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Naked and Afraid: A Harrowing Halloween Tale

I woke up in an unlikely place and in even more unlikely circumstances: on the field at Neyland Stadium, alone, in the dark, and completely naked. I had no idea why I was there other than a vague remembrance of partying with Smokey at a Halloween throw-down in The Fort. I gathered my thoughts and stood up, blinking my eyes to adjust to the dark. I walked through the tunnel and climbed over the tall gate, being careful to not cause any unwanted injuries. I jumped down, and I was free. 

 

It was cold. Cold enough to where I didn’t want to be seen by anyone for very personal reasons. I scanned my surroundings but didn’t see anyone. I headed up the hill in front of me. I had no idea what time it was, but that didn’t concern me. I needed to somehow get back to my dorm. This would prove tricky since the desks are always manned and there are cameras everywhere. And in case you’ve forgotten, I didn’t have any clothes.  

 

A single light was in the distance. A beacon of my hope to eventually get home. I went over to the Torchbearer and kissed its feet. I drew close to its warm flame and waited until the heat gave me strength. I climbed down and walked over to the dirt in the park. I stuck my finger in and drew two lines under my eyes and put handprints on my chest (I’m not sure why I did this, but it seems cool in the movies). I resumed my journey with renewed faith of my safe return.)

 

Not moments later I saw someone: a UT Security truck making the rounds. Its headlights were blinding; I timed my departure to be out of its spotlights, but to my horror, they spotted me. 

 

”Ha, look at the idiot! He’s naked,” the driver said to his partner. The other remarked that it must be some weird new costume trend and they drove away, but their laughter carried in the quiet night. My shame almost ended my journey right there. I had come so far, but there was still so much farther to go to get back to Brown. Fed up with my situation, I took off at a sprint. 

 

I continued my marathon and barely stopped to check for traffic. As I worked my way past Hodges I saw some late-night partiers decked out in their Halloween finest cresting the hill and had to duck behind some bushes. I was finally close to home, but when I looked into my reflection in a puddle on the street I had to wonder what deranged occurrence had gotten me to this point. I stood up and took off again. 

 

I had just gotten to Melrose when I saw the flashing lights.  

 

“Naked guy! Freeze,” the policeman said while shielding his eyes from me. 

 

”Oh, I already am,” I responded, determined to make it to my goal with wry humor.

 

I ran and heard the full force of Knoxville’s finest behind me. I could see the lights of Brown. I could also hear the stun guns behind me as they just barely missed me. I turned a corner and was able to get out of sight. I used the opportunity to get to Brown and safely elude them. I made sure to wipe off any mud from my feet to not leave tracks. I finally made it to the front door. It was locked.  

 

I backed into an alley and called my roommate like 30 times until he finally let me in. He was too tired to question my lack of clothes, dignity…well, everything. I quickly ran to my room and fell on to my bed. I fell asleep thanking Butch Jones for my safe arrival.

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