Aug 14, 2010

Back to school - dorm room essentials

When I was young we didn’t even think about back to school until after Labor day and our list of essentials was pretty short.

When my brother Wes and I went away to school, we had a 13-year-old Oldsmobile loaded with two suitcases and a couple of cardboard boxes full of stuff.

We couldn’t take much more. The Plainview Academy dorm rooms weren’t very spacious.

I took a few extra pairs of socks and underwear, one dress suit, one sport coat, six or seven shirts for class, three pairs of jeans, two pairs of slacks, two pairs of shoes, a pair of boots, one windbreaker and one winter coat.

My most prized possessions were drawing pencils, some water color paints, a primitive drafting board with a wobbly T-square and a Kodak box camera with two or three rolls of 620 black & white film.

Backpack? Forget it! I would have been laughed out of school carrying a backpack in those days.

No radio, no record player, just bare-bones stuff, but I was happy as a bunny in a cabbage patch.

It’s a whole new ballgame today. Now it takes much more to satisfy a cabbage patch bunny.

Kids today won’t be seen in an old ladies car such as a 13-year-old Oldsmobile. Nope, they ain’t happy if they don’t have a cool SUV such as a new Jeep Liberty or Ford Edge.

The list of stuff students "need" is much longer now:

1. iPhone

2. iPod

3. MacBook Pro computer

4. A printer than can scan, fax and copy

5. 12-megapixel digital camera

6. PlayStation 2 -- why is the PlayStation 2 essential? That’s what they use to play their DVD’s. After all, they can’t study unless Lord of the Rings has the room rockin'.

7. Livescribe Smartpen with notebook

8. TV

As the old Bob Dylan hit song says, The Times, They Are a-Changin’