March 30, 2018
This past Thursday afternoon, in the 15-minute gap between the 11:10 and 12:40 classes, a witness called the Tangerine’s anonymous tip hotline with a piece of information that changed everything.
“5’11”, maybe about 170 pounds, with muscle”, the witness shakily disclosed. “This man is carrying around what seems to be a milk gallon filled with water instead of milk.”
After our eyewitness disclosed the location of this gallon-wielding goliath, I immediately rushed to the scene; as a journalist, you wait your whole career for a moment like this.
Upon my arrival at the HSS lawn, I noticed the water whisperer almost immediately: faded t-shirt, Beats earbuds that snake around the ear like some sort of athletic secret service device. All the signs were there; this man was just insanely hydrated.
I watched with awe as a massive bicep, threatening to rip the short sleeve that enclosed it, lifted the entire gallon of water to his mouth. His demeanor was casual, but his body language was absolutely intentional. He was drinking far beyond the recommended daily dosage of water, and he absolutely didn’t care what you thought about it. The water cascaded and rumbled within the mammoth plastic casing, as if insecure of the mausoleum that enclosed it. The gallon was without a doubt heavier than his backpack, but you’d never know that from the ease with which he lowered the nectar of life back down from his lips to rest near his athletic shorts. It was an absolute marvel to behold. He was, without a doubt, the most hydrated person I have seen on campus.
When I finally worked up the nerve to ask for an interview, I sauntered across the grass with shaky knees. I had no idea what this man was capable of.
“E-excuse me sir?” I asked, my voice overflowing with earnest anxiety. “Can I ask you a few questions?”
“I’m sorry man,” he replied with a voice that made thirst sound like a triviality, “I’m headed to the TREC.”
“One- one question- why are you carrying a full gallon of water?”
“Uh- it’s just my thing, I guess. I drink a lot of water.”
And with that, he was gone: leaving me with more questions than answers. Leaving me with a throat that felt dryer than before our encounter.
I’ll never know if he was aware of the variety of ergonomic, insulated water bottles when he made the decision to lug around a full gallon. Maybe he prefers room temperature water. Maybe a Nalgene or a Hydroflask is too ostentatious for his lifestyle. Maybe none of this is any of my business. I suppose I’ll never fully understand the reasons why some people do the things they do, but that sure as hell won’t stop me from trying.