Before my 1:15 a.m. pre-sleep relaxation shower, I pulled out my phone for its nightly charge, and read the screen.
“Now calling Shannon.”
Life turned to slow motion.
“Noooooooooooooooooo,” I said, as my finger ended the call my pocket inadvertently began.
It rang. Forehead slap. I woke her up. I should say sorry … in a few minutes.
While standing in the shower, I decided against immediate apology. If she slept through the single ring, and then I woke her up with a text that said, “Sorry I woke you up,” as my friend Drake would say … and then the fight started.
With my messaging choice made, my mind hit rewind on the VHS cassette of my life (I’m too old to get the DVD version).
The tape played to a spring Sunday in college, with Shannon chosen as her sorority’s Greek Goddess.
One contest was a race, with the Greek Goddesses riding shopping carts pushed by their sisters. I questioned the logic. Shannon was 5-foot-9 with a muscular swimmer’s build. She wasn’t fat, but she weighed a lot more than appearances thanks to that muscle. Why are the 4-foot-11, 90-pound blondes pushing her, and not vice versa?
I held my tongue during their practice run by the sorority house, but I should have spoken up. The tiny girls lost control of the cart, which found the street’s only pothole.
Shannon’s tall, muscular body was ejected from the cart. She stood in the sorority house shower five minutes later, while I washed blood and dirt off of her knees and reconsidered my Sunday choices.
She confided she had her “Noooooooooooooooooo,” moment. Her five seconds of failure were an eternity: The cart halting. Her brief foray into human flight. Her knees meeting asphalt. The car driving by the cross street. Its backseat full of kids laughing. Hard. If I could hear them at the other end of the block, I know Shannon heard them 10 feet away.
The tape then queued to a few days ago. I was visiting another friend. I rang her doorbell at 3 p.m., and then next thing we knew the clock struck 9:15. Why wasn’t that in slow motion?
Fortunately, Monday night’s non-taped “How I Met Your Mother” episode changed my perspective (spoiler alert). Ted and “The Mother” (she’s still unnamed) are shown on their first date. Ted drops her off at her place; he walks away, knowing the old Ted would have blown this with some sweeping gesture and then regretted it while standing in his shower the next day.
She calls him back, instigates their first kiss and offers to extend the date with a few more walks around the block.
Ted pauses; when she asks why the delay, he says, “I’m remembering this.”
Ted doesn’t even exist, but he taught me that’s on me to hit “Slow-Mo” for the good, “Fast Forward” for the bad and “Record” for the exceptional.
I’m going to work on my personal remote … and my phone. These late-night pocket dials need to be erased.
Kevin Wilson is a columnist for Clovis Media Inc. He can be contacted at 763-3431, ext. 313 or by email: