“So why not drive on Allison Road…”

by Katie on April 2, 2009

Another one of my favorite people turns 24 today! 

Six years ago we were strangers. We are one of those rare stories where a potluck college dorm roommate situation actually works out. 
We first met over the phone. She called me the day after we received our roommate assignments in the mail for Legett Hall at Texas A&M. The first question she asked me? 
Allison: “Do you play basketball?”
Me [thinking, what else does she already know about me?]: “Um…yeah, I played in high school.” [not sure where to go next in the conversation]
Allison: “You’re probably wondering how I know that.”
Me [you think?]: “Yeah, actually, I was.”
Allison: “Yeah, my dad Googled you. And we found an article about you playing basketball.”
And then later in the conversation, I found out they had looked my dad up too – in her parents’ Aggieland yearbooks, so she asked about him having long hair in college. Something I didn’t even know. I’m sure her parents were just concerned about shipping their only child off to live with a stranger. Understandably so. Especially after learning that stranger was from a place called Anahuac. 
Needless to say, I was a little apprehensive about meeting this saxophone-playing, only child, high school Valedictorian, Catholic, Music major from Clyde, TX. 
Just as I’m sure she was about meeting a swamp-dwelling, cattle-showing, basketball-playing oldest of four children, Protestant, Agricultural Communications major from Anahuac, TX. 
We were quite different then. But if two people can survive spending one year in a dorm room together, and still like each other, I’d say that’s a pretty good sign. We even ended up choosing to live together for two more of our years at A&M. And we’re much more alike now. Maybe it’s that whole “environmental” concept of personal development.  
Some highlights of those roommate years, for those who were there: 
  • My drooling incident
  • An arrangement of tater tots
  • The demise of Allison’s innocence (thanks, in large part, to my 21st birthday)
  • One White Elephant gift exchange, Crayola markers and indecent exposure
  • Calli’s smell of “morning”
  • Monkey bread at the start of each semester, made by Allison
  • Hurricane Rita weekend and the burnt macaroni, made by me 
  • Many, many nights of dancing and singing to Aaron Watson
Allison is known quite well for her gift of…words. 
On one of our trips to Texas, Brandon asked who would be picking us up, as we were landing at the Austin airport. I told him Allison was on her way. 
“Oh, well I guess we won’t have to worry about bringing up conversation.”
[Allison already knows this story, which is why I can tell it here. She’s a good sport.]
   
I consider this trait a blessing for the most part. She’s hilarious, so it’s entertaining to listen to her, and you never have to worry about what to say next. 
I better say some nice things about Allison, too. After all, she has quite the collection of compromising photographs of me (some related to the White Elephant and Crayola markers reference, all related to indecent exposure), that I just know will be used as blackmail one day. 
  • The two of us can laugh together at just about anything.
  • She’s one of the most compassionate and giving people I know…most of the time.
  • She has great faith.
  • She picks out good shoes that other girls with big feet get to borrow – until they move two states away.
  • She’s smart. Really, she is. Don’t hold past stories against her
  • She’s a very talented musician, but not one of those people who is weird about it (contrary to what I first thought).
  • She doesn’t have too many of the “typical only child” characteristics.
  • You know you can count on her for anything in this world.
  • I’m very thankful I didn’t ask for a room change after that first telephone conversation. 
Happy birthday, Al. 
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