How I ended up in journalism

I promised to tell you about how I threw over The Hot Guy for The Smart Guy. I have to get to it, because on July 26 I have a story about us, and you should have been introduced to him by then.

Let’s recap what we have so far of my post-high school adventures: I worked as a hula-hooping singer at a ’50s place until a former customer saw me in public and offered me a job at a college where a Hot Guy came in asking for paperwork for a semester in Mexico, which I had never heard of but said I was doing, too.

So there I was, living in Mexico based on the lie that I could speak Spanish. I lived with a family there. I was a student at the Universidad de Guanajuato.

Every morning we rode an open-air bus over the cobbled streets to the university. All of us Californians got picked up along the same route.

There was a panaderia next to the school, where several of us would buy bolillos fresh out of the oven. I remember standing in that bakery in the overcast of the mornings, breaking my bolillo in half so I could shove my face into the steam and aroma.

In Mexico, papaya juice is their orange juice. They use what’s labeled here as sweet butter — there’s no salt in it. And when you order cheese on something, you get a white, crumbly goat cheese. I didn’t like any of these things, but I liked bolillos.

From the panaderia we tackled the stairs to our classrooms. I counted them once, and wish I had written down the number. There were more than 100. First there were the wide steps to get into the building, which you can see a picture of in Photos O’ Mine. Then there was a series of short switchback stairs we took to the top tower, about six stories up.

It was on those switchbacks I lost my heart.

There was a guy with unruly hair and tragically matched clothing who went up ahead of me. I always made sure I was behind him, so I could smell his cologne. I go weak in the knees for Polo. The Hot Guy smelled like cigarettes.

By the time we were loaded on a bus for a weekend in Guadalajara, I had completely lost interest in The Hot Guy. I made a point of sitting by the guy from the stairs for the six-hour ride.

He was wearing green denim pants and a turquoise sweater vest.

He had a gentle voice and kind manners. He told me interesting things and laughed at my stories. When we ran out of conversation I read aloud to him from my Katherine Stone novel. We got so engrossed in the story, that when all the kids went out dancing that night, we stayed back to finish the book.

This smart guy had become much hotter than The Hot Guy.

I loved being around him. By the time we were back in Guanajuato we were together all the time. We knew each other’s favorite things.

He had been a writer for his school’s newspaper. “Me too!” I said, which was true insofar as two of my St. Patrick’s Day entries won the limerick contest and were published.

As the summer grew short, I got worried. He had been accepted to Stanford, and would be moving there from Laguna Niguel a month after we returned. That was far from me. I began to send him telepathic messages to ask me to go with him. Ultimately he learned my hope when we wrote entries in each other’s diaries. He asked.

Back in the States he showed me the newspapers he had been a part of. I was inspired. When I enrolled for the fall semester, I joined the staff.

This story picks back up with The Earthquake story. After that quake, The Smart Guy, along with many others, suffered from depression. He cut me loose out of guilt for bringing me down, which broke my heart.

Then in spring I was sent to Hawaii….

The Smart Guy is now running Yahoo!

Click here for photo

Advertisements

Tags: ,

13 Responses to “How I ended up in journalism”

  1. JeremyA Says:

    I know a similar story with my dad…
    My dad was fluent in Spanish enough that during high school he participated in this exchange-student progam (sort-of, I still got to learn more of the story) to go to Mexico.
    He lived with a family in Tepic, Nayarit for a while and became good friends with one of the sons.
    As a family, we still go to Tepic to visit them (along traveling to other parts of Mexico).
    Later in ’72 my dad went to Mexico for 8 months of the year to surf.
    For 20-some years he did that until he met my mom.
    Now that’s a different story…

  2. Kevin Says:

    Hehehe. I remember your fondness for Polo. I don’t wear cologne often, but when I do it’s Polo. I remember coming into the Sink one night after a date or something, and you wouldn’t stop sniffing me. 😉

  3. gunky Says:

    so glad you were sent to hawaii. it was all meant to be . . .

  4. The earthquake « Stories O’ Mine Says:

    […] was October 17, 1989, and I had just been named the news editor of my college newspaper in Los Altos Hills, which is just south of San […]

  5. The homeless guy story « Stories O’ Mine Says:

    […] I lived in the Bay Area, I drove into San Francisco to meet a friend after work. My friend worked in a fancy hotel. Though […]

  6. I tried to get married in Mexico « Stories O’ Mine Says:

    […] tried to get married in Mexico By T. Twenty years ago today The Smart Guy and I celebrated his 20th birthday by getting a little […]

  7. My ex-boyfriends « Stories O’ Mine Says:

    […] Smart Guy to Photos O’Mine when it occurred to me I should have put an update on the post, How I ended up in journalism, mentioning that he’s now running […]

  8. I tried to get married in Mexico « Stories O' Mine Says:

    […] tried to get married in Mexico By T. Twenty years ago today The Smart Guy and I celebrated his 20th birthday by getting a little […]

  9. My ex-boyfriends « Stories O' Mine Says:

    […] Smart Guy to Photos O’Mine when it occurred to me I should have put an update on the post, How I ended up in journalism, mentioning that he’s now running […]

  10. I tried to get married in Mexico « Stories O' Mine Says:

    […] years ago today The Smart Guy and I celebrated his 20th birthday by getting a little […]

  11. The earthquake « Stories O' Mine Says:

    […] was October 17, 1989, and I had just been named the news editor of my college newspaper in Los Altos Hills, which is just south of San […]

  12. The homeless guy story « Stories O' Mine Says:

    […] I lived in the Bay Area, I drove into San Francisco to meet a friend after work. My friend worked in a fancy hotel. Though […]

  13. How I came to learn Spanish « Stories O' Mine Says:

    […] I dumped the Hot Guy after a week for the Smart Guy. That’s another story too. […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: