90 Alumni Stories: #22 Lawrence Marino (LH 1990-91)
Lawrence was part of a small team responsible for pulling together London House's first photo 'yearbook', something to pull out occasionally and reminisce about good times spent with the fascinating people pictured there. Here he talks about his role as video supremo and yearbook creator; sharing an 'in joke' with the Queen and giving away a coveted Eric Clapton ticket to another Member...
In 1990, London House needed someone to manage video presentations – meaning, rent videotapes and press play. I stepped up. Requests were honored and the wide-ranging selections widened our horizons, though I made sure to introduce the citizens of many nations to Bill and Ted (“Be excellent to each other”). Watching movies may seem a solitary pursuit, but it really isn’t when you’re crowded into a small room. We watched the gems of world cinema and discussed them as young people do. It was a pleasure.
For months, we annoyed everyone taking candid pictures, staging group photographs, arranging artistic shots, and documenting the fantastic diversity of the people around us …
London House never had an Annual ‘yearbook’, so we formed a team to publish the first. For months, we annoyed everyone taking candid pictures, staging group photographs, arranging artistic shots, and documenting the fantastic diversity of the people around us and the timeless character of the place. In those days Willy G was where the women and married couples lived, and I never passed the foyer. So there are Willy G shots in the Annual, but that’s someone else’s story…
We ran out of time. We had no publishing software, so over one long night we spread the photos on the floor and grouped them thematically to paste into the proofs. By dawn we had pulled something together. We had no time to add text, with few exceptions, so the Annual is mostly a label-less photo album (with a few stories, mostly about sports). It would have won the award for ‘worst yearbook’ in any fair competition, but I am glad for this memento of my time at London House. I pull it out occasionally and reminisce good times with the fascinating people pictured there, whom I remember, but now mostly cannot name.*
I was in on a joke with Queen Elizabeth. How do you top that?
I met the Queen. The American next to me explained to her about how his grandfather and hers were good friends. She looked over to me and quipped, well, that’s one way to get an introduction to the royal family, isn’t it? I was in on a joke with Queen Elizabeth. How do you top that?
While in London, I studied Russian language and history at a University of London school that no longer exists. I am now a partner in a law firm in the Cajun area of south Louisiana in the US, representing government agencies in varied litigation, contractual, property, and policy matters, including coastal protection and restoration. None of which involves Russia, though my wife, Ann, loves when I translate Russian dialog in movies. I met her in law school while evacuating from a hurricane. She still thinks I’m crazy for giving my London House-allotted tickets to one of Eric Clapton’s 24 Nights shows to another Member who loved Clapton more than I did. Though I partially made up for it with the many other things I was able to do, thanks to London House.
We support Goodenough College and encourage all Alumni to do so. We’ve enjoyed staying in Goodenough House twice, and look forward to returning – and finally making it to The Burn!
*For those who wish to view the 1990/91 Annual mentioned in Larry’s story, it can be found in the ‘Early 1990s Residents’ Photos’ group on Goodenough Global. Assistance in naming the people in the photos will be greatly appreciated.