I am now a lady of leisure. I am kicking up my heels. Feeling my oats. Throwing caution to the wind. Sucking the very marrow out of life. I finished The Hunger Games, and started Catching Fire. I am also over halfway through Girl Walks into a Bar, the memoir of SNL's Rachel Dratch. And tonight I started a third book, which shall remain nameless, because, after all, Val must remain an enigma. I said enigma, all you would-be Emily Litellas. ENIGMA.
Hick and Genius have forsaken Backroads this evening for the city. They are attending a gathering of Ivy League hopefuls at a hotel near the airport. The meeting concerns admissions and financial aid. Genius has his heart set on MIT, which is not one of the schools sending a representative. But he wants to learn the ropes. And after all, Harvard will be there, and it's just across the river from MIT. And one of Genius's friends was accepted there.
Before they left, Genius popped into my office to see if he was dressed appropriately. For a seventeen-year-old boy going to an informal information-gathering affair, he was. He had planned on wearing fashionable jeans and a tasteful polo shirt, but he scrapped the polo in favor of a black dress shirt. Which was fine. But I told him that he was a hillbilly boy from a rural enclave, and that might be his edge in gaining admission. Perhaps schools have a hillbilly quota to fill. To diversify their prep-school clientele.
I floated the idea that he dress like Cletus on The Simpsons. Or in a flannel shirt with sleeves cut off at the shoulders. Or in overalls, with no shirt. Perhaps borrow a droopy hound dog. And above all, whittle throughout the presentation.
Genius was not on board with my suggestion.