TCBA Yearbook

Foreword I


1902  1903 
1905  1906  1907 1908  1909  1910

1911  1912  1913
1914  1915  1916 1917  1918  1919


1921  1922  1923
1924  1925  1926 1927  1928  1929

1930  1931  1932
1933  1934  1935 1936  1937  1938

1940  1941  1942
1943  1944  1945 1946  1947  1948

1950  1951  1952
1953  1954  1955 1956  1957  1958

1960  1961  1962
1963  1964  1965 1966  1967  1968

1970  1971  1972
1973  1974  1975 1976  1977  1978

1980  1981  1982
1983  1984  1985 1986  1987  1988

1990  1991  1992
1993  1994  1995 1996  1997  1998

2000  2001  2002
2003  2004  2005 2006  2007  2008

2010  2011  2012
2013  2014  2015 2016  2017  2018

2020  2021  2022
2023  2024  2025 2026  2027  2028

Foreword 1
Foreword II
The Ad
The Letter
The Test
First Newsletter

TCBA Almanac

     There is an interesting discussion currently taking place among scientists as to whether or not a computer virus is, in fact, a “real” disease. Reading through the pages of this volume forced me to face squarely some intense memories with a depth of emotion that is quite startling. Although the TCBA world is rooted in fantasy, the evidence exposed by the contributors to this book screams as loud as any known reality. Even the most casual reader will recognize a pattern of socialization that continually developed from our earliest beginnings up to the present time.  We have created a language of reference unique to TCBA, from idioms like “the bus to Binghamton” to sheep jokes and “metro humor.” In a very real way, what we have done is to create an alternate reality, an evolving parallel universe into which we step from time to time, getting lost in its labyrinth of back alleys and by-ways, roads that we paved quite by accident. The joy and pain, the love and loss expressed in these pages is too clear to be anything less than “real.”    

    From the moment of our creation, time spent inside our alternate world has varied from member to member, from season to season. For most of us, a trip to TCBA is an escape from the harshness of our other existence, a chance to shade ourselves from the damaging rays of mortal life’s burning sun. For some the visits to TCBA have been short. Our history is dotted with quick departures. I sometimes wonder who those souls were that passed our way briefly on their way to other heres. What twist of fate caused them to appear, and even more intensely, why weren’t they chosen to stay? 

     For many, the TCBA experience has been a more lengthy one. A surprisingly large number of our original members are still active, a tribute not only to their stamina, but also to the power of TCBA to satisfy varied needs. More often than not, we have found TCBA to be the perfect place to hide during times of hideous personal strife. Our alternate world has proven to be a healing place, capable of accepting people of vast differences and somehow making us all compatible. The Quakers say that from diversity comes strength, and it has never been more true than in TCBA. 

     In today’s world of corporate dimensions, the popular trend seems to be for mission statements, or clearly defined objectives. In our TCBA world, we were given our prime directive back in 1975 by founder Jim Lafargue in the first sentence of our organizational constitution:

 “ promote friendship and stimulate competition...”

     It is not by accident that friendship precedes competition in that simple phrase. There are repeated instances in our history that amply demonstrate that without the strong bond of friendship our world would rip apart. We have weathered interpersonal storms of such magnitude that it is difficult to comprehend how our grand experiment has survived. At times competition seemed to be the driving force that led us into dangerous waters. Always it was the warm winds of friendship that blew us safely back to shore. By now we know that the intensity of friendship is why we are all still here. Read it in the pages that follow. Again and again you will discover that the friendships that have developed are the reasons why we continue to visit TCBA. In our created world we have discovered truth. 

    TCBA is a community, a tightly knit society that has witnessed births, deaths, marriages, divorces, hirings and firings. We have shared most of what life has to offer. Through those experiences has developed a caring and understanding that is not easily found elsewhere. In the predominantly male TCBA society, we are not accustomed to sharing our deeper feelings, but the words on these pages speak loudly and clearly. We care very much for each other, and I can say without hesitation that amongst my fellow members of TCBA are the best friends that a man could ever have. I am thankful and will be forever amazed that we have traveled the same paths together for so long. 

     The publishing of this volume could not have happened without the help and guidance of a lot of people. I especially would like to thank Dan Warren, whose initial statistical research and text served as the foundation for the whole project. Dan’s service as statistician for TCBA has gone unrecognized too often. Although many others have contributed to the production of the yearbook, Dan stands above the rest, and I thank him for it. May the sun shine softly in Gloucester, especially when I come to visit, Dan!    

     I realize that by mentioning names I run the risk of leaving someone out who has probably contributed as much as anyone. As editor for this book, I had the joyous task of organizing all the wonderful submissions from many TCBA members. I have tried to present the memories in such a way that allows for the seasons to flow along in a continuous thread, with some attempt to provide more historical substance to certain events. I sincerely apologize to all those whose work I have dissected. In all cases I have tried to keep clear the original meaning and intent of those offerings.

     As we enter our third decade together, we are facing renewed pressures, age has relentlessly crept up on all of us, and the next century looms ahead. Where we will all be by the Year 2000 is unclear. Where I would like to be is in Lancaster, PA, sitting on the sofa at the Willow Valley Inn with beer in hand, having a good laugh with Marty Fiehl about sheep, while the events of TCBA swirl around us. I would swear that was heaven. 

                                                                              - Bob Braun, December 1995


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