* I don’t usually do a prologue to single entries, but felt I should for this one. It is interesting how something looks, many years later. Perhaps you have your own, way-ward teenage stories. I can say for certain that when I went to college, and friends would often ask to re-read these high school stories of people they didn’t know, this arc was one of the most popular. And I can see why. In its own, Disney-esque, cliched way, it has just about everything that defines an adolescent tragedy. But I also don’t want to give it that much weight. Most of these entries I don’t remember writing, but I remember lying on the floor in Nicole’s room, writing this. At the same time, it feels very far away, and muted, like I am reading someone else’s story. And today I can appreciate it less as my story, and rather simply as a story. So, finally, in a very weird way, enjoy…
February 23, 1995 Thursday
I’ve been putting this off. The flower and notes were not supposed to do this. I wanted a “secret admirer” approach. That isn’t what I got.
The day after Emma most likely found out, I was determined to step forward. I stopped by the office, where she helps out an hour each day. All I got was a quick, “Well, I just knew you might do that.” Then she left.
I was still pretty proud of myself by Spanish class. Then I got the worst harassment of my life. The guys I do homework with, sit with every day, called me “phsyco” and “stocker.” And they laughed at the very idea of it all. Haley Hollis wouldn’t even look at me. I didn’t know how to defend myself, as I hadn’t expected anything of the kind. I felt trapped, and alone. That day I was steaming at everyone.
But I must fault my own inexperience, and my own impulsiveness. Like any first time, I really didn’t know what I was doing. So that’s my part of it, my responsibility. At the same time, I still saw how everyone reacted at first. When it wasn’t me, yet. The girls were giggly, the guys were curious. None of those leaden words were being thrown around that day. It begged the question–and provided an answer–that if Jake Pruitt or Jacob Harms had done that exact same thing it would have been funny, clever, or romantic. But it wasn’t. Because I did it, everyone hated it. That’s my take on it today. The day I gave to Emma everyone said “What a nice flower and card.” No one had said, “Who’s the loser who sent the death threat with the weed attached.”
I feel like I learned something, but a part of me, right now, would rather not know.
My confidence is shot. Hoke informed me Emma told him… she was scared around me. I should have stayed on the sidelines. It was better there, for everyone involved.
We had our first baseball meeting today. Games will start at the end of March.