Friday, April 20, 2012

A Real No Know

One of my most cringe-worthy memories is from high school (natch).  I decided, mid-assembly, that the candidates running for senior class president were too clique-specific and lame and that I would be a far more universally liked and desirable choice.  Unfortunately, I didn't consider that by volunteering to run for office I would be forced to stand up and present a platform.  Right then.  On stage.

Yeah, I had nothing.  It was a rambling speech that stressed only my ability to straddle the line(s) between all the different generically Breakfast Club-like factions of our grade.  Think Sally Field's "You Like Me!" only less earnest and more deer-in-headlights.  Not quite enough to win an election.  My grade was wiser, evidently, than the "who would you rather have a beer with?" population of America: they chose the smartest kid with the best ideas (even though he was a founding member of the Existentialist Club.  I am not making that up.  Yes, it was private school.).  Imagine that!

My political career may have been short-lived but it was honest: I did get along with most of my senior class (minus one obligatory blood-feud-of-forgotten-seventh-grade-origin frenemy). There was, however, one girl who drove me insane.  She was a super-eager, sugary sweet hanger-on who was desperate to be popular.  She laughed too much.  She talked too much.  She inserted herself (inanely) into conversations.  And, while I tried to tolerate her, one day she pushed me over the edge.

We were all just hanging out during a free period or after lunch or something and she was blabbering on about some nonsense when she said (to me):  "Omigod, I was so crazy this morning that I ran out of the house with two different color socks on.  I felt like you!  Isn't that such a you thing to do?!"

Record scratch.  What???  I was no Rachel Zoe back then (still not).  But I had never, would never leave the house with two different color socks on.  By accident or on purpose.  I wasn't wacky or zany or absent-minded or anything like that.

Coming from anyone else I probably would have just let it roll off of me but, man, I tore that poor girl apart.......

Flash-forward to yesterday morning.  Standing at the bus stop, I realized that I had forgotten to write a "bus note" for my son to go home with a friend after school.  I quickly borrowed a pen from one boy and found a scrap of paper in my son's bag to scribble on.

A fourth grade neighbor girl said (to me): "You always forget to write your notes for school."

Simultaneous record scratch and flashback.  What???  This was, I think, the absolute first time I had ever forgotten to write a note.  And for sure it was the first time I had ever written one at the bus stop.

I reined in my inner, indignant 17 year old and calmly told the little girl that, in fact, she was mistaken.

And that she must have me confused with her mother.  

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