I was reading a campus-safety article a few minutes ago, and it made me think of this story: I used to know a guy who later made some horrible mistakes–and wherever he is now, I imagine those mistakes still haunt him. But when I was in my late twenties, I decided to try Match – com. (I make no excuses for this; I made a lot of friends on Match – com.) After the first time I ever tried the site, I was supposed to meet a stranger for a date at a coffee shop. Despite the apparent safety of meeting somebody in public, and in broad daylight, I was a little nervous about the security of it all. And in passing, I told the first guy–the mistake-making guy–about my hesitation. So 5:30 came around, and my date showed up–and he was a sweet, little librarian who liked DC Comics and history. And then, at 5:35, my friend came to the coffee shop. He pretended not to know me. He sat in the far corner, and he read the whole New York Times. 

Why am I telling you this? I don’t know–except for the fact that I never so realized that when it comes to safety, friends can play a huge role in protecting friends. Secondly, the story makes me hope that if we do receive some kind of judgement at death, the universe considers us for all that we are, instead of just the worst that we’ve done.

(Originally posted August 27, 2014)

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