Open thread

Today we have an open thread.  Discuss anything on your mind.

Travel planning has been on my mind.  Take this survey if you’re interested.

 

I used to enjoy planning trips but over the years I’ve grown to dislike it. The researching, coordinating, and selecting seem to aggravate my tendency toward analysis paralysis. Do you have any tips to make it easier?

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75 thoughts on “Open thread

  1. DD is starting to fill out college applications and is unclear on a major. Last night she said, “I just want to give speeches and not work hard” Any suggestions for major/career options?

  2. Ice tea – I have received many, many gifts of tea over the years, lots of which are herbal which I don’t like. I have finally found a use for them – iced tea! I take a random assortment of different types of herbal tea, add hot water, steep, add ice and wah la, decent ice tea. Sweeten to taste.

    Just thought I’d share.

  3. I love travel planning. DH does, too. For the past few years, I’ve mostly deferred to him in planning our vacations, but for our upcoming Europe trip, I took the lead. He’s better than I am at planning for rural/outdoors/active-type vacations, but I’m better than he is at planning for city-centric vacations.

  4. I answered that I don’t like travel planning. But what I don’t like is “planning” on top of everything else that needs to be done. If it were the only thing I had to do, I might enjoy it. At least, the daydreaming/looking at pictures to figure out where to go and where to stay and where to eat — I am never going to be the person who has an itinerary for each day; that just feels too constrained and not vacation-ey.

    Our sad news is that one of the foster kitties is sick. DD mentioned that he had lost weight and didn’t look good, but not until he’d gone down from 2 lbs 9-10 oz to 2 lbs 5 oz. So we got him on meds yesterday, and he’s still not eating today, so the lady who runs the rescue is taking him home tonight to keep an eye on him and give him a bolus of fluids if he needs, etc. I hope he is better enough to come back tomorrow.

    The funny thing about this is how this has completely changed what I am thinking about the kitties. I have been mostly convinced that we were going to adopt the mom, because she is a real sweetheart, and DD adores her. And then I got the sick kitten back from the checkup yesterday, and the mom rejected it — greeted it, licked it all over, and then it tried to nurse, and she got up and walked away. Twice. Then she let another kitten nurse with no problems. And I got irrationally angry with her, because, damn, the little guy hasn’t eaten in a few days, and a little milk is probably exactly what he needs to get some energy to fight this thing, you know? (Irrational, I know, because her behavior is entirely normal in cat-world) I mean, the poor little guy is wobbling on his feet he is so weak — and she won’t let him nurse? So now I am *completely* doting over and fretting about my little sickie-bic, and the mom is dead to me. :-) So if he pulls through and comes back, we may end up with a little sweetheart instead of the larger former-sweetheart.

  5. DD is starting to fill out college applications and is unclear on a major. Last night she said, “I just want to give speeches and not work hard” Any suggestions for major/career options?

    Speech communication.

  6. I love trip planning. My strategy is to start by researching the things to do and deciding what we want to see/do. Then use that to figure out where to stay and if it’s a plane trip, where to fly in and out of. Obviously flight locations are also dependent on airfares.

    I like to have an idea of what we are going to do each day. It’s not a firm itinerary, but I don’t want to spend a lot of time having the “what do you want to do today?” discussions.

  7. I like travel planning. The options of how to get there, what to do, what order to do things in, choosing a few special places to eat are all great. Some planned times, natch, but mostly of the “while we’re here we’re going to do x”.

    Oh and aloha from Maui!

  8. Pseudonym, that’s interesting that she likes giving speeches. I agree with Rhett, some kind of trainer job might fit her well. Most people hate public speaking. This must be the FFA influence. I feel her on the “not work hard” stuff, but I have no good suggestions. But DD is right, speech communication might work, or maybe theater? I know a couple of people who majored in theater and now work at HP or other big companies.

  9. I hate planning trips. What if I get something wrong? Then I will have ruined the vacation for everyone. There used to be, and probably still are, high-end travel agents who will get to know you and cater to your preferences. I want one of them.

  10. Rocky – It’s one of those “why didn’t i think of that earlier” ideas. I mixed a whole bunch of different types together – surprisingly good and refreshing.

  11. Anyone else working today? I think I’m the only person in my building. Which is actually sort of nice, at least for a day.

  12. Rocky – just went to amazon to order that pitcher, only to discover we’ve been locked out. Amazon is insisting my password is incorrect (although we never log out so shouldn’t have been an issue). I’ve told it to send the code to reset to my e-mail, and it’s not coming through. What on earth is going on??

  13. I recently learned that a few of my adult cousins and their mom (my aunt) have a tracker app that allows them to track each other’s whereabouts. My cousins are in their 40s and don’t live neither their mom. I discovered this when my aunt was telling a story about her son and looked at her phone and said “he is driving right now, I’ll call him when he gets home”. Then 10 minutes later, checks her phone and sees that he is home, and gives him a call. I find this really strange to me*. Its like helicopter parenting when the kids left the nest over 20 years ago.

    *this app sounds great for teenagers, but adult children who are married, have kids, and employed, and basically don’t need mom’s help day to day?

  14. I know a mother and adult daughter who track each other through their phone app. Sometimes I’d like to have something like that, and in fact I’d particularly like it for my adult daughter who uses mass transit late at night. But I understand how it feels too helicoptery and creepy.

    I think travel planning would be less stressful for me if I did not leave it to the last minute and feel rushed to book things.

  15. Lemon – Is the mom elderly? The kids may have wanted to track her and agreed to also be tracked so she wouldn’t feel singled out. Or its just weird.

  16. Lemon & July,

    If it helps her anxiety then it might be easier to just share their location than deal with her anxious calls and texts.

  17. Since I have just finished a gourmet dinner with four wine pairings (and we had a cocktail beforehand), the following may not adhere to my usual standards of prose composition. Also, note to self, next time buy the premium all you can drink premium spirits package.

    I quickly learned something. Since my first two boat trips were Alaska inside passage on a nature exploration boat and the Columbia River on a paddleeboat, i tgiught ofvtge cruise portion as a necessary or efficient delivery mechanism for the destination. However, this ocean cruise, and I also expect the usual European river cruises, are different. It is not Norway and Scotland via ship, but an ocean cruise trip with stops in various ports.

    That being said, we both love this form of travel/floating hotel plus one on one time. I like being relieved of all responsibility, including the responsibility of making sure DH doesn’t get lost or overextend himself. You unpack once in 15 days. Somebody else preps the food, does the laundry, arranges the excursions, takes care of luggage and flight transfers. We do things together, or separately. All of the lectures are available on closed circuit tv. I like Spa time, but not enough to go to Canyon Ranch for a week. 4 or 5 treatments in 2 weeks, perfect. Plus a steam room, sauna and various cold options open all the time. And I have done hiking and sea kayaking at the 69th parallel. We already booked another cruise for western Mediterranean. New Years in Monte Carlo. DHs 75th as an excuse.

  18. Mémé, do you think motion sickness would be a problem on a cruise ship?

    “You unpack once in 15 days.”

    I’ve thought it would be great for us, in part because of this. On most of our trips, we’ll stay at multiple hotels, and every time we have to check out of one and check into another it eats up several prime hours.

    But the main reason we haven’t really considered one is that our family has a propensity to motion sickness.

  19. Fred, Tasaka (in Maui Mall) should be open again in a few days. It’s closed at least thru the 4th, as happens when the family takes a vacation.

  20. Good call in the anxiety. I can imagine my cousin suggesting the app so that she doesn’t call him all day long. My aunt would totally be the person that a thought pops into her head and needs to handle it right than and there and can not move on until it is done (as was evident when she was talking about him and had to talk to him). I guess I could see that being a useful option.

  21. Meme, glad to hear that you and company are enjoying the cruise. European river cruises are my parents (70 &75) preferred vacation method. They really enjoy the unpack once aspect. Growing up our family vacations involved multiple hotels per trip, so it was a nice change for them.

  22. Meme, glad to hear that you and company are enjoying the cruise. European river cruises are my parents (70 &75) preferred vacation method. They really enjoy the unpack once aspect. Growing up our family vacations involved multiple hotels per trip, so it was a nice change for them. Not to mention that now they can enjoy where they are, instead of thinking they need to hurry up and make it to the next city or historic site before xyz time.

  23. @ Finn, I get seasick very easily (ironic). I have puked over the side of a boat many, many times. We’ve been on 1 cruise and I wasn’t even remotely sick. We are considering some of the river boat cruises geared towards families.

    Amazon update – they noticed suspicious activity and locked our account. They sent exactly one e-mail notifying us, which apparently went straight to the trash folder since hotmail thought it was junk. They made no other effort to let us know. All straightened out, but what a pain.

  24. Related to Lark’s tale of suspicious activity–

    We recently took a trip to the east coast, and before we left, we notified our credit card providers of our travel plans. Then halfway through the trip, we were notified that a Lyft charge had been rejected, because Lyft is based in San Francisco, so that’s where the charge originated.

    Moral of the story: Next trip, if we’re going to use Lyft again, we also indicate San Francisco, even if we’ll be nowhere near there. Or if the CC allows, we’ll indicate our plans to use Lyft.

  25. Lark, DW had a similar issue with Amazon. She was trying to log in on DD’s laptop and it said they had to send her a confirmation email before she could log in on a new device, but she never would get the emails.

    Meme, glad you’re having a good time!

  26. SM, picking up on my response to your college question from the last open thread:

    For most totebagger kids, I would strongly recommend applying Early (with an upper case E, as in Early Admission or Early Decision) to at least one school (and others here, e.g. Fred, have concurred). Early Admission/Early Decision application deadlines are typically around October 31/Nov 1.

    So we can work backwards from there.

    The choice of schools to apply to Early should (IMO) be done by the beginning of senior year. That choice should be informed by test scores (and grades) to know which schools are reaches, safeties, likelies, etc. So this requires testing to be largely complete by then; I suggest by the end of junior year. This also helps in choosing which schools to visit during the summer after junior year.

    For SATs, the June test date may conflict with other plans, e.g., travel to attend the graduation of a family member. The May test date comes in the middle of AP testing, and for totebaggy kids should probably be reserved for SAT subject tests that leverage off AP testing (e.g., take the SAT chemistry subject test the same month as the AP chemistry test).

    So this means SAT testing should be done by March. To allow for a retake (or multiple retakes), I suggest the first SAT be taken in fall of junior year, and no later than December. The October or November test dates facilitate simultaneous preparation for both the SAT and PSAT. The August test date may, depending on school schedules, facilitate focused SAT prep leading up to the test.

  27. We are on Viking. High end UMC, but there are
    even more luxurious cruise lines. Just finished the evening show, which was a Benny Hill style magician comedian who finished up with a magic square (math trick). Tomorrow we all have to be dressed by 630 am. UK immigration is very tight now and every passenger and crew member has to be interviewed face to face and have a special sticker affixed to the passport.

  28. I tend towards overplanning and analysis paralysis for trips, but for this trip to Bologna, because the timeline was very fast, I ended up just grabbing a hotel kinda near the university – and I love it. If we came back to Bologna, I would stay here again. But I know one isn’t always so lucky

  29. So back from my third night in a row of going out with my working group. They are mostly Dutch and Swedes, with one other American, and a Brazilian who lives in Finland. Essentially, that means we eat appalling food every night, and the drinking goes on and one. I stuck with them tonight until about 10 and then staggered home. They were still partying on their hotel rooftop. At least tonight, I insisted we go to an actual Italian restaurant, as opposed to the beer n’ sausage place we went to last night. Since Bologna is crawling with party abroad kids from all over, there are tons of “American hamburger” joints and “authentic Irish bars” and that is where the Swedes like to go

  30. Thanks Finn!

    I’m trying to do the college thing the same way I’m trying to do vacation these days–no tight itinerary, but knowledge of all the “must”s so we can hit them without a lot of hoopla beforehand, and knowledge of lots of options, so when we are going from A to B and feel hungry, I’ll already have a few ideas of where to go. But in this, the summer before sophomore year of HS, we have already locked horns. We will be IN a college town for a wedding, and will have a morning/midday free (rehearsal dinner Fri, wedding 3:00 Sat. I think it’s a no-brained to do a campus tour, just to get a feel for how they go. DS says absolutely not, that adds stress. Grrrrrrr

    My sisters and I use apps to track where our parents are.

    Another advantage of river cruises is less to remember, especially if several trips use the same (or identical) boats. Whatever the day brings, you return to familiar surroundings.

  31. We have water bottles like the pitcher Rocky described. They’re great, until we re-use the fruit/veggies too many times. Then it’s very yucky.

  32. As my husband says, I want “hot ice”. IOW I want trip planning handled and managed for me but I want the discretion to do spur of the moment activities. So I might be disgruntled with a cruise that eases traveling but doesn’t allow me to stay an extra night at one port for a fabulous activity the next day. :D I just need to accept that a “perfect” trip doesn’t exist and go with the flow of imperfect travel.

    MM, I’ve seen photos of canals in Bologna similar to those in Venice. I’d love to visit Bologna.

  33. “I like to have an idea of what we are going to do each day. It’s not a firm itinerary, but I don’t want to spend a lot of time having the “what do you want to do today?” discussions.”

    I think this is where DW and I are headed. Until now, we’ve been much more structured, planning out which day we’ll do what, but once we’re not constrained by kids’ school schedules, we’re likely to start revisiting places we really liked, but at a more leisurely pace, and with more spontaneity.

  34. I looked at the list SM posted, and I think we totebaggers fall somewhere in between what the author considers rich and middle class.

    IOW, UMC??

    From the list: “The middle class live above their means, the rich live below.”

    Living below our means (along with delaying gratification) seems to me to be signature totebaggy behavior.

  35. I love my Chase Sapphire card fraud protection — when it detects suspicious activity, it texts me. I can respond to the text and have the clerk re-run the transaction. It has happened 3 times – each time it was actually me but in a new location.

  36. I like travel planning. For our Japan trip I will likely plan out daily activities with planned stops for meals. With the kids, I don’t want to be figuring out where we are eating. Without plans, I feel we end up eating crap because they are hungry and on the edge.

    On a quick getaway right now in Palm Springs without small monsters. No planning at all. We can get hungry, thirsty or bored, and no one starts crying. I like the random nature of our days – because I really do like just being with DH. No way this would work with small bladders and short-attention-span-snowflakes.

  37. I think it’s a no-brained to do a campus tour, just to get a feel for how they go. DS says absolutely not, that adds stress.

    Is it a school he is interested in?

    I think this is where DW and I are headed. Until now, we’ve been much more structured, planning out which day we’ll do what, but once we’re not constrained by kids’ school schedules, we’re likely to start revisiting places we really liked, but at a more leisurely pace, and with more spontaneity.

    I like to having a prepared list of options. We have a list of things to choose from depending on how we feel, the weather, maybe we talked to someone earlier on the trip who recommended something or recommended skipping something, etc. I like having time to do something spontaneous that we happen to pass by, stay longer at a place we really like, but I also want to make sure we have ideas if something ends up taking much less time or is a total bust and we have extra time. And I want to make sure we are going to hit the things we really want to.

  38. Meme – thanks for sharing about your trip. My DH likes cruises for all the reasons you’ve stated, but we have only cruised out of Galveston because it’s so easy to just drive down. Something like what you describe is on our list of what we’d like to do next.

    SM – the only thing I would add to the college list that you’ve got is to overrule him if needed and have him do things that he might not think are necessary because he’s not interested in whatever. The person my DS was by the end of senior year was a lot different than the one he was at the end of junior year, and I think he would have done some things differently (such as spending more than 10 minutes on his essay before submitting). He can always turn down opportunities he doesn’t want to pursue, but it’s a lot harder to decide in the spring of his senior year that he’d like to go to x school after all if he has not applied or taken the necessary tests.

  39. DD, nope, not a school he’s interested in at all. Purely just a chance to see what the process looks like with zero pressure. He doesn’t see it that way, of course.

    Becky, you’re talking about things beyond “musts”? I’d like to know how to get the better essay out of him! Every once in a while they just come, but for the most part, anxiety seems to be the biggest block, so there’s very little I can do that doesn’t make it worse. The thing you’re talking about–figuring out who he might be becoming and laying the groundwork for that person’s path–is what I’d love to do, but can be so hard to figure out. He is slowly learning to trust my judgement on very small things, like those outings I make him come along on that he winds up enjoying. This summer we may up the ante there a bit to include things like zip lining and Busch Gardens, and he says that he realizes it was dumb not to do the church nursery, so he says he’ll go next week (this weekend he was up til 5:00, including with stomach issues, probably simply because of nerves).

    Here’s what I came here, at this hour, to say:
    O M Geeeeeeee! Ms Perfect, who I knew in my grad program–. I just looked her up and wowsers–never in 1000 years would I think she would ever get fat or look anything other than 100% absolutely on point. It sounds like she’s hitting all her marks and doing well professionally, which is the important part. I’m not even criticizing her, just stunned. Do you know what I mean?

  40. Here are some other items from that list that made me think of this group:

    The middle class live comfortably, the rich embrace being uncomfortable. Rhett and some others like to poke fun at this, some more maliciously than others.

    The middle class work to earn, the rich work to learn. This is another one that gets some people worked up.

    The middle class focus on saving, the rich focus on earning (or letting your money work for you)

    The whole list is at https://businessplus.me/differences-middle-class-rich-people/

  41. Then I’m totally missing the point of pushing him to go on a tour of a college he has no interest in. What pressure is there on a college tour that you need to prepare for? You walk around campus with a bunch of other people while a junior or senior tells you what each building is. Why would you want to waste an hour doing this at a school he doesn’t want to go to?

  42. Viking ocean cruises appear to have a slightly younger and fitter profile than the river cruises, but it is still 55 plus. However, there are other cruise lines for every stage of life. But if you want the ability to get to know a place, a land or rail trip with flexibility in travel and/ or accommodations is best.

    The bottom line of the list comparison about the middle class is that the merely prosperous are risk averse, while the truly rich are not. That is most likely because the consequences of loss can be more easily absorbed. .

  43. Happy Fourth, everyone!

    This is a very quiet one for us — kids all gone and poor DH is stuck in the city with me since I can’t be in the car for the 2.5-hour trip to the cottage. Nor can I make it out to the various friends’ places where we’ve been invited, so it’s the 2 of us and the dogs at home, reading. DH will work out and I’ll do my pathetic PT and then he’ll bbq something. He won’t let me help in the kitchen so I’m encouraging him to keep the meal simple, since it’ll all be on him. Submitting him for sainthood at my earliest opportunity …

    Meme – sounds like you’re having a great time! Interested in hearing more about it. I confess I’ve never wanted to go on a cruise *except for* some of the Viking ones I’ve seen — especially the ones shown in the ads before Downton. I think these are the river cruises Lemon’s parents do. It sounds like your open-water trip has been really nice though. Maybe one day.

    Fred – I can’t recall if you’re there w/ all 3 boys, or just DW. Hope you’re having fun – let us know what you’ve been doing. Those of us trapped on our couches would like to vacation vicariously. :)

    SM – I’m w/ Denver on this: I would let him pass on touring a college he has no interest in. It’s just a slow walk and a lecture, in his mind. But you’re the mom here, and you may think there are benefits to him that we don’t understand. In that case, maybe a bribe? You come on this tour w/ me and I’ll buy you lunch at X. ?

    RMS – I have that water pitcher w/ the center column for fruit or cucumber or lemon or whatever. Thanks for the reminder that I need to get that out–surely DH will allow me to fill a blasted jug w/ water and toss in some berries.

  44. “We recently took a trip to the east coast, and before we left, we notified our credit card providers of our travel plans. Then halfway through the trip, we were notified that a Lyft charge had been rejected, because Lyft is based in San Francisco, so that’s where the charge originated.”

    We have this issue all the time at our local craft show — since the vendors come from all over, we get a charge from NC, then a charge from AZ, etc. We almost always end up having to call to authorize. Same thing happened on my NC/TN trip — funny, when you buy bagels in MD at 6 AM, and then try to buy lunch in NC at 1, they tend not to be too happy with you.

    On a sadder note, little kitty didn’t make it. DD took it better than I expected, although she is the queen of the “don’t let them see they got to you” in public. We spent the rest of the evening playing with the two happy, healthy kitties, who were being adorably insane — kittens are a pretty awesome cure for just about anything.

  45. I’m not even criticizing her, just stunned. Do you know what I mean?

    It’ll turn out to be a consequence of some medication that she was on for some condition that is totally not her fault. That’s how it is with perfect people.

  46. Maybe the college tour is stressful because the kid is already stressed about the wedding events that weekend. So try another time, perhaps even at a local college where you can drop in to see the rock climbing wall or get a snack at the coffee shop. You probably don’t need the full-on college tour at this stage; just wandering around on your own will give him a sense of the vibe on an urban/state flagship/tiny liberal arts campus. Generic colleges are everywhere. It might take the pressure off if he understands that you’re not scoping out specific schools for him.

  47. LfB, that’s sad news. But you know, his short life was much happier and more comfortable with your family than it was originally scheduled to be.

  48. I recall that someone on here (maybe Becky’s forerunner) mentioned likingLaundry by Shelli Segal. I just found this sweater (there are several other colors) for $13.

  49. Scarlett, that’s an excellent idea. His stress about the wedding is coming out just as I’m getting cold feet about those dresses, thinking they look like an old lady going to Sunday meeting. Maybe I should get a red hat, lol. There are several colleges around Tampa. He did an overnight camp at USF a few years ago and loved it, often refers to that school when he talks about wanting to go to college and the options that are available on a campus. I was thinking this would be the chance to get a feel for a smaller school, but there are several of those here as well.
    DD, you’d think there’d be no stress on a campus tour, huh? But it still means being around other people.
    My kid’s shrink has told me that he’ll be fine, just needs to grow up and decide he wants to do things. Even though it’s psychological, not physical, discomfort, this is still very much in line with recent studies showing that medical personnel discount pain in black people, and that black patients are given much, much less pain relief than whites with the same complaints. I completely disagree with him, of course, can’t decide if I should force the issue at our next appt or just find somebody different. The other day, I challenged him to strike up a conversation with anyone, including a small child, in public. The bribe was big enough, so we headed to the pool with a ball. Unfortunately, a thunderstorm rolled in before he had a really good chance.

  50. Btw, I’m not asking him to have an indepth discussion with a stranger, by any stretch. Something like this exchange with another customer when we got carryout on the way home from the pool would be fine.
    I had to drive through that storm. I could hardly see.
    Oh no–we are walking home from here!
    I hope I don’t have to drive through it again on my way to my daughter’s.
    Better be on your way–drive safely!
    Thanks! (I) hope you get home safely too.

    And just for fun, a wedding video.

  51. DD, you’d think there’d be no stress on a campus tour, huh? But it still means being around other people.

    But so what? Performance on the campus tour isn’t part of the admission criteria.

  52. I completely disagree with him, of course, can’t decide if I should force the issue at our next appt or just find somebody different.

    Find someone else. You’re not satisfied with this dr, there’s no reason to continue when you have other options.

  53. “I like to have an idea of what we are going to do each day. It’s not a firm itinerary, but I don’t want to spend a lot of time having the “what do you want to do today?” discussions.”

    ITA. This is our usual MO. We also like to make dinner reservations ahead of time if there are places we don’t want to miss, and some ideas for other places to eat. I hate wandering around hungry depending on what is open/available.

    @Lemon. That’s weird. DH & I share our locations with each other. It’s helpful when timing dinner & things like that. I would be really reluctant to let my mom track my whereabouts. She would never ask.

  54. When we lived overseas, I frequently sent pix of really mundane stuff, because I feel closer to people when I can envision where they are, so I’d like to think my family wants to know what it looks like where we are. Maybe doing the tracking app for adults is like that–“gee, Jeremy has been stuck in traffic every evening (that I’ve checked) this month. Poor guy must be really stressed” That sort of thing.

    Denver, I’m not sure if you are saying that because there is no objective reason to be stressed, my son won’t be anxious, or if you’re saying that you think explaining to my son that there is no reason for the stress would make it vanish, or if you think i don’t realize what I’ve said several times–there would be absolutely nothing riding on this one if we did it (which, as I said earlier, we aren’t) or if you don’t understand that stress and anxiety are not rational things that can be explained away logically. This complete impasse is how many of our recent exchanges have felt to me. I don’t understand why that is either.

  55. S&M, I’m saying it because I don’t understand what would be riding on any college tour. It’s not like the SATs or and interview, which are part of the admissions process and criteria. I understand why you would want to prep for the test and do mock interviews and such.

    The college tour is not part of the admissions criteria. You aren’t graded on how you interact with other people on the tour or what kind of questions you ask. That’s why I don’t understand why you think it is so important that he not be stressed or anxious when you go on tours at the schools he is interested in. It’s just a walk around campus with a tour guide. It does not affect his chances for admission.

    I understand stress and anxiety. I don’t understand why you think college tours are so important. These are two completely different issues.

  56. Wait, rereading. You’re saying we could skip campus tours altogether, once we’re at that point? Or that when it’s real, his anxiety will melt away and he’ll be able to absorb info and enjoy the pretty quads?

  57. My comments about the campus tours are totally separate from his anxiety issues. My point is that campus tours have nothing to do with admissions, so what does it matter if he wants to go on them or not?

    This complete impasse is how many of our recent exchanges have felt to me. I don’t understand why that is either.

    It’s because you seem to apply a filter to my comments that has nothing to do with them. In this case, you apparently were reading that my comments were all in relation to the anxiety issues. They had nothing to do with that at all, they were purely about campus tours and why you think the tours are so important.

  58. Admissions is only half the game–you also have to make a decision for the school, as much as they decide to accept you. How can you really decide to spend several years of your life in a place you’ve never been? There are some circumstances where that’s required, but I can’t see simply writing off campus tours as a way to decide if a college is right for you, and if you’re comfortable in the environment.

    “Applied a filter”? I commented on his anxiety about the tours, you replied, and it’s taken until now for me to realize that you were trying to move to a different topic and talk about tours per se. Tours are obviously not part of admissions. It didn’t really occur to me that you would be trying to tell me something so simple. I didn’t realize you think I’m that dumb.

  59. “Admissions is only half the game–you also have to make a decision for the school, as much as they decide to accept you.”

    ITA; one of the first steps in the selection process is (not necessarily literally) looking at schools to figure out where to apply. Step 1 is in the student’s court (although some would say step 0 is the schools’, i.e., all the stuff they send the students to get the students to consider them).

    “How can you really decide to spend several years of your life in a place you’ve never been?”

    BITD, that wasn’t uncommon. Some here have posted about picking a college sight unseen.

    OTOH, I encourage taking advantage of any chances to physically visit schools, whether or not you actually take a tour.

  60. “just wandering around on your own will give him a sense of the vibe on an urban/state flagship/tiny liberal arts campus.”

    +1. SM, I suggest you and your DS visit campuses when you have a chance, but without necessarily viewing any specific campus as a potential destination. Get a feel for what he likes and doesn’t like about each campus, and later that information will come in handy when he’s ready to start the selection process.

  61. Tours are obviously not part of admissions. It didn’t really occur to me that you would be trying to tell me something so simple.

    You are the one who talked about wanting him to do a tour with nothing “absolutely nothing riding on this one.” So clearly that means you think there is something “riding” on them for schools he does want to attend. Your comments clearly implied that you feel it is important for him to perform well on these tours, and I’m trying to figure out why.

  62. Denver, yes. Touring schools he wants to go to, it’s best if he doesn’t stay up vomiting the night before, if he is willing to talk and ask questions, and if his mind isn’t so dieser up that he can’t remember a thing. I know objectively that he won’t be judged in any way. I can tell him that. But that won’t necessarily make any difference in his memory so of anxiety. Why is this so hard for you to understand?

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