Remember last month?

I made light of Judy Roberts wanting me to stand in line at 6 a.m. to buy tickets for the Plano-Lake Highlands football game. Well, since then, I believe I’ve experienced the ultimate ticket-buying faux pas. On the way to Texas Stadium to watch the Wildcats play Nimitz, I stopped at the cash machine at the Comerica Bank (here’s another good one for the trivia list – how many names has this bank on Shoreview had?) and suckered $30 from the drawer, thinking that would be plenty for my wife Alice, daughter Emily and myself.

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First, let me thank the gentleman who only briefly glared at me when I asked to panhandle 30 cents outside the ticket window. Please give me a call, sir, and I’ll be happy to bring the money to your house. I was too humbled at the time to ask your name. And thanks to Alice for having that big purse with $1.70 rattling around in the bottom.

Nine dollars a ticket! Five dollars for parking! Would somebody please warn me next time? I told Alice I wanted her to sign us up to be band chaperones at every football game next year.

Band Parents Have It Made

It was shameful. I saw half the band parents entering the Nimitz, Jersey Village and North Mesquite games for free – just by wearing one of those band button thingies and carrying a five-gallon band bucket. I want to be in that line!

Enough of my hard times.

Speaking of standing in lines, I was behind a woman in the check-out line at Tom Thumb Thanksgiving morning when I heard a young woman in the adjacent line comment on her fine red and black sparkly earrings.

“They’re my ‘game day’ earnings,” she said. “Except I’m so excited this week, I put them on a day early.”

After the woman in the next line turned her attention back to the tabloid article on the 1,000 pound woman giving birth to eight babies, I started talking to Lynda Jo Hopkins Sawyer, ’67. Lynda Jo played clarinet in the band and was a baton twirler.

“Back when they had twirlers!” She said this like it was the same era Jolson was singing on one knee.

Her son Brett (No. 44) wouldn’t be playing, she told me, since he had suffered an ankle injury in the Plano game. She held her hands apart like she was holding a gallon paint can.

“It swelled up like this,” she said.

I noticed, however, Brett did play that Friday night, and I saw him sack Nimitz’ quarterback in the fourth quarter. Way to go, Brett!

It turns out that he’s the third Sawyer son to play on a Lake Highlands football team that made the playoffs. Her other sons are Brad, ’91, and Blake, ’93. Is this some kind of record?

Care For Some Cotton Candy?

Last month, people came out of the woodwork to clear up one of the trivia puzzlers from a previous Wildcat Tracks column. Lori Burns was first to report.

I had complained about not being able to remember the title of the movie filmed at Lake Highlands High School. The name of the movie was Cotton Candy, and it was filmed during Burns’ junior year at the school. She and her husband, Robert, graduated in 1975. They live in the neighborhood and have three children. The oldest, Caitlin, is a second grader at Northlake Elementary. Brenna is 4 and R.J. is 3 years old.

I also got a message on my voice mail from Jan Riddlebarger, my daughter’s second grade teacher when she was at Wallace Elementary. Jan penned my second all-time favorite note sent home by a teacher.

The entire text of the message was as follows: “Dear Mr. and Mrs. Russell – Emily fell out of her chair today. Sincerely, Mrs. Riddlebarger.”

That was it. And I wasn’t surprised.

I sent a long, detailed, tongue-in-cheek reply, where I basically sought to find an explanation for where I’d gone wrong as a parent. I figured falling out of a chair would no doubt lead to worse things, such as walking into walls. (Remember, Jan, when you told me you were afraid I’d use this incident in an article someday?)

All-American cheerleader Kirk Kelly. ’81, actually had a bit part in Cotton Candy. He used this role as a springboard to an acting career. He’s been on 21 Jump Street, Fame, Chico and the Man, numerous commercials, and is looking forward to this year, since he’s under contract to Tri-Star Pictures and is up for at least two movies and some television sitcoms.

Will The Real Betty Buckley…

A mysterious reply with the correct answer also arrived via the Internet. The message text carried the following clue: “The movie was also the start of my sister’s film career. My sister, Betty Buckley, is not the producer of the PBS kid’s show Wishbone.”

Who sent this note, please?

I called my friend, Ann Buckley, columnist for Park Cities People newspaper, whose daughter Betty Buckley is producer of Wishbone. Ann told me the anonymous e-mailer was probably the brother of Betty Buckley of Eight Is Enough, Cats and current start of Broadway’s Sunset Boulevard.

This Betty Buckley is from Fort Worth. I guess her brother is a Lake Highlands resident. Cool!

Ann also told me that Cotton Candy was one of the first “grip” jobs for her son-in-law, Richard Knight (married to the Wishbone producer, Betty Buckley! Is everyone keeping up with me so far?), whose profession is “key grip” in the film business.

Richard and Betty live in Lakewood, which is a neighborhood I’m told is south of Lake Highlands.