Mistakes We Make: Social. Spiritual. Professional. Style.


Would I do it differently? Probably not.

By NJ@30

“Memories that I can’t touch, I pray won’t be erased.”   Ahh.., well said Mr. Collins, and appropriate for introspective folks like myself.  Have you ever become so fixated on a past experience, that the idea of revisiting it, if only for an instant, seemed possible?  For better or worse, this happens to me quite often.  Healthy?  I don’t know.  The wife throws around words like “regressing” and “pathetic”.  Irresponsible accusations if you ask me.  I remind her that pathetic is in the eye of the beholder, and that those were the days when she made the decision to be in my world.

A couple of weeks ago, I shared with you my struggles with thoughtfulness, and all things romantic.  So I decided to make an attempt.  One night in paradise.  Nacogdoches, Texas.  ”Nac” is a virtual oasis of pick up trucks and buffets.  It also happens to be where we went to college.  Below is the itinerary created by a true renaissance man.

11:00am-12:00pm-Lunch at Szechuan:
What better way to kick things off than with marginal Chinese food at the place where we once broke up.  I could still see her looking at me with those “what’s wrong with you?” eyes as I gave her the Brad Hamilton speech from Fast Times.

 12:00-2:00-Scenic drive through town to look at the places I used to live:
Do you like luxury?  Then Iron Horse apartments is the place.  800 square feet of pure apathy.  JPB (solid roommate for 2 plus years) and I once hosted a 21st birthday party for a neighbor that included a keg of Keystone, about 100 guests (75 of which were smokers), and an unidentified six foot six man in a cowboy hat, that casually walked in, filled his cup with beer, and vanished, never to be seen or heard from again.  Ponderosa Pines and the Feazel Street house were also paid homage to, but they were late in the game, and lawsuits are still pending.

2:00-4:00-walk through campus:
Complete waste of time.

4:00-6:00-Check in and relax at the Fredonia Hotel in historic downtown Nacogdoches:
Debate for an hour on whether or not we are the only guests, and spend the rest of the time complaining about our lunch.

 6:00-7:30-dinner at Auntie Pasta’s (once Nacho Mama’s): Pleasantly surprised by the food and drink, not to mention how much I remembered from it’s Nacho Mama’s days.  I kept the conversation alive with such stories as the time DW got nude on the long table, George threw the Theta Chi into the chip dispenser, and I tried to help JG out of his handcuffs.  Consequently, the arresting officer offered to present them to me.  I declined.

 8:00-9:00- Grandes at Casa Tomas
There’s not a whole lot of options, bar wise, in Nac, so the students react by turning casual dining restaurants into Bourbon Street.  Casa Tomas was my Waterloo.  Site of the $40 tip, and the guitar playing impostor, this Tex-Mex joint was mere millimeters from my final resting place on Feazel Street.  The financial impact “Casa” experienced upon my exodus must have been traumatic, but they withstood, and although the jukebox has changed, the ritas will still make you cuss.

9:30-10:30-Nine Flags
We wrapped things up at the hotel bar with a few locals and a handful of college kids who hung around town for Christmas break.  The patio once served as a boardroom for my brain trust.  A secret organization known as the “Cougars” and a plot for a future kidnapping were both devised at this downtown staple.

All in all, I think she had a good time.  Maybe she left with a greater appreciation of how far I’ve come, I think I did.

“I look back and love you/Would you walk with me downtown?”   You’re so right AC.  We can never forget the events in our lives that shape us.  Few experiences are more real than our mistakes.  Where would we be without them?

I don’t have all the right answers, but I do know most of the wrong ones.

Click here for more greatness from Austin Collins

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  1. DAVIES says:

    I believe there was also a note of some kind on that 1000% tip!!!!

  2. NJ@30 says:

    That detail is still a bit hazy

  3. Courtney says:

    Your wife sounds a like a heck of a woman! Better hang on to her!

  4. Joe says:

    I try, just a little bit every day, to convince my wife that we need to move back to Nac.

  5. A-TRAIN says:

    Funny how the word “cougars” has a diffrent meaning these days.

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