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Friday, December 27, 2019

Microstory 1265: Allen Tupper

Allen Tupper wanted very little out of life. He saw it as a lack of entitlement, while his family saw it as a lack of ambition. He dropped out of college during his sophomore year, not because it was too hard, or because he was struggling with his grades, but just because he didn’t feel like he was getting much out of it. He didn’t have a thirst for knowledge, and he wasn’t much into the party scene, so higher education was a waste of his time, and a waste of parents’ money. At first, they were disappointed in his choices, but they came to realize the wisdom, and became thankful that he didn’t end up with mountains of student loan debt he would never be capable of paying off himself. His aunt owned a restaurant within walking distance of the house, so he started working there instead. He started out at the bottom, as a busser, but eventually made his way into the kitchen, where he became a line cook. He wasn’t astonishingly good at the work, but the menu wasn’t astonishingly complicated either, and he picked it up pretty quickly. His aunt was generous, and since the place was doing quite well, she kept it overstaffed, which afforded each worker more time off than most restaurants would be able to handle. Most of his coworkers didn’t take much time, since they weren’t getting paid to do it, but Allen didn’t care about the money. He worked to pay his bills, and as long as the number in his checking account stayed over zero, he didn’t feel the need to tire himself out. Instead, he took trips. He had this dream to go on a camping trip in every state in the country. Well, it wasn’t so much a dream as it was a long-term goal that his therapist suggested he come up with. She wanted him to worry a little more about the future, and not let himself get in a rut. It worked, because the only times he truly felt happy were when he was out there in nature, far from other people. There was one person he didn’t want to be apart from, however. Richard Parker had the exact same long-term goal, though he was a little less apathetic about it, and more enthusiastic. To make things even weirder, they had each already camped in the same states, so it was almost as if time were waiting for them to meet each other. Allen never believed in much, and he didn’t think anything happened for a reason. He couldn’t help but question his position, though. It was just too perfect, like they were already leading parallel lives, and just needed to notice each other. They exchanged information, and connected on social media upon returning home from Colorado. Richard was nine years younger, but it didn’t seem to bother him, so Allen decided to not let it bother him either. They took things slow, first moving to the same city to be closer to each other year-round, then moving in together, and finally marrying after a three year relationship. Unfortunately, they were only able to enjoy one year of marital bliss before their lives got really crazy.

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