By Katherine Wright 

There’s a lot of pressure to do something fun, extraordinary and life-changing every weekend. My Friday and Saturday nights feel like they must be filled with crazy experiences accompanied by constant bursts of laughter. 

These over-the-top expectations can get exhausting. But, at their core, buried beneath layers of extravagance and a desensitized perception of fun, lies a wise principle: we should experience weird, random and unexplainable things. 

I don’t mean you should desperately search for some objectively strange event you ironically want to attend and otherwise have no interest in. The beauty of “the weird experience” is that it is an authentic, natural occurrence which actually happens to you in your everyday life. 

For most people, the weird experience is usually not planned nor frequent. But you will know when it’s happening to you. 

The story I’m getting at is my weird experience of working the grand opening of a pet store. A completely random, totally unique experience that I could never have dreamt up. 

I still remember it so clearly. 

I was surrounded by wall after wall of dog food, sandwiched between cages of reptiles. I was holding a jar of fish-shaped lollipops. At one point, a baby chameleon walked up my arm. His name was Pascal, after the chameleon in Disney’s “Tangled.”

The store offered raffles and exotic pet-inspired games to the guests, and I was responsible for encouraging everyone to participate. If you correctly guessed the number of fish in the tanks (spoiler alert: it was hundreds), you received one ticket for the raffle. If you touched the snake, you received two tickets. If you held the squirming, hairless guinea pig, you received three well-earned raffle tickets and would then question if it was really worth all the trouble. 

Even though there were no puppies at the event, I had a blast. I spent every moment soaking up the beautiful randomness of it all, completely out of the ordinary from my usual routine. Although I have to admit that I didn’t touch the hairless guinea pig — who, by the way, was named Testicle. You seriously can’t make this stuff up. 

At the end of the day, we have to appreciate moments like this. After all, it’s not everyday that you get to or pass out catered appetizers in the middle of a pet store. And I certainly never imagined I would be eating a catered beef Wellington the same day that Pascal the chameleon walked up my arm. 

I came into that store carrying boxes filled with animal-themed decorations, and walked out with a brand-new, completely weird, totally random experience that made my day. 

You don’t have to do something exhaustingly extraordinary every weekend to make unique memories. But when you have the opportunity to experience something out of the ordinary, no matter how random it may be, you should take it. 

If it’s anything like the grand opening of that pet store, I guarantee it will be an interesting time.