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Annual Epiphany Letters

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I got such a good response, I thought I might try this every year.

January 6th, 2009


Tomorrow is January 6th and Epiphany.  Tonight is the 12th night of Christmas and what some refer to as Christmastide.  Once again if you are a Lord feel free to leap.  Epiphany seems like the best time for me to sit down and reflect about the past year and thank those that have been so supportive, or whose company has just made life that much more enjoyable.


2008 turned out to be a year of travel and doing whatever I wanted.  I started off the year by making free throws on the court at Staples Center before a Clippers game.  I am still the adviser for one of the only middle school chapters of Future Business Leaders of America which affords me several opportunities to have fun and positively influence future student leaders.  Every year I go to Magic Mountain for competition and thrill-seeking, go bowling, play laser tag, enjoy ice skating, host a movie night at school (this year we saw IRONMAN, and I did my facial hair like Tony Stark and pasted a light to the inside of my shirt), host a winter social and an end of the year banquet, and in between all of that we fundraise like crazy.  It keeps me busy and I always have fun at the events.  We are planning on going back to the Staples Center again this January. 


I am also still part of my district’s Technology Committee.  Every March I go to Palm Springs and enjoy a few warm days learning what’s new with the world of technology education and I get to see my Godfather Terry who lives there. 


I went to Vegas for Spring Break in April and stayed at the Paris hotel.  I tried some new places to eat such as the Top of the World Restaurant and the Eiffel Tower Restaurant.  Both were nice but not worth the money.  You can get drinks at both for much less if you want to see the view.  I always have a great time in Vegas but it is getting tougher to be thrifty.


I had a great time at the FBLA State competition in Irvine at the end of April and got to see my high school officers one more time before they went off to college.  This group of students was very special because they helped me start the middle school chapter 5 years ago when they were in 8th grade.  Several received scholarships to schools such as Brown, Cornell, and UCLA.  I was very proud.   


In May I performed in a drum battle at my school’s Spring Concert.  If I can find the footage I will edit it and put it up on Youtube soon.  I finished out the month as the keynote speaker at the second annual Elementary Leadership Conference. 


I could not find any work for the summer, so I simply didn’t work.  What a summer!  It was great.  I got a season pass to Raging Waters, went to the beach, exercised, saw movies and traveled as much as possible.  I spent a week in Chicago with my sister-in-law’s family.  I spent a week in Ojai at the expense of my district and enjoyed amazing scenery and an unforgettable birthday with beautiful weather, technology, activities, tons of food and drink, great people, and some more time on stage at the talent show (still available on Youtube – just do a search for Scott York Stand Up).  I spent a couple days in San Diego and went to Sea World after watching the opening ceremonies in the Gas Lamp Quarter.  I ate lunch at the hotel Del Coronado for the first time and played on the beach before heading home. 


I spent more time staying up late and listening to live music this past year.  I spent several nights down in Fullerton at the Soco district and a few in Fullerton watching friends and other great musicians play this summer.  I went to see Metallica in December for the first time in 15 years.  They were still great and I will never forget it. 


I took lots of pictures and video all year and spent a lot of time contemplating grad school programs.  I finally decided that I should defiantly get my MBA because it will be more useful and versatile.  I am currently researching programs and trying to set up financial aid now that the democrats are back in office.


The first day back at school I was told that I would be teaching Algebra and that it would be a class full of Special Needs children.  On top of that I was not able to use my computer lab for the first six weeks of school to teach my four computer classes because no one had bothered to finish setting it up in the new room that they tried to move it to over the summer.  It has been the toughest and most stressful year I have had so far but I am happy to have a job since so many of my colleagues don’t.  I took advantage of any vacation time I was given and tried to have fun with FBLA in the fall to find some release from the problems of the school year.  In November I went back to Sea World and stayed at Humphrey’s Half Moon Bay Hotel on Shelter Island.  It was a great get away and I stopped in Ocean Beach on the way home. 


Gas prices dropped just in time for me to drive out to Arizona for Thanksgiving to visit with my friend’s family for the holiday weekend.  We had a wonderful time and even took out his dad’s boat on Lake Pleasant. 


A fortuitous accident, combined with the generosity of my parents, allowed me to acquire an annual pass to Disneyland and I have already visited the Magic Kingdom seven times with family and friends that have passes. 


Christmas Break was a whirlwind of traveling, visiting, and enjoying the holiday season with family and friends.  I went ice skating in Pasadena, saw the lights at the Mission Inn, spent the day visiting the various wineries of Temecula with a friend that was house sitting in the area, had my annual holiday party with some friends, went to Vegas for a couple of days, had front row seats for the Rose Parade, and enjoyed Disneyland one more time before the Christmas decorations were taken down. 


What an incredible year it was.  I hope yours was just as spectacular and that 2009 is even better.  Thanks for your friendship and support. 

January 6th, 2008
Tomorrow is Epiphany Sunday and the 12th day of Christmas.  If you are a Lord, feel free to leap.  There are 12 days of Christmas because it took the three wise dudes that long to find the baby Jesus in his “golden fleece diapers” lying in a manger.  I hope you had a festive holiday season and you and your family have a great 2008. 

My friend Victor mentioned the other day that he hates Christmas letters.  So I sat down one Sunday afternoon and this came out.  This is dedicated to my dear friend Victor, just for spite.  Enjoy

It is a beautiful Sunday morning and I am sitting in church alone.  I came in a little late but found a pew to myself and I am reminded of the joke about the guy that eats beans before church.  I still would not say that I am a Presbyterian even though I have been attending this church by my house regularly for the past year.  I like the church and I have made some nice friendships here.  They are happy to see me and I always feel welcome.  I enjoyed playing softball with the church team this summer.   

If there was an Episcopal church in my area I would probably be there instead, and I sometimes enjoy joining my mother at Our Savior in San Gabriel where I have so many memories.  Every time I attend a service in an Episcopal church it seems to only re-affirm why I choose to align myself with this doctrine of faith and stewardship over all others.  Someone once told me that the Episcopalian church raises more questions than answers.  Meaning that if you are looking for a church to tell you what to do or how to feel about your relationship with God and the church…you should go elsewhere. 

However, I have never been one to question much.  I often wonder why so many spend their time debating the validity of theological history.  These things don’t seem to enter my radar.  I don’t feel the need to find answers to everything and I try not to judge others or label them.  Of course I realize this is why so many of us were once classified as belonging to Generation X - a label that was a reaction to our parents’ desire to feel secure by putting everything in a box and giving it a nice title.  My father once said that he felt I did not want to be known.  Given that X is the most common variable or “unknown” I would say that was quite an astute observation on his part.  He is often more profound than he means to be, or than he is given credit for.  This last year I have had much more to question and it has been very difficult to reason through and deal with despite my propensity not to.  I feel very appreciative of my family and friends that have been so helpful and supportive this past year.   

Work is about the same as always.  I still enjoy working with middle and high school students as the adviser of my school’s chapter of Future Business Leaders of America.  Every year we fundraise, go bowling, ice-skating, play laser tag, go to competition at Magic Mountain and generally have a good time while trying to foster professional behavior in young people.  I do it because I still enjoy it.  I stopped cutting my hair and beard after my wife left.  It turned out to be a lot of fun since our theme last year was Pirates.  My kids thought it was fun and I shaved off the beard after my family and I went to Pirate’s Dinner Theater for my birthday.  I am still growing my hair out and will probably donate it when it is long enough.

I just finished the last of my graduate classes on Cross-Cultural Language and Acquisition Development.  I will file the paperwork this week, after which I will be in compliance with the state and be able to keep teaching.  I am still a member on the district technology committee and I joined the one at church as well.  I spent a lot of time this summer with my brother and his family at their new place in Mission Viejo.  It has been nice to have him closer.  I enjoyed trips to Santa Barbara, Las Vegas, Palm Springs and Oregon this year.  I probably would never have any reason to visit Oregon if my cousins didn’t live there but they were very accommodating and made it such a memorable trip I hope to go back soon.  I spent this Christmas with the Tosto family in Arizona.  I missed my family but it was so nice and distracting to be outside of California.  Everyone made me feel at home and I had a great time.      

I am enjoying my house and the solitude it brings.  I play drums with friends a few times a year and can play my own set as loud as I want and never bug anyone.  I don’t know what will come next for me but I plan on traveling this next year to visit friends I have been too busy to see in the past.  I will probably continue with my education in 2008, though I am not sure at this point if I will be working on a Masters in Education or my MBA. 

Life is moving on and so am I.  Or at least I am attempting to.

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