Whenever my friend Claire visits me at Temple, we always go out for crêpes. They’re delicious, they’re not heavy, and they’re great with a latte. They might be the perfect food.

While in Washington D.C. this past January, I met up with my friend Chanelle, who I hadn’t seen in years. We went to Baked & Wired, a highly rated coffee- and bakeshop in Georgetown. I ordered a traditional latte and she ordered a chai latte. Being the social eater/drinker that I am, I suggested we swap drinks halfway through; that way we could each taste two different drinks from this highly regarded establishment. She took me up on my offer, and, halfway through, my life changed for the better. I had my first taste of a chai latte, and holy hell was it good — the perfect mix of spicy and sweet.

A month later, my friend Kevin and I went to Elixr, a coffee shop in Philadelphia. Waiting in line, I told him about my chai latte experience. Much to my amazement, he’d never had one before. The solution was obvious: buy him a chai latte.

We got our chai lattes, drank them, and agreed that, while they’re incredible, they wouldn’t go well with everything. Later that day, I realized what they’d go perfectly with: crêpes. Immediately I texted Claire about my discovery. “It has a unique taste. Once you have it you’ll know what I mean. It doesn’t go with everything — though I do think it’d be perfect with a crêpe.”

Eight days later: “I had a chai latte today. It was heaven.” Not only did she like love it, but she agreed it’d go perfectly with a crêpe.

While at the gym the following Wednesday, I felt a craving for a chai latte. And at that point, sweaty and in gym clothes, I knew I couldn’t get one right now like I wanted to. So I did the next best thing: look at pictures of chai lattes on the Internet!

I don’t know how, but eventually I came across this picture:


I sent the link to Claire, and though she said she’d really like to drink one, she missed the funniest part of the whole thing: the website I found the image on was deliciouscrepesbistro.com, a crêpe restaurant. And they serve what looks like the best chai latte ever. I pointed this out, and she started laughing. Then she said: “Does it say they are in California? Road trip!”

The thing is, I was already planning a summer trip to California. So when she said that, there was only one logical response: Do you want to come with me?

“That would be EPIC!”

She sent that message at 10:28 AM. And a few minutes later, it hit me: what an absurd idea. What an absurd thing it is that two 18 year olds, who had at that point been in each other’s physical presence all of two or three times, could even contemplate the idea of flying across the country together, to a place where neither of us have ever been. And not just hypothetically — it could really, actually happen. We each have the money; we wouldn’t have to ask our parents for a dime. It’s absurd — absolutely absurd! — and in the best possible way.

When I realized this, I couldn’t help but ask how things got to that point. Why, at 18 years old, could I even consider doing something so ridiculous? There I was, sitting alone with a cup of coffee in my dorm at 10:30 AM on a Wednesday morning, when it hit me: it all comes back to my parents.

While other parents wouldn’t have, my parents encouraged me to pursue my passions. This led to me working in the real world far before most kids my age, which led to me maturing way before my peers. Another benefit: I’d saved up lots of money.

Clearly, it all came back to them. They made choices other parents would not have. And it’s because of those conscious choices that I’m in the position I’m in today. It’s because of those choices that it’s not outside the realm of possibility to fly across the country with one of my best friends.

It’s all because of them.

When I realized this, I started crying. At times I had been a giant dick to my parents, but it’s because of them that my life is so great. I’d fight with them over the stupidest of things, not appreciating how incredible they really were.

Eventually I composed myself, and at 11:04 AM, I sent them this message:

I don’t think I’ve ever said point blank how much I appreciate everything you guys have done for me. The reason my life is so great is because of you guys.

It was you guys who encouraged me to pursue my passions, which put me in the position to learn the skills necessary to succeed. It’s because of you guys that I’ve had the incredible opportunities I’ve had in life. You’ve given me the freedom to live life to the fullest. And when I’ve gotten a little off course, you’ve always nudged me in the right direction.

Despite the shit I give you guys sometimes, I really do love you both. Thank you very, very much for everything.

Two minutes later, at 11:06 AM, my mom responded.

Are you high?????