My son graduated last Monday and although I was expecting the onslaught of uncouth behavior from most of the audience, I wasn’t prepared for the woman who sat one seat away from me. No more than 5 feet tall and round as a ball, she spoke with a gentle voice as she made her way to her seat. But when the graduates started to march in, she stood up and that woman must have some kind of diaphragm power because she yelled so loud that my left ear started ringing.
Before the ceremony, the school principal already requested that silence be observed since it was a formal occasion but most of the people did not listen. This woman, among others, were calling out during the speech of the school superintendent. She kept calling from someone named “Pigletto” or something that sounds like it.
This is not the first time I’ve observed this behavior. When my daughter graduated two years ago, it was the same thing. And my kids went to different schools. When I graduated, it was very formal, parents dressed up and clapped when appropriate. But the things people were wearing to this ceremony was verging on beach wear. Sure it was warm but is there no boundary anymore between leisure and special occasions? People talked on their phones and one man was even wondering why there were no snack vendors. Hello, it’s not a sporting event. There were even bull horns!
Well, this woman wasn’t done with the screaming. At one point, she was stomping on the bleacher floor and I was afraid she’d break a hole in it. The faculty was looking at her and her companions were telling her to quit it already but she just kept at it until “Pigletto” walked down from the stage and poor boy was embarrassed as hell.
And it doesn’t get better with the college crowd. I have worked in a university for 4 years and attended graduation only once and never again. It was just as bad. A woman even brought loud plastic clappers, like the noise-makers for New Year’s. I think when people can’t hear the name of the graduate anymore, they should just stop the ceremony. Or I wish security would take these people out. This is just using exuberance as an excuse to behave crudely in public.
Sometimes I wonder if the movie “Idiocy” is a vision of the future. Are we devolving? Try and sit in an elementary school cafeteria for a few minutes and tell me what you think.