Wednesday, April 16, 2003

A Boy's First Post

Northeastern called again the other day, ostensibly to make sure I was still getting the alumni magazine, but of course to ask me for money. While I am very grateful to NU for giving me -- er, strike that -- providing me the opportunity to earn a serviceable, if not spectacular, education, it cheeses me off to no end that they are constantly looking for money from me, after I just finished paying $250 a month for my 1/3rd share of college. (okay, I didn't finish paying it off, I rolled it into my mortgage, which thanks to these Great Depression Redux interest rates I raised the extra 20K for about $75 a month). And what the heck do they do with my $10? They build more freakin' buildings like the four-story health club -- that's right, health FREAKIN club -- on Huntington Avenue.

Now, not to sound like my dad, who walked ten miles to school each morning in the snow, uphill, both ways, in July, but when I went to Northeastern (cue music) we ate in a flippin cafeteria. With LINOLEUM. Probably ASBESTOS LADEN linoleum. And if the asbestos laden linoleum didn't kill you, the smoke coming out of the "game room", featuring one archaic Pole Position, a geriatric Asteroids, and perhaps Dig-freakin-Dug, that old whore of a game, would croak you. Like I want to make these kids' college years any more cushy. Screw that.

Anywho, I usually promise to throw them $10 per year, and then have to beg and plead with my wife, who wisely controls the finances, to let me send them a check after about 15 reminder letters from them, the cost of shipping and handling thus exceeding the $10 I eventually, grudgingly, send.

For some reason I was in a bit of an odd mood when the latest pimply faced workstudy student called looking for dough -- it was a guy, which perhaps doomed the effort to failure, as usually the voice of a youngish co-ed fresh from the leafy suburbs of Connecticut will elicit my interest enough to trade Professor McShane stories, after which I will usually promise the half-sawbuck, sort of the equivalent of the money on the dresser the morning after, I guess.

So I tell Mr. Sophomore that yes, indeed, I still get the beautiful alumni magazine. Which I read for the articles, really. Or, rather, would, if the articles were interesting. Which, is, not so much the case. Yes, I say, I get the magazine, which is rather puzzling as I graduated from Boston College.

Stunned silence.

Then, "Uh, you sure?"

Okay, perhaps he was asking if I was sure that I was receiving the Northeastern alumni magazine, not that I was sure I graduated from Boston College. I can understand him perhaps thinking I was addled enough to mistake the BC magazine for the NU magazine, as NU is quickly turning into a leafy green campus with expensive buildings, and the alumni magazine so rarely catches that real essence of Northeastern life, Punters Pub and classes at the Y (complimentary flak jacket included).

I am hoping that Northeastern has not taken to accepting students who would believe that I perhaps was not sure WHERE I HAD ATTENDED COLLEGE. I would have understood had he told me, "hey, you shitting me buddy?", or perhaps "oh yeah, you're the deadbeat who talks to the girls for thirty minutes and then promises ten bucks". But, please, am I aware of where I went to college? What the hell kind of question is that?

So, I said: Yup. BC, class of '93. Brilliant ad lib on my part, as due to Northeastern's patented water-torture-for-five-years I graduated NU in '94, but would've finished a normal school in 1993.

More stunned silence.

"Uh, could you hold?" So he put me on hold for 30 seconds, came back on, apologized and hung up.

So, no $10 bucks for Northeastern this year. Unfortunately, I may also lose my free subscription to the Alumni mag.

Jeez, I wonder if they'd print this story as an article? I'd read that.

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