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Zonked with circumstance

June 29, 2011

This is by my coworker and buddy brian.

TSo it’s 6am on my day off and my alarm goes off. I haven’t been woken up by an alarm since I was 15 and putting up black curtains in my bedroom to be “edgy” and secretly practicing Buddhism for 3.5 weeks to be a bad Catholic school boy.

The sound is horribly shrilling and it instills me this feeling not unlike what I imagine pre-historic mammals felt when they suddenly realized they had traipsed into a tar pit. So I spring out of bed and bang my toe and shower and get ready and throw on some un-ironed dress clothes since mother has mandated I “not look shitty” for my little brother’s college graduation.

Now, I could probably write volumes about the mere fact that this brought about a regression of my quater-life crisis anxiety attacks,but I’ll focus instead on the sheer absurdity of the day itself.

My family, comprised of mother, father, younger brother, and one cousin (why?) pull up to my place around 7 and we pile in and head out on the road to the campus. Which my brother claims is “somewhere upstate” but the invitation says is in Westchester county, so we head there and since I’m a Bronx boy, it’s not THAT far away.

Two hours later we are weaving in and out of lanes and pulling into random exits, hopelessly lost. My brother has failed to ascertain which exact campus the ceremony will be at, while my parents are bickering about being late, while my cousin sits in the back and comments on how hungry she is. I, meanwhile, am vainly trying to calm everyone down, and offer up my smart phone (which has lost service, go droid go!) to help us navigate.

Have you ever watched Seinfled? Are you familiar with George Constanza’s parents? If not, here’s a quick little snippet.

Those are my parents. Yeah.

Through some miracle of nature, probably comprised of a mix of frequent swearing, yelling, and good old fashion gas station attendant directions, we end up at the right place. Yay family.

What is it about graduations that brings out the worst in people? Seriously, its shocking how quickly I regressed to my teeny self with my black curtains and Dalai Lama action figurine. Pouting and yelling and such. On a day off no less.

To top it off, the ceremony is beyond boring. I actually loudly mutter “how patronizing” during the valedictorian speech, and I nod off for a good 20 minutes at one point.

And then someone has the bright idea to experience some fine celebratory dining at the Cheesecake Factory afterward. The five of us get stuffed into a booth made for four. I’m the only non-overweight member of my family. I begrudgingly order the Ahi Tartare (stale) and some salad (uninspiring) since the 3,000+ calorie counts listed on the other menu items scare me from ordering anything with the slightest modicum of flavor. It’s almost beach time after all. Which is always preceded by graduation season.
Thank goodness I’m never having children, cuz if I did, I’d sooooo ban graduations in my household. I’d just drop them off at the nearest Chuck E. Cheese (regardless of age) while I go to a bar and quietly enjoy a gimlet or four. Now that’s pomp.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. July 21, 2013 9:50 am

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