Mama Day in the Student Center Redux

Today I am sitting here, waiting to have lunch with Abs, in the the newly improved student center. This new renovation reminds of when they redid the Tally when I was an undergrad. We were so stoked to have a Taco Bell, a Wendy’s, and a couple of other restaurants to choose from. In fact, some of my best memories from college come from the times I spent sitting in the Tally during the Humpday Cafe; they couldn’t just leave Wednesday alone, so they provided the students who had to eat at the Student Center with open mic entertainment. All of us rascals from the HC would sit together at a table and make fun of the bad performers and applaud the good ones; we did much more of the former than the latter. But, it was such a good time of bonding over food. Any bonding done over food is good. 😉

The experience was only made better by the fact that, for a brief moment, Taco Bell brought back the enchirito, the most amazing menu item from our childhoods. It was like a little bean burrito, nestled in a silver tin, covered in red sauce and cheese, and topped with two or three olive slices. Essentially, the enchirito was heaven in a miniature pie plate. I think everyone at the table loved the enchirito, since each of us ate one everyday. It was a toss up between that and the big beef burrito. Ew.

Anyway, the group was such a strange mix of people: Julie, Angie, Tommy, Mike, Amanda, Allen, me, and some others I am sure I am missing. I know there was a whole gaggle of us, and it was a blast. I don’t remember ever leaving without pains in my sides from laughing so hard. One of our chief objectives every day was to make a huge sculpture with all of our trash and then to heckle the person who was chosen to try to carry it—without spilling any of it—to the trash. Those were some of those magically immature times where we had one foot in adulthood and the other one squarely planted in childhood. I mean, how fun is it to watch one of your friends drop everyone’s trash all over the floor and have to pick it up and possibly even have to go get the mop to clean up a drink spill?!? That’s funny.

The student center now houses Taco Bell, dining services, The Chef’s Corner, and Starbucks. The Tally has been opened up and redone with new furniture and a vaulted ceiling. And, the hotel has received a face-lift, as well. It’s actually quite beautiful, but I wax nostalgic for those earlier days that seemed so simple.


Today’s weather makes me want to sit in the coffee shop all day, reading and writing. I wish sometimes I could cancel classes in order to take advantage of these moods as they strike. I feel like I could write this whole damned proposal today. Or better yet, I could write my way into the sunset like an old-school Marlboro Man and squint my eyes into my own brightness, wondering if I will ever stop shining. Realistically, though, I will teach at Burris, then walk to the other end of campus to teach my college students. Then, when I finish teaching, Drew is in town so he is taking Bec and I out for dinner. It should be good times. I know Drew really appreciates Bec’s ability to accept him for who he is and be nonjudgmental. She’s kind of sweet like that.

Alas, no writing will ensue, though some reading will. Actually, I have already gotten a good start on Mama Day. This dissertation thing may come together after all.


I am thankful for my new (mostly waterproof) coat and its hood. I love Carhartt. Here is my coat, only mine’s purple, of course.

Exercise: walked the dogs 1.5 miles, ran 2 miles, walked from Burris to Lafollette

Food: banana, juice, chocolate milk, oatmeal, 7-layer burrito, Enchirito (oh, yes, they have them still), Puerto for dinner (veggie quesadilla, chips and salsa)

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