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Walk In My Shoes


Had a flashback walking across the campus today. No ... not an acid flashback ... this one was a true movie-type flashback. It was when Debbie and I drove young Josh Momberg to the University of Georgia his freshman year.
The car was loaded down with his treasures like ... video games, his favorite pillow, some disgusting cologne that he apparently thought would attract college girls (if they had really bad sinus trouble) and a few clothes.

The trip was memorable ... to say the least.

The first night we spent in Athens was at a Holiday Inn close to campus. We shared a room. A bed for us ... a cot for Josh. Some time after midnight, we heard a muffled scream coming from Josh's side of the room. I jumped up and turned on the light and saw Josh completely folded into his cot ... which had somehow snapped shut with only his feet sticking out.

He escaped unharmed ... just sweaty.

Debbie's turn at bad luck was on the next morning when she opened her (third or fourth) suitcase and noticed one of her toiletries missing. I can't remember which one ... but based on how distressed she was ... it could only mean it was one of her hair products.

She got over it.

My turn came soon after we moved Josh into his dorm. I headed out for coffee and bagels. I remember looking around the surrounding courtyard outside the dorm as I walked the crisscrossed sidewalks when all of a sudden ... I was standing in quicksand. Actually, it was wet cement. Now, most people would step into it with one foot and realize their mistake. Not me. BOTH feet. And I was sinking fast.

Suddenly I saw these two huge guys marching toward me. They looked just like William "The Refrigerator" Perry and Mr. O (remember "When Harry Met Sally"?) both in work overalls. They grabbed me by the arms and lifted me straight out without bending. The Fridge looked me up and down and chuckled and pointed to his cement truck..."Follow me."
"Wait ... I'm really sorry ... what can I do to make up for this?" I stammered.
Mr. O spoke up. "We got a hose, man."
I wasn't sure if they were gonna beat me with it or clean me off ... but I followed them anyway. They uncurled a huge firehose and stood me against the wall. The pressure sent me flush against it as they hosed the cement off my shoes and pants.

As I slogged away, I could hear them snorting and laughing out loud. I took a walk across campus to get coffee and bagles ... hoping I would dry off by the time I got back. I didn't. I walked back to the dorm and Debbie and Josh were standing on the porch waiting for me.

"Where in the world have you been?"
"Getting coffee."
"Why are you so wet?"
"Wet? Oh just a little accident. Not a big thing ..."

Over my shoulder I hear roaring laughter. I turn and see The Fridge and Mr. O with two other guys, Warren Sapp and The Hulk ... laughing it up too. The Fridge brings his pals closer.

"This is the guy! He stepped in with BOTH feet!"
I calmly said, "Funny. Really funny." Debbie and Josh tried to hide their faces.

Fridge handed me a sharp stick. "Hey man PLEASE sign the spot where you fell in .... I want to remember this spot forever."


I signed it "To The Fridge and his friends, Love Joel".

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