By writing this article, I am probably going to hear about it from Gayle, who for some reason unknown is trying to shirk away from her responsibilities to everyone who enjoys the Ambrosia Times by trying to pawn the writing of her article on some unsuspecting recent graduate. Instead of writing her article for her (she wasn't offering enough cash), I will attempt to show you, the reader, what the summer of a newly graduated Webster High School student is like. So, I present to you for your reading pleasure, one episode in my life. The names of those participating have been altered for the sake of their own protection.
Sunday, June 22nd, 8pm: I find myself sitting in front of the television, finding it thoroughly enjoyable because The Simpsons is on. It happens to be one of my favorite episodes. Midway through the episode, when I find that Sideshow Bob really had reformed his ways and wasn't going to try to kill Bart Simpson anymore, my friend Wally shows up wanting to know if I wanted to play a little tennis with him and Al. Wally and Al are quite the funny duo, so I decide to go off with them and play a little Canadian doubles.
Tennis was quite enjoyable, even though I haven't played since last year and my performance was pretty bad. In between all sorts of bad jokes, the subject of a party came up. I had received an invitation to party from some other friends, and the party was to take place that night in a cabin at a local park. We joked about it because we all knew the amount of underaged drinking and other acts took place there, and it was funny that they now actually mailed out invitations to such an event. By the time we could no longer see the tennis ball, Al and I had decided for Wally that we would be going to that party, even if we hadn't said anything to each other yet. But first, we needed another spoke in our so-called "Wheel of Cool", so we went over to where another friend, Jake, worked. We picked him up and went onward toward destiny.
Upon arriving at the meeting place for the party, we could see that this would be a pretty big one for this type of thing. Guided into the wooded regions into the park by some of the organizers of the event, we got lost but eventually found the cabin about 15 minutes late. By that time, our "Wheel of Cool" had decided that this was probably a bad idea. For starters, we got to the cabin with a 15 noisy people trouncing through the park, and we saw that there were another 20 there waiting for us. Some were already drunk, not being able to wait the 15 minutes for us to show up.
We saw that there was another person, Martin, who was not enjoying himself in the little revel taking place. We socialized for about 20 minutes, then noticed that others in the party wanted to start a bonfire. Observing that a) the 35 of us were quite noisy, b) were going to light a fire, and that c) we also had caused a scene while parking all the cars in the neighborhood near the park, I used my keen sense of "What's Wrong With This Picture." I had determined that the police were going to be crashing this party. It was rather obvious. Since our "Wheel of Cool" wasn't thinking that this party was the best, we decided that it might be in our best interest to leave. We told Martin that we were leaving and he asked to join us. Knowing that Martin was also what some would call "The Man" we allowed him to join. Our group was now complete. Myself, Martin, Wally, Al and Jake were going to have a bit of fun trying to make it back to the cars.
I like to think that I have a good sense of direction. I routinely get lost intentionally in order to test my ability to find my way back. This would be one occasion that my abilities would be put to the test. Since our newly formed "Wheel of Super Cool" was quite cocky about our abilities, we told the others we were leaving, and that "We can find our way back-No Problem" without the use of a flashlight. I should have known that we would have problems when we were not entirely sure how we got there.
Martin and I had remembered that the moon was behind us when we entered the woods, so if we followed it back, we would be able to get back without any major problems. However, Al and Jake didn't agree with our logic, and wanted to go in the opposite direction. Wally just wanted to get back as soon as possible, because he was supposed to be back at his house by 1:00am. Since it was around 11:45pm, we knew that we had enough time if we could agree on a direction to go. Al and Jake went their direction, and we followed them for a while, until they went into a bush, and thus lost any credibility they had. We thus decided to go in the way Wally and myself wanted to go: To the moon. The reason for picking the moon was because it was the only marker we had in the near pitch dark woods.
Wally and myself led the way for a while, when we started to go down a hill. All of us realized that we hadn't gone down a hill beforehand, and so our credibility was starting to wane also. Al, Wally and Jake wanted to head back to the party and get some light. We then realized that we could no longer hear the party. Let this be known to all at this point: If you were just at a party, and can no longer hear it, do not go back to it. Fortunately, I knew this little tidbit of knowledge, and we decided to continue in the direction of the moon.
We continued for a while, and noticed that we again were going down a hill. Wally was in the lead when we saw that we were in some sort of valley between hills. Suddenly, Wally lost a few inches. We were all surprised to see him nearly knee-deep in foul-smelling mud. He managed to get out of there, with only a little bit of difficulty. We decided to venture along the banks of this "mud river" and see if there was a way across it. I saw a log in the distance, and decided to take the lead and go across it to the plants at the other end. What I didn't know was that these particular plants were not rooted in any solid ground. I too suffered the same fate as Wally, sinking knee deep into the foul stuff.
I valiantly tried to get to the other bank. But while making my way through I had noticed that I had lost a shoe along the way. While shouting many words that will not be present in this recollection, the others laughed hysterically at my predicament. Fortunately for me, Al had a key chain with a little flashlight on it, which I then used to try to find my shoe. I could see where I had stepped, but finding my black shoe in black mud in the woods at night was more difficult than I anticipated. The key chain was useless, but I eventually found my shoe under an inch or two of muck, and with great effort I was able to get it out. We now decided that going along the muddy banks was not the best idea. We went back up the hill, and went in a direction slightly to the side of the moon, Wally complaining about his muddy sandals, and me telling him that he was fortunate to have a sandal on.
We eventually entered a more open area of pine trees, and hit a dirt road. We ran along it for a while, myself complaining that there were too many stones on the road and it was killing my feet. Eventually getting some good sense, I emptied my shoe and put it, and the extra two pounds of mud crusted to it, on. Emerging the woods to the backyard of a house, we ran though their yard and entered a street that was quite a distance from where we should have been. While the plan Martin and I had come up with was good in theory, we forgot to take into account that the moon moves in the course of a night.
Running along the road, cars slowing down to look at the mud crusted to me and Wally, we found the street where we were parked. We were all out of breath from the running that had taken place, for we were in the woods for at least 45 minutes trying to find our way out, and it became evident that we took one of the longest ways possible to get out of the woods. Walking through the neighborhood, a car pulled up to us and a head emerged. It was Sadie who was present at the party. She gave us a warning that the party was indeed raided and that they barely escaped. She then informed us that there were about 6 police cars within 15 feet of where we were parked. After thanking her for giving us the 411 on the situation, we decided that we had to go up to the police, and ask to get our cars.
None of us had been drinking, we had only been at the party for about 15 or 20 minutes so we knew that they couldn't really do anything to us. Our tired and worn group bravely walked to the 6 cars awaiting our arrival. There were only 2 police officers present, so we knew that others party-goers were still trying to get away from them. The officer asked us our names, which we gave willingly and truthfully. When I said "Tom Langworthy" to the officer, we gave me a look and said, "Langworthy?" No doubt because of the actions that took place last week (Um, that's another story). The officer was quite the nice person however, and let us all go without any problems. Wally got home at 1am, and a week later my shoes had dried from the thorough washing I gave them the next morning. Everyone who was caught had to pay a $50 fine for being in the park after hours.
Now, I ask of you all: What can we learn from this?