She’s Leaving for College!

Where the hell did the last 18 years go? Like, seriously. Tomorrow I will be helping my mom and dad bring my itty bitty baby sister, Moo, to COLLEGE. What?!

I find it really funny that, while my husband is tearing up at the thought that our son is moving up to the ‘older 3 year old room’ at day care, I don’t bat an eye. He’s growing. Yeah, I know that. No biggie. But when it’s my sister, I get all like, “no effing way she’s got her driver’s license, has gotten a tattoo, graduated high school, and is heading off to college!” In my head she’s still 4 years old, playing with her eleventy trillion Disney princess dolls and adorably singing the wrong words to “Drift Away” and “All Star”.

Thinking about this whole leaving-for-college thing has gotten me thinking about how bloody different it is than when I left for school back in 2000. It’s only a 14 year different for crying out loud.


’00: I believe Cedar Crest College was about $26,000/year when I attended. Thank the gods for my good grades and getting my senior year paid for in full, otherwise I’d still be in debt. Oh, wait. No. I’m still in student loan debt up to my eyeballs.

’14: She did not want to attend my alma mater- some silly business about there being no boys there. If she had gone, she’d be paying over $45,000 for her first year (minus the scholarship she’d get for being the sister of an alumna.)


’00: I brought my portable CD player with anti-skip protection and a giant case of 50+ CDs. Spiffy. I downloaded music for free from Audiophile, LimeWire, and a million other places where I could ‘pirate’ music because nobody was the wiser just yet.

Don’t forget: James Hetfield says, “Napster Bad”

It all got burned onto mix CDs which I still own to this day, although the quality is seriously in the shitter.

’14: Did she ever even have a CD player? She’s got a world of music available to her on her phone, Spotify, iHeartRadio, Pandora…. whatever. She is unlucky in that she has to actually pay for her music on iTunes. Sucker.

Cell phones

’00: I didn’t leave for school with a cell phone. Nobody in my high school had a cell phone. Where I lived, pretty much only very important business people or people who thought they were very important business people had cell phones. I believe it was either over winter break or the summer after freshman year, I managed to convince my mom that I should get one, and when I did, it looked something like this:

I can’t even find my first phone through Google searches- that’s how cheap and shitastic it must have been, even at that time- but this looks pretty close. It could make calls and I could very slowly type out text messages that cost $0.25 a piece because I’m pretty sure there was no such thing as a text messaging plan yet. Definitely no email (, of course) or cameras or Instagram.

’14: She’s got an iPhone 4S, which even though there are newer models out, it still has more capabilities than my whole computer did. Which brings me to…


’00: The family banded together to buy me a Dell Inspiron 2600 as a graduation present.

Oooh. Aaaah.

It beat the pants off of the giant IBM desktop with the 5 1/4 inch floppy disk drive that was sitting on the desk at my parents’ house with the external modem that went pshhhkkkkkkrrrr​kakingkakingkakingtsh​chchchchchchchcch​*ding*ding*ding* (yep I really looked up how to spell that.) It came with Windows XP and I thought it was so cool and futuristic.

’14: She’s heading out with a MacBook Air- Half the thickness, half the weight of the digitized brick I called a computer and probably more capacity than all the computers on my floor in Moore Hall combined. She’s was asking me how much hard drive space I thought she needed and I was dumbfounded. I had no clue what she would need now because ‘back in my day’ we couldn’t even contemplate the amount of space possible on a laptop. I stored my research papers on floppy disks for Christ’s sake.


Then again, some things don’t change at all, though, I guess:


’00: One of the top grossing films for the summer of 2000: X-Men.

’14: One of the top grossing films for the summer of 2014: X-Men: Days of Future Past, weird huh?

In the News:

’00: During my freshman year there was violence in the Middle East, Israel and Palestinians were fighting, and riots broke in Cincinnati because a young black man was shot by a white police officer.

’14:  Right now there is violence in the Middle East, Israel and Palestinians are fighting, and there are riots in Ferguson, MO because a young black man was shot by a white police officer.



Anyway, I was introduced to the music of Tori Amos while I was away at college. This past year, Moo did a research paper on her and learned how wonderful she is, too. Tori Amos’ “Ribbons Undone” has always made me think of my little sis, so I’ll leave off with that.

You can cry now, Mom.



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