By MIKE WEST
It's always somethang.
Especially this time of year when the end of school rolls around.
Yep, it's been a while since I graduated high school. I think the year was 1848. Yes, it had to be the years before the Civil War when things were so genteel. Well anyway ... I digress.
The thing is graduations and myself don't seem to jibe. Back when I graduated high school, it was a bright, sunny day with the ceremony held outside. Naturally, it went on so long that I got a sunburn on my face. The burn made me look completely embarrassed for a couple of days.
Of course, the sunburn would prove to be the least of my worries on graduation day. Naturally, with my last name starting with the letter "W" I was toward the end of the line. Standing in front of me was a pretty, young girl whose name I won't share. She had received a truly special graduation present earlier in the day, a new Ford Mustang. She had the keys for her new car clutched in her hands.
Naturally, being a girl she didn't have any pockets in her pretty, new graduation dress. So she then made the mistake of trusting her keys to me who was more block-headed than usual on that glorious day.
Yes, I forgot the keys to her brand-new Mustang were in my pocket.
Naturally, I did what all high school boys do immediately after graduation. Yes, I took off like a rocket and was soon cruising down "the boulevard." (You must remember this adventure took place long before the days of cell phones.)
I was heading home to celebrate when I stopped a car load of girls headed in the opposite direction. They were all frantically waving. Naturally, I waved back and headed on home. Idiot! That car load of girls were trying to get the keys back.
Eventually, much embarrassed I did manage to return her keys several hours later.
Durn idiot....but I digress.
My nephew, Lucas, graduated last Thursday from one of those huge Murfreesboro high schools.
The event was held at MTSU's Murphy Center. It was a wonderful affair or so I've been told.
Yep, the graduation bug bit me once again.
First of all, I forgot that we needed to be there at least three hours early because of the parking situation on campus. Heck, I had to work but my plan was to get there an hour and a half early. By the time, I arrived home my normally patient wife was worked up. "You've got to hurry up!" was her repeated message.
The traffic was horrendous! Even my usual shortcuts were all backed up. And yes, all of the good parking places were long gone. Even the bad places were filled.
It was then I remembered about the horrible steps leading to the entrance of Murphy Center. I had no idea where the family was sitting, but my faithful cell phone took care of that issue. Those durn steps! They were designed for someone with a giant stride. I pitied all the women wearing high heels as they struggled up those steps.
On the way up, I ran across CCHS Principal Mike Jones who was on his way inside to attend that graduation. It was a struggle for everyone.
I did manage to get up the steps and inside the big auditorium and eventually even found the family thanks to the cell phone. Meanwhile my missus was trying to find a parking place. I made contact with the family and was soon headed out to connect with my wife.
Going down those dreaded Murphy Center steps proved to be my undoing. I twisted my ankle, which in turn messed up my knee. I struggled down those steps as the only person leaving while the hoard was going up.
Dang it! There was no way I could make it back in there (short of a stretcher or at least crutches). The Missus abandoned her parking place (thanks to a cell phone call) and came to my rescue. I hobbled to the truck and we drove away defeated by Murphy Center.
Sorry, we missed your graduation Lucas! Didn't even get to hoot/yell in your honor. At least we managed to get your gift to you. Congratulations!!!