It was 1985 and the fun was just beginning for me. And for those of you who are sensitive to the word fuck, I suggest you leave.
I was starting 7th grade in a new public school after going to the same private school for six years. By this time I was somewhat jaded from being reprimanded all the time for being me and I apparently made an unconscious decision to rebel against the man (my mom). I wasn’t a bad kid, I just wasn’t big on conforming. I wanted to do things the way I wanted to do them. I mean, the way I do things is the best way after all.
I met the perfect partner in crime on my very first day at my new school and it turns out that she was the catalyst that led me to my teenage roguery. I’ll call her B for the sake of keeping her anonymity just in case you ever run into her on the street and recognize her, because apparently that happens, otherwise people wouldn’t have to change the names of people they write about.
Anyway, it was like meeting a soul mate. We met in 7th period science class. Within the first five minutes we were censured for talking and laughing while Mrs. Drowns was introducing herself and bullet pointing the rules of the classroom on the chalkboard. I’m pretty sure the first rule was NO TALKING DURING CLASS!
As we got to know each other for the next 45 minutes we discovered we had a lot in common but there was one thing we did not have in common and that was that B actually liked breaking rules and I did not. Not blatantly. If I broke a rule it was because I had no idea that it was a rule or because I truly believed that it shouldn’t be a rule and I figured I wouldn’t get in trouble for breaking that particular rule because I really believed in my heart that it SHOULD NOT be a rule. Therefore, I will not get in trouble. I have no idea why nobody else ever saw it that way.
So the first time B suggested doing something that was clearly a no-no in my book of rules, I was hesitant, but luckily for my low self-esteem and need for approval and acceptance, I went along with her plan to ditch school.
I walked to B’s house in the morning so we could finish doing our hair and make up, like we did everyday before school. I had my bright red McGregor duffel bag with all my books and daily survival tools that any 12-year-old girl might need to get through a day of junior high.
When we finished getting ready we went into the living room to say our usual good byes to her mom, brother and sister who were surrounded by a haze of pot smoke. I was like a skittish Chihuahua because I thought they somehow knew what we were planning. Luckily, we were able to make it out the door without being made.
I threw my big red duffel bag over my shoulders like a backpack and we walked toward the Pond, which was about 12 blocks from her house and in the opposite direction of school. Now let me tell you, I. was. scared. Constantly peeking around corners, running between houses and rolling on the ground like a ninja so we wouldn’t be spotted by our school mates that were actually on their way to school.
What was B doing you ask? Laughing at me.
I was completely worn out by the time we made it to the Pond and I slowed down the pace and spotted something on the ground:
Me: Hey, look at that raggedy ass dirty doll on the ground. I hate dolls. I think I’ll put it in my big red bag so I can remember this moment always.
B: You’re fucking stupid.
Across from the Pond was a cornfield, which was our first destination goal. What was the second destination goal? I dunno. We figured it would be safe in the cornfield because we would be off the street and no one would see us. I’m sure you must know how safe cornfields are and just in case you don’t know, cornfields ARE SAFE. Don’t let those stupid movies corrupt your mind like that. Seriously.
The walk to the cornfield felt endless because I was utterly paranoid of being caught. I kept looking behind me to make sure the cops weren’t patrolling the streets looking for us. You never know, they could have had an APB out on us by now. B kept laughing at me as if I had instantaneously become unhinged. And I may have. Who knows.
We finally made it. We crossed the two-lane road and barreled into the cornfield. Well, I barreled, B walked while laughing and shaking her head.
Then, there it was! A fucking cop car at the stop sign.
Me: Shit B! There’s a cop over there! (I ran faster into the depths of the cornfield)
Me: Over there! Just fucking run!
B: Oh yeah, because he might have missed the huge bright red fucking bag strapped to your back you dork.
B was still laughing but started running behind me. She had such a great sense of humor. I, on the other hand did not see the humor in any of this and I was quite appalled at the fact that she found it funny that we were about to go to prison for fifty hundred years for not being in school!
Me: They’re gonna get the dogs after us, you better run faster fucker!
B: (Laughing hysterically now at how absolutely ridiculous I was being) They aren’t going to get dogs after us you fucking retard!
(Yes. We swore this much. Still do. But if you do it while holding a glass of wine, most people don’t even notice).
I squatted down and hid behind a tree. (Yes, there was a tree in this cornfield. Get a grip and stop being so judgey). B was laughing so hard at my terror and big red duffel bag that she stopped running, laid down in the corn and convulsed like she was having an epileptic seizure.
Me: Will you shut up! He’s going to hear you asshole.
B: Yeah, because he might not see your big red bag sticking out from behind the tree.
Then we heard it, “come out of there with your hands in the air. I can see you, so just come out and don’t make this harder than it has to be.”
Is he fucking serious?! Come out with our hands in the air?
I immediately stepped out from behind the tree with my hands in the air, tears in my eyes and that stupid, fucking big red bag stuck to my back.
Me: I’m coming out!
B: (Whispering loudly) What are you doing dumb ass? Put your hands down and let’s run. He’s not going to get us in here.
Me: No way, I’m not gonna be shot at!
B: He’s not going to shoot us, we’re kids!
Me: Fuck you! He doesn’t know that. He probably thinks we’re bank robbers or something! I’m going out there.
B: Stop! Don’t go out there!
Cop: Let’s move it!
Me: I’m coming out I said!
I finally made it to the street where the cop was standing with his hand firmly planted on his holster.
Cop: Step over here young lady.
B took a little longer to come out but she finally did, and not with her hands in the air either.
He asked us what we were doing and why we weren’t in school. Of course I just spilled the truth along with a bit of my breakfast. B never said a word. She had more experience with this stuff than I did. We’ll get to that some other time.
The school was called, our parents were called and we were driven to school in a police car and escorted into the principal’s office. I was completely humiliated but relieved that it was over.
B: You and that stupid fucking bag.
Me: Shut up about the fucking bag already. What do you think is going to happen to us?
B: Nothing. Detention.
We talked with the principal and we were given three detentions. But the worst wasn’t over. I still had to deal with my mother and her new husband. If you want a glimpse of what that’s like read this.
Over and out.