By: Brian Laubscher
Sports Information Director
This week is spring break at Washington and Lee and as glorious as it is for almost everyone on a college campus, to a sports information director it only means that the environment is a little more quiet and we only need to produce half the number of programs we would for a normal game. That doesn’t mean we don’t get to enjoy a little down time, it just occurs a week earlier during finals week. During finals week at W&L, the athletic teams are restricted from practicing and playing games for a period of time and therefore, we sports information personnel get to enjoy a nine day respite with no athletic contests.
I chose to experience my “spring break” with my son Parker. Our day care is understanding enough to allow us to forgo payment whenever Parker is out of their care for more than one week. My wife’s spring break is one week before mine and so with us watching him ourselves for those two weeks, we are able to save over $300. Not to mention it is good to spend that time with him since my schedule is pretty irregular during the school year.
Mindy and Parker travelled to Florida to spend their spring break with some family members from March 29 – April 6. Though I knew I would miss them, I was sort of looking forward to experiencing a “bachelor week” on my own. A little taste of my old life when I could just lounge on the couch, watch basketball uninterrupted, drink beer non-stop and eat unhealthy foods for dinner (which consisted mostly of frozen pizza). The first two days, including Easter, I hung out at my in-laws with Mindy’s two brothers and their families so the bachelor week had really not yet begun. It was good bonding time with her siblings and an enjoyable experience. If you’ve ever met Mindy’s brother Stephen, you would instantly understand.
Bachelor week officially began on Sunday, March 31 as I plopped down on the couch and watched a pair of regional finals from the NCAA hoops tournament. It was in a word — glorious. No distractions whatsoever and I absorbed every single minute of the action (including watching Kevin Ware’s leg snap in two pieces). The next morning I arose and didn’t make the bed, which was also quite satisfying. My next task was to wear my favorite shirt named Old Blue. When Mindy is around, Old Blue has been relegated to strictly a lounge shirt. He’s not even allowed to be worn for golfing since golf is considered a “gentlemen’s sport” and therefore I need to look good when on the course. Old Blue’s only problem is that he is a six-year old Under Armor polo that has a couple of small snags on the back. I don’t see it as a problem, but some others do. So during bachelor week, Old Blue made a triumphant return to my wardrobe – on the first day. J
By Tuesday my excitement had begun to wane and I couldn’t wait to Face Time with my family. Wednesday involved a late night lax game against Bridgewater and the next thing I knew it was Thursday. By then I was already hating myself for the terrible things I was eating and by Friday all I could think of was how their drive back was going and what time would they arrive. Saturday morning I woke and decided to play some Tiger Woods Golf on my Playstation as a farewell to bachelor week. I hadn’t played video games in like eight months and frankly I had forgot all about them until that morning. It was good, but I started thinking about how I should probably make the bed since Mindy and Parker would be arriving later that afternoon and that was the longest continuous stretch in which it had not been made since we moved in together a little over three years ago. A funny thing happened as soon as the bed was made – I started obsessing about other things. Next up was the laundry, and then it was on to cleaning the kitchen, which turned into arranging the junk drawer, which turned into running errands, which turned into vacuuming the carpets and mopping the floors. I finished with a thorough cleaning of the bathroom. I was obsessed. I can only explain it by saying that I was simply ready for human contact and I wanted everything to be perfect when my family arrived. When I pulled in to my in-laws house to pick them up, Parker came running pointing both fingers at me and yelling da-da. I had to fight back the tears – what can I say, I’m a family man now. I will gladly give up the opportunity to do whatever I want and watch uninterrupted sports for what I have now (which was put to the test on Sunday when the Master’s was on all afternoon but I probably watched maybe a hour of solid coverage).
Sunday marked the end of my spring break, which I spent watching Parker and catching up on lost time from his trip to Florida. It’s amazing how much an 18-month old can change in one week. From new words to new facial expressions, it was like he was a different kid. We had a blast together, going to the park twice to play on the jungle gym and feed the geese. We went to the doctor for his 18-month well visit, got his hair cut and went to a car appointment for me. I may not have gone to some fabulous destination, but my spring break was as satisfying as any I’ve had. I just hope our students can say the same about their break, even if their situation is a tad bit different.