Old Stories

By | Posted April 7, 2014

Posted in friends, Paul | No Comments »

Last weekend, Lance and I went to Chicago to see Paul and Brian.  Specifically, we went for Paul’s junior recital.  Have I mentioned that Paul went back to undergrad to get a Bachelors in piano performance?  The lesson to be learned in that is, (I think), to let your kids follow their dreams early on before they incur major school debt.  I tend to be practical about things so I assume I’d be pointing my children towards more practical majors.  Now, nobody stopped Paul from following his dreams all those years ago.  He was really smart, so why not be a doctor?  Except he was really, really good at piano.  Finally, after years and the purchase of a grand piano, he decided to return to school.  He lightened his load at work and is now a junior.

I had such pride listening to him play.  I’ve listened to him worry these past few months about how he’d do.  There was no need because he was awesome!  Recently, he won a competition so we’ll be back soon to hear him play with a symphony!!!

After the recital, we had a huge get together at his house.

I saw my roommate from my freshman year at Texas.  She is now a professor and lives two minute from Paul.  His mom and sister were there, and lots of friends I’ve met over the years.  It was a blast.  The night ended at 2:40.  Paul, Brian and I were the last ones up.  It was kind of like we were back in college.  Except we’re not, and boy, I can’t handle nights like that more than once every few years.  Plus, I had to run Saturday, which I did, 10 miles!  Glorious to run outside there!

Saturday night had us at dinner with Paul, Brian, Paul’s mom and sister.  During the meal, talk turned to high school and some of our shenanigans.  We brought up the time he  puked black stuff, and I was so freaked, I called the ER.  The lady was a real witch and just said, “well maybe next time your friend won’t drink so much.”  Because that’s the smart thing to say to someone who is worried her friend has alcohol poisoning.  I mean, WTF?  At the very least, make sure I come in so said friend gets in trouble for drinking.

Anyway…his mom commented that that must have been the worst experience we’d ever had.  To which I said, “No, that would have been when the man pointed a gun at us.”  And everyone just stopped.  Because unlike me, Paul had not shared that story with his mom or sister!  I mean, my brother knew from the get go.

To sum it up, years and years ago, 1987 to be exact, bored, Paul and I decided to borrow a baby Jesus from an outdoor nativity scene.  I know.  Me.  The collector of nativity scenes, the Catholic who hates people to leave the faith…yes, me.  I was young and stupid.

The second we grabbed Jesus, somebody shouted “STOP” and there was a gun and so we stopped.  The guy and his wife who was shouting, “we got them” over and over shuffled us into the house.  I have no clue why we actually listened to them.  The gun, I guess.  The lady started crying because as it turns out people had been stealing poor baby Jesus year after year.  They weren’t religious even, but enough was enough.  That night they were going to catch the hoodlums.  Once inside, they asked who they wanted us to call: the police or our parents.  In unison, we said, “the police.”  We weren’t stupid.  Honestly, all I could think of was that my curfew was coming up and I needed to get the hell out of there.

In the end, all was fine, the couple invited us back for drinks the following year, and I made it home for curfew.

I thought Paul’s mom might pass out.  Turns out Sunday morning while I was at mass, (the irony, I know,) she had a little chat about the incident.

And now as I type this all out, I wonder if I ever told my dad…


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