“They chirp and they chatter What does it matter?” (Bob Dylan, Soon After Midnight)
When I was working at Fordham a couple years ago, I talked with Frank McLaughlin, the school’s athletic director. It was April of 2009, and the Fordham basketball team had recently completed a very difficult season. The alumni were making noise about Dereck Whittenburg, the Rams’ head coach. After seven seasons, they wanted him gone.
Despite the calls for him to do so, McLaughlin didn’t say anything about the status of his head coach. Most schools don’t. But that didn’t stop the fan base from demanding at least a simple statement from the school regarding the future of the program. More specifically, they wanted to know what was in store for Whittenburg.
I asked McLaughlin about it at the time, and this is what he said:
“We did say something. By not saying something we said something very strongly.”
While this response made Fordham fans want to stand in the middle of the Cross Bronx Expressway during rush hour, I understood exactly what he was saying. It’s one of my favorite lines.
Which brings us 30 miles north to the suburb of Greenwich, CT, home to a school system that said a lot without saying anything at all.
I’m referring to the report in Tuesday’s Greenwich Time that stated that five Greenwich schools – Eastern Middle School, Old Greenwich School, Riverside School, North Street School, and the International School at Dundee – were named among the top 46 schools in Connecticut.
That’s saying something.