Friends for Life

Social Groups Family, Kinship, Friendship FAMILY: Father And Mother I Love You How does a seriously ill parent deal with his/her kids? Should you tell your kids how much money you make? Family History family tree save your memories forever: Chronicle of Life The Modern Family family medical leave: maternity/paternity leave Home Marriage: alimony reform Parenting Personal Time sisters: Twin Sisters Bertheussen Kinship Friendship If you haven’t learned the meaning of friendship, you haven’t learned anything. Ali | How long do you keep your friends? sp | relationships: selection | saturation: Dunbar’s Number in general: fathers: F is for Family, Million Man March | adversity: A River Runs Throught It | beach: Dune-Water Dash sp |care services: care, carezone | dinner table | genealogy: ancestry, www.dnaancestryproject.com, mocavo | good vs evil: East of Eden Steinbeck |short story: brushstroke’s song sp | reunion sp | traditions: Turkey Bowl 1976 sp, No TV for 40 days and 40 nights sp gifts: thank yous: eCards > Balance | rule-of-thumb: something you want, something you need, something to wear, something to read domestic violence: organizations & movements: Courage Connection, National Network to End Domestic Violence, No More books, movies, music: hindu boyhood: Sanjay’s Super Team | resilience: A List of Things That Didn't Kill Me Schmidt | Old man, look at my life, I'm a lot like you were. Young | happiness & harmony: The Secrets of Happy Families Feiler | dysfunctional: The Death of Santini Conroy | end of life: Rocket Gibraltar | expatriates: The Namesake | weddings: 112 Weddings

Theta Xi, 1967

by scott pickard

Back in 1967 when I was a freshman pledge at Theta Xi at the University of Illinois in Champaign, I had no idea that I would still be close friends with my pledge brothers 49 years later. Back then we were too immersed in the daily flow of being students at the U of I, pledges at TX, participating in intramural sports, dating, going to social functions, going to Illini games, and everything else that made up those glorious and unforgettable college days, to think about where we would be in a half-century.

Now say what you will about the good and bad of fraternities and sororities and their place in today’s diverse and politically correct world, I will stand by the fact that the friendships you will make at Theta Xi fraternity will be special and unique and as each year goes by you will appreciate that this is true.

My pledge brothers and I have come a ways since our days at the house: graduation, work, marriage, kids, grandkids, and now some of us retired. As the years have ticked by I’ve asked many alums about their experience at UIUC and most of them don’t come close to the bond and longevity of friendships we made at TX. So please consider my words as a voice from your future 50 years from now that if you and your pledge brothers work at it – because any lasting relationship whether it be family or friends or colleagues or girlfriends or wives, takes effort — you will come to cherish the same long-time friendships my pledge brothers and I do today.

There will be forces that will challenge your ability to hold on to these TX friendships once you graduate: working long hours, moving around the country (or globe) from one job to the next, and taking care of your marriage and family. These will be your top priorities during this period of your life as they should be. But my recommendation to you is don’t ever lose touch with your pledge brothers. It will be hard many years but all it takes is an occasional email or phone call to maintain the bond from year to year.

But the most important thing of all is when the various invitations come, show up! Nothing beats showing up, if you can. We all go through the same lifecycle of coming back for homecomings, birthdays, bachelor parties, weddings of fellow pledge brothers, then weddings of their kids, and then eventually, I hate to say, some funerals. Across all of these life events, being there is the greatest gift of respect and friendship you can give to a fellow pledge brother.

In 2016 my pledge brothers and I will meet up in Tucson, AZ for our 15th annual winter golf outing. We look forward to this event like no other. It is our annual “fishing trip” and it’s a great thing. We will have brothers coming from Arizona, California, Illinois, Ohio, Georgia, New York, Virginia, and Florida. And God willing, we will be doing this for another 15 years.

Because my fellow brothers, at the end of this fraternal journey these friendships will be all you have left from Theta Xi. -sp

medinah

Medinah, 2015

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