After three-and-a-half years of whining, griping and sometimes even studying, I finally managed to earn an MBA (Master of the Bulldoodoo Arts) degree in my “spare time,” which I put in quotes because the only time that’s really spare is the time you spend with your wife when she’s making you watch America’s Next Top Model.
Taking classes after work is a great way to earn an education without having to live on a college student’s diet of Ramen noodles and Milwaukee’s Best. Still, if someone came up to me and said, “You have two choices: you can either earn another degree after work or you can swallow and pass this regulation billiard ball right here,” I’d probably have to take a vacation day to weigh my options, and possibly to start practicing on golf balls.
I once complained about how grad school was sucking the marrow out of my life to a friend of mine who has two kids. He looked at me without the slightest hint of sympathy.
“You may think you don’t have free time. You might sit around all day saying to yourself ‘Gee, I don’t have any extra time at all.’ Well, let me tell you something, Bucko. If you don’t have kids, you have an astronomical amount of free time. You have free time you don’t even know you have yet.”
Maybe that’s true. But now that I’m done with school, I’ll definitely have more time to try to find something worth grubbing other than grades. Or I might even find time to venture out to the backyard to try to turn our above-ground swamp back into a pool again. For the record, we didn’t even want a pool. It just came with the house, like the plastic cup of cole slaw that comes with your deli sandwich. Even though taking care of a pool, especially one parked under seventeen enormous maple trees, can be a chore, I’m really looking forward to relaxing and skimming the pool without worrying about term papers and final exams. There’s a certain Zen-like simplicity to skimming a pool, but you wouldn’t want to make a career out of it. That’s why there are no cabana men.
But I’m really looking forward to rekindling a relationship with a certain hot little number that’s been patiently waiting for my time ever since I started taking classes. That’s right, my PlayStation2. When you get wrapped up in working and taking classes, it’s easy to lose track of what’s really important in life: saving the world from mutant plagues that turn entire towns into zombies who must have their heads blown off for the good of mankind.
If you thought I was going to mention something about spending more time with my wife, I’d love to, but she still has two classes left to take this summer to finish her own grad degree. The best I can do for her is to shut the door while I’m watching all three Lord of the Rings movies in one gluttonous stretch. I’d love to feel sorry for her, but I started school almost two years before she did, and now she’s only a couple of months from being done, too. She almost lapped me.
Regardless, this summer is just about here, and I, at least, will have loads of free time with which to enjoy it. Summer and free time: those are two things that just go together, like bacon and egg n’ cheese.
You can give Mike Todd pencils, books and/or dirty looks online at firstname.lastname@example.org.