In theory, Junior Parents' Weekend is a chance for our kin to catch a glimpse of our Harvard years--to slum it a bit with us college folk, to make sure we've been eating and sleeping properly and, of course, to find out where, exactly, all their tuition money has been funneled for the past three years. Harvard invites our parents to the Square for the weekend, the weekend being the most, shall we say, intriguing aspect of any college student's week. We have, however, been thrown something in the form of a bone: an events schedule packed full enough with faculty lectures, Harvard panels and house social events to keep even the most Harvard-hungry parents satisfied--for a couple of hours.
Sure, my parents will attend the scheduled, stiff events, but they didn't leave the smoggy comforts of Southern California to learn about the allure of health care at Harvard--or even to discover the ancient perspectives on our future climate. (Amazing, I know.) Professor Michael J. Sandel may have success rekindling a few parents' flirtations with philosophy, but most folks are undoubtedly more interested in the intimate aspects of our Harvard lives. They'll want to meet that boy. They'll want to meet your nemesis (in my case, that's Stephen E. Sachs '02--damn him!). They'll want to see how those jeans are fitting you. And yes, they'll want you to define "hooking up" for them yet again.
And so as a heads-up to the Class of 2002, on the eve of our parents' arrival, here's a little something that's been waiting for you:
"Jor, why don't you ever write me back? I emailed you yesterday about Uncle Herbie's prostate surgery. How could you ignore something like that?"
"But I didn't get an email about that, Mom. You know I would never neglect--"
"That's impossible--you're still firstname.lastname@example.org, right?"
"Oh, Jesus, not again. My email address is email@example.com. The Dean of the College's is firstname.lastname@example.org. You know? Harry R. Lewis? That computer science guy we just listened to?
"Oh yes, that's right. What a talk--I especially liked his vocabulary and metaphors. And he's just so open to reform and innovation for your school! So who's your favorite professor this semester? You're taking a class with the one making the grade-inflation stink, right? Is he any good?"
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