For many of us, leaving home marked the start of our adult independence. Goodbye, curfews! Goodbye, babysitting our little siblings! And hello… regular phone calls checking if we’ve been brushing our teeth regularly?
Alright, so leaving home didn’t mean a complete departure from our parents for many of us. Of course, that’s not a bad thing! It’s nice knowing that they still care for us, even though that time they sold most of our stuff at the yard sale suggests otherwise—you’ll never even use that Hello Kitty stationary again, darling. Their phone calls and texts remind us that no matter how old we are, we will always be their little girl or boy.
However, there are things that seem to stress out our parents much more than they should. Below are a few topics that always make their way into our phone calls and Skype conversations with them (and Facebook wall postings, for you unlucky ones).
Our vitamin intake
Even if you weren’t a regular vitamin-taker back home, your parents will expect you to stock up on One A Day and Vitamin-C powder packs for the semester. It’s as if coming to college automatically meant disregarding our health. There may or may not be some truth to this, but the point is that vitamins aren’t necessarily a cure-all to begin with. And really, as long as we’re eating a balanced meal (whoops), there is no need to pop these supplements like Tic Tacs. Different parents also seem to have different vitamin fixations. My mom is especially concerned with my fiber intake, and makes sure to send me a Costco-size box of Fiber One granola bars whenever I receive a care package. Three cheers for digestive health!
Well, we did it. Parents Weekend is behind us and everything is looking a little duller. The sky is grayer, the clothes you shoved in your closet are spilling out, and the Ratty’s “Grilled” “Italian” “Chicken” is tasteless compared to Al Forno.
While Parents Weekend does get everyone riled up for some TLC, by the end, you’re wondering how you lasted eighteen years at home. Now that it’s over, we can go back to communicating with our parents the old-fashioned way: text messaging.
This weekend was the one time you were spared of the incessant stream of texts from your parents “just checking in.” Just so you’re not surprised, we thought we’d take a moment to remind you of the texts you’ll get on your iPhone 4 from your mom’s iPhone 6 this week. (Disclaimer: We love our parents very, very much. Love you Bob, Rob, Tamsin and Michele!)
These texts will always cheer you up! They get particularly exciting once your parents discover emojis. (Disclaimer: I am the only daughter, so don’t get too excited.)
Parents outside of their natural habitat.
With midterms and destructive squirrels taking up most of our energy, it’s hard to think ahead to this weekend when Brunonia will be alive with parents and families. While some of us may be primarily focused on getting our ‘rents to cover our many expenses, others may be worried about what the hell they’re supposed to do with a bunch of parents on a college campus. Never fear! There’s no need to spend actual quality time with your parents, for Brown’s clubs and activities have come together to give us a weekend packed with sporting events, brunches, and cleverly named concerts (I’m looking at you, a cappella) to drag your families to. Check our comprehensive list of every single thing you can do with your family this weekend.
Friday, October 24
4:00 p.m. Center for the Study of Slavery and Justice Building Dedication & Opening and Black Experiences at Brown: A Visual Narrative Exhibition Opening Reception, 94 Waterman Street
Visit the new home of the Center for the Study of Slavery and Justice. Address by the one and only president emerita Ruth J. Simmons.
6:00 p.m. PW presents 3C2C (3 Chairs, 2 Cubes)
A festival of new plays in the PW Downspace
6:30 p.m. Musical Forum’s Family Weekend Revue, Alumnae Hall Crystal Room
Join Musical Forum as in their annual Family Weekend Revue, featuring songs from hit musicals and movies.
7:30 p.m. Brown Madrigal Singers Family Weekend Concert
It is easy to lie to your family over the phone: “Oh yeah mom everything is going well, can I call you back in a minute? I’m just finishing up some homework,” you say, as you and your roommate and try frantically to put out a fire that you started when you tried to light each other’s farts. Or to make it seem like you have things under control over text.”Hey dad, I spent all my money on books. Can you send me some more?” you send, as your drug dealer holds you at gun-point in the Blue Room sandwich line. You’ve been living on the edge, taking no prisoners, and are definitely still overwhelmed and confused. That’s normal (right???), and having your parents around for a weekend may seem daunting, but there are some easy tips to staying ahead of your shifty, nosey, and overbearing parentals. The last thing you want is another lecture; you’re in college now and are way too cool/don’t have time for that.
Step 1: Be ready for an interrogation
Here are two different hypothetical conversations, one not prepared, and one prepared, between my mom and me. Learn from me to avoid mistakes and your mom’s wrath.
They’ve left their care packages. Thayer Street has quieted down. We’ve survived yet another Family Weekend at Brown. As a freshman, I came into this weekend with so many open-ended questions, including: how do I prepare for this? What if they embarrass me? What do I do with them? Now that all is said and done, I must admit that the last few days were, well, pretty awesome. My fridges are stocked, my tummy is full,
and my pockets aren’t empty. Getting babied by my mom was kind of nice after a month and a half of pretending to be an adult.
- Your cleaning attempts will be in vain. The first thing I heard when my parents entered my room was “I see you bothered to clean.” Wow, thanks. I guess hours of cleaning isn’t enough to
fool you impress you, Mom. (It was probably still a good idea to hide the booze, though.)
- Bring your orphaned friends along. If your family was able to make it up, you should feel very lucky; some of your friends aren’t seeing their families until Thanksgiving… or even Christmas! So, invite them to dinner, lunch, etc. They’ll appreciate being around your family, even if they are embarrassing. Besides, it’ll be easier to avoid the “have you skipped any classes” question if there’s someone else to divert the parentals’ attention. Continue Reading
Quick! Today may be your last chance of the semester to check out the outdoor Hope Street farmer’s market — a huge collection of local meat, seafood, produce and various other vendors such as Seven Stars Bakery. The market runs every Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on the grassy area between Rochambeau and Blackstone Boulevard, until it moves to its indoor location in Pawtucket for the cold winter months.
With or without parents here this weekend, the Hope Street market is a great place to visit and is easily accessible via the 42 RIPTA bus. It’s more than a larger version of the Wriston farmer’s market Wednesdays — the market is filled with Providence locals, cute children, and animals that remind us that people outside of the age of 18-23 exist (a phenomenon known as the “College Hill Bubble”).
In case you aren’t convinced that this market is our jam, we have a few thousand words to share…