Going Back

This past weekend my wife and I were in Baltimore for my friend’s wedding reception.  Devin is one of the few people I still communicate with from undergrad.  He was one of my groomsmen for our wedding.  He and his wife did a destination wedding in Jamaica last December.  Though it would have been a great time traveling to the Caribbean, Monica and I weren’t able to go.  The stateside celebration was a great opportunity to come show our love and support for their new union.

Monica and I planned to arrive a little early to take a look at the campus; an impromptu reunion if you will.  Although it was night, we could see drastic changes.  The new student center, Engineering buildings, and off-campus housing made me a tad envious of the current students.  But much of the old charm remained.  Like Soper Library.  I’m guessing it’s abandoned now, or at least being used for a different purpose.  One of the peculiar features of this building was while the elevator buttons allowed you to select floors B-10, the building only had 4 floors.  Soper Library is special because this is where Monica and I had our first “date” 15 years ago (wow; can’t believe I just typed that).  And then there was the Refectory.  Many a meal was had here, as well as heated debates on topics ranging from who had the better diss track?: Nas or Jay-Z, to Operation Iraqi Freedom.  As we drove through campus, all these forgotten memories came rushing back.  I constantly amazed at how the mind just stores these things for what seems like forever, only to recall them at a moments notice.

The reception was pleasant; glad to welcome Devin as his bride into the fellowship of the ring.

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When Trolling goes too far

I don’t have a problem with a good Troll.  It can be a great opportunity to laugh at myself, or some construct of our society.  But there is a line that should not be cross, which unfortunately is being overstepped with every increasing frequency.

Look no further than this commercial for Staples:

Growing up, I used to cringe every time this commercial would run.  Not just because it signified to close of yet another summer, but it was flat out wrong.

How they gonna show this dad sashaying down the store aisle just because he’s buying back to school supplies?  Look at how dejected his children are!!!  

I was incredulous.  As an adolescent, my mind couldn’t process these emotions.  The fact that someone thought it was cool to employ a popular Christmas song to express the joy parents felt when sending their children back to school was utter sacrilege.  I didn’t care how cleaver or ironic Staples brass thought it was, a line had been crossed.  Weren’t adults supposed to be, you know, adults about things?  It was bad enough most children across the land (I say most because i suspect some students loved school and were eager to return) were unenthusiastic about spending 7-hours a day, 9-months out of the year in the same building.  But now, someone was piking fun at us whilst we suffered.

Little did I know Staples had opened up a Pandora’s box, that would the blueprint for pretty much every “edgy” or “in your face” marketing campaign to come after this.

I’ll never forgive you Staples.