Home & Home

Shared by Martin VanDerSchouw on June 11, 2016

I first met Mike when I was convinced to volunteer on the Members Advisory Group he led for PMI's Registered Education Providers' Program.  Since we both hailed from the Big 8/12 and had a fondness for college sports, we quickly developed a friendship that covered almost two decades.  

I knew we would become great friends on one of my early trips to Philly.  Mike knew I had a habit of trying local dives to get a flavor of an area.  However, this was NOT the way PMI treated its volunteers.  The organization was always careful to ensure volunteers ate and lodged well so dives were NOT on the menu.  But, that didn't stop Mike.  So one cold January evening, Mike asked for directions (Before Google Maps) and we drove into Philly proper and sat on a frigid picnic table eating some of the worst cheesesteak sandwhiches ever created at Pat's served with authentic Cheese Wiz.  Laughing about the whole experience.  Only six months later we would attend our first OU football game together in what would become an annual home and home tradition that lasted 15 years.  In that time we saw the Red River Rivalry and Adrian Petersen's freshman performance, Kevin Durant's incredible game in Lawrence, the very last Missou game in Lawrence, and the Bg 12 Tournament.  As great as those games, and many others were, they are not what I cherished most.  You see, every year Mike and I travelled somewhere together it was a grand adventure where the only promise was time with a great friend and the unexpected.  Here are two of my favorites: 

One of our earliest trips Mike picked me up at the Will Rodgers Airport and promptly informed me that he had left our game tickets in his desk back home in Philly.  "You're kidding right?" I asked.  "Nope," he said laughing.  The only reason he had figured it out was he had run into another friend switching planes in Denver who was coming from Texas and was explaining to the man about his weekend plans.  When he got to the part about the game he realized he needed tickets.  No worries though, he assured me.  He had already arranged to have them next day'd to the Kinko's / Fed Ex Office in Norman.  That night we ate at Coach's and toasted his airport run-in confident the problem was solved.  Unfortunately, the next morning as we walked into Kinko's we were told they wouldn't accept and hold a UPS overnight shipment (It's a Fed Ex Location), and the driver had just been there!  After 30 minutes of searching we found a UPS service location from which we could call to locate the envelope.  We waited another 10 minutes in line as game time quickly approached, and just as we got our turn at the counter a brown shirted driver walks in and right up to Mike.  He promptly asks if he is Dr. Mike Price literally out of no where.  I don't even remember who OU played that year, but I remember laughing the whole time about our good fortune.  

A year or so later, Mike again picks me up from the Oklahoma City Airport late on Friday evening in his rental car.  As we drove down to Norman, Mike told me about how he had the exact same name as another guy who went to OU and also now lived in the Philly area.  However, the other guy had made a bit more money than he, and had made a small donation to the University.  Mike swore he had never used the commonality to his advantage, which I just couldn't believe.  Just after I had finished ribbing him about it, one of Norman's finest pulled us over for going 15 over the speed limit through downtown.

As we pull over Mike unbuckles his seatbelt to get his license.  When the officer approached he immediately informs Mike that it is a $100 fine for not having your seatbelt buckled, and hedoesn't seem pleased to hear we are driving a rental.  He takes Mike's documents back to the patrol car and is gone for almost 20 minutes.  He finally returned and began to hand Mike a simple warning for going 5 MPH over the speed limit, and telling us he was only giving us a warning.  However, he had one question, "So do you have any association with the University?"  We could see from the look in the officer's face he was convinced he had just made the biggest mistake in his career.  For most of us this scenario has an easy out.  Say, "yes" and drive away with no one the wiser, but not Mike.  Ever humble and honest to a fault Mike smiles at the officer as he tries to wrestle the ticket from the officer's hand and says, "No, but we both live in Philadelphia and I get that a lot."  The cop followed us all the way to the hotel.

Mike and I really only saw each other twice a year, but we would text constantly especially during college football and basketball seasons.  I will miss his try wit and sense of humor as we both often lamented our teams' early exit.  Last fall he suggested I bring my 9 year old son along for our annual trips.  This year will be Jake's first in what I hope will be a continuation of a long tradition.  Over the years, I know he will grow tired of hearing the same old stories, but someday I am confident he will understand why I continue tell them.

Thank you Mike for the memories...
 

Meeting Mike

Shared by Martha Legare on June 10, 2016

The PMI Registered Education Providers Advisory Group was how I met Mike. While we look agreeable in this photo, Mike was able to bring together people with a wide diversity of opinions to hash out how the first REP program should set standards for PMI training providers. He made us laugh, admire his insight and intelligence - and love him. He gracefully pushed me to work better for the larger community and helped me to grow. We both loved good food and good wine. When he married "that other Virginia girl that drove him crazy" (albeit in a different way), I was so happy for him! He chose right. Fortunately for me, after PMI he remained a friend.

Mike, I will miss you, but also know you are with me forever. Many thanks.

Movies

Shared by Justin Price on June 6, 2016

My father and I shared a passion for movies, and my dad's tastes were very specific. Here's a list of some of his favorite films:

Local Hero: Texas oil man representing a large company travels to Ferness, Scotland, and has his perceptions of the world greatly expanded through his interactions with the excentric citizens, including the occasional mermaid.

Matinee: The son of a naval officer recently stationed in 1962 Key West during the Cuban Missile Crisis makes new friends, which include Hollywood horror producer Lawrence Woolsey (John Goodman), who reminds people that life means little without a little magic.

Them: Radioactivity from nuclear testing causes certain ants to grow to giant size, terrorizing Los Angeles.

A Christmas Story: Young Ralphie carefully negotiates the tribulations of childhood in 1940's while trying to convince his parents to gift him a Red Rider B.B. Gun for Chiristmas.

God of Cookery: Less a favorite than something my dad found intriguing in new Chinese Cinema. A comedy about the business of celebrity chefs set in China. Stephen Chow (Shaolin Soccer, Kung Fu Hustle).

The Producers: My dad always said that every character in this film was certifiably insane, but it works. The original Mel Brook's film far exceeds the broadway muscial (sorry, but there is only one Zero Mostel). 

My Favorite Year: Arguably Peter O'Toole's greatest performance as an Errol Flynn-like movie star (Alan Swann) set in 1954. The main characer, Benji Stone (aka Benjamin Steinberg) is a fictional representation of Mel Brooks, and the story is a semi-autobiographical piece set when Brooks was a writer for Sid Caesar on Your Show of Shows. Benji is a junior writer for "King Kaiser" on a similar live variety show, which is hosting the washed-up Alan Swann who happens to be Benji's personal hero. 

Asulkan Valley

Shared by Justin Price on June 6, 2016

Dad's favorite spot in the world was the Illecillewaet campground in Glacier National Park in British Columbia Canada, near Roger's Pass. From that picturesque setting, there were dozens of hiking trails.

One of the most notorious trails was Asulkan Valley. I recall being around 10 or 11 years old, and my father leading us to the end of the trail, which included a section near the peak where the trail runs along a narrow ridge. On the right side was a 70 degree drop to certain death, and on the left side was a 60 degree drop to certain injury. My mother's vertigo, and fear for my younger brother, paralyzed them from proceeding, but dad and I continued to the peak.

Due to my age and my mother's acrophobia, I ended up being my father's regular hiking buddy, at least on the trails that led to dramatic heights.

Christmas Lights

Shared by Justin Price on June 6, 2016

Putting up exterior Christmas lights in most households was an activity that lasted an hour or so at most, but in our hosehold it was a weekend activity. My dad was a big advocate of figuring things out the hard way, and they had to be perfect. Had we been raised in a Northern latitude, I am confident I would have lost at least a couple digits to frostbite given all the time spent rehanging Christmas lights that weren't just right.

Share a Story

 
Illustrate your story with a picture, music or video (optional):