Published on August 25th, 2014 | by TLV News0
Welcome to Oxford – from Alderman Jay Hughes
Welcome to Oxford! To the incoming freshmen, welcome to the place you will call “home” for the next seven or eight years! To the other returning students—congratulations and glad your grades got you back here, or kept you from leaving. Oxford is truly an amazing place, filled with cultural and artistic diversity, and opportunities for all who call it home, second home, or “just hanging out.” You, now, are an integral part of the spectrum of vibrant fabric that makes it so unique. So, as I welcome you, I also pass along the advice that I got many years ago: “Act like your Mama’s watching you.”
So why do I say that? Because it is the best way to be a part of this community and make it even better. What it really means is to always remember you are a part—an indispensible part—of our community. Respect your property, your neighbors, and your neighborhood—like your Mama’s coming to visit. Conduct yourself when out and about our amazing town—like your Mama’s walking behind you. And, apply yourself to school—like your Mama’s still getting your report cards. You were great when you were with her, and lucky enough to be there. So, take these basic lessons and honor your new community. Your new city is not just an apartment building, a fraternity or sorority house, or a university. It is a vibrant community with deep and meaningful roots. You may be living by someone whose family has been here since Chickasaw Princess HoKa received a land grant for the city in 1838. Or, they may be new here, but call it home and go to work every day to pay for their proud home. Indeed, not everyone goes to school—many are just living life. But they will respect you and embrace you as part of this community—if you are willing to participate in it and be one with it.
Want to live like a local? We say yes ma’am, no sir, thank you, and please. Pets have to be on leashes and their poop does not get picked up by magic genies (the police just invite you to City Hall to give away your fun money). Garbage cans have to be picked up at the end of each trash day. Trash and cans go into the garbage can —not your front yard, porch, or sidewalk.
Oxford is an amazing place with so many opportunities to belong and contribute. Volunteer at the Humane Society, Arts Council, or Leap Frog. Go see a short comedy or a Board of Alderman meeting (sometimes one in the same thing). We meet in the same room of City Hall on the Square that City Court is held—where you will also go if you do not act like your Mama’s watching. Join a church, go knock on a neighbor’s door and introduce yourself. The bottom line is to be engaged and be respectful of others. Don’t do something in your front yard that you would not do at home—because this is now your home!