Blog Entry One
I've decided this will be the theme for my first entry of this blog as it seemed to be the theme of my day. Like I'm amazed that my teacher thinks his students have something of importance to say. Like my best friend is amazed that I know how to walk. Like I'm amazed by how growing up changes so many things in the slightest ways and I never know whether to hold on tight to the way it was or let go and see what happens.
Mostly, I'm amazed that I'm not waiting until three hours before this project is due to start my journal.
Procrastination, thy name is Elaina.
Anyway, my English teacher has decided that the best way to get today's youth to embrace writing is by sharing with us the allure of social media. Unfortunately, Twitter and Facebook won't cut it. Same with email. He wants us to take the art of journaling and bring it into the twenty-first century and maybe someday our journal will touch millions of people. Blah, blah, blah. Call me crazy, but even if I become some important historical figure, I can't see why anyone would care that my German teacher smells like mothballs and grandmas or see the genius in my ode to pop music that I dashed out when I should've been studying Chemistry. Honestly, I don't think I would want anyone to have access to those sorts of thoughts if I were famous.
Not that I plan on being some important historical figure. That seems like a lot of work for an underachiever like myself.
Despite the best efforts of our class in opposition to a project like this, Mr. Griffin's mind could not be swayed, so here I sit. Amazed by the whole notion of blogging as important. I wonder if one day there will be a whole generation of people who have documented so many mundane moments that they see no beauty in anything extraordinary. Mostly, I wonder how I can do the minimum work and still get an "A."
After class, I rushed off to my locker to meet Mike. He needed help with a Spanish test and I needed some books on famous diarists and the library seemed like the perfect solution. Continuing with the theme - I'm amazed that I didn't know better than to be wary of anything that seems perfect.
Things had fallen back into a fairly innocuous routine between us over the past week. I had decided to stop freaking out about the feelings I didn't understand and concentrate on what I did know. Mike was my best friend, my partner in crime, and whatever other weird junk my mind was creating or acknowledging or whatever, didn't really matter if it cost me my friendship. So I decided to do what I do best, outside of procrastination, and avoid the entire thing.
I knew it didn't solve anything, but it had allowed my some room to breathe in my own head. Well, most of the time.
Like not when I was walking across the library parking lot and Mike's hand casually brushed against my side, causing my head to short circuit and me to fall on my butt.
For his part, Mike didn't laugh. Too much.
I groaned in response.
"Nothing bruised but my ego."
He extended his hand and said, "It amazes me still that you have managed to survive this long without being relegated to life in a plastic bubble."
I huffed and grunted and not-so-politely swatted his hand away. I propped myself up on my AP Calculus book, finally seeing how it could positively affect my life in the future, and stood up on wobbly legs. I wasn't hurt, just had the wind knocked out of me, but I went into total spaz mode and couldn't seem to function properly. I could feel the eyes of patrons of the library watching me through the windows, their expressions changing quickly from worry for the poor girl in the parking lot to amusement at my expense. With my luck, some random passerby caught it on his Iphone and uploaded it to YouTube. I'll be the new Rebecca Black, except I won't even have a crappy song as my claim to fame.
"I need a new best friend," I muttered. I brushed off the bits of gravel sticking to my palms and knees off against my skirt - my mother would kill me if she saw such unladylike displays - and stepped out of the parking lot, dropping onto the first bench I could reach.
"Seriously, how are you even still alive after all these years? Shouldn't Darwin's Theory of Evolution kicked in at some point? Are you made of Teflon? It's an amazing feat, Elaina. We should have you join the circus and let a clown throw knives at you."
I glared at him. There were many profound things I could offer up, but instead, I chose simple. "You suck."
He laughed as he sat down next to me and stared at me. I had long ago learned and catalogued away most of Mike's facial expressions, but this was a new one he had been throwing my way recently. It was part endearing and part what the hell because he was my best friend and should not be looking at me like that. Not that I wasn't convinced it wasn't all in my head - some sort of psychotic manifestation that only I saw. I mean the best-friends-to-more is something out of a romantic comedy. Not real life.
Yeah, try telling that to my heart that started hammering in my chest because he was still staring at me like I was the only thing that mattered.
I twirled a lock of my hair around my finger, focusing intently on the brown wisps, and said, "Three falls in one week. I'm trying to break my own personal best since I learned to walk."
"I'm not really sure you've got it down pat yet." He tilted his head to one side, trying to mentally gauge my reaction as he asked, "Are you sure that you're okay?"
"Define okay," I replied with a shrug. I let go of the strand of hair and started with a new piece, twirling it around my pinky as I stared off in the distance. The sun was in its final encore for the day, the sky lit up with hues of orange and red, and it was perfectly framed by the blue sky and verdant green trees of the park. I wasn't a big nature person, but this was one of those bits of time where everything else but the beauty fell away.
Mike's arm draped across my shoulder and he pulled me against his chest. He breathed into my hair and said, "I worry about you."
I closed my eyes and tried to stay locked in this moment for as long as possible.
"Did you hear me?"
"Yeah," I said weakly. I forced myself to meet his gaze, creating some distance between us, and asked, "I'm fine. Really."
I wish I could say that I blurted out what I was really feeling, that I went Sandra Bullock on the situation and pulled him into a kiss, not worrying about the aftermath. But that wasn't who I was, so I stood up, clutching my messenger bag tightly and walked into the library.
Yeah, I know. I, too, am amazed by what a big coward I am. If you can't randomly tell your best friend that you might be in love with him, who could you tell?
Already reeling from emotions that I couldn't articulate, even to myself, I tried to slip in the door of my house and make a beeline for my room, but to no avail. My father cornered me in the kitchen and I had to endure another talk about my future. He was like a guidance counselor, except he had no guidance to provide except that if I didn't get into a good college and become a doctor or lawyer, my life would have no meaning, I would die impoverished and alone, and basically the world would end.
So I decided to make Mr. Griffin happy and shock the world by starting a project on the day it was assigned. I figured if I couldn't make sense of everything swirling around in my head, maybe writing it down would help. So far, I have to say, I'm not impressed. Mostly horrified at myself for not using fake names because I am not ready to have any Disney Movie talks with my best friend who stumbles upon my journal. No thank you.
At least that part of the day can be rectified fairly easily.