Sunday, March 29, 2009

Random Thoughts on Bobcats and College

My middle child is a high school senior, which means she will be going off to college in the fall. She'll be a freshman at Quinnipiac University, and today they held an "Admitted Students Day," which I initially thought was odd. Most of the time, the last thing teenagers want to admit is that they are students, right? Turns out "Admitted Students Day" is for the kids who have been admitted to the school for next year.

Here, in no particular order, are a few random thoughts from the day:

- I'm getting realllly old.

It's hard for me to believe that I've been out of college for almost thirty years. In the little mental movie that I'm the star of, I'm still a kid and would fit right in on a college campus. Unfortunately that movie is in low-definition black and white. I'm old enough to be the father of the kids I saw walking around Quinnipiac today, which makes sense considering I was there with my own daughter, but still, it's a disorienting experience being on a college campus as an old guy.

- I can't believe a college campus is located off a cow path.

Okay, Mount Carmel Avenue in Hamden, Connecticut isn't a cow path, exactly, but it sure feels like one as you turn a corner on the narrow winding road leading to Quinnipiac and find yourself face to face with an LP gas truck coming the opposite direction, crowding your lane. Seriously, this road must have been built to accommodate Model T's and was clearly designed by a civil engineer working on his tenth Bloody Mary. It must be a real adventure in the winter.

- My granddaughter could have been elected Class President today.

My older daughter had to work this afternoon, so we brought my two year old granddaughter Arianna with us to Quinnipiac. She was the hit of the campus, not just to the other parents bringing their high school seniors to Admitted Students Day, but also to the college kids strolling around the school and to the future Freshmen as well. I think Ari's ready to bypass kindergarten and move right on to college.

- Can you believe a two year old spent six hours in a car and didn't have one meltdown?

This little girl was so good on what had to have been an unbelievably long day for her. She slept for two hours on the way to Quinnipiac this morning, but was awake for almost the entire ride home and was as patient as a saint. She really is a sweetheart.

- College bookstores haven't changed a bit since I was in school.

I take that back. Prices on things are a lot higher now. Aside from that, though, the merchandise on sale at the QU Bookstore this afternoon was exactly the same stuff that was on sale where I went to school from 1977 to 1981. Lots of other things have evolved on college campuses, but it's like the bookstore was caught in some weird time-warp where nothing ever changes.

- I'm more excited for my kids' college experiences than I ever was for my own.

I went to a pretty high-profile university, with some pretty stringent entrance requirements, but the pride I feel for my childrens' accomplishments dwarfs anything I ever felt for my own. My oldest daughter is a sophomore at Saint Anselm College, and my middle one will be a freshman this fall at Quinnipiac. I couldn't be prouder. I also couldn't be poorer, but that's a story for another blog. Next up is my son, who will be a junior in high school next year.

- It's exciting to see the future opening up for my little girl.

Out of 16,000 applications received, only 1400 incoming freshmen were selected to form the Class of 2013 at QU. To say I'm proud of my daughter Kristin would be a massive understatement. This kid has been getting overlooked and underappreciated her whole life, starting in the womb when the OG-GYN told my wife and I that the fetus was dying and we should start preparing ourselves for a miscarriage. My wife refused to accept that diagnosis and Kristin was the result. She's beautiful, smart, silly and motivated. And don't even think of telling her she can't do something, because she will prove you wrong. Every. Single. Time.

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