Drive of “Shame”


I’ll begin this post with two videos involving my usual interpretation of the “walk of shame.”

First: in my worst Anne Robinson impression: “You are the weakest link–goodbye!”

Then: “LEFT! RIGHT! LEFT! RIGHT! (ad-infinitum) SIT DOWN!!!”

For people who know me well, they would never picture me mentioning the “walk of shame” or “drive of shame” in the “colloquial sense” of the phrase to refer to one of MY stories. That colloquial term is given definitions in both Wikipedia and Urban Dictionary.

To some extent, I qualified for that this morning! Let me explain…

Yesterday, I went to the Twin Cities for three purposes: Services in the morning, a Husker volleyball watch party in the early evening,  and then a birthday party for some of my new friends immediately following.

The day was going well! I had a relaxing afternoon with my usual St. Paul hosts, enjoying conversation, snacks, and reading material.

Then, I went to downtown Minneapolis and watched the Husker volleyball team sweep Texas for the national championship, with a few other Nebraska alumni. We were a small but mighty force in the bar area!

After that, I went to the aforementioned birthday party. Because I was originally planning to drive back to Menomonie that same night, I obeyed Rule #0.

I ate some food (though not too much since I was full from dinner), did some dancing, conversed with new and old faces, and was having a good time. More fun was taking place in the basement.

I played several hands of “Cards Against Humanity,” which was a lot of fun. Though I don’t have the same dark mind that others might have, and even though I was sober (unlike everyone else), I can still have a good time. Obviously, even being at the party itself was a slight break-down of my usually sky-high defenses!

It was 23:15 and I was beginning to make leaving noises,did somewhat disappointed in the fact that nobody had responded to my request for a safe space to crash overnight. But, one of the hosts mentioned that there was an unused bedroom upstairs in which I could sleep. YAY! No worries about driving back.

So I continued with some more games and dancing until about 00:40, when I was out of energy. Entering the empty room and closing the door, the only disturbance for the remainder of the night was the loud music one floor below. I slept pretty soundly, all things considered, and I was left alone. Good!

I forgot to turn off my alarm on my phone, so it woke me up at 07:33, and naturally I could not get back to sleep. I quietly walked downstairs, in the same suit that I wore during the night.

However, I did not want to leave immediately: (a) because I didn’t want to leave the front door unlocked for the hosts, and (b) I wanted to help clean up since they offered me a place to crash. Kindness begets kindness, and chivalry begets chivalry.

So I waited for one of the hosts to get up, or maybe not “get up…” possibly not having gone to sleep yet! (Wow. That’s beyond my comprehension.) I offered to help clean up, but said host declined the offer. Therefore, I was able to leave with peace of mind in that sense, and the drive home included a call to Mom and Dad… not to mention the drive of shame, but simply because I hadn’t talked to them since Wednesday.

They both expressed pride in my “drive of shame.” Clearly they want me to experience uncomfortable situations on my own and learn how to deal with them! Plus, it would be even more shameful (AND DANGEROUS) for me to have driven home drowsy last night.

And, with no sexual activity, no intoxication, no disheveled-ness, and a clear mind (other than the mentally-induced stomachache from pre-existing stressors), really the only qualifying terms for the “shame” would be the no-change-of-clothes and the unexpected overnight!

Nevertheless, I’ll be watching social media carefully over the next day. Nothing will come from my phone, as it never appeared during the party.


Lincoln: 3 days.

Joint Mathematics Meetings: 16 days.

Second Semester: 30 days.

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4 thoughts on “Drive of “Shame”

  1. Bless! So much I can identify with in this post, Noah; in fact, it reminded me forcibly of all too many socially awkward moments (self-created, I hasten to add!) from my own past. Sounds like you dealt with the whole thing a heck of a lot better than I ever have, frankly! Loved your bit about kindness and chivalry. x


      • Very often, Noah; I would agree with you on this. I think failure and embarrassment help us to be more empathic and compassionate, both to ourselves and to others. xx


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