Ode to Luke

Monday, Jan. 29 was quite possibly the worst night of my life. OK, maybe I’m over exaggerating, but that doesn’t change the fact that fate was playing a proverbial game of “kick the kid with one shoe” with me that night. And you guessed it- I was the kid with one shoe.

The day started off rather pleasantly. I went to my classes and then retired to the Houstonian newsroom to finish my page for that issue. After finishing my work, which was slightly delayed because of various problems that arose, I was ready to leave at approximately 9:00 p.m. Central Standard time- possibly a Houstonian record?

My plan was to go to Wal-Mart to get money and gas and then join a friend at the movie theatre to watch “Epic” movie, a Monday night ritual. I arrived at Wal-mart shortly after leaving campus, pulled out my wallet to retrieve my ATM card and found that the card was, in fact, nowhere to be found. I freaked out, to say the least.

From that point in the night, I was no longer a sane or logical person. For some reason I decided to drive back to my apartment to see if I had simply forgotten it at home, but I remembered half way to my destination that I had taken it out of wallet in the newsroom earlier that day. I called Kenny, the editor, to see if the paper was finished for the night and with my horrible luck the paper was done and there was no one left in the office. I managed to get the key from him and drive back to campus.

By this time, the “empty” light in my car was shining brightly, as if to mock me, and my friend was probably wishing my demise for being 30 minutes late. So my card was in the newsroom, right where I had left it, but I still had to go to Wal-Mart to get cash and gas before going to the movie.

After navigating the streets of Huntsville in way that would make even Jeff Gordon envious, I arrived at the Cinestar movie theatre just as my friend was calling me, most likely to chew me out. The movie was half way over, but I still hoped they would let me buy a ticket.

They didn’t and I had to go home- defeated. I stopped by my work and then headed home, incredibly pissed off. Things get exponentially worse from here.

I was glad I hadn’t lost my credit card in the first place, but I probably completed three whole laps around Huntsville before I realized it. At that point, the night was not a complete loss. And then I locked my keys in my car.

Three hours, five wire coat hangers, 10 people and $50 later, I was able to retrieve my keys.

As I laid in bed that night reflecting on the chaos that consumed the few hours of my existence, I was blessed with an enlightenment it takes most people years to discover. Even though I experienced a string of arbitrary events that left a dent on my sanity, I came to the realization that I would not, in theory, change a thing.

At the time, Jan. 29 was the worst night of my life. But now that I think about it, it was probably the best. I have never in my life experienced that range of emotions in such a short period of time. I laughed, I cried, I was angry but at the same time incredibly thankful. The best part, however, was that I experienced that night with some of my most favorite people in the world.

Things happen in the world that we don’t understand. Having family, friends and laughter is what makes this life worth living.

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