The Daily Post – Topic #125: 1) Stand up 2) Turn to your right 3) Count objects you see, and stop at #3. 4) Write about whatever item #3 is.
When I first read this prompt about three weeks ago, I was at work. I stood up, turned to my right, and begin counting objects. Technically, this post should be about a paper about something called the Hospital Inpatient Waste Identification Tool. But then I lifted my gaze up a few inches to the wall of photos above my desk, counted three to the right and landed on this beauty.
So, this one’s for you, Caitlin Cecilia Ross.
Come the end of August, Miss Ross and I will have known each other for 14 years. Ooh, ahh Bearcats. Caitlin was my next door neighbor freshman year of college and in the years since has been one of the best friends a girl could ever have. A year or so after we graduated from college, we ended up living in the same apartment building for awhile. I was on the third floor, CCR on the second. Conveniently, I could see her kitchen window across a courtyard from my kitchen window. This required a bit of stalkerish contorting and pretty much climbing up on my counter and halfway out the window to do so, but you best believe that every time I saw her light come on I was on the phone within 30 seconds. “Ross, I know you’re home. I’m coming down. I’ll bring vodka.”
When Caitlin moved out of the building first, I felt slightly abandoned, but mostly excited that she was buying her first home. Turns out, that house – located in the neighborhood affectionately (and only semi-aptly) nicknamed Sudafed Heights – is one of my favorite places in town. So much fun, so much frivolity, so much comfort and pseudo-therapy when I have needed it.
Caitlin is pretty neat. She is also one of the most modest, unassuming people you’ll ever meet, which is why she will hate this next part. She is one of those people who looks gorgeous all the time. An average Friday night hanging out, trivia on Wednesday after a long day at work, hungover and unshowered on a Sunday morning – doesn’t matter, she of the princess hair and porcelain skin always looks fantastic.
So how do I repay this dear friend of mine for years of awesomeness, kindness and good times? By completely throwing her under the bus and perpetuating a series of jokes at her expense. A few years ago we were indulging in one of our favorite pastimes – dinner at a suburban chain restaurant. On this particular Saturday in question we chose Red Robin over our usual standby, Olive Garden. We are not fancy people. The plan was a movie after dinner, but we were both pretty beat, so rather than head to Target to kill the 45 minutes before the next decent movie showing, we opted for the first one we could get into. Drillbit Taylor.
It. Was. Awful. On our way out of the theater, Caitlin – a middle school counselor – made one, simple observation, “Yeah, but the stuff about bullies was pretty accurate. I see things like that all the time.” I took that one statement and ran with it. The next time we were with our friends, my hyperbolic tendencies and I wasted no time in declaring, “Gawwwd, Caitlin and I saw the WORST movie the other night and she LOVED it!” It just grew from there into a long-running joke about trashy Caitlin and her uncouth habits. “Hey, someone let Drillbit know that we’re playing poker tonight. Remind her that there’s no toenail chewing at the table.” And so on. For her part, Ross has taken it like the gracious, beautiful, decidedly not trashy champ that she is.
I am a big ol’ sap. I know this. You know this. I could easily sit here, on this glorious Saturday morning, sipping coffee and getting all misty eyed thinking and writing about pretty much any of my friends. You all are the best and I am infinitely grateful that I have had the good fortune to find myself surrounded by such a kickass crew for so long. But this morning – hell, this summer – belongs to Caitlin. Why? Because in two months and nine days she’s going to get herself married. The only thing better than Caitlin is Caitlin and Orion. They are a power couple for the ages and on August 13, they are going to lock that shit down for life. We have all kinds of celebrating to do before then, and I’m not sure I know anyone who deserves it more than Drillbit.
Alright Caitlin, I think I’m done. I’m sure you are cringing and shaking your head and sort of hating the attention. I’ll leave you alone. For now.