I’m back. It’s Thursday night. I was going to write some last night, but I was really, really tired and went to bed almost as soon as dinner was over. Eating dinner with my parents was tense. Not for them, me. When I went downstairs, they were already at the table waiting for me to join them. Mom had fried some chicken and two pieces were on my plate. She had also made mashed potatoes and green beans. She usually doesn’t fix meals like that unless it’s Sunday night. Anyway, I sit down and start nibbling at my chicken leg and wait for them to say something about what happened at the meeting. As I listened to them smacking their lips as they ate, I waited and waited, but nothing. They didn’t say anything to me. Mom asked me once if I had finished my homework, and I told her I still had to do some translations for my French class, but that was it. Dad asked me if I was still in a lot of pain and I told him I was okay. Actually, my face really hurt, but I didn’t feel like telling him. I don’t know why. I winced when he put his hand to my face to examine it, but then he went back to eating dinner. That was it. So right now, I’m really, really confused. They were supposed to question me about being gay, but they didn’t. I don’t even know if Dad said anything to Mom. When dinner was over, Dad headed to his office and Mom went into the living room and sat on the couch grading papers while she watched the evening news. I cleaned the table and put the dishes in the dishwasher. After I completed my French translations which took about an hour, I crawled into bed, pulled the covers over my head and fell asleep.
This morning when I went downstairs for breakfast, it was like any other morning. They drank their coffee while I ate a bowl of cereal. Dad talked about the lecture he was going to present to his grad students, and Mom talked about a new student in her class. That was it. I’m beginning to think that maybe Dad didn’t hear what I said to Lloyd yesterday in the meeting. He sometimes can sit and look like he’s listening when sometimes I think he’s working out in his mind something he wants to put in his next book. The meeting was really about Lloyd, not me, so maybe he figured it wasn’t worth the effort in listening to what was going on. But now I have to figure out another way of coming out to them. I have a ton of homework, so I better get started on it. If college is going to be like this, I think I’m going to work the rest of my life as a bag boy in the grocery store.
I’M IN MY OWN LITTLE WORLD, BUT IT’S OKAY. THEY KNOW ME HERE.
Okay, it’s first period and Mr. Byrd just checked our journals. My cheeks are red because I think he read the comment about my lucky underwear. He patted me on my back and walked away laughing. He said he can speed read. I googled speed reading the other night and it said that some people can read thousands of words a minute. That scares me. If Mr. Byrd can read that fast, then he can probably read everything I’m writing in this journal when I turn the pages to show him what I’ve done.
HONEST MR BYRD. EVERYTHING IN THIS STUPID JOURNAL IS FICTION
I’m back. I’m trying to write on the bus, so this may look messy. I think they design these busses for maximum discomfort. Instead of assigning detention, they should make students ride a bus around town for an hour and hit every pot hole in sight. Hehe. Now I forgot what I was going to write about. Oh yeah. I was going to write about Abe. Last week he wouldn’t talk to me, this week I can’t get him to stop talking. Since he told me about doing IT with Sarah, I guess I’ve become his confidante. And now I feel guilty, because every time I look at her, I keep thinking about what she did to Abe in the back of the theater. If he was better looking, I guess I’d be jealous, but he’s not someone I would really want. I like him, but not like that. Abe is really bothered about what happened. It kind of surprised me when he talked about it. After we got our lunch, he asked me if I wanted to eat outside today. It was a little cool, and I didn’t have a jacket on, but I told him okay. We found a secluded place and sat on the ground and ate. He told me he was really regretting that he did IT with Sarah. It wasn’t what he thought it would be like, and now he wishes he had waited. I couldn’t believe it. I thought every boy’s dream was to lose his virginity, and there was Abe telling me he regretted it. He said they did IT so fast because they were afraid Sarah’s parents would show up that he felt he’d missed out on the big picture. I’m still not sure what he meant by that. For a minute I thought he was going to cry. Cry! He lost his virginity and he was going to cry about it. I felt really sorry for him, but there wasn’t anything I could say to him. It was just weird to hear him talking about cheating himself out of a once in a lifetime experience. Now I’m wondering if I’ll feel the same way when I finally do IT with someone. I was beginning to think I’d do IT with the first boy who wanted me, but Abe’s reaction has got me to thinking. Maybe I’ll give it some thought before I finally do IT. I sure don’t want to regret it like Abe. He also told me that Sarah wants to break up with him now. That’s why he has been eating with me and Cory the past few days. I suppose she’s feeling the same way. They both did something without giving it much thought, and now that they have had time to think about it, they regret doing IT.
Oh great. Elizabeth just moved up and sat down beside me. She’s trying to read what I’m writing, but I have the journal positioned so she can’t. Now she’s giving me these dirty looks, so I guess I better go for now. More later.
DON’T LET YOUR MIND WANDER. IT’S WAY TO SMALL TO BE OUTSIDE BY ITSELF.
Okay, I’m back. I did my homework because I didn’t have anything else to do tonight. It’s kind of sad that I’m 15 going on 16 and I don’t have anything to do on a weekend night. Most kids my age do something, they don’t just sit in their room and watch a spider walk across the ceiling. That really didn’t happen. Hehe. I just thought it would show just how desperate I am to have something to do.
I need a boyfriend. I can’t believe I just wrote that, but I guess I really do. It would be nice to have someone call me on the phone and talk for a long time. I rarely get calls. In fact, only Abe, Cory and a couple of other people have my cell phone number. It’s not that I guard it. I’d give it to hundreds of people. It’s just that no one asks me for it. What’s really sad is I only have five numbers on my contact list, and one is Dad’s office number and another is Mom’s cell phone number. The others belong to Abe, Cory and Stephanie. I have Stephanie’s because we sometimes unofficially dated. I think I’ve called her twice to go to the movie. The other times we made plans to go with Abe and Sarah. Since they are no longer dating, I guess we won’t be going anymore. Besides, I’m pretty sure Stephanie knows I’m gay. She hasn’t said anything to me about it, but then again she isn’t talking to me anymore. At least I won’t have to worry about whether I should kiss her when I walk her up to her door after we’ve been to a movie. I never did, but I think she kind of expected it since Abe would kiss Sarah goodnight. Now that I’m out, I guess I won’t have to worry about that anymore. At least that’s one positive thing that came out of all this.
Okay, I got sidetracked again. Now, back to the boyfriend thing. I need to find someone. I don’t think I want a boyfriend for sex. Jeez. My face is so red right now. I can’t believe I wrote that. I mean I fantasize about guys like that, but I try not to do it in school. Sometimes it can lead to an embarrassing situation. Every guy knows what I’m talking about. There’s nothing more embarrassing than daydreaming about something you shouldn’t be, and then hear the teacher call your name and asks you to go to the board to do a geometry problem or translate a French phrase. Last week I was looking over at Cory. He had on a pair of shorts that kind of crept up his leg. I could see all his thigh. His legs are smooth and hairless, and then IT happened. I tried to push it down with my elbow, but the more I did, the harder it got. To make it even worse, I heard Melanie, the girl who sits beside me in French class, snicker a little. I didn’t look over because I was pretty sure she saw what I was doing. So I started to think about going into a French restaurant and ordering in French, but that didn’t work. I imagined my waiter was this really cute boy with a sexy accent. Then the unimaginable happened. I heard Ms. Neuman call out my name. I looked up toward her desk, and she was holding out a piece of chalk in her hand. She asked me again to go to the board and translate the phrase she had written. I just couldn’t. I told her I didn’t know what the phrase meant, but she insisted that I attempt it. Then Melanie snickered again, and she dared me to get up. By then, everyone in the room was staring at me. And I could feel IT still in my pants, pointing out to the side. I pleaded with Ms. Neuman to let someone else do it, but she wouldn’t let me off the hook. When I started to stand, I looked over at Cory just as he looked down at my problem. He jumped from his seat and told Ms. Neuman he wanted to translate the phrase. Before she knew what had happened, Cory had grabbed the chalk from her hand and was walking toward the blackboard. When he finished and was walking back to his seat, he looked over and gave me a little wink. I thought he’d tease me about it later, but he hasn’t said anything so far. I guess I owe him. If he ever gets called to go to the front of the room and I see he has the same problem I had, then I’ll do the same for him. I guess us guys have to stick together when we’re 16.
DON’T KNOCK ‘IT’, AT LEAST IT’S WITH SOMEONE I LOVE.
Hehe. Okay, now that is funny. I wonder if Mr. Byrd will smile if he reads what I wrote. He’s beginning to spend longer at my desk when he checks our journals. I think he’s reading what I write in capital letters.
YOU SHOULD HAVE BEEN BORN IN THE DARK AGES- YOU LOOK TERRIBLE IN THE LIGHT.
Now I’ll see if that makes him laugh. Okay, where was I? I have to go back over and read what I’ve been writing. Oh, yeah. A boyfriend. I like Cory, but he’s not gay. He’s almost like a brother to me, so it wouldn’t even seem right to do IT with him. There are 10 boys in my class, and I don’t think any of them are gay. Carl may be, but he’s really big. I’d say he’s fat, but that wouldn’t be very nice. How about rotund? Yeah, he’s rotund. Much nicer word. He’s a really great guy, but he’s not what I’m looking for in a boyfriend. So what am I looking for? I really don’t know. I guess he has to have a nice personality. That would be important to me. If I’m going to spend a lot of time with him, then I’d have to like him, right? If he’s this really big jerk who thinks the sun rises and sets on him, then I wouldn’t be interested. A lot of the jocks in our school are like that. I hate it when they strut down the hall and expect people to move out of their way just because they are an athlete. I don’t have anything against athletes. I just don’t like the attitude most of them have. The only trouble is, most of the athletes are the hottest guys in the school. I guess good looking and athletic are synonyms, the same way geek and athletic are antonyms. Hehe.
Let me see. I also want a guy who has a good sense of humor. However, if that is someone else’s criteria for a boyfriend, I’ll probably fail miserably. Because I’m not very social, I tend to be shy and reserved. But still, I want someone who makes me laugh. I want a guy who is like James- outgoing and funny. They don’t have to be the class clown, but just make me smile occasionally. Okay, great personality and a good sense of humor. What else? The thing that most people look for, good looks and money, don’t really interest me. I don’t want to date Quisimoto, but he doesn’t have to look like a movie star either. I guess he’s not exactly going to get one in me. I’m not hideous looking, but I don’t exactly turn heads when I walk down the hall. In fact, most students don’t even notice me. So no, he doesn’t have to be exactly good looking, although it would be especially nice if he was. But then again, I’d probably be afraid if he was too good looking that he would try to find someone better than me.
Oh yeah, I forgot. He has to have confidence. I need someone who can help me when I’m lost and confused, which is becoming more frequent. Someone like Cory. Cory seems to just know where he’s going. Like when he stood up for me in the cafeteria last week when Lloyd pushed me into the trash container. Cory sprung to his feet to protect me. Then afterwards, he tried to comfort me when he saw I was upset. He just seemed to me to know who he is and he knew just what to say to make me feel better. Sometimes I wish he was gay and liked me that way. Cory would be a perfect boyfriend. Okay, not Cory, but someone like him. Besides, half the girls in our class are interested in him too. I wouldn’t have a chance. And one thing I’ve decided I’m NOT going to do is fall for someone who I know I don’t have a chance with. I’m not very strong, and I don’t think I could stand it if I got my heart broken. Abe and Sarah are a good example of that. So I’ll just take my time and find the boy who is just right for me. I don’t have high standards, and I don’t mean to sound like I’m picky. But I’m 15 going on 16. I have my whole life ahead of me. This is something I can wait for. The only problem is, it’s really lonely sometimes being by myself all the time. I mean, I like myself and all, but it would just be nice to find that one boy who feels the same way about me. I’m going to bed now. I’m getting kind of depressed. I really shouldn’t get too philosophical before bed. I’ll write more tomorrow. Night.
LIFE IS SIMPLE, IT’S JUST NOT EASY.
It’s Sunday night and I’m going to bed soon, but I just had to write this down. I’ve been kind of crying since it happened. I know sometimes we can just take our parents for granted and we don’t see how wonderful they are. Mine are at least. I know I feel that they don’t sometimes even know I’m around, but today they proved me wrong. Okay, let me explain. Mom came upstairs around 4 and asked me if I’d go out and mow the yard. I was lying on my bed reading a book for my literature class, The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway. I was kind of glad she did interrupt me because I was almost getting ready to fall asleep. I’m not going to say the book is boring, but there has to be something better a student can be assigned to read. Geez, Hemingway? Anyway, Mom asked me to mow the yard. I looked out the window and it didn’t look like it needed mowed since I’d just mowed it last weekend. But I was glad to get out and finally do something, so I didn’t complain. Well, I did, but she would have been disappointed if I readily did it without putting up some kind of a fuss.
It took me about an hour because I raked some leaves up from an elm tree which were already beginning to fall. When I came back to my room to clean up before dinner, I noticed a stack of books on my desk. I didn’t put them there, so Mom or Dad must have. I started looking through them and I couldn’t figure out why they had brought them to my room. One was by Noel Coward. Another by Willa Cather. Two were written by Somerset Maugham, and other was the collected works of Lord Byron. That had to be from Dad. The final four were by Truman Capote, Langston Hughes, Gertrude Stein and Oscar Wilde. I was familiar with all of them, but I couldn’t understand why my parents had brought them to my room. Then it dawned on me- they were all gay writers, or at least I remembered a few being gay. When I was finished looking at the titles, I started to restack them when I noticed an envelope stuck in the Lord Byron book. My name was written on it in my Dad’s handwriting. I know it was his because only he can scribble like that. When I opened it, he had written, “Accomplish great things.” So I started crying and I couldn’t stop. Mom came up later to get me for dinner, but I was still too emotional. She walked over and I stood and gave her a really, really big hug. When she pulled away, she was also crying. She didn’t even tell me I had to come down for dinner. She brought it up to me later. I nibbled at it, but I was still too emotional to eat. Dad came by a little while ago and stuck his head in the door and asked if I was okay. I nodded and he closed the door. Tomorrow, I’m going to give him a really, really big hug. I’m going to bed now. I’ll write more tomorrow.
I’VE GOT THE BEST PARENTS IN THE WHOLE WIDE WORLD
I hope someday they read this.
I’m back, and am I screwed. I can use that word, right? It’s not like a bad word or anything? Well, anyway, I’m in Mrs. Griffin’s 5th period Lit class. She’s given us the last 30 minutes to read The Old Man and the Sea. But since I read it yesterday when I had nothing to do, I’m caught up. As I look around the room, it seems like most of my classmates are too. Some are working on other assignments, and a few, like me, are writing in their journal. They’re probably writing what I’m about to write.
Okay. I guess I better explain. Last week, Mrs. Carter, my history teacher told us we had to serve 60 hours of community service. She told us this morning we had to submit our proposal to her. I completely forgot about it. I think half the class did. When she told us to get our submission form out, I pulled mine from my book bag and it was blank. I hadn’t written anything in it. She walked around the room and got really, really mad when she saw that most of us had blank papers. She then went into a rant about being responsible students. How did we plan to be responsible adults when we couldn’t complete one simple task? I thought she was being too severe on us. Geez, we’ve been piled with so much work this year that most of us can’t keep up with it. If she could only see me working four or five hours a night trying to complete my schoolwork. If I had a life outside of school, I’d be upset. But it gives me something to do. Anyway, now I’m some kind of social reject because I didn’t fill out her stupid form. What is it with teachers anyway? First, I have to spend half my time writing in this journal. Now I have to spend the other half being a Mister Kind Heart for some social organization. I’m getting fed up. The more she talked, the angrier I got. If I was a little braver, I would have spoken up. But I doubt it. Elizabeth tried to say something, but Mrs. Carter ignored her and continued to rant about how a bunch of social misfits we are. Wow. I think Richard is really mad because he just broke his pencil in half. Everyone, including Mrs. Griffin, looked at him. He’s writing in his journal and I’d love to see what he just wrote.
Anyway, back to my dilemma. Just so I’m not a social misfit, I had to come up with a project to meet my community service requirements. I stared at the paper for 10 minutes. I reread Mrs. Carter’s suggestions, but nothing seemed interesting. I finally decided that I would volunteer to tutor students in an after school program our school offers when Elizabeth pulled her seat next to mine. She then started begging me to volunteer to work with her at the teen crisis center downtown. She said she needed two more people to volunteer on Saturday nights because that was when they received the most calls. She had already talked Caryn into doing it, and she hoped that I would too. She said that there were no boys on the staff, and even though most of the callers were girls, occasionally a boy would call and then hang up if he had to talk to a girl.
Okay. So Mrs. Carter demanded that we have something to give her by the end of the period. I only had about ten minutes left to make a decision. Elizabeth was on my left begging me to do it. I had a blank form in front of me. So I caved. Elizabeth clapped and giggled when I asked her the name of the place. So beginning next week, I have to start my community service with the Outreach Community Crisis Teen Center. Elizabeth told me she’d give me more details later, but she did tell me that I have to attend a six-hour training class before I can answer phones. Fortunately, that 6 hours does count as hours toward my community service. And right about now, I feel like I’m the one who should be calling a crisis center.
ON THE KEYBOARD OF LIFE- ALWAYS KEEP ONE FINGER ON THE ESCAPE KEY
I’m on the bus on my way home. I couldn’t wait to write this down. Elizabeth is writing in her journal too, so I think she’s writing about what happened. Oh, yeah. Let me explain. We were in 6th period and Ms. Neuman had us doing oral translations from the book. When it came time for Abe to translate, she had him read something that went like ‘I fell in love with you the first time I laid my eyes on you.’ He didn’t have any trouble translating it, but Sarah laughed and made some sort of remark under her breath. Whatever it was, Abe thought she said something sarcastic, so he called her the ‘B’ word right in front of the class. Ms. Neuman got up from her seat and rushed over and grabbed Sarah before she could slap him. She told us to finish the assignment on a sheet of paper and then she escorted them down to the office. When she returned, Abe and Sarah weren’t with her. No one saw them after school, so we don’t know what happened. I don’t think anyone has EVER cussed in front of a teacher before. I’ve heard some of my classmates use bad language, but not when an adult was around. It was kind of cool to see the astonished looks on some of the girls’ faces. You’d think Abe had just said that God didn’t exist or something. I feel sorry for him. His parents are like ultra-conservative, so I know he’s going to be punished severely when he gets home. And since no one has seen him, it’s hard to say what Mr. Bowers did. I’d call him tonight, but I’m afraid his dad would answer the phone and I wouldn’t know what to say. If I find out what’s going on, I’ll write more later.
It’s late and I’m going to bed soon. I had two things I wanted to write about before I go to sleep. First, I gave my father that big hug I wanted to give him. I walked past his office when I went downstairs to get something to drink. He was pacing around in his office like he does when he’s thinking of something big or trying to work on a sentence in his book. Anyway, I peeked in and just watched him walking around, acting all nervous like. He stopped and saw me looking at him. I froze at first because I was afraid he’d be mad with me watching him, but he kind of nodded his head and smiled. I pulled open the door and walked over to him. I think he knew what I wanted to do because he just opened his arms and we held each other for a few seconds. I told him thanks, and he sort of did a knowing nod like he knew what I was talking about. On my way back to my room, I tried not to cry, but a couple of tears escaped. But I feel good about it. All my fears about coming out to my parents were really pretty unwarranted. I don’t know if we’ll ever just sit down and talk about it, but at least they know and the world didn’t come to an end. In fact, I feel better about myself knowing that they know. So I guess you could say I’m now officially out. My parents know and my close friends at school know. I guess I should feel different, but it’s strange that I don’t. I’m the same of old Reggie Faulkner I was last week. Of course, I don’t know if that’s a good thing or a bad thing. LOL.
Oh yeah, the second thing. Cory called me because James called him because James called Abe. So I’m probably getting about half the story because James never gets anything right. The boy is smart, but the elevator doesn’t go all the way to the top sometimes. Anyway, James told Cory who told me (I have 250 more words to go so I’m trying to stretch this out so I don’t have to write anymore this week. Hehe.) So James told Cory who told me that he talked to Abe who told him that he was assigned detention for three days after school. Abe said that Sarah really performed in Mr. Bower’s office. He said that she should win an Oscar for her role. Anyway, she cried and acted like she was so hurt by Abe calling her the ‘B’ word. It’s not like she hasn’t heard it before. Stephanie calls her that all the time when they argue about something. So I guess Mr. Bowers felt sorry for her. Sarah wanted Abe to be suspended, but Mr. Bowers said that he couldn’t do that just for calling someone a name. Abe said that by the end of the meeting, he thought Mr. Bowers wanted to call her a ‘B’ too because of the way she was acting. So it should be interesting to see what happens tomorrow when they see each other in class. I still can’t figure out what happened. You would think that after what they did, they’d be closer. I’d think we would need a crow bar to pull them apart. I guess they both feel guilty, and they don’t know how to deal with it. I don’t think anyone but me knows the whole story. Cory said James didn’t know what was wrong and he asked me if I did. I told him I didn’t have a clue what had happened. I guess I’ll have to get alone with Abe tomorrow and see if he’s okay.
Yippee! I have over 5000 words and it’s only Monday night. I’m sure I’m going to have a lot more tomorrow, but I’ll put it in for next week just in case I get busy with that crisis class. Oh, Man. I’m not looking forward to doing that. Oh yeah, I had so much to tell I didn’t even answer the prompt question. It was dumb anyway. We were to write about what one historical character we’d like to meet and what questions we would ask them. Let me see. I’d say General Custer, and what were your thoughts when you saw the Indians coming over the hills. LOL. Not really, but since I don’t have to answer it, I thought I’d write something funny. I hope no one reads this because they’ll probably say that I am being insensitive and politically incorrect because I said Indians and not Native Americans. But no one is reading this, right?
EAGLES MAY SOAR, BUT WEASELS DON’T GET SUCKED INTO JET ENGINES