Travel Stories

Dr. Renik I Presume

          I am mostly baffled at what fuels my desire for a rendezvous with, Owen Renik, a H.S. classmate I haven’t seen in 54 years, and who I honestly don’t recall having had one conversation with, ever, or indeed even a shared activity, ever, altho I was surely aware of his existence, viewed him as of a different class, almost waspy, and a competitor.  He was not from my neighborhood, i didn't "hang out" with him, and I knew nothing about him other than what he looked like and what I projected onto him, which at that age I expect I saw as somehow "known" by me.  And although I would proclaim I am not that attached or attracted to most of my high school experiences, nor to my high school cohorts, the fact is I have gone to the 10th, 20th, 30th and 50th class reunions.  Dr. Renik has not, and I did not ask him why, although my guess/projection is that his h.s. experiences and mates are of little to no interest to him.  And I "imagine" I get it.  

         Nonetheless, I am interested in meeting him, and in attaching a real person to his name and face, and I have worked on making it happen over email for about a year, telling him of my interest in meeting him and how I'm often out in San Francisco, and him suggestion that when I was next out here to let him know and he would put some time aside for me.

         Here's what I knew about Owen Renik before our rendezvous ... nothing.  Here's what I "know" after our rendezvous at NAME - a very lovely lounge/bar in the neighborhood of his office around Sutter and ??  
         He is currently a training and supervising analyst at the San Francisco Psychoanalytic Society.  He was editor and chief of the “Psychoanalytic Quarterly” for a decade and Director of Training/Associate Chief of the Mt. Zion Hospital Department of Psychiatry.  More than that he is the father of two girls/women, one a pediatrician in S.F.,m and the other a geologist, living in Texas, where Owen's current woman/partner is.  Neither have children and although he recognizes it would be a lovely experience to have, he is not attached to the notion that if it doesn't happen he will suffer.  Indeed, although I understand there were times in Owen's life when he did suffer, and was confused, his overall experience of his life is that he was/is a remarkably fortunate man who lived a nice life.  And on this one occasion of our meeting I found him to be as lovely a man as you are likely to meet.  Fit.  Trim.  Nice haircut.  T shirt and sport jacket.  Works out.  Girlfriend in Texas.  Daughter in Texas.  Other daughter pediatrician. 

Joan – from the old world –

Jerry – scions and apples