Oh, you got it bad, boy. There are crushes. Then there are near misses, like the tube doors closing, the elevator taking too long to get to the right floor, or getting shuffled through customs and out to the taxi stand before you even realize what happened. But when you stand there at the door watching it open and close for two years, you can't find a boot big enough to kick yourself with when she moves out of the country and you never see her again.
That's the kind of infatuation that really affects you: years of intense attraction as a singular light in the gloom punctuated with immediate severance and zero closure. That's the kind that weaves itself into your psyche so inextricably that you're still dreaming about her over ten years later. Oh, you got it bad, alright.
I finished these two sophomore year, during a brief period spent on creative writing. I strongly suspect that high school english teachers pick a grade for you and that's what you get on everything no matter how hard you worked on it or how damn good it was even if it practically wrote itself. My grade was a B, at least until senior year when I had a teacher that gave you whatever you used to be getting, minus a letter grade. On a scale that marked 93% as a B+, these still only squeaked into the A- range. I'm not bitter.
To try to teach us vocabulary, we were instructed to write a short story containing all of the words on the most recent word list we were using. Use it three times and it's yours, they say. Most people squeezed them into a page or so, double-spaced. I wrote enough of a narrative that it didn't read so much like a bunch of big "D" words strung together. So much for going above the call of duty. I guess I didn't really do it so much for the assignment as for myself, anyway.
It's all lowercase because at the time I was using a font that had all uppercase characters no matter what case was typed. I think I started writing in all caps in fifth grade, probably in no small part because it irritated my teachers. You're used to uniform case by now, anyway, right?
In another assignment, we were tasked with writing a poem about a 'common object' in the style of Wallace Stevens's Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird, except we only had to have ten stanzas. We were just high school kids, after all. Again, I took a little creative liberty in that I was hardly writing about a common object.
I really got ballsy with this one. I slipped not just her first and last, but also her middle name into it, both of our birthdays...if no one in any of the honors or high honors classes that read it figured it out, then I guess my low opinion of OHS students isn't quite low enough. I even let her read it one day after school when we were alone at her house working on an assignment for French class. I think she must have known.
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