Matt Carberry (kingpin248) wrote,
Matt Carberry
kingpin248

Mad Monday - "Operation Transcript"

It was a Saturday night much like the previous couple of Saturday nights. I stayed in, and had a six pack of Harpoon IPA to accompany me along the way. Also joining me in the latter stages was the movie Ocean's Thirteen. It was almost two in the morning when the film concluded, and I still wasn't totally sleepy. I flipped over to News 12, and at some point thereafter, saw a commercial for an "Enrollment Day" at nearby Hofstra University the following Tuesday. The thought was filed in the back of my head as I drifted off to sleep.

The next day, I started thinking about it in detail. And I started looking at the numbers. Specifically, what Hofstra costs, and what the Post 9/11 GI Bill will pay. Given that Hofstra is a private institution, it's not assured that the full balance of the tuition will be covered. The numbers are surprisingly close...and what's this? The Yellow Ribbon Program might be able to make up the difference? All right, this is something to seriously consider. To be properly prepared for this, I need a copy of my transcript from Cornell, as much as it pains me to look at that document. I might have a copy laying around somewhere; the copy I provided to the Navy was returned for me in 2005. But I have absolutely no idea where that is. Mail? Uh...no. Even if the Cornell registrar's office provides an express delivery option, the earliest that request could be acted on is Monday, which would put them in my hands Tuesday afternoon. Not good enough. And as it turns out, Cornell only sends transcripts by first-class mail. The only way to have a copy of that transcript in my hands at 9 a.m. on Tuesday morning is to make the request in person. That means driving from Northport to Ithaca and back, in one day. It's two hundred and seventy miles each way. Hmm...what shall I do?

The deliberative process took about one minute. It went something like this:
  • Two and a half months ago, I made the very same round trip. If I could make that drive for a lacrosse game (ironically enough, against Hofstra), I could certainly make it to procure a document that could drastically shift the course of my life.
  • If this fails, I'm no worse off than I was two days before. And by going to Ithaca, I get a Pinesburger out of the whole deal.
  • It's not like I had something better to do...
The departure was late morning; I didn't get to sleep until about three on Sunday night, and I needed to be fully rested while avoiding traffic. I did that well enough through New York City, but I wasn't completely in the clear. The construction zones on I-81 that were dormant on a Saturday in early May were alive and well on a Monday afternoon in late July, and they caused the ETA to slide precariously to the right. Fortunately, not so far to the right that I couldn't complete the primary mission. I arrived at Cornell just before 4 p.m., took care of business with the registrar, and then headed for Collegetown. I wanted to pick up a replacement for the bicycle chain I had broken three days before.

That done, I headed for the Glenwood Pines. The combination of hunger and desire to return to my ancestral home something resembling a reasonable hour caused me to get myself in and out in just thirty-two minutes. I was back on the road at quarter after six - and this time, I took Route 17 back. It was relatively free of delay, and soon after crossing the Tappan Zee Bridge, I heard Howie Rose call Fernando Tatis' eighth-inning pinch-hit grand slam that put the Mets ahead for good. I got home at 11:20, just as Dad was leaving for work. Despite knowing I'd be up early the following day, I still had trouble sleeping. What happened on Enrollment Day? To be continued...
Tags: college take two, cornell, insanity
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