Where’s PZ?

People keep sending me horrible, frustrating news stories — I’ll post some later, but first, I have to restore my center with pleasant contemplation. Deep breaths. Grade some more exams. Watch some fish for a little while.

OK, here’s a pleasant memento: Mrs Janes’ 3rd grade class at O’Brien Elementary School, in Kent, Washington. The year is 1966.

(click for larger image)

Top row: Cindy Burton, Kathleen Sturtz, Nancy Bull, Mary McHugh, Debbie Long, Becky Barnier, Darlene Yamada, Susan Rea, Billie Anderson, Mary McKay, Cathy Jenkins
2nd row: Mrs Janes, Richard Campbell, Richard Nault, Arthur Yabara, Brian Pittenger, Chris Bauer, Loren Deanton, Pat McCart, PZ Myers, Steven Brewer, Tommy Marino, Rob Kimoto
3rd row: Kathy Willkie, Jill Johnson, Mary Gjerness, Linda Bevilaqua, Mike Dixon, Carla Fleming, Patty Spitzer, Cathy Jones, LaJuana Smalley, Bill McDaniel

This is where I met my wife. I’m in the picture somewhere, and so is she. Think you can find us?

I think I’m feeling better now.

Names are added now, you can all stop guessing. I’m fourth from the right, middle row; the Trophy Wife™ is third from the left, front row.


  1. Mike Easter says

    I’ll say….second row, fifth from the right. I have no idea what your wife looks like, so I ain’t even going to try.

    Should I try to find some great news stories to help cheer you up?

  2. Bill Dauphin says

    What I want to know is how she can be both your 3rd-grade sweetheart and your Trophy Wife(tm)? Doesn’t the whole nature of trophy-wifeness conflict with the childhood-sweetheart gestalt? Enquiring minds want to know!

  3. Susan says

    Plaid shirt (without the glasses) next to the cub scout who is near the center of the second row?

    (which, is I think, the same person Mike Easter just pointed out.)

  4. cbutterb says

    I vote for second row, fourth from the right–behind the girl with the flowery (or whatever) dress.

  5. Susan says

    And how sweet that you met in 3rd-grade!

    (Why, shouldn’t you be on your 3rd spouse or be living in sin right now, since you don’t have Jesus in your life or have a personal relationship with God?)

  6. Lana says

    I’m guessing you’re the kid in the second row in the plaid shirt with the glasses and the goofy smile. She’s the girl in the front row with the plaid skirt, the fifth child from the right.

    I don’t care if I’m right. That’s how I’ll picture you two from now on.

  7. alex says

    oooooh, wait ’til those creeps at Uncommon Descent get a hold of this. flatulating flash animation on the way – “Young PZ”. i can hear the squeaky Dembski-voice-over already.

  8. chancelikely says

    It’s funny – you just know that some kids in that picture were making fun of other kids for their unfashionable clothes, but I have no idea which fashions would have been ‘in’ and which ones would have been ‘out’. But then, I was born a couple decades later.

    I’ll guess righthandmost boy in bottom row and lefthandmost girl in top row.

  9. Logicel says

    PZ is the boy on the most right hand side in the front row, while his wife is the girl second in on the right in the top row.

  10. says

    I’m guessing PZ is fifth from the left, 2nd row, (4th from the left if you don’t count the teacher), in the plaid shirt complete with pocket protector.

    So which is it?

  11. Bjorn, James Bjorn says

    I can’t tell which one you are, but I can say for sure you are not second row 2 nor 3 from right, because with those ears they never attracted any girls whatsoever.

  12. says

    I’m with cbutterb. Second row, fourth from the right is PZ. Something about the tilt of the head and the knowing eyes.

    I’ve never seen a pic of your wife, so I’ll have to guess. Top row, second from the left.

  13. Tom says

    I’m pretty sure wife is 3rd from left front row. My money’s on PZ being behind the girl with the flowery dress. You are so lucky knowing each other for almost your whole life.

  14. erh says

    What does it say about me that the first thing that came to mind regarding this picture was that the sex ratio was really skewed?

  15. Aris says

    Second row, fourth from the right — compare the nose and eyebrows to PZ’s current photo.

  16. tyaddow says

    Yeah, I’m goin’ with 2nd row, 4th from right. And no offense PZ, but it looks like it was slim pickings for the ladies of Mrs. Janes’ 3rd grade class. Yikes!

  17. Bride of Shrek says

    I’m hoping you’re not the tall one on the far left in the black dress.

    Boy, waistbands were sure high back in those days. Severe wedgies all round.

  18. says

    I think syntyche’s right (second row, next to the teacher), but Aris and Adam are convincing, too–second row, fourth from the right, would be my second guess.

  19. Annapolitan says

    I’m going with second row, fourth from right. I have no idea which one is your missus.

    PZ, thank you for posting this. I’ve been having a crappy day myself and it cheered me immensely to see such happy faces.

    I am your age and this photo reminded me of my beloved third-grade teacher, Mrs. E. I was teacher’s pet that year. At the end of every school day when we would be lined up to leave at the sound of the dismissal bell, Mrs. E. would lean down when I filed past her, and allow me to hug and kiss her goodbye.

    I so wish kids could do that today.

  20. says

    Unless there’s something about you or your wife that you’re not telling us, I’m assuming that you were one of the boys in the picture and your wife was one of the girls. Beyond that, I haven’t a clue.

  21. inkadu says

    PZ: Second row, fifth in from right (in front of the girl in the plaid skirt).

    PZ’s wife — never seen her, but i’m electing the girl in the back row, position 2, to be “most likely to grow up to be a trophy wife.” In fact, if that’s not your wife, please forward me her name and I’ll see if she’s still available.

  22. Bride of Shrek says

    What, you onnly had one barber in that town? Nothing like a bit of variety in the haircuts. My money for PZ is the ginger kid, 2nd row, 3rd from right. The one that looks like Ritchie Cunningham. I bet you dye your hair now to hide the fact you’re a carrot top.

  23. says

    I’m disappointed. When you wrote “Where’s PZ?”, describing yourself in the third person, I had really hoped it was the intro to a game of peek-a-boo (Where’s PZ? Where’s PZ? There he is!)

    Now I’ve got to content myself with gumming this ring of keys.

  24. Dahan says

    Trick question right? You weren’t there at all. You were off that day visiting your Uncle Monkey.

  25. Physicalist says

    You’ve evolved.

    Couldn’t be; if he evolved, why are there still third-graders? I don’t see any beard in the photo, nor any transitional forms. Obviously PZ can only be explained by supernatural intervention.

    My guess: PZ — 2nd row, fourth from left. Trophy Wife (TM) front row, third from left.

    BTW: Did it help that there were twice as many girls as boys?

  26. Doug says

    He looks like the cub scout the second from the left on the second row. His wife probably had a thing for a man in uniform.

  27. Annapolitan says

    Did you remember all those names or were they written down on the back of the photo?

    If I were to look at my third-grade class picture, I don’t think I’d manage the first and last names of more than a handful of students.

    If there’s some memory enhancer you’re taking, I’d like to know the name of it. ;-)

  28. Bride of Shrek says

    No offense PZ but I gather she was attracted to your personality. She’s the class hottie and you’re, well, um, well, you’re better looking than the guy next to you anyhow.

  29. says

    The names were written down, but I did remember something around 3/4 of the names. These were kids I went to school with for the next nine years, you know.

    I hate to admit this, but I don’t think my personality is particularly dazzling, either.

  30. DiscoveredJoys says

    Would you believe it? No one is holding a cell phone or listening to an iPod. In fact everyone is standing to attention… Argh its the Stepford children! Run for your lives!

  31. says

    Aww… Cute. I think it’s pretty slick that you knew your wife way back when. A buddy of mine and his wife met in Kindergarten, and they’ve got all sorts of toothache-inducing tales of sweetness to share.

  32. J Myers (no relation) says

    Bride of Shrek, wow… that’s pretty harsh coming from someone who married an ogre :)

  33. says

    I left a comment earlier but it didn’t go through. I guessed PZ is the boy with glasses in the second row, and Mary, errr… Trophy Wife is the third from the left on the bottom, in the fancy skirt.

  34. andy says

    So cute! Though I can never look at
    a class photo anymore without thinking
    of the movie, Battle Royale

  35. JMartin says

    This task was not even remotely difficult, particularly as to your wife. Sad kids, dim kids are matt. Kids blessed with intellectual smarts shine. Those few very bright kids who are also blessed with good hearts, however, literally glow.