Tuesday, June 10, 2008

My Missed Vassar Reunion

My 20 year Vassar reunion was this past weekend. Unfortunately I was unable to attend, but that didn't stop me from reminiscing.

I heard from many friends and I thought of all of those from those special years who are still in my life and well loved - Anita, Christina, Dan F., Emily, Jen, Liz, Luke, Mike G, Noelle.

And those not so much in my life as I would like, but are still there, known and loved - Anne, Alex, Bonnie, Bill G., Bill H., Dan S., Alex L., Dan B., Josh N., Greg, Caroline, Paul J., Doug, Anna, Marc, Scot O, Kristen, Vanessa, Lisa F., Scot S., Gisele, Matt B., Jeff, Mike K., Gokhan, Terry, Alex N., Jason, Martin, Andy, Catherine, Cindi, Wendy, Ken, Burke, Todd, Kimathi and Peter.

And recently I enjoyed a very well done online tour of the beautiful campus. And I saw some special personal pictures of campus on an iphone.

I used to tell people I decided to go to Vassar because of the tea, the parlors, and bathtubs (a dancer needs to soak). Secretly, it was also because a dearly loved fictional character went to Vassar (Carney from the Betsy-Tacy Series' Carney's House Party; out of print then, but reissued in 2000).

I loved so much, so well. Most of all, I had fun. More fun than a body should have, as I used to say.

I have a hand out from either my 10th or 15th, not sure which - I attended both, entitled Are You a Real Member of the Vassar Class of '88?

200 questions to answer to discern the answer and the scorecard is as follows:
150-200: BP
100-149: Mug Rat
50-99: Nerd
Less than 50 : You should have gone to Wesleyan

Some of my favorite questions:
  1. I wanted to form an inter-mural sports team only because I thought up a good name with an obscene double meaning.
  2. I went to Vassar because I'm a guy and thought I would be surrounded by easy women.
  3. I used stolen bathroom tissues as napkins while eating Napoli's pizza.
  4. I read the graffiti in the women's restroom in the Library, and I'm male.
  5. I remember those stupid signs they put up that told you to "Keep Off the Grass" in Latin.
  6. I ignored those stupid signs they put up that told you to "Keep Off the Grass" in Latin.
  7. I defaced, damaged or destroyed those stupid signs they put up that told you to "Keep Off the Grass" in Latin.
  8. I've been on the Main catwalks.
  9. I've been on the roof of Rocky.
  10. I've been on the roof of Walker
  11. I've been on the roof of the Library tower.
  12. I've been on the roof of Jewett Tower
  13. I moved to Main just so I could go to the Retreat and check my mail without shoes and/or a jacket.
  14. I know what "BP" stands for.
  15. I was a BP
  16. I denied being a BP
  17. I denied being a BP, even though I was.
  18. I engaged in long conversations trying to define what a "BP was.
  19. I smoked clove cigarettes while at Vassar.
  20. I only ate on the left side of the left.
  21. I lived in Raymond and never went to ACDC in a group of less than 10.
  22. I tried shouting from that "echo point" in front of Noyes.
  23. I didn't hear an echo when I shouted from that echo point in front of Noyes.
  24. I participated in Airband.
  25. I've been in that weird basement-like room that was on the second floor of Blodgett above the arch.
  26. I snuck into a filled movie through the basement of Blodgett.
  27. I remember the time Ivor gave the pre-movie announcement in Blodgett in the nude.
  28. Someone pulled cards for me at registration.
  29. I pulled cards for someone at registration.
  30. I remember that time when a guy climbed hand-over-hand on the sprinkler pipes above the heads of the crowd in order to get to the head of the line at registration.
  31. I cheered for that guy.
  32. I waited in the Mug line.
  33. I waited in the Mug line for more than two hours.
  34. I waited in the Mug line for more than two hour, but didn't go in.
  35. I got into the Mug with someone's else's I.D.
  36. I can't read my diploma.
  37. I have to explain to prospective employers whey I have an "A.B." instead of a "B.A."
So perusing that list made me remember some other things...
  1. I remember pulling up to Joceyln and that the soundtrack from the Big Chill was blaring from Marion's boom box.
  2. I remember I forgot to ask my parents for money and my sisters ran back from main gate to give me some.
  3. I remember Emily's 18th birthday and having a hard time getting past the tennis courts when trying to replenish the champagne on Raymond Avenue.
  4. I remember making our Apple computers talk dirty and giggling because it sounded Swedish.
  5. I remember the boat in Jocelyn.
  6. I remember the coed bathrooms completely freaking out my father, and his mother.
  7. I remember "backrubs"
  8. I remember THE water bed.
  9. I remember Mr. Egg on all our doors and then the mysterious Christmas ornament.
  10. I remember my crazy freshman roommate.
  11. I remember discussing Luther with Emily on the fire escape in Jewett.
  12. I remember Bill D. serenading with his guitar
  13. I remember dashing out of Jewett with Liz.
  14. I remember dancing with Marc.
  15. I remember Greg and mine combo birthday parties.
  16. I remember being not legal, legal and then not legal, then legal for good with respect to drinking.
  17. I remember lines at Pete's place
  18. I remember watching Body Heat at Blodgett.
  19. I remember watching Fatal Attraction at the Galleria (and Alex predicting the rabbit).
  20. I remember recruiting the guys for the synchronized swimming team who came up with the "boat float" move.
  21. I remember the boys from Laguna.
  22. I remember sunbathing on Jocelyn's "beach" with the red phone strung out through the open window.
  23. I remember Vuarnet sunglasses and Miami Vice jackets
  24. I remember volleyball.
  25. I remember Luke breaking his leg skiing.
  26. I remember Evan's not so funny April Fool's Day joke.
  27. I remember Evan's chicken stickers.
  28. I remember Vanessa hiding in a closet.
  29. I remember Wednesday nights, after soccer games.
  30. I remember going to away soccer games when the team was in the finales.
  31. I remember Chris getting a card, when he was a rabid fan.
  32. I remember making up and serving "Cassandwiches" at the Retreat (turkey on the grill, with melted provolone cheese, cucumber, red onion and honey mustard on a toasted onion bagel).
  33. I remember starting water fights while closing up the Retreat after I got soaked washing dishes (those darn bowls).
  34. I remember feeling the grease on my skin after a shift in the Retreat.
  35. I remember checking out the couples who came through together on Sunday afternoon and seeing who had hooked up.
  36. I remember causing trouble by asking him as I rang the food up, Is this together?
  37. I remember going to Mass on Sunday at 4 pm only so I could see my crush with his girlfriend.
  38. I remember staking out an English History classmate's dorm room in Main because she'd taken out every single book on Lady Jane Grey from Thompson, effectively prevent me studying and writing on my chosen topic.
  39. I remember our teacher told us we had to sort it out.
  40. I remember she eventually caved.
  41. I remember the masque balls.
  42. I remember the 5:15 parties.
  43. I remember Heaven and Hell
  44. I remember the formal dance in December 1985.
  45. I remember signing up for Italian because Latin was full (but I dropped it eventually).
  46. I remember that girl who fell out of the third floor bathroom window in Jocelyn.
  47. I remember the girl who fell from the catwalks.
  48. I remember ringing the bell in Main.
  49. I remember throwing the chairs into Sunset Lake in protest for our graduation being inside Walker on a perfectly sunny day.
  50. I remember turning all the furniture over in Martin and Pete's TA and nearly peeing in my pants I was laughing so hard.
  51. I remember Winter Weekend 1988.
  52. I remember hiking around Lake Mohonk with Scott.
  53. I remember countdown nights at Joe's (150, 100, 50, etc.).
  54. I remember diving and rolling on that cruddy floor in order to sneak in, with Anne and Bonnie.
  55. I remember shooting pool at McAuleys.
  56. I remember the Aula opening.
  57. I remember nearly getting caught with alcohol in the Aula and lucking out because I'd used an emptied bottle of apple juice, which vodka resembled when held above candlelight. Sheer luck, I could have easily had a cranberry juice bottle.
  58. I remember modeling vintage clothes in a fashion show at the Aula - I wore a beautiful blue dress I still have - and being asked to NYC (but lets go do drugs first!)
  59. I remember being in a wheelchair.
  60. I remember being asked to borrow my wheelchair that Halloween so a group could tastelessly dress up as terrorists and Leon Klinghoffer, who'd been killed that month.
  61. I remember being asked by people I didn't know for my painkillers.
  62. I remember resting on the grass on my way back from dinner because I hadn't realized that ACDC was farther than 25 feet from my dorm room in Jocelyn.
  63. I remember buying knee pads to protect my knees, because crawling was faster than that wheelchair or the crutches.
  64. I remember Alex N. picking me up, expectedly, and carrying me to my room.
  65. I remember Sweeney doing the same thing when I needed no such aid and scaring me.
  66. I remember being given keys to the elevator in Main because I was in a wheelchair.
  67. I remember how that access made it possible for me and 10 friend to cut the Mug line.
  68. I remember getting caught by the manager of the Mug cutting the Mug line with the help of 10 necessary friends.
  69. I remember after hours at the Mug.
  70. I remember trying to down as many shots as Marion did in Raiders of the Lost Ark.
  71. I remember that gorgeous guy who changed my life trying to get me to down my first kamikaze shot without telling me first what was in it.
  72. I remember Smavis (and I pretty sure I have the recipe somewhere! - does any one know it by heart - Scot?)
  73. I remember when the Cafe opened.
  74. I remember that snow day when Anita, Alex and I went drinking at Pete's before noon and I tied a cherry stem into a double knot in my mouth after Alex dared me, wining us all a free round for my achievement, and then going to ACDC and being confused by the fine spread of food (the CIA was cooking), stealing whole loaves of bread and then hearing about how I'd missed sledding on ACDC trays down path to the TH's because I'd passed out too early.
  75. I remember Hurricane Gloria and how the school canceled classes and opened the Mug and we had over 12 straight hours of fun, while it only rained.
  76. I remember the time I had tickets to the Cosby show and we got lost in Brooklyn and missed the show. Half of us stayed in NYC, and half returned to campus early
  77. I remember an unhappy discovery upon my return.
  78. I remember when a Vassar student's video made the final 10 for a Madonna video contest.
  79. I remember the endless debate contest.
  80. I remember that joyful Blues Band air band performance in the Villard Room.
  81. I remember the poster up on the wall in my TA 19 with the funniest phrases and pithy remarks.
  82. I remember climbing the trees in the center of the quad and scaring people as they walked underneath.
  83. I remember when a strange Irishman walked naked through Jocelyn.
  84. I remember the pine forest up there somewhere.
  85. I remember hating T.S. Eliot's Wasteland because I didn't understand it and I had a rotten teacher.
  86. I remember being scared of Prof. Day and his Greek class and having to memorize all those Greek islands.
  87. I remember loving Shakespeare class. Professor Gifford. Wasn't that his name?
  88. I remember doing the New York Times crossword puzzle with Annie during Intro to Art History senior year and not even having to buy it because that cute freshman always gave us his third section.
I did that list without opening my yearbooks or scrapbooks or files. Those of us who gathered the summer of 2006, the year we all turned 40, know how fastidiously and earnestly I collected mementos of that time. (I have my original packing list - red pumps, blue pumps, black pumps, cream pumps! - thanks Jen, yes it sounds like Dr. Suess!). I think I even have every Miscellany News too.

What do you remember? Go ahead and comment below. Perhaps we could get a fun discussion going here. I'd love to hear from you. (especially if you have the Smavi recipe).

If any of you are in DC, through DC, please stop by and I'll serve you some tea in my parlor. (No bathtub though!).

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