That screaming banshee on the far right, the one holding his grandfather’s dress sword and leading his detailers (essentially his management team), followed by about a hundred awed plebes, is none other than Kilo Company Commander MIDN Lt Carl Chadwick Kolon. This is what he said to his detailers before these practice parades began:
Today is our first practice parade. Whether or not you think it develops you as a Naval Officer (I do!) parades are a valuable experience. They are one of the only things at the Naval Academy that is not all about you. I hear other Midshipmen complain a lot about parades and they say things like “how will this develop me as a Naval Officer”? It doesn’t matter, because we’re not out there for ourselves.
We’re out there for the moms and dads in the stands. We’re out there for the taxpayers, to prove that the Naval Academy actually does teach discipline. We’re out there for the one kid watching who dreams about coming here. We receive an entire education on the dime of others. Think about parades as the 5-hour-a-semester job which pays for it.
Despite the occasional cynicism, I know that everyone here feels a deep pride for this place. Performing well in a parade is how we show that pride to other people, without the arrogance or individualism of knocking our class ring on the table. When we perform as one precise unit, when all the bayonets flash at once, and when we march back to T-court in step all the way, we will have displayed the most important emotion we should all feel: gratitude. If you don’t buy that, try this: a key part of military discipline is performing enthusiastically no matter what the mission.
And we can’t perform well in a parade without performing well in a practice parade. So let’s kill it today.
Carl, I wish I was one of your detailers.
Kana, Nellie, Mia, Anaïs, and Minako Celebrate!
So that’s a wrap for Nellie’s High School career. On June 3, Nellie and a couple hundred other graduates were celebrated in a beautiful ceremony near her American School in Japan. But ASIJ wasn’t Nellie’s only high school. She spent her first two years at the Harrow School in Beijing, but embraced (even sought out) the challenge of moving high schools halfway though. That meant changing not just schools but systems (British to American) and of course countries (China to Japan.) What a killer.
Northeastern University, in Boston, is Nellie’s choice for her undergraduate tour. And tour it’s going to be, because she’s going to spend the first semester at University College Dublin, as part of Northeastern’s NU.in program. Perhaps a little odd that this international student with a school career spent entirely in China and Japan should go “overseas” for her introduction to college life, but after that she’ll be in Boston for the next 3 1/2 years.
Nellie plans to study biological science, which is one of the hottest majors in undergraduate education right now, and in which Northeastern has a great set of programs and fantastic co-op opportunities. Bioscience also covers the two most-valuable college degrees according to Forbes magazine.
Nell was accepted into a bunch of schools, and offered scholarships to a few too, but ultimately the program, city setting, and New England location sealed the deal for her.
We’re so proud of Nellie and can’t wait to watch her succeed!
Carl called yesterday with the exciting news that for the first assignment of his final year in Annapolis, he’s been appointed Commander of the USNA 20th Company for Plebe Summer 2017. This is very cool for a few reasons:
- He’ll begin his final, “firstie” year as he did last year – developing the 20th Company’s plebes “morally, mentally, and physically” as the USNA mission statement goes.
- This year though, he’ll be developing his own leadership skills even more than the plebes themselves, because all told, he’ll have about 100 mids reporting to him. I was well into my forties before I had responsibility like that.
- With three stripes he’ll become a “striper” which makes him one of the leaders of the brigade of midshipmen.
- Therefore, as a 1st -Class Midshipman Lieutenant, he’ll wear the insignia at the top of this post. Pretty sharp!
Hard to believe that Nellie is looking at colleges already. Here’s the map. We might not visit them all, but we expect to get to many of the ones in the Northeast this summer.
The map used to be here, but Google upgrades made is unusable after a while, so I’ll just say that Nell applied to schools in Montreal, Burlington, Boston, Amherst, New York City, Washington D.C., and a few other places. Above you can see what happened.
Nellie and her friend Hiroki went to the 2016 ASIJ Prom together, along with their friends Sae and David. What a couple of lovely couples! The parents were very busy taking pics to show their friends, so I took a pic of them for you too.
Now that the house is mostly complete, we are (finally) turning to the question of landscaping. We’re working with Chad Willard of Paints With Plants for the work itself. The above is his first plan for the stonework and planting, and while we’ve made a few changes, we think it’s pretty cool.
Posted in Home
As I often say, I’m a really lucky guy. From mid-March to mid-April, I had friends and family help me celebrate my 50th birthday in five cities and a town, in four countries, on two continents, beginning in Singapore and ending up in New York.
I also had some of my favorite people visit me in Tokyo: Carl and Jackie came on their school vacations, and Jesse visited the week after. If I had known turning fifty was going to be so much fun, I would have done it a lot sooner!
Thanks everyone who drank, ate, sang, danced, smoked, stumbled, and otherwise celebrated with me. Most of all, thanks to my lovely Patty who pulled together the amazing Ryokan visit in Hakone and who enabled (and allowed) all the others.
I’m almost the same age now that Pop was in this 1967 picture. Yeah, that’s me!
The ring in the above picture is on my finger now. The HHoF insignia is almost worn away.
My grandfather Bill Chadwick was born on October 10, 1915; today would have been his 100th birthday. His first home was on 122nd St in Manhattan and his father delivered milk from a horse-drawn wagon. From those humble beginnings he went on to change the history of the game of ice hockey as a referee, get elected into the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto, and become a iconic broadcaster and the public face of the New York Rangers. He also managed to marry my grandmother, have two children with her, and be a hero grandfather to me and four other lucky kids, and a great-grandfather to four more.
Four generations of The Whistle: me, Carl, Big, and Bill.
I wrote this post when he passed away in 2009 at 94. A pretty good run, and few regrets for sure. I think of him all the time as I think all us Chadwicks do, and many others besides.
Carl and Nell have each been having their share of triumph lately and I want to brag, so here goes.
Nellie has gracefully and successfully negotiated our move to Tokyo with all the class you’d expect. She attends the American School in Japan (ASIJ) and takes seven classes, four of which are AP, and including both Chinese (where she’s at the top of course) and Japanese (where she’s just a smart beginner.)
She’s also playing volleyball again and has become one of the captains of her team, is the owner of a stunning serve that got her 11 aces in a row in one game, and is a great leader who is improving all the time. I’m so proud of her!
Carl is back for his 2nd year at the Academy, a so-called “youngster” now. He’s got a packed academic schedule too, but the most impressive outward sign of his development is his place in the USNA Jolly Rogers – the academy’s silent drill team. He auditioned, was accepted, and qualified all last year, and this year he’s performing with the team nearly every weekend. I went to Annapolis on a recent trip to the US and had time to see them perform, and it blew me away. Here’s a video from the weekend before. If you’re only watching for him, he is most easily visible at about 5:15. But watch the whole thing, it’s excellent.