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My Mythicality: Pick A Fight

Let's talk about the fact that this is the least embarrassing photo of myself from my freshman year!

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Just like last week, I’m going to talk about another chapter in the “Book of Mythicality”. The chapter I selected was about getting in a fight when necessary. I’m going to be real honest I’m not someone who fights on a regular basis but I’ll definitely stand up for myself in a way that I wouldn’t have in my younger days and I agree with Rhett and Link that sometimes you just have to fight.

This story comes from my freshman year in college and I’m sharing it because it was so out of character for me at the time but it was also one of the first times I couldn’t call my parents for help. In the grand scheme of life this “issue” didn’t amount to a hill of beans but at the time I was so angry that it forced me out of my comfort zone.

I lived on campus at William Carey all four years of my college experience and at the time Carey was known for their 95-year-old, golf cart driving security guards which will be relevant to this story. They would fall asleep at the gate so you couldn’t get in and do all kinds of crazy stuff that made for great stories and the ability to get away with some strange stuff. At this point in college I didn’t have a job and would not leave campus on some days so I had a great parking spot under this big tree by Bass Hall. Due to its proximity to the Auditorium the security guards would block off spots with traffic cones when there were big events. One day I came out to my car and found a cone behind it and cones in all the other spots. I assumed they wanted to reserve it so I backed out replaced the cone and went about my business. No harm, no foul. However, several weeks later when I went to register for classes I was told I wasn’t allowed to register because I had a ticket. What was this ticket for you may ask? Tampering with security devices, which is how overly dramatic WCU could be about things. I was horrified because that was on my record and in 13+ years of school I had never so much as gotten a detention.

At this point I hadn’t connected the traffic cone to this situation but was told I would have to go pay my ticket in the security office. Over I walk, absolutely mortified that I was now a criminal (even if it was just on a Baptist level). I explain to the gentleman in the office that I supposedly had a ticket but had never received it. He then pulled my “record” and informed me it was because I moved the traffic cone to park there. I countered that I had to move the cone to leave not the other way around. I realized at this point that one security guard had placed the cones and one came around and thought I had illegally parked. I explained this to the gentleman whose response was, “The ticket is only $15 so you might as well pay it. It’s not that big of a deal.” It was at that moment that I realized I had a choice. Take the easy way out and pay the ticket for something I didn’t do or stand my ground. Please remember I had NEVER stood up to “authority” in my life but that was the day. I calmly told the gentleman that I wasn’t going to pay because I had not received a ticket nor had I done anything to receive it. He said he would call the security guard a few hours later when he came in but there was no need for me to wait. He was sure I had somewhere else to be. He was wrong. I sat my behind there for hours. Like lunch time to close. He kept trying to reason with me that is really wasn’t a lot of money so I should just pay it. I explained that at this point it was the principle of the matter. I was not paying that ticket and in the end I didn’t. (This may have also been the moment I realized how hardheaded I was!)

In the end, I think I surprised him with my resolve to be right. I know I surprised myself. For such an inconsequential issue it really did teach me a great lesson. Sometimes you have to fold but sometimes you don’t…even if it’s only $15.

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