courtney non-dairy

I spent the summer between 9th and 10th grade at science camp. High School Ashley was not really a "science camp" type of person (and for the record, Present Day Ashley isn't, either).

This science camp was pretty cool, though. It was at the now-defunct (as far as I know) Duke Marine Lab, near Beaufort, NC. Have I written about this before? I don't remember. Anyway, since it was a marine lab, all the different tracks of study were marine-related. I was in the marine invertebrate zoology lab. (The fact that I voluntarily signed up for a summer science camp about marine invertebrate zoology continues to astonish me, to this day.)

In general, the class was an odd combination of random hilarity and mind-numbing boringness. My instructor was a guy whose name was Scott Linenberger and he cried in the first grade because he was the only student who couldn't spell his own last name. Scott liked to use catch phrases - "do not molest the blue crab" was one we heard over and over.

There was a girl in the class who sat at one of the front tables. She was "good at science" and generally pretty spunky and outgoing. Her name was Courtney Creamer, yes, spelled like that. Scott teased her about her last name (and immediately followed it up with stories about him being teased for his) and then spent the rest of camp referring to her as Courtney Non-dairy, or "non-dairy" for short.

Because I was am kind of a spaz, and because my family doesn't really drink all that much coffee, I didn't get the joke. (It took about 10 years for me to get it.) (Don't tell anyone I said that. Totally embarrassing.)

For some reason, I've never forgotten Scott Linenberger who cried in the first grade and Courtney Creamer, aka non-dairy, who sang Natalie Imbruglia all the time.

Incidentally, and embarrassing for me, there's a girl at my church whose first name starts with K and last name is one vowel short of "Creamer" and is pronounced more like "Kramer" from Seinfeld. I know this girl's name, and it's NOT Courtney, and I often speak to her when she's around, but for some reason I keep calling her Courtney. It's frustrating and strange and I will sometimes even know that her name isn't Courtney but have trouble coming up with her actual name. It's so embarrassing and awkward-making for both of us. I mean, it's not like I'm going to launch into this whole story of my science camp experience, because that would be strange and she probably could not care less. I just apologize, say "I'm sorry K---, I know your name isn't Courtney and I'm sorry I keep messing that up," and then make an off-hand comment about how she reminds me of someone I used to know. You know, play it cool and whatnot.

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