In an attempt to win the coolest giveaway prize ever courtesy of Backpacking Dad, I am presenting my essay on which character I most identify with from The Breakfast Club...
"...and these children that you spit on, as they try to change their worlds are immune to your consultations. They're quite aware of what they're going through..." - David Bowie -
High school is a classic case of the medieval caste system at it's finest, isn't it? The minute I walked through those double doors at 7:35am that September Tuesday morning in 1989, I was typecast. No one knew me. I was that new girl. And after a three second glance, they thought they knew me. They were wrong. But they wanted to be right. They would spend the next four years trying to prove me wrong. They never succeeded but man they tried.
What they saw was a curly haired, glasses wearing, music loving band geek who was way to shy and insecure to ever say the right things. They saw this kid when the looked through me...
"And, uh, I didn't have any shoes. So I had to borrow my dad's. It was kinda weird 'cause my mom doesn't like me to wear other people's shoes. And, uh, my cousin Kent...my cousin Kendall from, uh, Indiana... He got high once and you know, he started eating like really weird foods. And uh, and then he just felt like he didn't belong anywhere. You know, kinda like you know "Twilight Zone" kinda. "
They saw the awkwardness. And as Brian so eloquently wrote, they saw what they wanted to see. I was so damn insecure that I found it easier to keep to myself. I had some friends but they were the Allison's of the high school sect. I wanted to be an Allison. I would have been an Allison too, if I had enough guts to let people see me. Instead, I became Brian. I became what people wanted me to be. If I failed, they would be disappointed. If I failed, I failed them. I failed their expectations. There was no room for failure. So I tried. I tried to fit in. I tried to make the light bulb turn on. For four years, I tried to make the light bulb turn on. It never happened. Not from 8:00am to 3:00pm anyway.
They would ask me about music, about help with their physics homework about the other places I lived. We would see concerts together, we would hike the state parks together, we would study at the diner together, they would copy my lab homework. Would they have enough confidence to bring that to school with them? Not a chance. At school, even four years later, I still was "that new girl."
That new girl graduated, third in her class. And then...
College. College saved me from her. College gave me a new start. And I took it and ran. I look back now as I am writing this and want to scream the word CONFIDENCE. I want to go back and give Brian some self worth, some pats on the back. And I want to give Brenda some of that confidence and experience she has now.
You see what you want to see. Just make sure you are seeing the right things.
So tell me, who were you in highschool? Did you want to be that person or was it fate?
I wonder if detention would have given me some street cred?
...and in the end
4 years ago