So after four years, three university probations, thousands of beers and less girls than the movies promised me, I can now proudly disgrace the Boston College name by calling myself a graduate. And after going through what might have been the worst day of my life on Monday, here’s a few observations from the weekend and tips so people don’t function as poorly as I did when their time comes:
Every Single Parent is an Idiot- I feel like you hit a certain age where you magically transform into a person who can’t eat a piece of pizza without carrying it with a tray first, has to figure out directions by staring at a map while shuffling in the middle of the sidewalk, and thinking 10 AM is a reasonable time for brunch. This reality check invasion is absolutely worth it if as long as you someone invites you to dinner at nice restaurant, except when the parents set the pace of the meal and you can’t get more than two drinks without them judging you. Then it’s only kind of worth it.
If an Asian Person is Graduating Every Person in Their Extended Family Will Be There- I’m not saying other ethnicities don’t invite a lot of people too. I’m sure if I had graduated with honors or a real job then my parents would have invited family members and they wouldn’t have been the only two people that I knew in the stands. But I saw Korean students who were literally from Korea walking around campus, and counting the people they were with was basically playing Roll Call from Mario Party. I almost mistook a Filipino girl for Manny Pacquiao because of the facial hair and giant posse around her. I don’t mention this for any particular reason except that I also noticed every group always had one four foot tall grandmother who didn’t speak a word of English and who absolutely had no idea what was happening. There’s a conspiracy there and someone needs to figure out what.
Celebrate How You Want to Celebrate, Because If You Celebrate How the School Wants You to Celebrate It’s Going to Suck- Senior Week is something every person should have the chance to experience. Since it’s everyone’s last hurrah they want to do everything they can to enjoy it, which in my case involved a $100 per head “Commencement Ball.” I wasn’t going to Glansberg myself so I ended up on a party trolley on a Friday afternoon, and I wish I had never gotten off of because it was the only good thing to happen that day. After 30 minutes of waiting in line to get into the hotel and discovering that I had paid for the privilege of buying $12 drinks while listening a cover band full of old white people, my friends and I figured the only option was to take a cupcake from the dessert tray and throw it at the side of the hotel. The night went great from there, and it’s because we did it how we wanted to do it. You only have a week. Make it count.
Charge Your Phone and Then Buy a Second One and Bring That Too- The hours leading up to graduation are an absolute cluster fuck. Between having to balance figuring out how a graduation hood works, hiding all your illegal things before your parents get to the room and trying not to vomit, you forget to do some things. My thing led me to leaving my dorm at 8:15 AM with 44% battery. My phone quit the exact moment the president of Ireland starting talking about a battle between the French and the Spanish 492 years ago. Unfortunately the internal debate about whether or not a mortarboard could sever an artery ((the conclusion: Probably not) didn’t last even close to long enough to make it through the first quarter of the speech. I’m Irish and at that moment I wished the potatoes could have killed everyone because it would have prevented me from having to experience what I discovered to be my definition of hell. No idea how people did this shit before smartphones.
Drink Before, During, and After- Obviously the before part doesn’t have to be said, but for some reason when I asked other people what they were drinking during the actual ceremony they look at me like I was an alcoholic. Um, Seal Team Six didn’t train for years and tell Obama “No thanks” when it was time to kill Bin Laden. They brought their A-game. The last thing you want to do is abuse your body for an entire night and have the sun beat down on your black robes while you sit on a folding chair for three hours with nothing to dull the pain. Also, the after thing is optional depending on your plans afterwards, but if you’re going to have to stay up for a little bit it’s easier to maintain and deal with the hangover than go through withdrawal while moving boxes out of your room. I totally get Trainspotting now.
Don’t Drink Warm Nips of Jim Bean That Have Been Sitting in Your Pocket for Four Hours- Because that’s how you end up holding back vomit for fifteen minutes to avoid forfeiting the deposit on your gown. In hindsight, iced coffee+anything seems like a better move.
Graduation Will Probably Be the Worst Day of Your Life- If you take anything away from this it’s that everything you’ve ever been told is a lie. Every picture you’ve seen, every story you’ve been told. Lies. Graduation is hell. The highlight of my day was counting how many people with the last name Kim they could call in a row (16). No warned me about the headache, sunburn, shakes, the mild hallucinations due to sleep deprivation and the crying like a little bitch when reality stars to sets in. I know what it’s like to have a period now. So all I’m saying is be prepared. I don’t want other people to have to go through what I went through.