I'VE NEVER been the overly sentimental type. In fact, chances that I'll get weepy about some needless milestone (i.e. the last time I'll stand in line at the Bookstore for a $5.00 notebook) are about as likely as expecting Kate Moss to show up at Outback.
Whereas other graduates might be sitting in some apartment or coffee shop today wistfully recalling great times of yore while listening to "Closing Time," my friends and I probably will opt to play Mario Kart instead. And if history holds, I'll be losing. Badly.
But while I won't be sobbing into my extra tall café latte anytime soon, reflection is a necessary part of graduating from college. Apparently, it's expected: As your collegiate career winds down and your time on campus (that's right, I said campus! Down with the needlessly specific lingo of the University! Down I say!) draws to a close, you have time to sit back and reflect on all you've seen and done in four years, how you've changed, etc. Unfortunately, I seemed to come up short in the reflection department. The only thing I could conclude was that college was a good time and writing for The Cavalier Daily got me a job doing what I love, writing sports.
Then, a few days ago while having dinner with a friend, we decided to spice up the conversation and predict where the other would be 10 years from now. It's a fun exercise which I heartily recommend. Thus, in my final article for this publication, I've decided to turn my prognosticating eye towards our beloved University.
So fire up those flux capacitors and let's see where U.Va. stands 10 years from today. I think it'd go a little something ... like this.
MAY 21, 2000 -- On the 10th anniversary of their commencement, the Class of 2000 returned to the hallowed Grounds of the University of Virginia to recall lessons learned and brain cells lost.
The highlight of the day proved to be the keynote speech by The Rock. In a 20-minute address which saw the thousands ... and thousands ... of spectators chant his name, the former U.S. President reflected upon his days in the World Wrestling Federation, his election in 2004 and subsequent impeachment for DDT-ing Senate Majority Leader Tom Bednar through a table.
"The University of Virginia's Class of 2000 represents the finest minds and talent America has to offer," The Rock said. "The Rock salutes you for your contributions to this great nation of ours."
The Rock then struck University President John T. Casteen III over the head with a steel chair before leaving the stage.
The presence of the Most Electrifying Man In Politics today provoked a host of opinions from members of the 2000 class.
"I'm so psyched The Rock finally came back to the University," part-time ambulance chaser and full-time jabroni Mike Greenwald said.
"He's no Ronald Reagan," NASA Director Brian Dewhurst added. "And he's no Steve Austin either, for that matter. I ask you: When's the last time the Rock drove a monster truck over a stretch limousine? He's an amateur."
Several Virginia celebrities attended the gala event as well, most notably, Cavalier men's basketball coach Pete Gillen. The fiery Irishman maintained that the Cavaliers were a year away from contending for the ACC title, and still were looking for a dominant big man to fill the paint.
Football coach George Welsh also was on hand. Released from his customary off-season cryogenic freeze, he threw his hat to the ground in honor of the former grads. Welsh recently celebrated his 20th consecutive seven-win season, a feat which became much less remarkable once the NCAA expanded the college football campaign to a 14-week season.
Still only halfway thawed, however, Welsh began to melt in the hot May sun and returned to the cooling cryogenic stasis.
"Much like Dirk Nowitski, cryogenic freezing has been a godsend to the sports world," ESPN SportsCenter anchor Jed Williams said.
Although not part of the Class of 2000, Williams attended the gala to provide entertainment, reciting every selection in order from the 2000 NFL Draft as a nostalgic reminder of yesteryear.
While the esteem of the University has fallen in recent years, plummeting from the second-best public university to tie for 27th with Louisiana State and Virginia Tech, the 2000 alumni were unconcerned.
"Now when I say I went to U.Va., people don't care," software mogul Joel Haspel said. "So it's a good thing I hurried up and made my millions. But hey, it's not all bad. At least Chik-Fil-A is open on Sundays."
Haspel then paused to purchase the state of Montana and sell it for parts.
At the close of the day's events, a large contingent of the 2000 graduates made a pilgrimage to the Corner. While Bodo's Bagels still was not open, a dust-covered sign out front guaranteed that the establishment was "Coming Soon!"
(John Moorehouse is a former Sports editor and associate editor.)