Like many veterans, once I separated from service I decided to take full advantage of my GI Bill. After my first weekend on campus I realized that being a 30-something year old student is oh so different than being an 18-year old student. All the sudden I can relate all too well to Billy Madison.
I am more than 10 years older than my peers. Want to know what that means? I graduated high school before some of them were even in kindergarten! I have had some of my classmates ask me if we even had color TV when I was their age. Apparently my wrinkle cream isn’t working if they think I’m that old! Even my parents had color TV!
On the flip side…when I have an epically awful day I am old enough to go buy my own wine. And I know the difference between a good bottle of wine and cheap Boones’ Farm is that with the extra money I pay for the wine I won’t have to spend money on hangover food the next morning.
Being an older student also means I am slightly out of touch with the terms that the popular crowd uses. Then again, even in high school I was such a nerd I wouldn’t have known a cool phrase if it bit me in the butt. I swear, listening to my classmates talk I feel as if I could use a translator to understand what the heck they mean.
However, being so much older means I am a lot less confused when our professors start cracking jokes. Let’s face it, college professors aren’t exactly known for having the best sense of humor so the dad-jokes and ’90’s references make complete sense to me. Heck, half of the kids in my classes are probably still trying to figure out who Billy Madison is!