Posts Tagged ‘junior high’

True Confessions

March 26, 2014

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Look, I’ve got to get a few things off my chest, but you have to promise this stays between you and me.

You: Uh….you’re putting this on the Internet.

Me: Confession #1 – what’s the Internet?

I Lie

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A classic case of sun rash.

Lying for coworkers. Natalie and I used to work together as legal assistants. After she left her abusive boyfriend, she went through a “make-out slut” phase[1]. One morning she showed up to work covered in hickeys after a close encounter with a human vacuum cleaner. Natalie told everyone she had a “sun rash.” I stood by her in her time of need, and proclaimed loudly to anyone who would listen, “Ah man, sun rashes are the worst and also they exist. I have totally had like 4 cases of ‘the rashes’ in my life. Let’s all give Natalie some pie.”

Lying to coworkers. Whenever I have to choose between being nice and being honest, I usually pick being nice. If someone has a new hairdo, I tell them I like it, when really I usually feel nothing more than, “I notice you look mildly different.” If someone at work is wearing a loud outfit, I tell her I like it simply to avoid the social awkwardness of gaping and pointing.

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Lookin’ good, Deb!

Faking a Pregnancy?? But I’m already married! My senior year in college, I landed a pseudo-acting gig at some fancy schmancy woodsy resort in upstate New York for the summer. I was supposed to lead people around the place pretending it was the 1800s and that I was a new Irish immigrant who had escaped the potato famine. But I had second thoughts. I had recently married, and wanted to follow Didier to France instead of languishing alone in the woods. I waited and waited until the last possible minute to get out of it. Garnering all my cowardice, I sent the resort an email that I was preggers and couldn’t come. The resort dude called and I made Didier answer the phone.

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Shame on you, Wife-Child!

For 40 odd minutes, Didier had to deflect the persuasions of the resort guy – “We can make this work! She can get all the prenatal care she wants here in the woods!” After he finally hung up, Didier wouldn’t even look at me. I learned years later, as we were breaking up, that Didier had never forgiven me for my indiscretion, and was “disappointed in me” for lying and making him complicit in the lie, even though the whole point of my charade was so that I could be with him. He did have the moral high ground, though, having only cheated on me once in our five year relationship.[2]

I Cheat

First, let me just explain that I grew into my morals over time. I would never ever ever have cheated in college or law school, where I actually gave a shit. But before I became the paragon of morality you see before you: lazy desperate times called for desperate measures.

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Me, being smart and popular.

Original sin. School and me go way back. School was good to me, and I was good to it. In grade school, I was always smarter than everybody — like way, way smarter. That’s why I was able to make so many friends.

Picture it, first grade: there I was, flying high without a care in the world- when all of a sudden I was stopped dead in my tracks. Teach gave us the math worksheet from hell. There was no way to solve it, it was completely inscrutable. I looked around for sympathy. Everyone else was breezing through it. Even Ryan Thibodeau, who sat behind me and drooled on his desk. Time kept ticking by, and there I sat, internally pissing my pants. Teach tried to help me, but to no avail. Finally, she let everyone go to recess, and I was left behind to complete the assignment, abject and alone. Ryan’s finished worksheet winked at me seductively from his desk. Was this a setup? Were there spies everywhere, just waiting for me to take the bait? Or had Teach taken pity on me as I agonized futilely over this veritable Da Vinci Code? Did she want me to cheat? I concluded that she did, and respected her decision.

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Er, did I say jazz? Blues! I meant blues!

Muddy, Muddy Waters. 9th grade was my most morally bankrupt year. I was too busy growing a pair of kick ass boobs to give a crap about my immortal soul.  One time Mrs. Cross was forcing us to read biographies and then write book reports. Gross. I was too lazy to read a whole book, so I found some liner notes in a Muddy Waters CD that contained a short biography. Not short enough, though, for my delicate constitution; I just copied it and called it a day. Mrs. Cross called me up after class to have me explain my obvious plagiary. I channeled the State of Florida, and stood my ground. “Uh, well, you see, Mrs. Cross, there were all these jazz terms— he was a jazz musician, right? — that I didn’t understand, so I didn’t know how to put the concepts into my own words.”

Result: B-.

I Steal

It all started in junior high, when I would fill my sweatshirt pockets with gum at the corner store. In 9th grade (of course), I advanced to shoplifting clothes.

Even though I was a totally badass shoplifter, I had a lot of compunction about it. The guilt of my crimes drove me to distraction, and I told my mom everything in a fit of hysterics.

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Forgive me! Forgive me! I stole all the gum!

I was so pathetic that instead of punishing me[3], Mom had to rock me back and forth like a baby until I calmed down. She even told me that shoplifting wasn’t so evil, and that she’d done it herself as a child. There was never a discussion about apologizing to store owners or repaying my debt to society, thank God.

For a while, I was cured. But then in 10th grade, shit got real again.

I had been musing to Angela about my glory days:

* Shoplifting 101: pick out a bra you want, and carefully hide it in a big pair of pants, etc. Then go to the changing room with the decoy apparel and pretend you’re going to try it on. Once in the stall, put the bra on under your clothes. Then go out and put the pants on the reject rack. Leave store. Come back another day. Repeat.

Angela could already taste the forbidden fruit of the loom. Resistance was futile; she quickly talked me into pulling one last heist.[4]

The mark: Kmart, the Pierre Cardin of Waterville, Maine. The score: bras and undies. We walked over to Kmart with evil in our hearts.

It would probably have worked out just fine, but we got greedy. Too many panties, not enough pants. Angela panicked, and put all her clothes away. I was about to follow suit, when all of a sudden my mom showed up OUT OF NOWHERE.

“It’s raining really hard so I thought I’d pick you up!” (Thanks for nothing, Mom.[5])

MUG!

Us, if Kmart had won. Poor Mom got caught in the crossfire.

I froze. “Uh, ok. I’ve just got to try a few things on.”

 

By the time I got to the changing rooms, all of my unmentionables had migrated to the bottom of a pair of pants in one guilty bundle. A young employee began inspecting my wad at the service desk. Just as she was about to come to the undies ball, I pulled it out and confided, “Sorry, I hid them because I was embarrassed walking around the store with underwear.” [6] I had momentarily neutralized the threat. As I walked into a dressing room,  she booked it to the manager. Then I snuck out, and put everything back like it was hot.

Shortly thereafter, a store manager came up to me with menacing adult authority.

“What are you doing?” he barked. But he was no match for me.

Shopping,” I said witheringly, in cold blood. He limped away, rubbing his deflated ball sacs.

But despite the trail of employee carnage behind me, I couldn’t help looking over my shoulder. Some murky, amorphous retribution was waiting for me.

And Mom was taking forever. “Oh look, Kristy, did you need some notecards?” I just barely got out of there alive.

NOTECARD!

Result: A narrow escape, a moral victory.[7]

End of Part I

In our next installment of True Confessions: “I Pee My Pants,” “I’m Dumb as Bricks,” and “I Should Have Paid More Attention to After School Specials.”

[1] Don’t act like you didn’t, Trenchmouth.

[2] I never cheated on him, which was the least I could do, considering the gravity of my lies.

[3] I should mention that my mom has punished me a total of zero times in my life.

[4] As you can see, it was all Angela’s fault.

[5] My mom is actually the best mom in the world. If I find out you said anything about her, you’re dead! Well, probably not, but it will really hurt my feelings.

[6] God, I’m good.

[7] My friend Charo wasn’t so lucky. She is permanently banished from Walmart.

 

ONE MORE THING: I encourage you to write your own confessions in the comments!

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Pranks!

March 23, 2014

Did you know that if you grow up with a mean drunk of a dad, that you get to do whatever the fuck you want and no one can get mad at you? I for one loved to pull pranks, and they were hella funny. But just in case you think they’re mean, I put that stuff about my dad right up front so you’d feel too bad to judge me. [1]

Cast of Characters

Me: You know, that awesome woman what writes this blog.

Foxy[2]: My best friend to this very day. Can you believe that shit? What’s nice is that the fact I’ve managed to have the same friend for nearly 30 years is proof positive that I don’t have borderline personality disorder. Foxy also had a crazy home life, so we both had diplomatic immunity for our dickishness. ImageOne time, her mom and stepdad were low on money, and had to make the Sophie’s choice of buying formula for Foxy’s baby sister or buying cigarettes. They picked the latter and gave the baby a bottle of half & half mixed with water. Her stepdad had a weird spot in one of his eyes and was always in his underwear.

Angela: One of my oldest and dearest friends. Angela had an excellent home life, but I did have one thing she didn’t….junk food! I’m talking Twix bars, Girl Scout cookies, 4 flavors of soda, the good chips, sour cream for dippin’, ice cream bars, ice cream sandwiches, etc. etc. etc.

Angela and I dedicated many hours to playing with the Ouija board in my room. One time we were contacted by Satan, who told us he was sitting on the bed. We went to check, and the bed felt all sinisterly cold. We totally flipped our shit.

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This really happened.

Angela was really popular because she was nice to everyone, and was even voted homecoming queen. Moral: movies about high school are full of shit. Moral II: that’s why I love them.

Charo[3]: This girl was funny, funny shit. In junior high, we used to stand on the side of the road and wait for cars to go by. When they did, Charo would hunch over and curl her arms into claws, and lisp, “Yesth mathster,” while I beat her with a stick.

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Do not, I repeat, DO NOT, do a Google image search for “person getting beaten with stick.”

Foxy and I assumed Charo was depressed like us, but it turns out she just had a real bad case of “the Maines.” Charo had moved to Maine from Virginia in 7th grade, and winter did not agree with her. She lived in the middle of nowhere and was always stuck in this claustrophobic shack while her real house was being built, one piece of wood at a time.

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Jesus, Charo, what’s your problem?

Charo and I had shitty eyesight and even shittier glasses. One day we were strolling through the park and some guy was there playing air guitar. Only maybe he wasn’t playing air guitar.

Regina: My pyromaniac friend who threw her bra on stage when the navy band played at our school and once took a dump on home plate. Now she’s a marine biologist.

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Phone Pranks

This was me and Angela’s thing.

Angela and I watched the movie Amazon Women on the Moon pretty much every day in junior high. I hope one day as I’m winning a Newbury Award or maybe a Pulitzer Prize in literature, I can cite that as one of my biggest influences. Take that, Maya Angelou!

I believe that if you are not familiar with this comic gem,  that you suck and don’t deserve me to explain the movie to you. Derek disagrees, so here you go, Loser: Amazon Women on the Moon features a bunch of comedy sketches with super famous people intercut with a spoofy 50’s sci-fi movie.

We did not get all the jokes. There was this one skit called “Blacks without Soul,” and I really didn’t understand what “soul” meant in this Imagecontext. It was styled as a PSA, with B.B. King asking for donations for this terrible ailment. It heavily featured David Alan Grier wearing Liberace shirts and selling his best hits album with songs like, “Blame it on the Bossa Nova.”[4]

Angela and I were most baffled by this scene where a black man was talking about a car he had bought. He was dressed like a pimp and walking through a sketchy  neighborhood. We, being rural Mainers, just interpreted this as “City Life, City Clothes.” So then he says, “Safety and good mileage are the two things I look for in a new car. That’s why I bought a Volvo station wagon.” This was a real head-scratcher. The best we could come up with was: “Volvos are, like, really dangerous cars?”

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Anyway, as we knew in our hearts that this was the funniest movie ever made, we decided to share its greatness with the world. We used to call strangers, ask if they wanted to buy a Blacks Without Soul album, hit a few clumsy notes on the piano, and then croon “Jeremiah was a bullfrog.” I see now that this may have been offensive. Thank God for my diplomatic immunity.

You can imagine how our hearts broke with the advent of caller ID. ImageFoxy and I learned the hard way that its evil clutches even transcended town lines. We were at her grandma’s in the Big City, Portland, calling this dude Jason[5] over and over and hanging up. Then, just as we were almost out the door and scot free, Jason’s mom called the house… And we were almost out the door.

Then there was Davy. This one requires a lot of backstory that I’m too lazy to tell. One day, if I feel that you’ve earned it, I will let you in on the Cult of Davy. For now, here’s a taste. We called Davy anonymously and he told us he was having a party. Foxy asked to go, and then this happened:

Davy: Are you ugly?

Foxy: Kinda.

Davy: How much you weigh?

Foxy: 200 lbs.

Davy: That’s ayyyight.

Davy was a true gentleman.[6]

Valentine’s Day Pranks

The high school would do a Valentine’s Day fundraiser every year. You paid a dollar, and got to give someone a piece of candy and a card. You could sign the card or give it anonymously. It was a comic goldmine.

Making fun of nerds was mean, but popular kids were fair game. Especially jocks. So we always sent some amazing anonymous cards to our favorite people.

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Not cool.

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Fair game.

Cory: Cory once said Foxy was sexy, and that he wanted to sleep with her. What a jerk! His Valentine’s Day card: (to the tune of Hey Mickey):Image

Oh Cory you’re so fine

I wish you’d unzip your fly, Hey Cory! Hey Cory!

Oh Cory what a pity you don’t understand

You take me by the heart when your dick is in my hand

Oh Cory, you’re so pretty, can’t you understand

It’s guys like you, Cory! Oh what you do to me, do to me

Do me again, Cory!

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If we’d known this was coming, we would have been nicer to Jimmy.

Jimmy: This guy was just kind of generally a dick. I remember in junior high he dated this very nice girl, and after they broke up, he made some disgusting comment about how she was “dry.” A few years ago, he went crazy and managed to hold up a bank with a bible or something.

His Valentine: “Your sexuality makes me want to crawl into a cave and die.”

Jeremy Jones: This guy was high school hot. My sister once told me and Angela that your boobs got bigger if you saw hot guys. So our joke was, “I saw Jeremy Jones and my boobs went from an A to a C cup in 10 seconds!” Rumor has it that he moved to a trailer park in Florida, where he pimps out his high school sweetheart.

His Valentine: “Jeremy Jeremy, I would say, I would make an easy lay. [Something something something] I hope I’ll fuck you again someday.”

Now all these idjits thought their Valentines were the odes of pining secret crushes. Sorry, dudes, you were a pack of dicks. [7]

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My Enemies

Steve: There is nothing I hate worse than an annoying person. I would rather play Frisbee golf with a bank robber than spend five minutes in the same room with a boor. And I HATE Frisbee golf.  I’m pretty sure it was invented by sadists in the 17th century to punish elementary school students with poor motor skills.

Steve’s crimes were manifold. We had actually briefly been friends in junior high, but then he wrote me a love note and stuck it in my locker. From that point forward, he was dead to me. It gets worse. One time he wrote an essay which included terms like, “Womyn” and “chrystyan.” Steve was always making painfully dumb jokes in class and then he’d hee-haw like a donkey at his own material. Where others simply rolled their eyes, Regina and I saw an opportunity. Every day in Reading class, she and I would sit together with a piece of notebook paper between us, surreptitiously keeping a tally of all Steve’s asinine comments. We helped Steve reach his full potential and break old records by laughing encouragingly at everything he said.

It gets even worse. One time Steve and I were sitting in the hall working on a project, and Steve farted. By a stroke of good fortune, Foxy happened to be walking by. We shouted in unison, “Go get some Ex-lax!” Score. (NB: for those purists out there, yes, I know that Ex-lax does not stifle farts. But if you can’t appreciate the metaphorical beauty of our joke, then you simply do not comprehend the transcendental nature of comedy. You probably also hate the spirit of Christmas.)

Christina:  God, I hated this girl. You can’t even believe the shit she pulled. First, we had the same name, only she spelled it wrong. Christina was a year below me in school, which was already suspect. She made things worse by being two years ahead in math whereas I was only one year ahead. So that bitch was in my math class. As if that wasn’t bad enough, she was also in my English class. Christina even did drama, despite the fact that drama was my thing. Ok, in hindsight, I might have been the problem here.  To be fair, though, one time at a poetry slam she read a super lame poem she’d written with her little sister. It rhymed.

ImageMrs. Cross: We hated her so much, and yet all I can remember of her crimes was that she used to say the phrase, “in a nutshell,” interminably. One time Charo and I snuck into her classroom and looked through her stuff. Mrs. Cross had the tallies for the gifted and talented writing program, and I did not make the cut. I only had like two or three checks near my name. Foxy had by far the most votes. She was, and continues to be, a very talented poet. Even you’d like her poems, and you hate poetry. So then Charo and I left her a note in her mailbox in the teacher’s lounge (did I mention we also broke into the teacher’s lounge?): “Roses are red, violets are blue, golly gee Mrs. Crotch, we sure hate you.” How I didn’t get more votes for GT writing remains a mystery.


[1] Sucker.

[2] Full name: Foxy J. Sheen. Foxy’s parents were heavily influenced by the works of Michael J. Fox and Charlie Sheen.

[3] If you thought this was really her name, you’re dumb as shit. I asked her what she wanted her fake name to be, and she said, “Charo McElvis.” Ms. McElvis, your wish is granted.

[4] If you’re still lost, go watch the God damn movie and then report back.

[5] Jason later shaved his head and joined a cult. Most likely in response to our prank calls.

[6] His brother recently went to jail for drug trafficking.

[7] Cory actually did end up getting penis enlargement surgery.  My friend Lara slept with him after high school, and he had a notably small penis. Then a few years later, she slept with him again. Afterward, he asked, “Did you notice anything different?” It was the best moment of my life, and I wasn’t even there.


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