When we headed off to Blacksburg, we had the inclination that this was our big step into the world. Miles away from home and more importantly, our parents, we were left to the elements; forced to watch our own backs and take care of our own selves – or so we thought.
Little did we know that by the time we had settled into our dorm rooms and watched the family car roll away, our mothers and fathers had already become members of a secret society. This secret society, consisting of 8,674 members, and keeps our parents connected to life in the Burg and enables them to essentially call the shots from remote locations.
It’s called the Virginia Tech Parents (VTP) Facebook group and The Black Sheep has just hacked its way in. Here’s what we found:
This is the most exclusive Facebook group to join:
Before your initiation into the group, you must undergo an extensive interview process. Three questions stand between you and your VTP membership: Who do you know here? What is the secret passcode? And who do you work for? These questions are to ensure the group stays true to its slogan, “No students allowed”.
This is the strictest Facebook group to be a part of:
Once you have been put through the group’s vetting process, you are fully expected to read the house rules. The rules are hidden inside of a separate document found on the group Facebook; there are 10 of them, not unlike the Commandments, and are signed with a copyright stamp by the group’s overlord known as “Dee Dee” we shit you not.
There’s a secret language:
Like all great secret societies, the VTP Facebook group has its very own secret language. Scrolling through the posts of tips on avoiding the Hokie Plague and the searches for basketball tickets, one would notice the use of the initials “DD” and “DS”. To the untrained eye, you’d think those were the initials of Robert’s son or Martha’s daughter, and you’d be wrong. Listed under their quite extensive house rules are a few select words to be used in code to protect the identities of others. “DD” refers to “darling daughter” and “DS” would be a “darling son”.
Surprise appearances from Frank Beamer:
Frank seems to pop up a surprising amount in the posts of the VTP members. There must be an unwritten rule somewhere that states that all selfies and/or portraits taken with and/or near Frank Beamer must be promptly uploaded to the VTP Facebook group. We are still investigating why Frank is such a passively active member of this secret society; of all things, this is still the least puzzling aspect of our beloved Frank.
Your parents are everywhere:
We’ve found posts from all over the globe, from Blacksburg to California to Pakistan. Many report from sitting in I-81 traffic, and others check in from the comfort of their homes in Virginia. It’s a nice reminder that no matter where they send their DS’s and DD’s, they’ll always be watching their beloveds and celebrating the Hokie all access pass they’ve been granted into this exclusive club of elites.
Parents are oddly interested in weather reports:
Blacksburg weather has always been a big conversation starter on campus, but our parents take it a step further. Even if they’re on a boat just off the coast of New Zealand, our lovely VTP members are always first to report the current weather situation in the Burg. Stephanie will not sleep until she lets her cohorts know it is a lovely day for a lacrosse game. And Kim will be dead before she forgets to tell you to wear an extra layer or two.
VTP members can be up to some shady stuff:
Posts asking for recommendations are made quite frequently in the Facebook group of our helicopter parents, and some of them are quite puzzling. Fewer and fewer parents are willing to offer explanations as to why they are looking for reasonable places to learn how to salsa dance, or why they need an orange effect shirt from 5 years ago. It really makes us stop and ask, “Why do you need chicken wings to be ordered for that specific day at that specific hour of the night, Bob?”
The last thing we learned from stalking the Virginia Tech Parent’s Facebook group is that our parents will always be our parents, no matter if you’re half-way across the globe or a two hour drive down 81. And they have no shame in asking for recommendations for the best cures of explosive diarrhea for their DS or DD.
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