nameless Friends

On my way to class at 12:50pm on Tuesday, October 10, a lame foot failed to make the necessary extra inch of lift over a cement slab between the McCormack and Wheatley buildings. I managed to find myself momentarily airborne before crash landing with only knees and hands as landing gear. Lying face down on the paving blocks, I was gauging the wreckage, wondering if my recently replaced hip had survived the crash.

Shaken but not too badly stirred, I was immediately surrounded by a sweet symphony of voices and languages: Russian (Ukraine?), Arab (Iran?), Vietnamese, African-American, South Boston Irish, and Latino. Soon, I matched the voices to the kind faces hovering above me, each offering help and support to me, a total stranger.

Nine years I have taught here at UMass; nine years I have known the joy of seeing my children’s faces in every student’s face and hearing my children’s voices in each of theirs. Now and again a crystallizing event brings us into focus; for me this now and again was face down on the pavement. I simply needed to look up at them and there they were-rays of sunlight and promise soothing my pain and consternation. They are our hope and our future.

Soon, these dear students had me up, vital signs checked, brushed off, and kindly offered me help getting to class. A couple of sprained wrists and bruised knees later, I’m none the worse for wear. Thank you, kind and nameless friends! Not only did you lift up my body, you lifted up my soul. Bless you all.

Kathi Lee, Instructor

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