Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Family Weekend, or ...

I've been excited for weeks to join 96 at Sarah Lawrence for Parents Weekend. Technically, it was Family Weekend but I made an agreement with 98 that if he had no missed homework and no failed grades this term he could stay home by himself. So Parent Weekend it was.

I get there and 96 and I go to register. They wanted thirty five dollars (THIRTY FIVE DOLLARS!) so I could sit through a welcome message from President Karen Lawrence (no relation), followed by the keynote speaker who was an SLC parent, then "lunch under the tent" which I'm sure was lovely, and finally an afternoon of panel presentations-z-z-z-z-z-z-z-z-z-z. No thank you.

If I'm driving four hours to my son's school, I want to hang with my kid. He's an actual human being now. Civilized and everything! So we spent the day in The City instead.

After arriving at Grand Central Station our first stop was the 9/11 memorial. It was a humbling experience, and I felt very, very small compared to the enormity of what happened that day. We were still on Kwaj at the time, but Tom's New York roots ran deep.

Someone needs to invent a word that means taller than tall to describe the new building. It is in fact the biggest building I have ever seen. I liked the view up from the very base of the building. And Rahm Emanuel can bite it if he thinks that's "just" an antenna on top and shouldn't be included in the measurement. It's not. The end.

We wound our way through The City and ended up at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, where we were meeting up with another SLC family with the same boredom threshold as us, who also spent Parent Day in the city. The cafeteria was inside the museum, and to get there we needed to pay admission. $25 each, according to the sign over the cashier.

Record scratch.

My son, the city slicker, informed me that those admission rates museums charge are really just "suggestions" and we didn't actually need to pay $25 per person to walk back to the cafeteria. Fully expecting to be laughed at, or at least trashed on Facebook as that cheap-o Bostonian who refused to pay admission, I explained that we were only going to the cafeteria and so here's a dollar. The ticket person could not have been nicer about it, and gave us our lapel stickers identifying us as full fledged museum visitors and we were on our way. Expecting to pass a broom closet, an electrical box, and the service elevator en route to the cafeteria, imagine my surprise when we actually had to wander through the Middle Ages armor and weaponry exhibit to get to our destination.

Mortified that I had only paid a buck (for the two of us! Not even a dollar each! A dollar total!) for the experience, I thought maybe I shield my eyes as I walked past. But I couldn't resist a peek. The cafeteria assuaged my guilt somewhat by charging me $15.25 for two oj's and a cupcake.

Hunting Knive Combined with Wheellock Pistol, 
etched with a calendar for the years 1529-34.
World's first Swiss Army  knife

H and 96

So the plan is another weekend in New York with a daylong visit to the Met in my future, at which time I promise to gladly and enthusiastically pay full freight.

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