Sunday, May 20, 2012

graduation day

This was written back on Saturday, May 6th, as I sat in the audience, via iPhone's Blogging app.  It is until just now that I got around to posting it, in between all the other posts that were more timely... so, enjoy.

So... My first college graduation. The time is 1242p, and I'm sitting in the middle of the Coleman Coliseum, planted right on the campus of The University of Alabama.

My brother in law, the Super Cool Tyler, is getting his degree today in Mechanical Engineering, meaning he is smarter than I and he makes more in his internship than I do in real life.

When I say it's my first college graduation, I mean that--I graduated from Troy State U (go Trojans!) in the spring of 1998... However, to walk, you had to pay like, $50 to rent your cap and gown and such, and honestly, I didn't have 50 bucks for anything, and I missed the deadline for ordering... Were I to walk, I wouldn't have anything scholarly to wear. There was a mission trip to New York City with our BCM that March--right during Troy's graduation... So I saved up some money, and in mid-March, on that Friday, instead of shaking hands with Chancellor Hawkins and getting my diploma, I was instead strolling down 8th Avenue in Manhattan, headed towards FAO Scwartz with Allysong Guy, Claire Baldwin and Troy McConnell.

So, here I am. And the whole family is here too... There is Big Daddy Ron... Mama Ruthless... Aunt Becky... coming soon is Angie, the sis-in-law, Randy the bro-in-law, and the kids, Madeleine and Benjamin. Sitting with us as week is Tyler's fiancee, Brynn... And lest we forget, The Lovely Steph Leann. Who is holding our five month old.

The graduates file in, one by one, ready to end their dreamy college
experience and begin the strange new adventure known as "The Real World"
Our five month old. In a crowded, loud arena. For three hours. What. Could. Possibly. Go. Wrong?

107p... We find out, as Campbell has decided he has hungry a little ahead of schedule.

113p... As the graduates make their way into the arena, Angie and Company have arrived to join us. The gang is all here.

114p... We are currently playing a little game called "Find the Tyler"

117p... One of my favorite things at graduations--high school up until today--is to hear the "Name Reader" butcher the simple and not so simple names. And with names like "Mohammed abdulrhim al Ibrahim" (pg 49) and "Meisam Salahshoor-Pirsoltan" (pg 24) it might've been a fruitful afternoon... However, I've been informed by Trey Cartledge, sitting in front of us, that Eugene Proffit, the "Name Reader", is a god among insects when it comes to such things... He apparently doesn't miss names. We shall see.

129p... Camille Sonnier, at least according to the jumbotron, sings the national anthem... U-S-A! U-S-A!!!

132p... Surprisingly, an invocation. Albeit one to "the Creator", but still...

138p... The Doctorates are first. Some chick named Wookjung Chang is up. Her family? The Woojung Clan.

144p... After pronouncing Cui Cui, this exchange:

Brynn: this guy is a baller
The Lovelt Steph Leann: he has been doing this a long time

146p... Just had a Michael Scott AND a Miaomiao Pang.--pronounced "Meow Meow".  Just saying.

147p... Elizabeth Luzer. What a rough name to overcome. Im not a Luzer, I'm a Winher!!

149p... Candidate for Cinemax name of the day... Willie B Breedlove.

151p... Campbell shows his support by pooping. The Lovely Steph Leann will be right back.

156p... The Business Degrees are up. And if Danielle Marie Drago doesn't name her son Ivan, then there is no justice. I'm also expecting big things from anyone named William Augustus Burgstiner IV. Just saying.

207p... So far, Procter is like a pimp on these names... But, I'm wondering, is it possible that he is getting a ton of these names wrong, but says them with such conviction, no one questions him?Maybe the graduates are told "okay, he might goof up your name, but go with it."

208p... If I were William T. French, I would have totally gone by "Will T. Freedom" back in the early part of the 2000s.

211p... If your last name is Gooch, and your a guy, cool. If you are a chick, you are looking to marry out of that name as soon as possible. And surely John Nicholas Grabowski's nickname is The Big Grabowski. Right? Right?

217p... If Lisa Yoko Lawless is dating the guitarist, you know the other bandmates are nervous.

220p... The name Brooke Elise Pancake just came up. I have about 3,877 breakfast jokes right here--by the time I decide on one, the moment is gone. Sad.

227p... Peter Joseph Scatamacchia? "yea, I need a tall latte, and venti mocha frap and a grande Scatamacchia... With an extra shot, please.". Love it.

229p... Jenna Nicole Stiffler probably thought she had a name that was fine, forgettable and unremarkable. And then those American Pie movies came out.   And her poor mom.

234p... We enter Hour 2 of this name fest and it's time for the Engineering... Which means Tyler is up.
Mommy and Campbell, before he decided he liked it
better outside, where the attention was all on him.
242... Look! There's Tyler in line!

(cue record screech sound)

We are sorry to interrupt this blog, but further jokes about names and random comments about graduation proceedings are now impossible, due to the fact the 5 month old in our group has decided he'd had enough and had begun to cry... Meaning Daddy--yours truly--now has him in the lobby, walking around, patting him on the bum and whispering comforting things to him.

I actually think I heard the family yell for Tyler as I was exiting the row... I said "excuse me" to the lady at the end of the row as she had to stand to let me by and added, "this little guy has had enough".

She smiled with a smirk and said, "yes he has.". I took Campbell out.

259p... And it's over, the grads are filing out. A few pics, a hot walk to a distant parking lot and 20 minutes later, we are now all at The Cypress Inn Cafe, awaiting a seat.

So, I guess that's it. There is your Alabama graduation... Oh, I guess since I'm in Tuscaloosa, home of the 63 time national champs (according to them) and the 6 time national champ (according to logic), I guess I should end this with those two famous words...

Go Gators.

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