Sunday, May 14, 2017

I Just Can't Help It

I hate boring things!! And graduations are right up there at the top of the list! Don't get me wrong, I am always proud of the graduate and all of their accomplishments, but my style runs more towards "let's have a big fun party!" Instead, it's the "same ol, same ol!" You know what I'm talking about---thousands of graduates, boring speeches and a predictable commencement address. There's really nothing new to be said.

We left on Friday to drive to Knoxville for Jordan's graduation from the University of Tennessee. We arrived in time for a brief nap before dinner reservations. The hotel was crappy---Clarion Inn. I made the reservations in January and was lucky to get them---we were about 5 or 6 miles away. Everything closer was already booked.

Dinner was outstanding! We went to Jordan's favorite place---Chesapeake---a seafood place. The food was incredible. We had it all---appetizers, soups, side dishes with our dinners and dessert. A couple ordered the lobster at "market price" which always means very expensive. I was so surprised that it was only $32.00! There were 10 of us. Steph and Nicky paid. These kids eat (and drink) a lot! Not much went to waste. It was all good. The boyfriends are fun and easy to be with. For us, it went downhill from there.

We got back to the hotel just in time for the hockey game to start. The Predators are playing the Anaheim Ducks for the Stanley Cup. Stephanie and Nicky came to our room to watch it. They couldn't find it. We were shocked that it wasn't playing. We found out the next morning from Morgan that it was, indeed, on tv---just not at the crappy hotel!

We got to the auditorium about an hour and a half early. We parked easily and walked up to the entrance. We were told by security that we could not take purses inside---we needed clear bags. Luckily for us, a graduate nearby gave us hers. Butch had to take our purses back to the car. We were really happy with our seats. I have no idea how many graduates there were, but "eagle eye" Butch was able to find Jordan. Getting everyone else to spot her was a trick: "see that guy standing up, see that hat with the star, count the fourth row from the back and go over two"---you get the idea.
When the ceremony started, the faculty processed in. The "main guy" carrying this huge banner was limping and had to have help in the way of relief from the banner.  The faculty was absolutely ancient! Then came the welcome greeting. I think that was the chancellor. I knew we were in trouble when just the welcome and thank yous lasted 20 minutes! The student speaker (maybe the Valedictorian?) said the same old stuff about making your mark on the world, it's your time, blah, blah, blah. Then the guest speaker was up next. He was some old astronaut from 1972 that I never heard of. Luckily he didn't speak too long.  Then, the moment we'd been waiting for. The chancellor had all of the graduates stand. She congratulated them and had them move their tassels. We all looked at each other. This was only an hour and fifteen minutes in. Could it be that we were done?

Uh, no! We couldn't be that lucky. The graduates were called up one by one. They handed the "announcer" a card with their name on it. OMGosh!! This went on forever. It was 45 minutes before Jordan was called. In the mean time, she had texted that she was leaving right after. We were happy about that for sure! By our calculations, there was at least another hour and fifteen minutes of name calling. Even the faculty couldn't handle it. The same "guy" who had trouble processing in, fell asleep on stage and fell to the floor. That caused quite a stir, but they still called the names.
Here's our girl! Stephanie realized after the fact that the honors cords Jordan has received through the years were supposed to be worn at graduation. Jordan was quite distressed---even though she couldn't remember how many she received or what they were for!!
That's Jordan walking up and her picture on the screen. See the guy seated closest in red? He's the one who had fallen asleep and fell to the floor just minutes before.

I know, I have a bad attitude. Or maybe it's not that. Maybe I am just willing to verbalize what everyone else is thinking. Seriously, does anybody like these things? Morgan who will graduate next year, says we are not doing this. Yes, we will go to her nurse pinning ceremony, but skip the big, boring  graduation situation!! Fine by me. Seems like just paying for college should give us a free pass!!

In two years, Mitchell will gradate from college, Victoria will graduate from high school and Elizabeth will graduate from 8th grade. That will be my punishment for this post!!

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