August 12, 2008

And that was that.

Quite a long trip since that late August day in 1995 when I dropped her off in the front of the elementary school and watched her toddle in for her first day of kindergarten—that being, the trip down to Montgomery this weekend past to deliver Oldest to college.

I suppose everyone has his or her own set of emotions when you do stuff like this, but I’m not certain most folks’ emotions include a sigh of relief. Time to let others grapple with the melodrama for at least a little while, and hope that the distance and new surroundings will do her some good and maybe squeeze a little of that melodrama out of her. Or at least give it some direction and constructive purpose. Despite all that has transpired in the past few years, I suppose I’m still an optimist and think better things must surely be on the way. Just like Charlie Brown when Lucy’s holding the football.

Anyway, it’s a nice place, and not too big, and very supportive (astonishingly so to this old man who simply loaded his junk in a travel trailer and went to school with nary an advisor/minder/ mentor/hand-holder/butt-wiper in sight), and pretty strict, and the dorm is new and neat and clean (astonishingly so to this old man who remembers the concrete block rat holes run by Northcutt Realty in Auburn that were so reminiscent of a Turkish prison that he decided it would be better to live in a travel trailer for five years), and at least for the time being she’s not complaining. To us.

So, you know, hunky-dory and all.

In other news, the rest of the kids start back to school Thursday, which is going to be good for them, too. They’ve done well this summer, with Rebecca working her vet job and enjoying the benefits that come from gainful employment, and Catherine working with the little old people at Reba’s work and enjoying the benefits that come from volunteering, and Jonathan going to band camp and enjoying the benefits of being surrounded by lanky leggy young women and being in the percussion pit (no marching!), but I think they’re ready to get back to school.

As for what’s going on in the rest of the world, who in the world came up with synchronized diving? And why? I mean, the synchronized swimming stuff is odd enough, but if you’re going to do diving, too, why not have synchronized every-other-thing, like gymnastics and trampoline and fencing?

Then again, fencing would actually be pretty cool if you had a whole heap of people going at it like in a pirate movie. Wrestling would be a lot better if they had tag teams, too. And maybe a steel cage division.

But synchronized diving is just silly. Unless we give them swords or guns or something.

There’s probably other things going on in the world, too, but I don’t know if I have an opinion about those or not.

So there.

Posted by Terry Oglesby at August 12, 2008 09:46 AM

Synchronized diving? That kind of makes me even more happy that I do not watch the Olympics.

I dropped my youngest off at college,
then moved out of state the next day.

Posted by: Larry Anderson at August 12, 2008 01:24 PM

Did you leave a forwarding address?

Posted by: Terry Oglesby at August 12, 2008 01:39 PM

Larry you are a man of wisdom. Ours eventualy picked a school only 55 miles from home. Isn't that wonderful?

Posted by: jimj at August 12, 2008 03:28 PM

I likewise think those Food Network competitions ("World's Tallest, Ugliest Cake", et al.) would be much improved if they had to carry the cakes to the judging stand through a live minefield.

Anyway, nice that she's off to be indoctrinated by the State, and that your money can now be siphoned off to a new place.

Posted by: skinnydan at August 13, 2008 09:45 AM

If only it were my money, and if only I had any.

As for the Olympics, if they have equestrian events for the Summer Games, why don't they have dogsledding for the Winter Games? And if we're going to have animals, why not have some rodeo events, too? And is there a way to make John Tesh shut up?

Posted by: Terry Oglesby at August 13, 2008 10:16 AM

To answer your questions: it would discriminate against cats; Union regulations; No

Posted by: skinnydan at August 13, 2008 10:52 AM

I would not be averse to watching catsledding, were the union to allow it, and were John Tesh not involved.

Posted by: Terry Oglesby at August 13, 2008 11:07 AM

Well, how about synchronized cat herding as an event?

Posted by: Stan at August 13, 2008 11:11 AM

Well, you gotta admit that's several orders of magnitude more difficult than synchronized diving. And probably a heck of a lot more entertaining.

Posted by: Terry Oglesby at August 13, 2008 11:23 AM

At our household, we've had a time figuring out age limitations.

There was a 14-year-old synchronized diver, but some controversy about the limit of 16 years for a female gymnast.

Then there was a 15-year-old something or other last night.

Is Dr. Possum in the address book?

But synchronized diving? When did that come up?

Posted by: Janis Gore at August 13, 2008 11:59 AM

Dr. Possum is currently in China assisting one of the Estonian women shot-putters, but I did find that there isn't a good single source of information about such things from the people one would expect to have some interest in it, such as the USOC or the IOC. The best answer I got was from Yahoo Answers, but there's no citation for the information other than the answer-guy's say-so. Still, it looks reasonable: Boxing - 17 years old

Gymnastics - 16 years old

Cycling - 19 years old

Swimming - 15 years old

Diving - 14 years old

the rest of Olympic sports - 20 years old.

Sounds about right, but I suppose you'd have to find each sport's governing body's rules and go from there to be absolutely sure.

As for synchronized diving, yet another visit to the Internets says that "Once only used in aquacades and diving shows, synchronized diving (or synchro diving) has become one of the most popular diving events in the world. Introduced internationally at the 1995 FINA World Cup, synchro diving finally became a full-medal Olympic sport, debuting at the 2000 Games with four events."

Hmm. So they're saying that this all started out as some sort of carnival side-show. Given this history, and with the earlier talk of equestrian events, I think a worthy addition to the Games might be diving mules--with RIDERS! And they could combine it with either archery or rifle!

Now that would be cool.

Posted by: Terry Oglesby at August 13, 2008 01:08 PM

So can I assume "one of the most popular diving events in the world" ranks ahead of "least boring lint conversations" but behind "most engaging string cheese art" on the list of popular world events?

Posted by: skinnydan at August 13, 2008 01:21 PM

I think it's just a ruse to have lesser swimmers stand on the platforms.

Competitive swimmers have scary looking shoulders.

Posted by: Janis Gore at August 13, 2008 01:28 PM

As my bro said, "Why didn't they dress the male sand volleyball teams in Speedos?

Posted by: Janis Gore at August 13, 2008 01:41 PM

Yep, Dan, it's right up there with ballroom floor waxing.

As for scary-looking, what freaks me out are the way the swimmers warm up right before they get on the platforms with all that floppy noodle arm-swingy flab flailing they do. Nobody that muscular should simultaneously be that gelatinous.

There's male beach volleyball?

Posted by: Terry Oglesby at August 13, 2008 01:42 PM

Yes. But they dress like basketball players. Plus one turned backward bill cap.

I agree with Charles, the backward bill cap takes 30 points off the suspected IQ on sight.

Posted by: Janis Gore at August 13, 2008 01:49 PM

Well, as for IQ and all, it's not like they're playing beach brain surgery. Although, let's face it, that would be pretty doggone entertaining in its own right.

Posted by: Terry Oglesby at August 13, 2008 01:53 PM

::TWEET!!!:: Hypothalamus out of bounds! Medulla Oblongata to the blue team!

Posted by: skinnydan at August 13, 2008 03:20 PM

OOOH! And they could have the patient rigged up like the Operation game so that he buzzes and his nose lights up whenever they hit the wrong spot!

Posted by: Terry Oglesby at August 13, 2008 05:04 PM

They do have men's volleyball....and women's wrestling too. I can't find when that one's televised though.

Posted by: southtrek at August 14, 2008 08:04 PM

I don't really care what the guys do, but it would be cool to see Victoria from WWE give one of those big Rooskies a Widow's Peak!

Posted by: Terry Oglesby at August 14, 2008 09:42 PM

I thought the Rooskies already had bad haircuts? To go with the tendency towards totalitarianism, naturally.

Posted by: skinnydan at August 14, 2008 10:38 PM

Oh, Sillydan--you act like you don't know nothing about wrestlin'! The Widow's Peak ain't no hairdo, that's for sure!

Posted by: Terry Oglesby at August 15, 2008 04:43 PM

Golly, late to the Possum Olympics party! I also feel a need to vent, but I'll try to keep it short.

I've heard that the choice of what Olympic events to show on prime time has been "feminized" (to maximize viewers), and after enduring through it for the last week I have to agree. Years ago you could see "real" wrasslin' and big swarthy Eastern European guys hoisting large weights above their heads. What made it great is you knew someone who looked just like them living down the block. Now we have to put up with little girls who "stick their landing". Ugh. They must put the good sports on some obscure cable channel at 3 am. I'm sick of volleyball too. Just show some highlights until they get to the medal round. I could give a possum's patoot that Misty May has won over 100 matches. Big bleepin' deal.

As far as I'm concerned they can hold a separate Olympics for any sport that involves judges. Either somebody beats you to the finish line, or just literally beats you, or scores more points/baskets/touches etc. The only judging I want to see is having all of the judges lined up, bent over and then find volunteers from the stands who have big feet, where the public phone-votes for butt-kick style points.[/rant]

Congrats on dropping off Oldest to school. Have you started an over/under on when she calls for either the "emergency plea" for a large amount of cash or "I wanna come home" sobbing at 2 am. Either call will be no fun. Put me down for a fin at six weeks.

Posted by: Marc V at August 16, 2008 05:58 AM