Wednesday, May 26, 2004

Vacation Story #3--Famous Last Words (Parental Advisory--Explicit Dialogue)

I was watching graduation on the local cable access channel. I had woken up late, so I was getting dressed, watching several of my friends walk across the stage. Finally, the time came for the Theatre Department to graduate, including my generous host. The first name called was my friend Bree.

A brief biography of Bree: Bree came to OBU as the average Christian high school graduate. Raised in the church, very polite, very proper. Raised no hell and only small amounts of heck. A good kid. Fast-forward to now: he seems to have been burned by religion and Christian hypocrisy and has found his meaning in the non-meaning of absurdist theatre. He has decided (and will debate the point) that realism is dead as an art form, and the only impetus of social change left at his disposal is absurdist shock theatre. He has lost faith in redemption. He thinks like Freud. He lives like Casanova. Or least attempts to. His bedposts are heavily notched.

A brief note about my alma mater: typical Baptist college, very insulated, very above-board. Its president is pretty much a tool, but I find it hard to hate the man. He's a product of his own system. He can't help it.

Scene: Graduation. Bree walking across the stage to accept his diploma (cover) and shake President Brister's hand.

As I watch on TV, I see Brister and Bree exchange words, and Brister's plastered smile is momentarily shaken. He regains himself and turns to shake the hand of the next happy graduate, his smile firmly in place.

I'm intrigued. Excited. Pleased. Soon after, I find the graduate Bree, and ask him what it was that he said. His account of the exchange is as follows:

"So I'm walking up to him, and he sticks out his hand and says, "Congratulations, Bree, are you excited?" And I look right back at him [big smile on his face] and say without missing a beat, "You have no fucking idea, sir!"

I laughed my double-wide ass off.

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