Sunday, October 21, 2012

Gold and Silver liningness Sunday

Wolfgang and I had a fun day as "CU student for a day" for his first college visit.  We left well before sunrise, and got home well after dark.  It was a full day of touring and information along with the expected schmoozing to get students to enroll.

Wolfgang declared his love for the place before we'd even had lunch.  I expected that to be the case, but we'd still like him to visit a couple of other parentally sanctioned schools for comparison.  But as he put it, "CU set the bar pretty high" ( well as the price tag *COUGH*).

He's always been a good kid, but I noticed a bit of a shift during our time there.  As he got to know the campus and experience it on a typical day with classes in session and students moving about, I got the feeling that Magnum and I went up a few notches on his coolness chart.  Like he sees us in a little different light now.

Another nice and unexpected thing for me was, there was a student panel session for parents in the afternoon.  I recognized one of the girls on the panel.  She'd taken, coincidentally, a college entrance test prep class I'd taught two years ago.

After the discussion, I went up to say "hi" and asked if she remembered me.  She did and told me that another student from that class was also at CU.  They still hung out and were TA's together.  I was happy to hear that since the two of them were from different high schools and didn't know each other before our little class.

We ended the day with a tour of the Engineering Center which really brought back the memories.  All good. Okay, not ALL good!

But all in all, a very fun if long day.

For those who don't know, CU has a ful grown female buffalo as its mascot, lovingly named Ralphie.  She is the official start of all of the home football games.  Second halves as well.  Her handlers are "Ralphie Runners",  and Ralphie Running is actually a CU varsity sport.  Many try, but very few are able to make the team.

No matter how good or bad of a season the football team is having, the fans pack the stadium because they all love Ralphie and watching the Ralphie run.  Some teams get jet flyovers, but what's not to love about a charging buffalo!

So I'll share, first, a CU propaganda video with the Ralphie Run prominently featured.  The second video is from a fan - a typical Ralphie Run from start to finish - for a full appreciation of what it is to run that fast, that far, while controlling a charging buffalo.  Just another day at the office.


Go Ralphie!


Duble said...

I can't believe I've been reading your blog long enough for your kids to go to school, there were all just little fellows a minute ago

Abby said...

Tell me about it. There must have been an alien abduction in there at some point, to explain the unexplained passage of time.

Guano said...

Looked like Ralphie might've actually enjoyed that run -- right up until the door slammed shut! Or conversely, maybe she was terrified the whole time and felt "home" again in the trailer. Either way, those Ralphie Runners have their work cut out for them; me, I'd be running the OTHER way!
Bet it was fun to visit the ol' Alma Mater. Did you get the Nobel Laureate's autograph?

Abby said...

Yeah, I'm sure it may seem like animal cruelty to some, but I think she does enjoy it! The Ralphie runners are full-time athletes who spend quite a bit of time training with Ralphie for those 30-seconds of craziness, and she is very doted upon! I think she's in the starting gate hoping for a new PR of how many runners she will leave tumbling in her wake.

And nope, no autographs. Just a t-shirt, like I need it.

Rebecca S. said...

Wow! Look at Ralphie go! As well as the handspring guy. I'm gobsmacked. University in the States is a whole different ball of wax compared to up here...drumlines, cheerleaders, live mascots, huge football stadiums...I mean, we have football, but wow!

terri said...

Good to hear that Wolfgang is so excited about starting college and has found a place the feels like a good fit!

Ralphie is quite a fun mascot! Our local Big 10 school has a gopher as a mascot. What's so intimidating about a gopher? Kacey's school mascot is a Maverick and Brad's school mascot is a Bison. I think the Bison could give Ralphie a run for her money!

ShadowRun300 said...

Do the Buffalo runners attend school for free? (If not, they should!) Maybe Wolfgang could try out. After all, he is THIS close to breaking the 17 minute mark (or did he do it yet??).
How cool that you got to see one of your tutees! Makes it all the more rewarding for you I'm sure!

Abby said...

Sometimes I wonder if all the hoopla around the athletics and extra-curriculars makes people forget that universities are supposed to be for higher learning! At least I think they are.

Abby said...

Hey, gophers are persistent critters! Ever try to get them off your property?? But yeah, I don't think it would be very intimidating to the visiting team if one were to run around the football field.

Abby said...

Maybe the runners get free tuition in lieu of student health coverage. Better deal for the university.
Yes, it was fun to see a student I had taught! It took me a moment to realize why she was so familiar. Good to know I'm not totally senile yet.

agg79 said...

So you and Magnum both attended CU? Tres cool. I had considered CU in my early hunt for for a good Engineering school but wound up going with my dad's alma mater in stead. Excellent school, if not a wee bit high (on expectations). I know Wolfgang will set aside all the hype and hoopla and excitement an make the best choice for him.

And I am impressed with those Ralphie handlers. Something about handing wild livestock makes it seem a bit more intense. Love how they run him into the trailer at the end.

Duble said...

maybe they're hoping the visiting teams will turn their ankles in gopher holes.

Abby said...

Yes, CU has a notable engineering program. Thanks for noticing :)
Your alma mater is definitely not chopped liver either! Hmmm, maybe I could change my online moniker to Buff90?

Jimmy said...

Yes the Ralphie Runners would be an elite group in my opinion, the responsibility in addition to the training is a lot more than people realize, I am glad Wolfgang is impressed with this school and seeing it for himself moving the two of you up on the coolness chart is an honor.

Linda Hensley said...

It sounds like a wonderful trip. Wishing Wolfgang the best in his higher education!