Wildcat Tales


Barton Freedman (1962) on Gym Class and Irwin August 

Funny personal story that I'd be glad to share - during my senior year at Wheatley in 1962, Mr. Brightman found out that I had been repeatedly cutting gym class. It was true - I hated it and thought I wouldn't be missed. Brightman "advised" me, in no uncertain terms, that, in order to graduate on time, I would have to work out 3 mornings a week with Mr. August, who had reported me to Brightman in the first place. I served my sentence and graduated. Walked from Horseshoe Lane to Wheatley 3 days a week to meet him at 6:30 in the morning and worked out with him for an hour each time. Interestingly, my parents supported the school - not me - and told me to be careful walking on Bacon Road. (Contrast to today) I don't think i have ever been in such wonderful physical shape. I hated the man - I can still hear his gravel voice almost 55 years later - and also loved him. Sorry to hear of his passing - I will send a note to his widow.


Barton Freedman (1962) on Tubas 

Speaking of tubas - If you're looking for another crazy memory to post - I can fill your section myself - sometime around 1968, while I was in Law School at Fordham and trying to sign up for military reserve waiting lists, I sold myself as a Tuba player to an army reserve band unit at Camp Kilmer in NJ. They set me up for an audition about 4 weeks hence. I had not touched a tuba since my freshman year in college (1962-63). I was living at my parents' house on Horseshoe Lane in RH at the time (and commuting to Lincoln Center every day). I asked someone at Wheatley if I could try a tuba in one of the practice rooms to see if I could still blow it. They did me one better - they loaned me one of their tubas to take home for the four weeks - I blew my parents' brains out instead of the school's - actually took it to Camp Kilmer and was accepted into their band. Lucky for me, I never had to serve so I was able to turn them down.


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