there’s this story that’s been getting a lot of play in our newspaper. it’s about lauren spierer, a young woman from our area who goes to school at indiana university. she went missing june 3 and hasn’t been found. the last time she was seen, according to witnesses, she was drunk and stumbling out of a friend’s apartment building at like 3 in the morning. she was headed home, just around the corner. she never made it.
her poor parents have pretty much abandoned their lives here in new york and moved to indiana, intent on leading the search for lauren. they’ve repeatedly urged their daughter’s friends to come forward and talk about that last night. what did they see? what did they hear? what do they know? why, for the love of everything holy, was she allowed to go out onto the street, alone and intoxicated, at such an ungodly hour?
there’s an anti-DWI campaign here that says “friends don’t let friends drive drunk.” in this case it should be “friends don’t let drunk friends go home on their own.” in college, our friends always made sure we got to our dorms safe and sound after late nights (although i don’t think any of us ever got roaring drunk). during those times we got locked out because we got back way past curfew, there was always somebody willing to let us crash on the couch (or, in the case of W’s walk-up, on the floor). remember that one night we all stayed up at the sunken garden (and played hide-and-seek) because it was very late and others had no place to go?
college is a tough time in a young person’s life. and it’s not because of the courses you take or the terror teachers. for most it’s the first time you’re out of your parents’ homes. it’s the first time you get to test your wings. mistakes, lots of them, are made. but you survive. and your friends survive. if you all watch each other’s back.
where am i going with this? don’t quite know. i guess i just wanted to say thank you to you and our other friends. i wish lauren had the kind of support we had. maybe then there’d be one fewer set of parents waiting for their child to come home.