Don't get me wrong. I understand the need for rites-of-passage. I understand the need to savor success. Our lives would be arid if we did not trumpet and memorialize the major milestones in our lives.
But this high school senior stuff is way out of hand. Can you believe $252 for invitations to a High School Open House?
I blame it on social media. Every kid in Eaton Rapids knows the "high runners" for gifts from the previous year. Belladonna is supremely confident that she will haul in +$4000 in gifts.
I am not so sure.
We offered her $1000 straight up to skip the Graduation Open House. She refused. She was offended. She acted as if we were trying to steal $3000 from her.
These kids take pictures of every flower given to them at every honorary event and post them on Facebook. And there are a boat load of these events. Every sport has a senior night. Every extracurricular activity does as well. Not only do we get to sit through the Eaton Rapids senior nights, we get to sit through Portland's, and Mason's when our away competition happens to be their last home event. And it is not just Spring sports. Nope. We get it Fall and Winter as well.
Woe to the parent who gives their child a smaller bouquet than everybody else. They will hear about it.
I could understand the fanfare if we were sending these kids off to be suicide bombers. But in most cases, they are going off to college where life will be pretty darned jolly.
They did their job
Back-in-the-day we went to school and we studied and we graduated because it was our job. If we had an open house it was a spiral sliced ham, a bowl full of Hawaiian Punch and Ritz Crackers.
I suspect the overblown grandiosity is the fruit of the cult-of-the-individual.
We saw it coming.
We saw it in Valedictorians who identified their hero as themselves.
We saw it in the growing circular logic of self-referential perfection. "Of course I am entitled to the best!"
And some did not
I, personally, know the sting of having a child who failed to graduate from high school. That gives me license to mock the false Gods of "sensitivity" and "political correctness."
Many of the kids who fail to graduate high school are cynically observant. They see that they are being prepared for the job market of thirty years ago. Let's be honest, nobody knows what the job market of 2020 will look like. Why work hard to be 183rd in a class of 200? Better to smoke a little bit of "I-don't-give-a-damn" weed and play video games. At least that does not hurt.
It is the economy of the Circus. Somebody is benefiting. But it is not me.