The night of the lottery, my college roommate and I were watching it on TV. The first date drawn was his birthday — he was No. 1. I hung on until 141, which was a problem. The purpose of the lottery was supposed to be to let you know whether you were going to be drafted or not, so you could plan. But 141 was indeterminate — I still couldn’t know whether I’d be drafted or not. I had a student deferment, but who knew what lottery number would be reached the year I graduated? I’d learned nothing. When I went home for Christmas I visited the draft board office to see how high their number had gone, and whether they would meet again that year. They had not reached 141, and would not meet again that year. I immediately requested that my deferment be dropped, so I would have "exposure" to the draft that year. The rules said that if you were eligible for the draft in any year, but your number was not reached, you were free and clear. The clerk questioned whether I was sure, and I said yes. She did the paperwork, and I was free of the draft.