Last week, I strolled back in time and toured a college campus.
That's because my daughter Lindsay is a campus tour guide at Michigan State University where she is a senior and I wanted to see her in action. I tried to blend in with the group of excited future students and anxious parents and secretly snapped a few pictures from the back.
Then Lindsay announced, "If you see a woman with a camera along with us today...she's my mom!"
Of course, everyone looked at me and smiled at my camera. I was being the typical mom.
I was so proud of my sweetie...so witty and bright, knowing all those facts about MSU.
She spieled about the sport teams, lectured about the library, and saturated us with safety on campus. Then she showed us a dorm room staged with comfy comforters on the bed and real clothes hanging neatly in the tiny closet...like that would ever happen in college. The mothers smiled as she talked up the fun of dorm life. As we walked out of the residence hall, a mom sidled up next to Lindsay and asked,
"What REALLY goes on in those dorms??? Is it one big party?"
I snickered to myself as I recalled my own dorm days at Ohio State University in the late 70s.
I lived on the top floor of this big dorm.
We called it The Penthouse.
Yes, it was a sweet time with my fab friends. This is just how moms HOPE dorm life will be for their children. That's me on the top left rolling Shelly's hair as she gabbed on the phone. No cell phones in those days!
We threw innocent popcorn parties...
And slumber parties in the study lounge.
But we also had our share of rip-roaring FUN! Imagine our total delight when 25 years later, my roommate's nephew attended Ohio State.
He told Aunt Jan that he heard the dorms were wild in our era.
"The girls in one dorm used to soap down the hall floors and hold 'slip and slides,'" he told my roommate.
Jan e-mailed us pronto because those girls were US, the penthouse gals!!!!!
We are dorm LEGEND at Ohio State and PROUD OF IT!
Yep, we used to hose down the hall and add dish soap.
The gal with the arrow is Lari of Lari's Tomato/Basil Pie Recipe fame.
After the soap down, we used to shove each other down the hall...it was so slippery, you would slide down to the end on your knees with ease.
We also snuck into the boys' dorm in the middle of the night with water balloons that we taped above their doors.
We also tied their doors together with rope so they wouldn't open.
And, toilet-papered the joint.
Please do not report us to campus security.
The boys walloped us enough when they reciprocated by sneaking into our dorm in the middle of the night and leaving behind a thick layer of motor oil on the hall floor with popcorn kernels and toilet paper, plus shaving cream on all our doors. Our resident advisor was furious and we were up all night trying to clean it up. Even a slip and slide wouldn't have rid the horrible smell that lingered for weeks.
I didn't share any of those shenanigans with the worried woman on Lindsay's tour. I know she was actually concerned about drinking and drugging!
I know it's scary to send a child off to college knowing of all the temptations. My son will be joining Lindsay at MSU in the fall and it scares me, too!
But, as I did with Lindsay...I will just have to trust that I spent 18 years teaching my son
integrity and responsibility.
It worked with Lindsay. She amazes me every day and I was one proud mom on that tour!
The kids need to work hard and get their education,
but they also need to throw in lots of fun and create lifelong memories and friendships.
Note to my kids: Please don't do slip and slides in the dorm hall...you might get hurt!
Mom's have a very different perspective...