Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Pekin "Chinks"......WHAT????

Well this post is a sort of "fess up" message which also contains more truth than most would like...Particularly my liberal friends.

I am a graduate of Pekin Community High School.....Pekin, Illinois....proud Class of 1961!

The fun part is that Pekin High's sports teams and thus their students are today known as "Dragons", actually a rather natural name given the name "Pekin" which supposedly was short for "Peking", the Chinese city which was supposed to be half way round the Earth from Pekin.

In 1961....and for many years prior to that and until 1967 or so.....we were the Pekin Chinks.

No lie!......Our radio program broadcast by students, including Moi, five days weekly, was Inside Chinkland, and we wrote, produced and spoke the words of the 15 minute daily show on a local station. (eventually led to my 8 year radio-TV newsman stint!)

Each year we elected the Chink and Chinklette who appeared at sporting events and welcomed the other team.....in their Chinese costumes and coolie hats!

I look back today, in this time of "political correctness" and am amazed we did it.....

We interpreted Chink to be a term meaning "worker", and we were proud "workers" for Pekin High.

I still have the glasses, letter sweater, etc. proclaiming our heritage.

Know what?

Inspite of the renaming of the team, and the era of political correctness.....we are still

Pekin Chinks

and shall be forever........

In fact, in the right small shirt shop in Pekin, in a back room to which access is controlled, you can still purchase bright red tee shirts that proclaim Pekin Chinks; and, of course, I have one! Next year, 2006, I plan to attend our 45th year reunion in Pekin, and join my fellow Chinks as we enjoy our heritage.

At the Friday night social we'll all be wearing memorabilia from PCHS!

Duke of DeLand.......A Chink Forever!