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A Freshman Penn Stater’s Guide to Annoying Things You’ll be Forced To Do This Parents Weekend

It’s week eight at Penn State, and as a college student you’re a little too comfortable with the freedom. You’re eating chips and queso in bed for the “first” time and wearing your dirty underwear inside out. Yet your mom believes you’re “doing fine!” from the texts you send 45 minutes after her eleven consecutive “Helllooooo?” messages. Ready or not, your parents are en route to “Penn State’s Parents Weekend 2017!” This guide will tell you what to do with your folks, keeping them away from your stash of empty Crown Russe bottles in your Earle Hall closet.


Park the goddamn car:

This is an event in itself. Your parents insist that the minivan can’t breathe the same air as any college student “human.” Meaning, they expect you to instruct them where to park that’s not anywhere between the East parking deck to the Pugh parking deck. You might as well just direct them the wrong way down a one-way street.


Waste your meal points at The Creamery:

At least there’s no walking to see how long the line is, because you take one step out of Curtain Hall and are already in the line. With every step, you descend further into an intense family argument over which ice cream flavor is the best. What a better way to bond with the family. Good thing they came.


Break a leg via ice skating:

Just like old times. You know, whenever you were in middle school and your parents would drop you off on a Friday night at the Skate Hop for your first date ever. Now the only difference is, you are ice-skating at the Pegula Ice Arena with your parents, you have now hit puberty, and you haven’t been on a date since middle school.


Go to the Lion Shrine, it’s original:

Because you need to match head-to-toe for the 2017 family Christmas card! As if you haven’t already had enough torture waiting in lines, your dad starts practicing his best Nittany Lion roar. “Penn State Dad” is printed on his t-shirt. “Saturdays Are Not Fucking For The Parents” is imprinted on your heart.

“Fall” into the Arboretum Pumpkin Festival:

As if your mom doesn’t call you “her pumpkin” enough already. What a better place to take her, so she can take 100 pictures of the same square of autumn decorative landscape. You’re going to occasionally need to help her switch her iPhone camera to selfie, but the agony will all be worth it whenever she doesn’t bother you for an hour while she’s concentrating on finding the “most plump” pumpkin to take home. Size does matter.


Eat some downtown edible grub:

Your folks actually think you’ve been eating real food for the past two months, until they see you take your first bit into your Turkey Bacon Grill Sandwich at The Allen Street Grill. You finish your meal before they can even start questioning your love life.


It’s the destination, not the journey – Run the THON 5K:

You might like waking up slow on Sundays, but your dad is up and chirpin’ like a college student on noon game days. Since there was no Penn State football for your big guy this weekend, you must innovate. Take your folks to that THON 5K you’ve read about in Stall Stories. How #passionate you are for the cause. What a foreign concept for them to think their child has a passion.


Congratulations, you have survived your first Parents Weekend! We encourage you to go about being a degenerate once again.

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