'Matter of Laugh or Death,' a humor column
By Bill Dunn
Interesting observations on this thing we call life
(appearing each week in the Republican-American newspaper, Waterbury, CT)
ONLY MINUTES AWAY FROM A HOLY SHRINE
My daughter recently started graduate school in Boston. She now lives exactly three blocks away from Fenway Park. If I had gone to college living exactly three blocks away from Fenway Park, being the Red Sox fanatic that I am, I’m pretty sure I would have missed quite a few classes and spent a lot of time drinking beer in the right field bleachers.
Wait a minute. What am I saying? I went to school over 300 miles away from Fenway Park and I still missed quite a few classes and spent a lot of time drinking beer. Except it didn’t take place in the right field bleachers in Boston; it took place in a fraternity house near the Susquehanna River.
Well, at least it proves that even at a young age I was able to adapt to any situation. Although there were no Red Sox games within walking distance, I still managed to be both irresponsible and inebriated—the two activities that best describe the well-rounded college experience in America.
OK, I exaggerate. There are, of course, other important activities that also describe the well-rounded college experience in America, such as sleeping 15 hours per day and doing laundry no more than once per semester.
Since my daughter is not much of a baseball fan, I don’t think she realizes that she is living exactly three blocks away from a holy religious shrine. I know many devout Catholics (such as myself) who would much rather make a pilgrimage to Yawkey Way than to the Vatican—and not just because the Vatican frowns on people spontaneously breaking into a chant of, “Yankees suck!”
(Actually, that particular chant can be heard fairly often in St. Peter’s Square. Whenever some American tourists are being especially obnoxious, a group of scarlet-clad prelates will gather on a high balcony and begin shouting, “Yankees suck!”, prompting the American tourists to reply, “Cardinals suck!” It’s like the 1964 World Series all over again.)
Although I am happy that my daughter is enrolled in a good school in a vibrant, exciting city (and did I mention that she lives exactly three blocks away from Fenway Park?), I have to admit I am also a bit jealous. I am jealous that she lives exactly three blocks away from Fenway Park; I am jealous that she is 22 years old; I am jealous that she goes to a good school in a vibrant, exciting city; and last of all, if I haven’t pointed it out yet, I am jealous that she lives exactly three blocks away from Fenway Park.
Even if I were somehow magically transformed into a 22-year-old college student living exactly three blocks away from…you know where, it probably wouldn’t make much difference. If you think college tuition has skyrocketed in recent years, way beyond the average rate of inflation, you should check out Red Sox ticket prices. A single right field bleacher seat now costs about as much as a Lexus. (But only if Kansas City is in town. If it’s the Yankees, then a ticket costs as much as the Space Shuttle.)
Since there are a lot of research hospitals in that area, I probably could sell one of my kidneys to raise money for a ticket. But after the fourth or fifth time of doing that, it would get pretty old. I suspect I instead would end up hanging out in my room, missing classes and drinking beer while watching the games on TV.
So for a lot of reason it’s a good thing I cannot be magically transformed into a 22-year-old college student. But I’m still a little jealous.
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