Another Tribute Tuesday, and this time the calendar aligns perfectly, because today is the birthday of Jackson Ferrell and just the person I'd like to thank for being an awesome friend for more than a decade (eek, has it been that long since I was in college?!)
|Speaking of 12 years ago, check out this hotte photo from November 2002! Eek! Jackson is in the back next to me.|
|The Super Ferrell Bros brought me cake on my birthday in 2003. Or maybe they just helped me eat the cake. I can no longer remember.|
|Sophomore year (2003-2004), when we both lived in Pinkney Hall (although not on the same floor, as I recall), Jackson and I often hung out. Pajama power!|
Anyway, I remember sitting near the boy who would turn out to be Jackson Ferrell from Ohio and striking up conversation. The only part I remember about it is that I was quoting lines from musicals that I liked (way to lead like a NERD, Jenny) and Jackson was appreciative of the bad puns. I particularly remember him chortling at the line, "unstatusing your quo/ and making your Beelzebubble burst" (from a song in the musical "Camelot").
It turned out that I could not have picked a better person with whom to share my affinity for bad puns. And so began a friendship which seems to have withstood the test of time and distance. Jackson and I discovered that we had more in common than just liking bad puns. We also both were Christians and went to Christian Fellowship in the "Chasement" (can I get an amen, Rhonda?). We both had gone to private prep schools for junior high and high school. And we both had been assigned the dreaded work-study job of spending ten hours a week working in the dish pit.
The dish pit was a room in the school's kitchen where all the trays came down after meals and we were in charge of scraping the excess food off and putting the silverware, cups, plates, and trays through the industrial washing machine and then stacking them to send back up to the dining hall. It was not a coveted job, and I did not elect to return there after my freshman year (I went on to do my next three years of work-study in the Admissions office, which was lots more fun). But Jackson and I had a few shifts together and he often brought his CDs to play on the boom box (translation for this generation: a boom box is like a precursor to an iPod dock). He introduced me to some musicians that I had never heard of but quickly grew to appreciate.
Jackson ended up transferring to a different college after his sophomore year. St. John's is a very specialized and unique school and it's not for everyone, and I think Jackson was happier at a more traditional college. Since we parted ways, we've kept in touch via letter, email, Facebook, and I think even a phone call once or twice. He runs a sweet webcomic which you should check out.
Jackson, thanks for introducing me to all kinds of awesome things and for being a good friend throughout the years. Happy birthday, and many combolations! All your base are belong to us! Etc.