“His Reindeer Flies Sideways…”

More on that title in a minute.

I would like to jump straight into today’s failure.

Today, I failed to receive my diploma.

This is not due to any incomplete requirements or failed courses.  No, the reason for this failure can be summed up in one word.


Now, to begin all this explaining I have to do, I must tell you about one of the policies of the university I graduated from.  At my former college, if a student had a fine, fee, or outstanding balance on their university account, a hold was placed upon it.  A hold could prevent the student from doing fun stuff such as registering for next semester’s classes or deferring their book purchases to their account.  In the case of graduating students, a hold would mean that they would not receive their diploma until the hold was removed.

Ah, you’re catching on.  Very good!

My hold was placed on my account for a different reason.  Earlier in the semester, I had checked out 8 books from the library.  They were due on….today! June 8th! (8 books on the 8th, anyone else feeling the Twilight Zone vibe here?) However, the university felt I could not be trusted to return those books by the due date, and so a hold was placed on my account.  Normally, the diplomas are mailed out four weeks after the graduation ceremonies.  That fourth week began today.  I failed to receive my diploma today because hold or not, I wanted as much opportunity to finish reading those books as I could get if I decided to finish them.

Yes, you read that correctly.  I chose to have the option of reading books I had checked out from my university’s library over my diploma being mailed out at the same time as the rest of the diplomas. 

I have claimed to be many things over the course of my life.  Normal has not been among those many things.

Some of you might already know what the title of this post references.  I did not know until I googled it a few minutes ago, but someone created lyrics about reindeer to the tune of “Pomp and Circumstance.” There’s a nice little flash animation posted here: http://www.albinoblacksheep.com/flash/reindeer. I don’t know if it’s the original or not, but it’s the first hit I had on the googlin’ track.

However, the lyrics I heard were slightly adjusted from that version. The version I was serenaded with went, “His reindeer flies sideways, your reindeer flies upside down.  Her reindeer flies backwards. My reindeer is dead! Bom bom bom.”

The lyrics for both versions are almost the same.  I am making a big deal out of the version I know because while it is not life changing or anything, the first time I heard it was at my graduation ceremony.  The person I was standing next to began singing as soon as we reached our seats and were standing in front of them while waiting for the rest of the graduates to file in.  Meaning, I heard this little ditty performed repeatedly for a solid 20 minutes.  It is now burned into my memory.

Pity me.

Nevermind, don’t do that. Instead, take good care of your reindeer.

There is not much left to say, except that for those concerned, yes, I did turn in all the books today.  The hold is now removed.  The failure of not receiving my diploma today will be erased when it arrives at some point within the next week or so.

Until tomorrow, happy failing!