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Column: This Magic Moment

Heights Columnist

Published: Thursday, September 27, 2012

Updated: Wednesday, January 9, 2013 19:01

As parents flock to Chestnut Hill from all corners of the United States, I reflect on my previous Parents’ Weekend experiences. I remember watching parents and siblings eagerly explore Hardey First Floor as my floormates and I impatiently waited for them to say goodbye so we could fulfill our Friday quota of binge drinking and bad decisions. I remember the Saturday football games, where my mother would forlornly ask why I wouldn’t let her bring a mystery book to read.  Lastly, I remember Sunday morning Mass, a yearly ritual where I drag my disheveled self over to Conte Forum and parry questions about the previous night’s activities from my disapproving parents.  

Boston College works tirelessly to create info sessions, guest speakers, and formal functions during Parent’s Weekend that I have absolutely no interest in attending. Therefore, what is the purpose of Parents’ Weekend?  The webpage for the event states that it is “a chance for Boston College families to gather together and celebrate all that makes the BC student experience unlike any other.”  Well, the uniqueness of the BC student experience is pretty obvious. I’m fairly certain that no other college experienced a moral crisis over the first down chant at a football game. So the true purpose must be connected to the gather together concept.  

In my search for the true purpose of Parents’ Weekend, I summon the wise words of Ferris Bueller. “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.” This quote has always been in the back of my mind, mainly because roughly 99 percent of my senior class used it as their yearbook quote. I apply it to my own life by tuning out the insignificant parts of college, like classes, homework, and automated BC emails, and instead focus on the little things. For example, two nights ago, when I should have been writing this column, I instead retreated to my backyard to smoke cigars with my roommates. As the delicious aroma of tobacco filled the air, we discussed sports, girls, and our post-college plans. On the surface, this appears to be a typical bro hangout session.  For me though, it went deeper. A year from now, I will be drowning in a sea of legal textbooks.  Opportunities to hang out with friends will be rare or even nonexistent. In my quest to cherish the small things, I seek out these types of moments. Next year, I won’t look back fondly on hastily written final papers. I will remember the midnight cigars, which could be described as “gathering together,” but actually mean so much more.

As previously stated, the official purpose of Parents’ Weekend is to gather together BC families. The true purpose, though, is to create a midnight cigar-type moment for our parents. This weekend is about them, not us. So my advice to you, the reader of my somewhat self-indulgent column, is this. If your parents are visiting this weekend, spend some time with them. If they offer to take you out to dinner, accept. Parties don’t start until after 11, and all the super cool kids show up fashionably late anyway. A simple dinner may not mean much to you, but it could mean the world to them.  On Sunday morning, I will wake up at 9:55, throw on some wrinkled clothes, and dash over to Conte Forum to meet my parents. If morning Mass means as much to them as a midnight cigar meant to me, then I can rest assured that I have fulfilled the true purpose of Parents’ Weekend.

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