The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus


Staying grounded

Recently I ventured to my birthplace and hometown of Houston. I figured over Fall Break it would be nice to travel somewhere. I was growing weary of the SMU dorm rooms and I needed a change of scenery.

When I returned to Houston, I quickly realized most of my high school friends were out of town, due to the fact they were attending college. No matter, I thought to myself, I can still figure out something to do.

After completely wasting the weekend playing Super Smash Bros. on my GameCube and listening to B-sides of Lynyrd Skynyrd and Weird Al Yankovic, I made a final attempt to do something productive by going to the movies and seeing Bill Maher’s “Religulous”. Bill Maher thought it would be funny to combine “religion” and “ridiculous”. How silly, Bill!

After leaving the movie I departed for home. As I entered the freeway, I started accelerating (it takes my car a while) when I noticed a sea of red break lights. Yeah, apparently, the city of Houston has traffic at 11 p.m. on a Saturday. I could not believe it. It blew my mind.

I have this cool little gadget that lets me play my iPod through my radio. It cost me around $900 even though I could have just made a mix CD or listened to my iPod while driving (but I hate when people do that). But no, I had to have the $900 attachment that probably cost the store that installed it $16. I digress. The iPod gadget decided not to work so I had to find something to pass the time.

When I realized I wouldn’t be moving, I put the car in “P”, or “park”, and jumped in the back and tried to find a CD or something that would calm my nerves. You see, the woman in front of me had decided to let everyone get in front of her because she is such a Good Samaritan. Get off your phone!

Finally I found a CD case that was full of all kinds of CDs. This will do. Suddenly, I heard many people honking. Were they honking at me? How dare they.

I hopped in the driver’s seat and realized the woman in front of me had taken off along with the rest of traffic. So I put my car in “D” or “drive” and took off. I was very pleased with myself because I had found a treasure chest of music that would suit me for my drive back to Dallas.

I packed my things on Monday evening and awoke Tuesday morning anxious for the drive. I was actually a little excited to listen to all of the great music I had discovered.

What I had stumbled on was something that embarrasses me so much. This was like, my 8th grade music collection. Everything was talking about hating life, how life is so hard, how no one understands their life, how they wish they could end life and how their girlfriend’s dumped them. This was awful. I did not need to hear this.

A sample playlist: (This is an actual playlist)

1. “Ohio is for Lovers”-Hawthorne Heights

The list goes on and on, but I don’t think I have enough room to put it.

What does all this have to do with anything? Nothing really. Except a story. In 8th grade I had discovered the show “Jackass.” I was obsessed with it. I loved the idea of filming myself jumping off a roof into a pool, then getting out and laughing about it and quickly running inside to ice down my face.

I also had a fascination with skateboarding, meaning, I thought I could do it. I asked for one for my birthday and received it. Well, the word on the street was that a certain girl whom we’ll call “Mary” was interested in skateboarding guys. Now Mary was only like, the hottest girl in 8th grade.

I was going to do this. I was going to prove to Mary that I could be the next Tony Hawk. So I skated a few streets over after school one day to Mary’s house where she was sitting on her driveway talking to her friend. Oddly enough, there were four guys skateboarding in the street in front of her, moving out of the way of passing traffic when someone yelled the all important, “car!”

Just do it, JP. They do it on TV. It’s fine. Plus you beat “Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater Four;” of course you can do a double kick flip then a lip slide on the curb. No problem.

What ended up happening was that gravity decided to play a trick on me and make me fall head first onto the concrete where I busted my upper lip and chin. When I opened my eyes and saw a pool of blood, I looked up to find “Mary” kissing one of the guys, and everyone else pointing and laughing at me for falling down.

I stood up slowly and picked up my skateboard and started hobbling home, vowing to get better and to show them all how much better I could be. I’d show them. I’d get signed by Element and have my own TV show and all the girls would want me.

That skateboard is still underneath my bed in my room back in Houston.

John Paul Green is a freshman theater major. He can be reached for comment at [email protected].

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