My first rodeo: A cowboy’s tale

In college, I once went to meet a friend of mine at his frat house right down the street from my apartment. I’m not typically a fan of the frats, but he is a close friend of mine and invited me so I thought “hey why not.”  When I used to drank (I don’t anymore), I may have had a small case of Napoleon Complex or Little Man Syndrome. Pun intended. Well, on this fateful night, Napoleon made his historic return. I vaguely remember watching music videos in one of the rooms in the frat house. I remember that the room was packed. Like a sardine can. There were bodies everywhere. It was a mixture of boys and girls and everyone was piled up on top of one another.  I also remember feeling like I’d been there for 10 hours and I may not have said a word the entire time I sat in that room.  I’m still not sure. Either way, I got up to make my way down the hall to explore this new world when I come across an open door with a sad looking man inside. He was eating a sandwich and staring intently at the TV. He was in his boxers and he looked absolutely miserable. I struck up a conversation in the hopes of making him cheer up.

Me: “Hey whatcha got there?” I asked.

The Man: “Don’t worry about it.”

Me: “That doesn’t sound really appetizing”

The Man: “How about you get the fuck out of here PLEDGE!”

Me: “Sure, after you shove that sandwich up your ass”

This was the spark that lit the fire. The shot heard around the world. The guy jumped up, “do you know who I am?” I couldn’t have cared less when I simply asked, “an asshole?” Within seconds, I was surrounded by what seemed like an army. There were probably 20 frat dudes around me. No sleeves. Imagine a small dwarf or hobbit surrounded by enormous talking trees. Imagine a karate movie where the bad guy snaps his fingers and 100 ninjas come flying down from the rafters. That’s the visual you’ll need for this. The next thing I know I’m being carried down the stairs while a slew of profanities are being thrown my way. Caught up in the moment and holding nothing back, I shouted, “THIS AIEN’T MY FIRST RODEO!” I proclaimed this message from the third floor to the front door like a broken record. It was an outright lie. It was my first rodeo. I’d never been in a rodeo before, but damned if I was going to let them know that.

I would later find out that the man in his boxers eating a ham sandwich by himself at 1am on a Friday night was….wait for it….the President of the Fraternity. The people carrying me out. They were the mindless drones following their Master’s commands. When we finally reached our destination, I was thrown from the front porch onto the well landscaped front lawn. Must have been 10 feet. In my head, I was flying through the air for what felt like an eternity. I literally was thrown and landed completely horizontally. My body did not bend at all in the fall. I fell straight down onto my face. I got up and dusted myself off. In my final moment standing on that lawn with Clint Eastwood’s iconic The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly theme song playing in my head, I proudly said, “I told you this wasn’t my first rodeo.” I then got on my horse and rode off into the sunset.


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