This is not an exit

After a summer and fall of broads abroad, a reunion

In Uncategorized on January 7, 2012 at 10:00 am

I was planning on having a bonus On A Side Note ready for you today, I really was. But in writing a rant against the free distribution of professional news content across the Internet, I found I was pointing fingers at the wrong folks and the more I researched, the more ambiguous the causes of the problem became. It’s still coming, but the tone will be completely different than the original idea.

Instead, I’ve opted to help start your weekend off right. Hell, I’m about to, so why not offer the same to my reader(s)? Last fall I made some amazing friends, some of them former acquaintances and others completely new to my life. The five subjects of this post are the latter.

In order to understand why they’re so special to me, let me paint a picture. I was taking 12 credits per term at Lane Community College and heading the student-run newspaper. My work week started on Sunday afternoons editing copy and ended when the paper went the press Wednesday for Thursday pickup. But that was just the heavy stuff. Add critiquing, meeting with advisers, staffers and a full workload from my classes and you can see where it comes to be a bit much.

Enter the women I affectionately refer to as “Those Crazy Broads.” Four of them were roommates during their freshman year at the University of Oregon and the fifth a mutual friend. They all lived in a house on 15th Avenue and Jefferson Street. Nearly every weekend for seven months, that house offered a respite from breaking news, deadlines and the hassles of managing a team of reporters and editors. There were dance parties, Lord of the Rings and Back to the Future nights, Cinco de Mayo parties and all sorts of other shenanigans that gave me the break I needed to recharge.

Every Monday I was excited to go back to The Torch offices because I knew that no matter how hard the work was, I knew these wacky women would help me get over it and move on to the next big project. Don’t get me wrong: I had plenty of support from other friends (And I haven’t forgotten about them; they’ll have their own spotlights soon enough.) But what I got from these girls could not be replicated.

They listened to my rants about the journalism business. They put up with politically incorrect bits and remarks. But, more than anything, they taught me that there’s no sense in worrying about things beyond my control. When they were around, there was plenty of fun to be had and that’s all I could think about. They got me out of several funks — many of which they might not have known I was in — and for that, I can’t ever repay them.

Yes, they’re all wonderful friends. They’re also pretty worldly. Not only did they all move home for the summer, but each one also studied abroad during the first term of this year. One went to India. Two others to Europe in Italy and Prague. Another found herself in Tunisia. And, finally, the one who introduced me to this ragtag clan whisked off to Mexico, my homeland.

Today I reunite with all five of them for the first time since mid-June. I spent New Year’s Eve with three of them, kicking sufficient ass at Mario Kart 64 wearing an Iron Man mask to make it one to remember. But today the group is as one again and I can’t express how incredibly excited I am about that. Those Crazy Broads are finally back.

Words can’t do these women justice, so I leave you with a photo gallery followed by a string of words and phrases that recall some of our best times.

  • Better-than-crack brownies
  • Photobooth
  • “Rox in the Box”
  • Maneschewitz sno cones
  • Schmeder
  • Bold Passover
  • “Shit’s gone awry.”

[Update] Off the Waffle, a new house and a trip to the University of Oregon bookstore later, I can, indeed, confirm that today’s been incredibly enjoyable.

But what do YOU think?

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