My son sent me an e-mail.
For someone who once claimed e-mail was dead, for a kid who grew up on MySpace and Instant Messaging, this is huge. HUGE.
It gets better.
Attached to the e-mail were two Excel spreadsheets. The first details his monthly expenditures once he starts college, starting with that enormous bill called tuition right down to details like Saturday night dates.
He plans on sending us monthly reports.
I suspect certain details will go unspoken.
The second illustrates his financial plan for funding all four years of his college education. He detailed his scholarship, federal grant, student loan and committed income from Dad-Who-Would-Be-Outlaw, his adoring grandparents, and, of course, moi. Detailed right down to anticipated dates of receipt.
We all now know exactly where we stand. We are no longer his loving relations. We’re tick marks in The-Man-Named-Bill's financial plan.
My financial plan when I started college? Grants, student loans and cocktail waitressing (Great tips. Cheap drinks).
Ya gotta admire Bill’s persistence.
He didn’t get into the film program at his first choice college. But he got a scholarship. So he’s going anyway. Plans on relying on chutzpah to eventually get into the film school.
And his job at the theatre production company became impractical when they decided to move their operation to San Diego.
Does he sweat a drop? Nope.
Calls the Dean of the Film School, actually gets the man on the phone (which is apparently a rare feat), and procures a list of recommended work-study programs that will better position his application for film school next spring.
Sounds a whole lot more strategic than wearing short skirts and peddling cocktails to businessmen.
I suppose I ought to start writing about something other than my son. I really thought my life would turn once he graduated from high school and went to college. That I’d find all kinds of other interesting things to write about like…well, like writing.
I know people think I’m proud of him. Which I am. But this is something more.
Bill fascinates me. Utterly fascinates me.
He fascinates me the way most of us find certain movie characters fascinating. Or certain film stars. Like Humphrey Bogart. Or interesting people we meet when we’re traveling.
I feel like I'm in the middle of a great of novel with a fascinating lead character. The kind of book that gets me so wrapped up that I can't put it down. Up till 4 in the morning reading. Poring over every word to make sure I don't miss a subtle plot turn or a single nuance of character development. Can't wait to find out what happens in the end, but more importantly, can't wait to find out what happens next.
Bill starts college and the next chapter begins.
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