|I have had a pretty fortunate life. I was born in Tyler, Texas in 1978 and grew up in Athens, Texas. I lived in Athens for eleven years. In the eleven years that I lived there I got into a lot of trouble. I was hell on wheels growing up. My parents probably wished that they had had only one child. Some of the things I pulled was either destructive or mean. For example, we lived on a dead end street that was connected to the street behind us by a grassy road. My friend and I had a club house on this road. It was not wide enough for cars to pass trough, but people walked and road their bikes all the time. I would dig a hole that was about a foot and a half deep and put a string across it. This way when someone would walk over it, it would release a zip-lock bag full of rocks, dirt, sand, and other crap that I need not mention.|
It was set up to hit them in the head. I know this really sounds mean, but like I said I was hell on wheels. I was pretty active kid in the day. I loved to be outdoors so my dad took me hunting and fishing a lot. I didn't like it at first, until I was six and shot my first deer. After that I was hooked for life. My family has a beach house in Rockport, Texas, so we went down there a lot (and still do) to go salt water fishing (which is my favorite kind of fishing).
When I was eleven my dad got a promotion and we moved to Sherman, Texas. This was my first move so I really was not pleased with the idea. We moved in November of 1989 when I was in the sixth grade. I hated it and wanted to move back to my home in Athens. Then when I got into Jr. High I got involved in the church youth group and made a lot of friend. This was when I really started to like this town. I had a best friend by the name of Matt McGee. We were the studs of our age group (at least we thought so). There were only five of us in our age bracket so there weren't a lot of guys to choose from. Not much really happened to me in Sherman except I had my first girlfriend and had my first kiss. This was probably the high life, but I really liked my friends that I made and the time that I had here.
When I started high school my dad got another promotion and we left for Waco, Texas. We didn't leave until January of 1993 so I didn't have to start school in the middle of the semester. I really didn't want to leave Sherman but I didn't have a choice. I knew that I was going to hate Waco. I figured that the only thing that would happen to me in Waco was that I would learn to drive, little did I know. Then about three months after moving here a little thing happened. I think that you may have heard of it. Someone by the name of David Koresh decided that he was God and the little conflict lasted for two months. Now when someone asked me where I lived, I could tell them and they knew exactly where Waco was. Not a good way to be put on the map, but we are now known in the world. I went snow skiing for the first time my Sophomore year of high school and meet a guy on the chair lift from Australia. When I told him where I was from he said "oh yea mate, that David Koresh thing". Over my high school year I experience a lot of things, had my first real girlfriend, and I graduated from Midway High school. I guess I had a good experience in high school. Nothing really spectacular happened so when I graduated I knew I would not miss it.
When I graduated from high school I didn't know what I wanted to study in college. Because of this I went to McClennan Community College for the summer and into the fall. My reason for this was that I was not sure if I wanted to be an Architect or not. I really wanted to go to Baylor University, but if I wanted to be an Architect I needed to go to the University of Texas at Austin. I stayed at McClennan through the fall because I didn't want to go to UT and then decide that I wanted to do something else and then regret that I went there. Plus I would have wasted my parents money. This way I would save them a little until I decided what was best for me. I'm sure I would have had a great time, but Baylor was the place where I wanted to be. So the spring of 1997 I was a student at Baylor University.
January 5, I moved into Penland 2 South and my life would change for the better. The day I moved in I met these two guys Brandon Blagg and Jess Mowery. These were the type of guys that I never would have hung out with in high school, but things are different when you get to college and everybody is on the same page. I was a little nervous because everybody had a semester on me, and I was the new guy on the hall. In fact for a little while that was my nickname (New Guy). The day before the first day of school we had an ice storm. Well at least it was an ice storm in Waco terms. Instead of being safe we decided to go out driving and have fun. I became friends with everybody pretty quick. Since my parents lived in Waco, we always had a place to hang out. At first I thought that they were just going to take advantage of me because of this. This was not the case though. I met the best group of friends I ever had in my life. Every Sunday night we would all go out to my house to get dinner and do laundry. My first semester at Baylor I had a group of about 20 to 25 friends so there was never a dull moments. Over the course of my first semester I became close friends with Jess. It really is amazing how one can change when they get to college. If Jess and I went to the same high school we never would have been friends. Spring break I went to Acapulco for 7 days. It was extremely relaxing, but I will go into detail at another time. That summer Jess, Mike Collier (another good friend of mine), and I went to Cancun for 4 days. I'm sure you know what goes on in Cancun, so I won't go into detail. Let's just say that it was the best week of my life up to that point.
My sophomore year of college was fun, but not as exciting as it was freshman year. My number of friends diminished a little which was to be expected each year of college. I met a girl named Crista and we dated on and off for about 6 months. Spring break of that year my future roommates Nathan Burkett, Jeffrey Gross, and I went to Whistler, British Columbia, Canada, for 7 days. This had to be the best skiing I had done in my life. I love to ski so this was great. Whistler is considered the #1 ski resort in North America. It was the most beautiful skiing place I had been to. To drink in Canada you have to be 19, this was perfect b/c all three of us were 20. The problem was that the entire trip I never got carded until we went to this one place where you had to be 19 just to get in to eat. So I got carded to just eat. Easter of 99' was the best one I have ever had. I took a bunch of friends to my beach house in Rockport. Jess, Sean, Nate, Jason, Heather, Kristi, Jenny, and I were the ones to go. Fortunately though, Nate lives in Corpus Christi, so half stayed with me and the other half stayed with him. We spent a lot of the time fishing and hanging out at the beach. As of this day, it was the best Easter I have had with my friends.
The summer of my Junior year brought on a whole new experience. During the summer of 1998 I met a girl at Mike Collier's 4th of July party. Her name was Julie Diehl, and she was from Houston. Julie was friends with Kristi, who was Jess's girlfriend. The two of them went to high school together, and Kristi introduced me to her that summer. Over the course of our relationship, we had our good times and bad times just like any other couple does. That Christmas, she spent her time with my family and I in Canada. We decided to take a family vacation to Banff, Alberta, Canada. The place was amazing and the scenery was outstanding. My Junior year was also the year that I turned 21, and I had the flu for two week during my birthday. Kinda sucked for a 21st birthday. My Junior year I also moved into a new apartment with some new roommates. Jeffrey Gross, Jason Fobart, Nathan Burkett, and I were the ones that lived together. The name of our place was Boardwalk Apartments. Our place was always party central. Other than frat parties, we were known to have the best apartment parties. I think we were even the first ones to have a margarita machine party. Which I might say, went over very well. At the beginning of the year I decided to change my major from Architecture and Graphic Design to Management Information Systems. I decided that I could use computer and art together and create websites and other things. Once I started my computer classes, I got sucked into the whole thing and dropped the art side. Database design, programming, and networking were things that interested me more. Spring break of that year, a bunch of us decided to take a road trip to Purgatory, Colorado. We had a pretty good size group who included Jess, Nate, Jeff, Catherine, Candice, Kristi, Heather, another guy who we just met on the trip, and I. We were able to do the drive in one day. We spent about four days skiing and having a great time. The summer of that year was a little rocky at first. In the beginning of June, Julie and I broke up. The break up was a little bit rough, but we got over it. Jason and I were the only one's to stay at the apartment that summer, and I got a job with the computer company that he worked for. The name of the company was Hourglass Computer Service Inc. I ended up working for the company off and on for the rest of my college years.
My first Senior year was another great year. I was not attached to a girl, and the school year was busy but not too tough. The year was filled with a lot of memorable experiences, which I will never forget. Since I was not dating anyone, I went out more on the weekends, and I made a lot of new friends. It is really amazing how you become friends with people that you never thought you would, and they turn out to be friends you stay in contact with after college. There have been many people that were good friends to me in college and a little while after, but they turned out to be friends that I haven't spoken to in a long time. My Senior year we got a new roommate to take the place of Jason. He had decided to go to photography school in Atlanta, Georgia.
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