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

SMU professor Susanne Scholz in the West Bank in 2018.
SMU professor to return to campus after being trapped in Gaza for 12 years
Sara Hummadi, Video Editor • May 18, 2024


Chapter Nine: Anchor Splash

After sleeping off the previous night’s events, especially the hit-and-run, Peter, Liz and Walter needed to avert their minds to more pleasing endeavors than catching the fleeing driver.

Peter was sitting on the couch watching “College Game Day” when Liz approached him.

“Hey, how’d you sleep?” asked Liz.

“Very nicely,” said Peter. “That is until the sun came up.”

“Well, that’s the risk you take when you sleep on the couch in the family room; there are no blinds.”

Liz leaned back on the couch and watched TV with Peter for a while before becoming curious about Walter’s whereabouts. “Hey, Peter, where’s Walter?” she asked.

“He’s in his room talking to the insurance company, the cops and his parents,” Peter responded, with special emphasis on the latter.

“Ouch,” said Liz. “That sounds awful.”

“Yeah, I’m sure they’ll be understanding though. The whole incident occurred by no fault of his own.”

“I hope so,” Liz said. “It is amazing how well the rest of our adventure went though. Made it from Dallas to Austin in a little less than an hour and a half, and enjoyed a little Amy’s ice cream. It was too bad it had to end when that idiot sideswiped Walter’s truck.”

Walter emerged from his bedroom immediately after Liz finished her sentence.

Peter and Liz looked inquisitive as to what just happened but were afraid to ask. Walter noticed their expressions instantly. “I don’t want to get into it right now. It’s only going to make me upset. However, there is some good news: Some of my friends from LSU are in town and want to know if we’d like to join them on the lake this afternoon.”

“That sounds fantastic!” exclaimed Liz

“Great,” said Walter. “I’ll give them a call back right now to let ’em know.”

Later, at the marina, Walter was thoroughly enjoying himself. His friends, as it turned out, were all women. He introduced them all to Peter and Liz with great enthusiasm. He especially enjoyed himself when other boaters took notice of him walking along the waterfront among all his friends – or in the boaters’s eyes, girls – enjoying their looks of utter confusion, which he mistook for jealousy, as to how such a loud, boisterous and homely male had corralled so many good-looking women.

Lauren, Kelly, Rebecca, Christy and Emily were all nice girls. Unfortunately, as Peter, Walter and Liz would soon find out, they knew nothing about anchoring a boat.

As the boat slowly idled out of the marina, the girls began exchanging pleasantries with Liz, trying to discover whether or not they liked Walter’s new friend.

“So, Liz, are you in a sorority?” asked Kelly.

“Uh, yes, I’m a Kappa,” she said. “Are you in a sorority?”

“Yeah, I’m a Delta Gamma,” responded Kelly. “We all are.”

“Oh, that’s nice. I have a lot of friends who are DGs.”

“Cool!” exclaimed Kelly. “Do you and Walter hang out with them much?”

“Uh . . . no, not really,” stated Liz.

“Why not?”

“Um . . .”

Just then, Lauren, who was driving the boat into a side cove, asked the group where they wanted to stop to swim. “Hey, where do you guys want to anchor?” she asked.

“Just pull it over to the side somewhere; it doesn’t really matter,” said Walter.

Lauren followed his advice and pulled over near the cliffs.

“All right, Walter, can you anchor us?” asked Lauren.

“What?” he said. “I can’t anchor a boat.”

Unfortunately, Lauren was relying on Walter to be able to anchor the boat. Although she had her boating license, she was never the one who anchored the boat when she went out with her family.

And Walter, despite living near Lake Travis for much of his life, had never learned how to properly anchor a boat. And, apparently, he was unwilling to try.

“Does anyone know how to anchor a boat?” asked Lauren.

“I’ll give it a shot,” volunteered Liz.

Liz and the rest of the girls gathered around the anchor, and they took their best shot at anchoring the boat. They failed miserably.

Multiple times they tried to set the anchor, but each time something went wrong. On their first attempt, they forgot to properly secure the anchor to the boat. Luckily they realized this immediately upon dropping the anchor in the water and were able to grab the rope and pull it back up.

Sensing the first sign of trouble, Walter quickly realized he did not want to be part of the anchoring in any way, even passively. Therefore, he grabbed a life vest and abandoned ship – or went swimming, as he would call it.

On the second occasion, the rope got completely tangled when they threw the anchor in the water. They again had to pull it out, spending many minutes concentrating on untangling the rope.

Peter found the whole incident quite amusing. He poked fun at what he observed to be their futile efforts and laughed at the seriousness in which they were embarking upon their self-assigned task of anchoring the boat. None of the girls were amused, least of all, Liz.

On their third attempt, they prevented the rope from tangling, and securely fastened the anchor to the boat; unfortunately, they did not leave enough slack in the rope for the anchor to reach the bottom so the boat continued to drift.

Peter, unwisely still on the boat, was the first to notice that the boat was still drifting and quickly pointed this out to the girls who were celebrating their apparent anchorage of the boat. His gleeful attitude in pointing this out was his downfall.

Each joke Peter had made during the anchoring process wore more and more on the girls, and his last one finally broke their spirits. He had taken it too far. Unfortunately, he did not realize it yet.

After finally swimming, Walter climbed back aboard the boat, he couldn’t help himself. “Jesus, ladies, our boat was all over the place,” he said sardonically. “I can’t believe you couldn’t figure out how to set the anchor.”

“I know. It was a real mess up here,” laughed Peter teasingly. “I mean who can’t anchor a boat?”

“Goddammit, Peter, it’s not funny!” exclaimed Liz. “You should have offered to help us instead of sitting around and mocking us. You were a real jerk.”

And although there was no follow up to Liz’s statement, the rest of the girls felt the same way. Peter and Walter, however, were shocked. The rest of the way back to the marina, they thought deeply about what she had said.

After they had docked and cleaned the boat, the girls, including Liz, went off to the restroom together, making sure they avoided Peter and Walter as much as they could.

As Peter and Walter waited for them on the shoreline, Peter voiced his frustration and confusion about what Liz had just said to him, to Walter: “What the hell is wrong with Liz and those girls? I’m not even sure why they’re upset. It’s not a big deal.”

Walter responded, “Well, I can see why to them it is, at least I know why they’re upset. I mean, don’t get me wrong, I thought it was hilarious, and even if I was in their position I’m sure I’d feel the same way.

“We definitely should have helped them more, that’s for sure, and we definitely should not have mocked their efforts, you especially. But when we made fun of them, they failed to realize we were also making fun of ourselves. But, you know, most people can’t take a joke.

“Unfortunately for you, my friend, women don’t usually forget about this kind of thing easily, and Liz probably won’t be acting as friendly toward you as she has been this past week or two. My women, on the other hand, will have until winter break to cool off.”

“Yeah, if Liz doesn’t let this thing go, it could be slightly problematic seeing as how we hang out all the time,” commented Peter.

“Well, my suggestion is you find a way to make it up to her fast,” suggested Walter. “Something grand, something that will put this whole incident out of her mind.”

“If that’s the only way,” said Peter.

“It is,” said Walter. “By the way, I’ve been meaning to ask, do you like Liz? Because I know she likes you.”


“You’ve gotta do something about that, man,” said Walter. “She’s not gonna wait around forever.”

As the girls started approaching Walter and Peter, they turned to walk back to the car. Peter looked at Liz and wondered what he could do to make her forgive him. He was finally ready to ask her out.

More to Discover