So this happened.
In mid-April , one of the admin assistants from the President’s office caught up with me at coffee time and said, “You’ve been selected as this year’s recipient of the Board of Governors’ community service award.”
I said, “Huh?” I hadn’t even know I was nominated. (I still don’t know who nominated me; it’s a private, confidential deal. But I do thank whoever it might have been.)
I was told I could have up to six guests attend the University’s convocation, if I wanted. Unfortunately, my wife was unavoidably out of town on the date of the ceremony. My mother made the trip from the big city, though, and X, my so-called “judo wife”, came along as well.
Several people asked me if I’d be making a speech; I told them that I hadn’t been informed one way or the other if a speech was expected, so I hadn’t prepared anything. I was ready to ad-lib something short, though, if the need arose. My boss ended up in the seat beside me on the stage, in the second row of the platform party. As the grads were filing across the stage to get their sheepskins, he leaned over and whispered, “So how long is your speech?”
I replied, “I really won’t know till I’m done.” He laughed softly and sat back up.
As it turned out, I didn’t need to say anything; I just stood next to the President, looking pretty, while she read off the bio I’d submitted. Then she handed me the framed certificate, the photographer (a friend of mine, as luck would have it) snapped some photos, the crowd went wild, and I sat down.
After the ceremony was complete, we stuck around for some further photos. X talked me into letting her do the kata-guruma lift for the camera. In our fancy clothes.
(If you don’t know what kata-guruma is, check the video below. Note that X put me back down on my feet, as we didn’t have any mats backstage.)
And that’s how my weekend went. How was yours?