After arriving at Zahm as a scared freshman and unloading all of my belongings, I walked around campus with my parents, took some pictures, and stopped at the bookstore before returning to the dorm. Shortly after returning to Zahm Hall, my roommate Chris Hendrickson arrived. His parents helped him unpack and arrange his area of the room. Then both his and my parents headed out for the evening. Chris and I ventured over to the Huddle mart at the LaFortune Student Center to grab some snacks for the evening. We headed back to Zahm and began to explore the dorm. We talked somewhat and then went down to the basement to play some pool. There was already a game in progress, so we both sat down to watch. It was between an upperclassman named Rob Seward and another freshman from Lowell, Massachusetts named Wally Poirier. Wally was obviously drunk and could not make a pool shot to save his life. He seemed like a nice enough kid though. He was complaining that he had to take some placement tests the next morning. I decided I would take a Spanish placement test the following morning as well. I don't think Wally ever did make it over to take those placement tests though. That was the first time I ever met Wally, little did I know then what an impact he would have on me throughout my four years at Notre Dame and what an impact he continues to have on me even today.
We even began starting rivalries with some of the new dorms on West Quad. The night before Torquemada, Wally and I defended the honor of Zahm by throwing ice cubes that had been left in a metal trough at Fieldhouse Mall at the men of O'Neill Hall who ran by chanting, "Zahm Sucks!" and "Ole, Ole, Ole, Zahm's Gay!" Wally also thought it would be funny if we paid a visit to O'Neill, where he proceeded to urinate on the building and I ripped up a cardboard sign that said parking for residents of O'Neill Hall.