The president of our seminary congratulated us at our graduation ceremony, “You are now members, he said, “of the intellectually elite!”
He paused and smiled.
Well, da-amn! I thought. Who woulda thunk?
Don’t get me wrong. I was glad to receive my Master of Divinity. It took a long time to achieve those eighty-four graduate hours, which was twice the size of many other graduate degrees. I was somebody now.
How smart does that make me? I didn’t have time to figure it out then because I was scrambling to replace the cap and tassel I had left at home.
I can’t worry about such matters anymore because I am one of the intellectually elite.
I was thinking about that at the DMV where it turns out no matter what kind of degree you have on the wall, they want your birth certificate, your social security card, and two other forms of identification before you can get your picture taken. I didn’t have all that with me and so they turned me away.
“But I’m a member of the intellectually elite!” I said. I could see how impressed the woman behind the counter was even as she hollered, “NEXT!”
These lower beings didn’t have the capacity to understand my situation, even if they could drive legally.
I couldn’t find my car when I got to the parking lot because I had forgotten where I parked it.
It started to rain. Being the intellectual I am, I had brought an umbrella but I had left it in the car. That diploma was really paying off as I wandered the lot looking for my car while getting drenched. Finally, I found it but then I couldn’t find my car keys. They weren’t in my pocket. Did I lock them in the car? I looked in the windshield but couldn’t see them.
I went back to the DMV office to call my wife because the battery on my phone was depleted, I didn’t need my birth certificate, social security card and two forms of ID to borrow a phone. I was still soggy when I sank into a chair to make the call. And that’s when I noticed that the keys were in my hand.
My graduate degree doesn’t do me much good in my new job, either. Turns out an Mdiv doesn’t equip me for making deli sandwiches. The customers aren’t impressed either.
“You didn’t put enough onion on mine!”
“I want those OTHER pickles!”
“Hey, I said I wanted Mortadella!” (I may be an intellectual, but I didn’t know what that was–sounded like a member of the Addam’s Family).
“Is there someone else who could make my sandwich?”
“You bet,” I said. “I’ll get one of my non-intellectuals friends–they’re a lot smarter than I am.