When Leo High School welcomes Moms, Dads, Students and Staff, the bags of Mickey D's cast-off paper and plastic, battalions of styrofoam trays with chicken bones, legions of Frito-Lay parcels, squads of empty pints of Bumpy Face Seagrim's Gin, scraps of Sun Times Redlines and wet matted bits of penny saver coupon bundles are no where to be seen on the grounds.
Elves must pick up and toss the detritus of modern urban thoughtlessness and 'disappear it' into City of Chicago waste bins on our 79th Streetcape.
This morning I traveled from my home in Morgan Park six miles to the south and west of Leo High School, up Western Avenue (plowed and somewhat salted), east on 87 Street (plowed and somewhat salted) and north on Racine ( unplowed, nor salted) to 79th Street east ( (plowed and salted) and into the Leo Parking Lot ( unplowed at 4:45 AM).
I got out of the Malibu and said my morning Leo Memorare and noticed that the sidewalks and pathways around the school were already cleared.
When snow blankets the pathways and sidewalks, some miracle men must have bolted from their quilty blankets in the Sixteen Degree frost of the morning and cleared our winter waves of white stuff.
No, my dears, Mr. Harold Green and Army veteran and a family man with the strength of eight lesser mortals did that.
Harold shoveled all of Leo's campus and then cleared the CTA benches for people who wait to swipe their hard-bought Ventra Cards for travel to work and school - not in Harold Green's job description. With all of that done - Harold will drive to Beecher, Illinois, South Holland, Roseland, Brainard and back to Leo High School with twelve students. Now, some mincing person might offer, " Well, that's his job."
Mr. Harold Green gets to work at Leo High School at around 4AM - rain, shine, snow and trouble: Never late, never absent. During the day, while perched on my rump in the Development cubicle, I see Mr. Harold Green haul, lift, fix and fetch in and out of the school - 'Go to Menards: Get coffee for visitors; Jump Start my Car . . .' and ,one day, just prior to Leo's Annual Veterans Observance I received this inter-office memo :
Pat,Well, it is his job, after all.
1. Harold Green will pick up coffee.
3. Harold Green will set up 3-4 rows of chairs.
4. Harold Green will set up podium and sound system.
5. I spoke to Mrs. Latifi and she will have NHS students greet and help older veterans cross the street.
7. Mrs. Hill will have 1-4 students sing the National Anthem.
Yes, it is. Have a nice day, Cupcake.
Mr. Harold Green is the Leo High School go-to-guy that educators and most otherwise nice people rarely notice.
I'm not so nice. I notice.
Harold Green is my idea of a mythological Titan.
Harold Green expects to do his work. That is all that Harold Green needs to say about it.