Sunday, October 11, 2009

I believe the children are our future.

On Friday, I journeyed to my alma mater to speak to English majors about, like, having a career and stuff with an English degree.

I was excited. And terrified. I was nervous about crashing and burning, a la Randy Watson in Coming to America.

And I figured they asked me to speak because they had a hard time finding English graduates who are, you know, employed. And not living in their cars.

But I went, and I was one of four panelists. The first three? Well, we kicked ass, talking about how our English degrees prepared us for a myriad of interesting careers. But the fourth dude? Basically talked about how he went to LA to be a screenwriter, ran out of money, returned to the Midwest, and has a job he hates because he has a wife, two kids and a mortgage.

Yay! Congrats on choosing a super great major, kids!

I loved my time at Large Midwestern University. I transferred as a sophomore and didn't know a soul. I chose to major in English because those were the classes I liked. I became more myself in the three years at that school.

And yet? I looked around that very familiar campus and had to laugh. It looks so different. They're slowly but surely replacing all the dorms. The bookstore is nicer than a fancy department store, and the rec center looks like something out of The O.C. This is not my school anymore.

I walked around, figuring I could blend in. When some guy held the door for me and gave me That Look, I realized that at best, I was a nontraditional student. But more than likely? I looked like someone who just didn't belong.

I was shocked by the footwear. On a rainy day, most students were wearing flip flops. This was both cold and completely against any fashion choices that would have been made in my day. Then, there were girls wearing wellies, which was adorable and practical. However ... since when is it cool to wear sweatpants tucked into Uggs?

These are totally not my people.


Iron Needles said...

Love your new photo of doggie behinds! Loved your old photo, too! They are both favorite.

So. There is snow on the ground and record setting low temps in my neck of the woods. I have on a wool coat, scarf (hand knit!) and gloves.

I have seen oeioke in shorts. In flipflops. With only sweaters (not necessarily hand knit). Crazy students.

Laura said...

Love the new photo as well.

I too, found myself on my college campus this past weekend for the first time in years. They must have come in to some money, because there were new buildings, new signs, new everything. As we walked through campus one of my friends said "Wow, it's almost like a real college now!"

We had a big lunch with my old sorority - alumni and actives together. I was doing great until we went around the table for introductions. One of my pledge sisters said that we pledged in the fall of 1991 and the girl next to me said "That is the year I was born!"

I didn't know whether to order a big margarita or ask for the senior discount on my lunch.

Ahhh . . good times.

Anonymous said...

Brava to you for participating in the panel. I notice all the "new improved" stuff at my old college too--my, my have they upgraded since my day. And my, my do the girls look trampy these days.

sherilee said...

I too just returned from my alma mater... I suppose living 7 miles away from it doesn't strike quite the same romantic chord, but still... I was asked to do some mock-interviews with students heading out into the work place... a frighteningly articulate bunch. I don't remember being that together back in, yes, 1991. Definitely not my peeps.