Friday, May 09, 2008

Congratulations Graduate

My nephew, Joe, officially picks up his college degree tomorrow. A Bachelor of Science in Sports Management with a Business minor. He completed the program in 3 1/2 years. & he's already got a great job in professional sports. That doesn't surprise me. He's graduating from Liberty University in Lynchburg VA. That does sort of surprise me, or it did at first.

I hardly know my nephew. He's aware of me & has been in contact. I like him. He was raised out of sight in south Jersey. Maybe his parents thought I was a bad influence. But that can't be. For 25 years I've been nothing but beneficial for the Youth of America, indeed, even globally. Well, those few who paid attention. Anyway, when you grow up in the vicinity of Atlantic City you've heard everything & then some & there isn't much remaining that will disturb your sleep. That probably set Joe apart from many of the more agitated students who arrived at Liberty from the provinces with no conception of a city constructed on a fragile sand barrier island in the 19th Century for the purpose of selling sin under the guise of offering fresh ocean air & artesian well water, & which no storm has ever succeeded in ruining. It's my theory.

I still have no idea why Joe chose a fundamentalist Baptist University - albeit one with up-to-date technology, & which will be richly endowed by its alumni in the years ahead - from among all possible protestant schools of a conservative doctrinal bent. He was raised United Methodist. I will grant that Liberty is in a part of the world I've seen & like, has a first rate Division 1 women's basketball program, & lacks a wretched fraternity culture. He loved it there. One should attend a school one loves. I never did. I've never doubted that Joe has his own independent mind. Neither of his parents are from families inclined to apologize for their tastes & opinions. He couldn't know his paternal grandfather & namesake, but I sure did. & if that Joe were alive today, he'd be in Lynchburg for the happy occasion. He liked the scenery down that way, too. & he was crazy about his grandkids.

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"If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be." Thomas Jefferson

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