A Good Problem, Girl Confusion, and a Rude Awakening

Filed in PersonalTags: Palliative Polemic

Part I -

I just got back...it's 3:00 in the morning. So I'm going to wuss out and write this journal entry in the morning. Today was a busy day, so I'll have plenty to talk about when I wake up.

Part II -

Well, I had intended to sleep for about another hour and a half this morning, but the not-so-subtle sound of the dump truck dropping off a load of gravel right outside my window changed those plans...maybe after I finish writing this, I can go back to sleep for a while.

So, I'll start with my change of plans yesterday. I tried on my suit Monday night in preparation for my upcoming interviews. Well, when I put on the pants, they were so big I couldn't even get a belt on. And I was practically swimming in the jacket. So I called my dad at work to discuss it, and we conferenced in my mom (one of the many advantages of them working in the same place). I was going to see if my suit could be taken in, but apparently the size difference is too great for that, so my mom suggested that I go to Ayers and get a new suit and put it on her card. Well, since my first interview is Friday morning, that meant that I would have to get it done yesterday (Tuesday) in order for it to be tailored by Thursday, so I could pick it up in time for my interview Friday. Fortunately, Amanda had Chem Lab until about 3:30, so I had time between my classes and when she and I left for Wabash to go take care of it.

Yesterday was also Badge Day on campus; sort of like Greek Pride day. All of the fraternity members (frat boys, as one of my friends lovingly referred to us) were to wear badge attire (basically Sunday dress) and wear their fraternity badges to school. A couple of the fraternities made badge attire mandatory, but my fraternity feels that our guys have enough pride in ourselves to do it on our own. I'm glad to say that I didn't see even one of my brothers not wearing badge attire.

Classes were pretty much normal. I started work study - apparently, because of the campus phone-athon, we don't have much work to do during the day, which means that I'll have plenty of time for what little homework I have. My design group may have to meet in the alumni office, but oh well, I really need the money...

So I finished classes, ate a really quick lunch, and headed off to the mall. I thought ahead enough to grab a change of clothes, since I was still in badge attire. SO I get to Ayres and go in to start looking for a suit. They're having their Spring sale, 30-50% off...yeah me. My old suit size was 52 regular. My new suit size is a 48 regular. I've lost 4 suit sizes in about 10 weeks. Wow. Now, their selection in 48R was not as great as the other smaller sizes, so I ended up having to buy a more expensive suit. It was $430, on sale for $310; add in a shirt and tie, and it came to almost $400. I can't think of any other time I've spent $400 at one time, where school was not involved. But, it was for a good cause: Get Chip a Job 🙂 While I was there, I headed upstairs to housewares to check on a skillet for my dad. While they were here for the musical, they bought me a new skillet. Now, I don't think I've mentioned this before, but I love to cook. They got me at 12-in skillet, 18/10 Stainless Steel Farberware Millennium series. It is non-stick; personally I prefer all stainless, without the coating (mainly because I have no qualms with cooking with butter or oil, and the real reason for non-stick cookware is that such cookware eliminates the need for butter or oil in cooking. Contrary to popular belief, un-coated cookware is just as easy to clean as non-stick cookware, when it is used and treated correctly.), but I'm certainly not going to complain. I love this skillet; it lives with me in my room (along with the cutlery set I got for Christmas and most of my other cooking accouterments), because I don't trust the rest of the guys living here to treat it correctly. That sentiment may sound strange, considering I live with my brothers, but believe me, it is justified. And if you think about it, brothers or not, they are still a bunch of college guys, thus not usually too handy in the kitchen. So anyway, when they bought me the skillet, it was on sale %50 off. My dad asked me to check while I was at Ayers to see of they were still on sale. Unfortunately, they were not.

Those errands taken care of, I headed over to the Woods. When I got there, Amanda was not back from lab yet, but fortunately her roommate (Erin) was, so she came downstairs and escorted me to their room (since the Woods is all-female, males must be escorted whenever they are in the dorm). We stopped for a couple minutes to say hi to Rene and Elisa, two other of my friends there, and girlfriends of two of my brothers, and while we were talking, Amanda got back from lab. So we headed to her room, I changed clothes, she checked email, got ready, and we left.

Since I had never driven to Wabash from the west side of Terre Haute, she showed me all the little shortcuts to get there. She also showed me where her accident had been, as well as where Erica, another Woodsie (and the owner of the car Amanda wrecked in), also had an accident. Now, I don't remember if I mentioned RO's accident. It happened on the Thursday of our quarter break. I was visiting the TKE house since they had invited me up there to hang out, and Amanda (and Erica, too) was there to audition for the Wabash performance of Othello. (Erica was also auditioning...she is going out with one of the TKE's and is also the house sweetheart.) Well, by some twist of plans, Amanda was to drive Erica's car back to the Woods, Erica would drive her boyfriend Mike's car back the next morning, and I would give Mike a ride with me back to pick up his car sometime the next day also. Well, Amanda left (with another Woodsie who had auditioned) and all was well. Then, we got a message on AOL IM from Amanda's roommate, telling us to answer the house phone when it rang, because it was an emergency. Amanda had been in a pretty bad accident on the way back to the Woods. As it turns out, both girls in the car are okay. Erica and Mike drove out to the site of the accident and accompanied the two girls to the hospital. They called us at the house to let us know that both girls were okay, but shaken up. But for the rest of the night, I was really worried, and didn't really know why until yesterday. Amanda told me yesterday that she recently found out that while in the hospital getting X-rays, while still in shock, she passed out a couple of times, and actually stopped breathing, and had to receive CPR and the whole treatment. Scary thought. She and I seem more and more to have some kind of strange connection. She was telling me about two separate incidents in which she had a dream about one of her younger siblings getting hurt, only to find out that something strikingly similar had happened. I also had such an incident about my sister losing a tooth. Now, I'm not big on the whole psychic power thing, but I do believe in supernatural powers (if that's tough to swallow, think rather that God talks to us in different ways). Looking back, I think that something was telling me to be worried that night (I'm also a big believer in the conviction of the Holy Spirit). I felt the conviction to pray, and I did. Only now do I know why.

So we get to the TKE house, I drop Amanda off, and walk over to the tennis courts to watch the meet. Wabash is ranked slightly higher than us in the Midwest region, and they have played 13 matches already this season. I believe this meet was our 5th or 6th at most. Despite all that, we actually played them really well. We ended up losing 5-2 or 6-1, but a lot of matches went to 3 sets, and the set scores were like 6-4, 5-7, 7-6; in other words, it was a much closer meet than the match score indicated. We were generally pleased with how we played. If we're playing this well now, we should be really good when the conference tournament comes around. We'll need it; three of the teams in our conference are ranked nationally. Now you have some idea of why I won't see any matches this year. I'm good enough to play at your average, run-of-the-mill Division III school, but here, I'm just happy to be practicing. I did, however, figure out one reason why I did well in the King of the Hill drill the other day: I'm the only left-handed player on the team, and the guys are not used to hitting against a lefty, much less trying to return a left-handed serve. Damn, and I thought it was just because I was getting better 🙂 But, inadvertently, I may have helped us win our one match point. The the four singles match was against a lefty, and our guy playing him had played against me in king of the hill. It's a long-shot, I know, but a guy can dream, can't he? 🙂

I got back to the TKE house and waited around with Amanda for the guys to finish chapter. When they got out of Chapter, a group of us played Therapy. Therapy is a board game I've never played before, but it was actually kind of fun. Especially considering the Freudian twist to any game involving a group of college students. Despite the fact that I was at a marked disadvantage, since I knew (and was known by) everyone else playing the least, I somehow ended up winning. The game was a marathon, three-hour affair, so we were all quite happy to be done when it finished. I did receive a very high compliment, though, during the game (at least, in my humble opinion). One of the guys told me that it was too bad that I went to Rose-Hulman, because I would have fit in very well with those guys in their house there at Wabash. At any rate, I appreciated the comment.

Afterward, four of us made a run to Blockbuster and Taco Bell. Now, due to my carb-restricted diet (and cash-restricted wallet), I decided to wait and get something to eat later (note that this was already like midnight, so I hadn't eaten for like 10 or 11 hours...needless to say I was starved). We went back to the house, Amanda threw the softball around in the basement with one of the guys for a while, then she and I made our goodbye rounds and took off. When we got back to Terre Haute (particularly noting the stench of the paper mill upon our return), we stopped at Denny's. I got something to eat, she got some Oreo dessert thing (big surprise there, eh), and then we headed back to the Woods. Now, she had made a comment earlier that night that she would not let me pay for her food, since "she's not mine" or something like that, so there was no way I was going to let her pay at Denny's 🙂 Not that the two bucks or whatever it was, was anything to brag about, that's just the way that I am. So I dropped her off at the Woods at about 2:30 and drove back home.

That drive gives me about 20 minutes of good thinking time, especially at 2:30 in the morning, when there is basically no other traffic. And guess what I was thinking about. I have mentioned previously that I would consider asking Amanda out, under the right circumstances. Well, those circumstances basically consist of three major criteria: one, that my brother is not in the picture; two, that I have no reason to be concerned about the warning I had received from Rene about being interested in her; and three, that she indicate to me that she is interested. The first criterion goes back to previous experience with girls and fraternity brothers, and I won't go in to the details now. Interestingly, she told me yesterday on the way to Wabash that she and my brother were no longer an issue. Mainly because he was still interested in his sort-of-ex girlfriend. The second criterion is based on my respect for the opinion of Rene. But, Amanda has actually told me about the concern in question, and I am not bothered by it. The third criterion goes back to a promise that I made to Amanda that I would not ask her out unless she told me she was interested in dating. I haven't heard anything from her along those lines, so that third criterion is also out there. I suppose I should add a fourth criterion: I believe that she is interested in getting back together with her previous ex-boyfriend, and if that is what will make her the most happy, I don't want to get in the way. So, I guess a fourth criterion is that she does not get back together with her previous ex-boyfriend. This is all kind of confusing for me, because we're getting to be good friends, and in the past I have not always been very good at keeping romantic feelings separate from close friendships with girls. I've lost a couple of close friends that way (of course, I've developed some very good friendships that way, too), and I don't want that to happen here. I guess that's why I've written so much about it in here; it helps to sort my thoughts and feelings. Fortunately, she and I are both fairly blunt when it comes to saying what's on our minds, so this whole discussion I'm having is fairly open...in other words, I know that she knows what I'm thinking.

Well, so much for going back to sleep. My alarm just went off, telling me it's time to get up and get ready for my one class today. Oh well, who needs sleep anyway. Oh yeah, I do 🙂 (note to you-know-who: no matter how much we're alike in other ways, required sleep is one way that I will never be just like you 🙂 ) So, I think that's all for now.