Posted: July 21, 2007 in Family and Friends

I’m supposed to be an adult, right?

I’m here in Grapevine, Texas, with my family, and at 11:54pm last night, I drove with my three nephews to a nearby Wal-Mart. John Mark (the oldest) recently graduated with an engineering degree and leaves Monday for a prestigious internship with Cisco Systems in Raleigh, North Carolina. Joseph (his younger brother) is engaged to be married and, if all goes well, will enter graduate work in physical therapy after his senior year at Abilene Christian University. Josh (their cousin) plans to attend Marymount Manhattan College in New York City this fall, majoring in accounting.

Well, this prestigious group of young men went to Wal-Mart with their Uncle Al at midnight last night for the long-awaited release of the seventh (and final) book in the Harry Potter phenomenon.

The funny thing was that Josh was the only one who wanted a book. I went hoping to take pictures of crazy costumes or knock-down, drag-out fights over a children’s book. I think John Mark and Joseph went just to make fun.

Wal-Mart had a security guard out parking the cars for the midnight crowd. They handed out free water and made a special Harry Potter cupcake-cake for everyone. They also handed out bracelets (red guaranteed to get a book, green for maybe… I’m not sure what the blue and yellow were for…). This was a big deal, you know?

It wasn’t really an emotional crowd, however. Only a couple of lame costumes, and absolutely no fights. When we made it to the front of the line, it looked as if there were plenty of books in stock for everyone in line and then some, so I didn’t feel compelled to wait around to snap pictures of the first people who didn’t get a book.

The best picture I got was the one of crazy Josh paying obeisance to the surprised checkout girl who presented him with his treasured book.

But we had a blast: four smart aleck guys up past their bedtime.

I’m suspecting last night was the last time I’ll get to hang out specifically with the sons of my sisters, just the four of us. That might not be such a big deal to the three of them, but their Uncle Al was glad he tagged along.


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