It’s autumn, and the leaves on those definitely-not-ugly trees that line Upper Sproul have changed colors, glowing in red, orange and gold.
You make your way through campus to your favorite coffee shop before class, knowing in your heart that he’ll be there.
His name is Dan or Anthony or some other equally “earthy” kind of name, and he wears his plaid shirts rolled up at the sleeves. He makes coffee like he’s working on a car, twisting his wrist as he makes you a latte in a way that suggests he could definitely help you change your bicycle tires that you’ve been meaning to fix.
You say hello and he brightens your morning and the entire Bay Area with that smile — it’s all in his warm eyes and the way he says, “That’ll be $4.30.” Your fingers brush as you pass him your card. You swoon all the way to class, but your day has only just begun.
You sip on your coffee as you float on down to the library. The beating of your heart is in tune with the student librarian’s stamp as he checks in and checks out books. Speaking of checking out… he’s got totally ironic TV show shirts, a really very attractive lanyard and that floppy hair in his eyes that he has to push out of his way to see.
He leaves his desk with a cute sigh and helps you figure out OskiCat for the third time. There’s something about the way he clicks on the mouse that’s almost as compelling as his laundry detergent.
“Well,” he says, as he stands up again. “Let me know if you need anything.”
“Oh, I will,” you say, throwing back your hair with a laugh.
An hour and a half of hardcore studying and multitasking on UCBMFET goes by and you call it quits. On your way back through Sather Gate, it lights up, reminding you that Christmas is just around the corner.
Then you see him with his spiky hair and jean jacket with obscure pins all over the place. He’s got a sign held high with his three fellow protesters. You’re not really sure what he’s protesting, but he’s very compelling in those combat boots. Somewhere along the line, you end up with a sign, too. He’s wild enough for an hour of flyering but, as you realize, too wild for you.
You leave before UCPD comes over to talk about permits, and you hold your fist held high in solidarity as he’s written up for the third time.
You pick up some Chipotle and head out for some late Game Day festivities. You don your blue and gold face paint and march with your friends up to the stadium. On your way, you see a striking man with black and red stripes on his face. Your eyes meet, but you look away. It can never be.
Suddenly, you hear your name being called; you turn, and it’s Danthony the barista!
“Can I sit with you?” he asks, and you say, “Sure.” Jessica can find somewhere else to sit.
The game starts, and you two get cozy on the bleachers and talk about everything. When Cal defeats Stanford once and for all, you and Danthony find yourselves there as it begins to snow… blue and gold confetti.
As you smile at one another, you know in your heart that today’s just another day at UC Berkeley.
Contact Lauren West at email@example.com.
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