Professor O was my Criminal Law instructor in law school. Both of us were in our first year in the Twin Cities. Prior to that, I was an AmeriCorps volunteer doing great things in Moscow, ID, and I guess PO was doing pretty well for himself in Waco, TX. As I entered his classroom one morning, he was nowhere to be found, but this video was playing. It was loud, it was on repeat, and it was wonderful. Minutes later, PO introduced the class to the world of fraud, which was somewhat interesting, but walking into that late 80s / early 90s popfest is one of my greatest law school memories.
I'm not certain how he does it, or even if he does it intentionally, but PO does and says things that, to me, are not simply memorable, but also impactful. He gets me to think, and he gets me to do. Before I was even in his class, I heard him speak for mere minutes at a lunch-time activity. Only hours later, I was at the library, picking up his book, considering the interplay between Christianity and capital punishment. Breakfast with PO this morning was no different. He said things to me that were greatly uplifting, for which I'm thankful, but he also provided me with specific things that I could do that could have an immediate and positive effect on this project and my life.
I hope to someday be incredibly successful (by my definition, anyway), be asked about people that influenced my life and contributed to my success, look back, think about Milli Vanilli and PO, and chuckle. But even if I'm incredibly unsuccessful and nobody ever cares enough to ask about my life, I like to think that I'll always remember that morning in PO's classroom. And even if my lack of success drives any and all desire to laugh from my body, I hope that when I think of that morning, I can at least crack a smile, because it was just that freakin' wonderful.
Not long ago, an article was written about this project, posted online, then posted on Facebook.
Some people commented on the article, including one woman who referred to me as a "kat." I have a fascination with people that use Ks where Cs might be considered more appropriate, so I sent her a Facebook friend request. She accepted. Tonight, my wife and I met up with her, her daughter, and their foster dog. And we all lived to tell about it. Go figure.
I wouldn't necessarily recommend this brand-new-Facebook-friend-meeting lifestyle to all others. For some, it may work, while for others, it may be a terrifying idea. For me though, on this night, it worked wonderfully. J was a great host, made all of my favorite things for dinner (of which there are many), let me snooze on her couch, and even packed up some food for us to take with us. She gave us a feel for life in smaller-town, Minnesota and just let us enjoy the experience of the experience. Yes, if I do this enough, I'll probably lose my face at some point, but tonight was not that night. So I think I'll go ahead and do it again.