Saturday, May 12, 2018

Graduation is over

Walking up (too early, I am always too early for things and I stand around and wait), I heard a family getting out of a car arguing about who was going to sit where and what they were going to do after, and I that moment I just wanted to turn around and go back home and go back to bed.

(My allergies have been VERY bad, in the sense of making me tired and feel sort of "meh." And I dealt with too many arguing/"I'm gonna make my problems all of you innocent bystanders' problems now, because I can" people this week)

But I kept going. (I *always* keep going). Yes, I was too early. Eventually my chair arrived and a few other people. It was a little chaotic - a lot of the marshals this year were new and they were not as strict about dividing up the faculty (there are supposed to be two lines of us almost the same length) and so we wound up with five of us on one side and a lot on the other, and they had to divide the longer line up *as we were processing in* and send some of them over to our side and....well, I guess it worked out but those kinds of things just make me tenser than they should.

A rumor ran through the faculty as we were waiting - "Hey, I heard the invited speaker isn't here, I heard she wound up in the hospital."

While I admit I tend to be in favor of shorter graduations (and have heard a few real stinkers of speeches in my time, though some have been good) I hope she's OK.

They also inexplicably cut out the "message from the Regent" thought the Regent present is the oldest one and I think he had a stroke a while back and maybe he wasn't up to it? Or maybe people just got discombobulated with the speaker absent.


There weren't many faculty present. We are SUPPOSED to be there (and anyway, it's good to support the students) and I wonder if all the people missing (based on empty chairs) requested absences (You have to fill out a form; I did it one year when I derped and made my travel plans a week earlier than I should have). I will say with one exception (and I am quite sure he filled out the form), everyone from my department was present.

Lots of people graduated. I forgot that one of the guys I used to have as a TA was graduating, he came through ahead of time (while we were waiting out in the hall) and high-fived us. (And after graduation, a woman I had had in a couple classes came up. She hugged her advisor and the woman she had had a lot of classes with, and I was prepared to shake her hand (I tend to anticipate I am not the kind of person who inspires that level of affection) but she grabbed me too and exclaimed "I'm a hugger" so...okay.)

There was one sort-of-emotional moment: a young woman walked through to accept the diploma on behalf of her sister, who had passed away (I think that happened a little while back and they just now arranged it? It wasn't something that happened this semester as I remember).

There were a minimal amount of air horns this year (then again: that seemed to be a more B-school thing, and we were in a separate graduation from them this year) and there were no podium selfies, thankfully. (Maybe the students were warned against that. It did slow down an earlier graduation and anyway there are copious "official" pictures taken).

But now it's done. I'm not sure what to do with the rest of the day - part of me is thinking, "You could probably run up the backing for the birb quilt fast enough to get it out to the shop before they close at 3" but part of me wants to take off my dress and hose (I wore a dress today, because it was hot: normally I wear slacks and a button-front shirt (you need something to anchor the academic hood to so it doesn't ride up in the front and choke you. This time, I fastened a bit brooch on the front of my dress, which looked goofy, but it provided that anchor point).

I mean, shoot, if I wanted to there'd even be time to go to Sherman - but, meh, it's hot, and I FEEL kind of meh. I might just find some stupid tv to watch and knit, or go and work on the new quilt top instead.

I also need to figure out lunch but along with the heat and humidity I've got my annual loss-of-appetite. (This would be okay if it weren't coupled with an emotional desire to Eat All The Sweet Things; if I could just force myself to eat enough vegetables to stay nourished, I'd be good).

what I really want, again, is someone to fix me nutritious and at-least-marginally-tasty food, and set it before me, so I can eat it without having to decide first what I want and then fixing it.

I also am kind of bordering on having a headache; I suspect we ARE going to get the storms tomorrow that they keep waffling about. (It doesn't help that both the dewpoint and the barometric pressure are very high right now).

Probably I need to DO something (working on the current quilt top might be best), but I also don't feel terribly motivated....

Edited to add: they played Pomp and Circumstance #1 as the processional; I have almost a Pavlovian response to that now ("Start walking, not too fast, not to slow, try to exude dignity and gravitas, but don't get too far behind the guy with doubtless-longer-legs-than-you who is in front of you, then match your pace to the person who winds up next to you when the two streams combine").

It seems funny to me that an Elgar celebrating-the-Empire song is now SO wedded to commencement ceremonies in American's minds; I've even seen ones where they didn't have a symphonic band so they played it from a record player (or later, a CD player)

(I also just realized: Isn't the Elgar also known as "Land of Hope and Glory," a patriotic British song? Again, doubly weird we Yanks use it at graduations. I suppose it's the right length and the right speed and it sort of telegraphs a mild seriousness. I'm now thinking - and giggling over - the sheer inappropriateness of something like a disco number being used)

As the recessional, they played "The Liberty Bell March," which people of a certain age and/or level of geekiness will forever associate with "Monty Python's Flying Circus." (they did that one year before I remember; on the way out the door a colleague whispered to me "I was waiting for the giant foot to come down" because he knew I'd get it)

Some years they play "The Thunderer," which is a less-familiar Sousa march. 

1 comment:

Lynn said...

Oh yeah, I really HATE people arguing in public and, to be honest, always want to butt in and tell them to behave, like scolding little kids, but of course one cannot do that so I settle for what I hope is a strongly disapproving stare, which no one ever notices.