It’s Friday morning, and I’m sitting in Mrs. Reynold’s geometry class. We have a substitute, and she’ll probably be here for a week or more. She told us Mrs. Reynold’s sister died. I guess she lived in California and Mrs. Reynold’s and her family are flying there for the funeral. We felt really bad when Ms. Cooperfield told us. Beverly said she was going to Hallmark after school and get a big card for our class to sign Monday. So right now everyone is kind of sitting all sad looking and doing the assignment. Ms. Cooperfield seems nice, but she said her degree is in English, not math, so she warned us that we’d have to be patient while she attempts to teach us. We all groaned when Elizabeth told her not to worry because we’d be willing to help her, and then suggested that we could take turns teaching the class since we know the material anyway. Ms. Cooperfield thought it was a great idea, so she asked Elizabeth if she’d like to teach Monday. Naturally, Elizabeth said yes. Then Ms. Cooperfield asked who else would like to be teacher for a day. Elizabeth tried to get me to volunteer but I’ve already got too much to do. Besides, why would I want to volunteer to do a teacher’s job when they get paid for it and not me? But anyway, enough students volunteered for next week. Now if Mrs. Reynolds is out the following week, Elizabeth will try to get me to volunteer again. I can’t wait until Thursday. James is going to be the teacher. That should be fun. He’ll probably have us doing handstands in the hallway and then have someone determine what degree we’re leaning.
Since I’ve finished the assignment and I have a few minutes, I’ll write about Perry. I know I’m becoming obsessed with him, but I can’t help it. I’ve been sitting beside him all week on the bus. He gets the cutest smile on his face when I get on the bus. Once I had to look behind me just to make sure he was smiling at me. I haven’t told him I’m gay yet because I’m afraid he will not be my friend anymore if I do. I kind of suspect he’s gay, but I don’t want to take a chance just in case he isn’t. But I think he is. Like yesterday, I got on the bus and was walking toward him and he looked down at Little Reggie. Fortunately, he was asleep. But I think it kind of embarrassed Perry because I saw him staring at me. He looked up into my face and his turned a really bright red. When I sat down beside him I was going to ask him if he saw anything he liked, but I chickened out. But anyway, we are starting to walk each other to our classes when we have rooms that are nearby. He’s been walking me to Mr. Byrd’s 1st period. We don’t see each other 2nd, but he meets me after my class and I walk him to Mr. Byrd’s 3rd period. I think Mr. Byrd is starting to think we’re boyfriends. I wish we were, but I’m still not sure he’d want me for a boyfriend, even if he is gay. He’s too cute and could have anyone he wants. I know I’m not all that bad looking, but I’m not like him. Anyway, we eat lunch together, usually with Beverly, Caryn, Abe, Cory and James. James has started acting normal, well as normal as James can be, and he doesn’t make Perry talk just so he can laugh at him. I’m not sure, but I think Cory may have threatened him if he did it again.
Abe asked me yesterday in 5th period if Perry and I were having sex. He said he thought we were because Perry is always pressed up against me at lunch. I must have turned about 50 shades of red, and I told him no. He doesn’t believe me and he kind of got mad because he reminded me that I promised him I’d tell him because he told me about him and Sarah. I finally made him believe that Perry was only a friend, but I’d definitely let him know if I did have sex with him. When I told Abe that, Little Reggie woke up but I don’t think Abe saw him.
Anyway, after lunch I walk Perry to his 4th period, then he walks me to my 5th. We don’t see each other again until we ride home on the bus. Yesterday he pulled out his geometry book and wanted me to help him with a problem. I wanted to invite him home so we could work on it there, but I chickened out. I’m trying to get up the courage to ask him tonight if he wants to go to my house to do his homework, but I probably won’t. It’s one thing to be with him at school when other people are around. I don’t know how it would be if we were alone together. I’d probably be too afraid to talk, and Perry definitely won’t talk if I don’t. We’d look stupid just sitting together and looking at each other. I wouldn’t mind, but he might since I’m not all that much to look at. Anyway, the bell is getting ready to ring and I have to meet Perry to walk him to Mr. Byrd’s class.
FRIENDSHIP IS LIKE PEEING ON YOURSELF. EVERYONE CAN SEE IT, BUT ONLY YOU CAN FEEL ITS WARMTH.
It’s Friday night and I’m sitting in my room, but I don’t feel so alone. In fact, I haven’t gone to the window to watch for deer once this week. I can’t stop thinking about Perry. I know I’m acting like a little 12 year old girl who has her first crush on a boy, but in a way, I guess that’s what I’m doing. I’ve never really had a boy to be interested in before, so this is like a whole new experience for me. I just hope I don’t ruin it by acting too immature. I know I’m 16 now, so I guess there’s a certain way I’m supposed to be acting, but when I’m around Perry I do act like a little 12 year old girl. Like on the bus coming home from school, he grinned when I sat down beside him, and I started blushing. I don’t know why, but I did. He asked me if I would help him with a chemistry problem, but I just wanted us to talk. At first I think I hurt his feelings when I told him I didn’t want to, but then he started smiling when I told him it was Friday afternoon and we should forget about school for a while. We sat quietly for a minute. I was hoping he’d say something, but Perry never starts a conversation. So I had to think of something. One thing I know we have in common is Mr. Byrd, so I asked him how he liked him as a teacher. He started to stutter, but I put my hand on his thigh and gave it a slight squeeze and told him to take his time. He looked down at my hand, so I quickly removed it. At first I thought I’d made him feel uncomfortable, but he looked up at me and kind of smiled. He then told me that Mr. Byrd was his favorite teacher. I told him I thought he was mine too. Perry then asked me what was my favorite subject, but he had trouble saying subject, so I put my hand on his thigh and squeezed it again, only this time I didn’t remove it. He finally asked me, and I told him I liked literature because I enjoy reading. He said he did too, so we started to talk about our favorite authors. After several minutes, I was aware that my hand was still on his thigh and he hadn’t said anything or even looked down at I. When the bus arrived at my stop, I got up and told Perry I’d see him Monday, but he told me to wait a second. He then reached into his pocket and took out a small piece of paper and handed it to me. When I got off the bus, I turned and waved goodbye to him. He smiled and waved back. As I walked up the driveway to my house, I opened the paper to see what it said. He had given me his phone number. He had written his name and put a smiley face beside it. So I guess he wants me to call him. Now I’m unsure when I should do it. I want to call him tonight, but it may be too soon. He may think I’m desperate or something. I guess I am desperate, but I don’t want him to know it. Right now I’m beginning to think he really likes me, especially since he gave me his phone number without me even asking for it. I don’t want it to seem like I’m rushing things. But then again, why would he give me his phone number if he didn’t expect me to call him? Okay, I’m beginning to feel uncertain, and that’s something I said I was going to work on. I don’t like feeling uncertain. So I have to make a decision. Okay. I’m going to do it. I’ve got Perry’s number in my hand and I’m going to go get my phone and call him. Wish me luck.
IF 4 OUT OF 5 PEOPLE SUFFER FROM DIARRHEA, DOES THAT MEAN THAT ONE PERSON ENJOYS IT?
I’m back, and I just spent the best hour of my life! I called Perry and I asked him if he was busy, and he said he was playing a video game. I thought I had interrupted him and told him I’d call him later, but he hollered, “No” so loud into the phone it almost burst my eardrum. Not really, but it was really cute because I guess he thought I was going to hang up. We started talking about video games at first. I like playing them, but I usually get bored after a while because it’s really not very much fun to play by yourself. After about 15 minutes something strange hit me- Perry wasn’t stuttering so much when he talks on the phone as he does when we’re actually together. He still had some trouble, but it wasn’t as bad as when he tries to talk at lunch. Then we started talking about what kind of music we like. I had to think really hard because I don’t listen to a lot of music. My parents usually play classical music when we eat dinner, so that is the kind I’m most familiar with, but it would make me sound like a real nerd if I told him I like Chopin or Wagner. He likes the kind of music Caryn likes. She let me listen to her Ipod one day and there was some band playing. I guess it was music, but it sounded more like a bad car accident and people screaming. I didn’t want to appear too stupid, so I told him I liked some of the bands he liked. When I get through writing tonight, I’m going to get on the computer and go to Youtube and see if I can find some of the bands he named. Maybe the next time I can talk more about the kind of music he likes. The only trouble is, I know I won’t like it, but I can’t tell him that. After all, I’m now 16, so I guess I should be listening to the kind of music that makes Mom yell up the stairs and tell me to turn down. Hehe.
So we talked for a while. He asked me about school and I felt embarrassed when I told him about the classes I took and the grades I make. He sounds more like an average student. He said he failed algebra last year and had to take it over in summer school. He’s really having trouble in Algebra II, so I volunteered to help him. And I actually kind of suggested that he could come here to study after school if he wanted. He giggled a little bit and then said, “Okay.” Of course, Little Reggie had to wake up when Perry sounded like he was excited about coming to my room to study. I don’t know what I’ll do if he ever does.
And I’m really, really starting to think he’s gay. He didn’t exactly say it, but he kind of hinted around about it. I was going to tell him I was gay, but I chickened out. Anyway, we eventually started talking about dating, and I asked him if he had a girlfriend. It was the first time all night he started to stutter really bad. He laughed at first and then finally told me he didn’t have one. So naturally, I was becoming interested to find out if he was gay, so I asked him if he was interested in any girl. Again, he laughed, and then he stuttered a lot as he asked me why I was getting so personal. So I had to make up something so he wouldn’t think I was too nosy, so I told him I just thought that is what guys do- talk about girls. When he stuttered out that he didn’t like talking about girls, I was going to ask him why, but I decided I better not. So now I’m wondering if he is gay. I think I’m going to tell him I am and see how he reacts. Of course, it’s possible that he already knows because Beverly may have said something to him. If he does know, then I don’t know why he doesn’t tell me.
So anyway, we talked a little bit more. He has a golden retriever named Sampson, and a cat named Whiskers. I told him I don’t have any pets so he told me I could play with Sampson sometime if I wanted.
It took us about 10 minutes to say goodbye. It was like neither of us wanted to stop talking. When we did finish, I had the biggest smile on my face. It was the first time I’d actually talked to someone that long on the phone. I’m not sure I’ll be able to fall asleep tonight because I’m so excited. But I have to because I’ve got to volunteer tomorrow at the crisis center. Robert said he was going to call and talk to me. Maybe he’ll finally tell me what’s bothering him. I’ll write more later about it if he does.
SAVE YOUR BREATH. YOU’LL NEED IT LATER TO BLOW UP YOUR DATE.
Okay. I’m really laughing now. You should see how red my face is. I can’t wait until next Friday to see if Mr. Byrd reads this one.
It’s late Saturday night, and Mom just peeked in my room and told me to go to bed. It’s after midnight and I can’t sleep because of what happened tonight on the Talk Line. Okay. Let me explain. I got there at 6 and sat around talking to Mavis, Elizabeth and Caryn. For a Saturday, it was kind of a slow night. Then around 9 the phones began to ring. I don’t know why, but it seems like everyone waits until it gets dark outside to call. Maybe they are just too busy to call when it’s daylight. So anyway, Mavis and Caryn are talking on the phone when mine lights up. I kind of got nervous because I thought it might be Robert. Mrs. Armstrong pounded on the window and motioned for me to answer the phone. So I did, and it’s him. Like he always does, he disguised his voice until he knew it was me. I feel kind of guilty because he isn’t aware that Mrs. Armstrong is also listening to the call. He thinks it’s just us, and it seems like I’m violating his privacy. There should be a warning when someone calls that their call may be monitored. I guess because we are teenagers we don’t have the same rights as adults. Anyway, I’m getting off the subject again.
So Robert and I start talking, or I guess I start talking. He doesn’t say much, so like I do with Perry, I have to think of things to say. So I ask him things like if he goes to school or does he like to play sports, things like that. Mrs. Armstrong keeps motioning for me to keep talking because I think she thinks he’s going to hang up. So finally, I just ask him why he’s calling the Talk Line if he isn’t going to talk. Mrs. Armstrong frowned, but it seemed to help. He started saying that he was unhappy with his life and he had no one to talk to about it. So I told him I’d try to help if he’d only tell me what is wrong. So he said his life is all (he used the ‘F’ word) up. I ask him why, and he just repeats that his life is all (F word) up. So I ask him again why, and he says it just is. Now I began to feel like I was playing a little game with him. It was like he wanted to tell me, but he wanted me to force him to tell me. So I ask him if he was having a problem with his girlfriend and he kind of laughed and told me no. Then I asked him if he had a problem with drugs and he told me no again. Okay, so he doesn’t have a problem with a girlfriend or drugs, so I’m beginning to run out of questions. I asked him if he is having trouble with his parents and he tells me I wouldn’t understand. Now I feel like I’m getting somewhere. At least he didn’t say no. Mrs. Armstrong starts tapping on her window and holds up a sign that says ask him if he is being abused at home. So I ask him and he starts laughing. “Dude,” he says. “If you could see how built I am, you wouldn’t ask me that.” Okay, now it’s starting to get interesting. I’m envisioning that Robert is this really hot guy, and Little Reggie is starting to wake up. I look over at Mrs. Armstrong to see if she has any more suggestions, but she just shrugs her shoulders. We sit for a minute in silence, but it seemed more like an hour. Finally, he asked me if I was still on the phone and I told him I was. He asked me why I’m not talking, and I told him I don’t know what to say because he isn’t helping me very much to understand why he called to talk. So I asked him if he’d like to talk to someone else since I noticed that Mavis and Caryn weren’t on the phone, but he told me he wanted to talk to me. But I reminded him that we really weren’t talking since he isn’t saying very much. Then he asked me what school I go to, and I told him I go to Fairhaven. And he hung up!
Mrs. Armstrong came out of her office and we talked about the call and some of the things he said. She thought he hung up because he probably goes to my school and he’s afraid I may know him. So now I’m going over the conversation to see if he gave me any clues as to who he might be. He said he was built, so he may be an athlete. Of course, that could be half of the male population at our school. Okay, I probably shouldn’t say this because it doesn’t seem right, but he has a really sexy voice. It’s kind of deep, sort of like how Cory talks. If he looks anything like Cory, I can’t imagine what his problem would be. I thought maybe he has a girl pregnant, but he said he didn’t have a problem with a girlfriend. In fact, he kind of laughed when I asked him, so it can’t be that. Anyway, I don’t know now if he’ll call back to the Teen Line. He may be too scared that I might find out who he is. But now I’m trying to think why he would be scared and only one thing keeps coming to my mind. It’s the same thing that bothered me for a couple of years. Maybe he’s gay. Maybe that’s what is wrong with him. Maybe that’s why he says his life is (F word) up and no one understands. I know I felt like that for a while a couple of years ago. But he seems older. In fact, he kind of sounds like a man, not a teenager. Okay. I’m going to go to bed and try to get some sleep. I’ll probably lay awake and think about every athlete in our school and wonder if he is Robert.
YOU’RE SO DUMB, YOU ONCE PLANTED A DOGWOOD TREE AND WAITED FOR IT TO GROW A LITTER OF PUPPIES
Okay. I’m so excited I can hardly write this. It’s Wednesday and I’m in Mr. Archer’s chemistry class. We’re supposed to be working on an experiment, but Abe is doing it so I’ll just copy his paper when he’s through. I hope he doesn’t try to read this. Now why I’m so excited- Perry is gay!!!! Okay, let me explain what happened last period. We were in Mrs. Reynolds class last period and Julie was the teacher for the day. Anyway, after we finished the assignment, we still had about 15 minutes left, so she told us to talk quietly. We all looked at Ms. Cooperfield to see if it was all right if we did, and she nodded her head. So anyway, Beverly scooted up beside me and started talking to me, real quiet like. So she asks me if I like Perry, and I told her I did. So then she asks me if I really like him. I looked at her and said I did really like him. She kind of giggled, so I asked her why she was asking me that. And she said because he likes me too! Then she leans in real close to me and whispers real soft that Perry could never tell me, but he wanted her to tell me that he’s gay! So I just sit there with my mouth all open and she goes on to ask me if I remembered the night she called after Abe outed me and she told me I could talk to her because she knew someone who was gay and he talked to her about it. I nodded, and she said that someone was Perry. She said he told her about 2 years ago and they talk about it sometimes. So I ask her if she told him that I was gay, and she kind of smiled and asked if I’d be mad at her if she had told him. I let out a sigh of relief and tell her I wouldn’t be mad, and then she told me she told him last week. So he has known for a week that I was gay and he wouldn’t tell me he was. I asked Beverly why he wouldn’t tell me and she said he just couldn’t. She said he was afraid I wouldn’t like him because of the way he stutters and he didn’t want to be hurt. I told her that I’m not bothered by the way he talks and she gave me a little kiss on the cheek. Of course, Cory had to see her do that, so he asked me if I was coming over to the dark side. I giggled and turned really red.
So Perry is gay and he likes me! Wait a minute. Abe is finished with the experiment and I have to copy it down before the end of class. I’ll write more later. I’m so excited!!!!!!!!
Okay, I’m back. It’s Wednesday night and I am really sleepy. I just got back from the crisis center. We mainly just sat around tonight. We had only 2 calls all night. I answered one of them, but it was a girl who wanted to talk to Elizabeth. I kept waiting for Robert to call but he didn’t. Now I’m worried about him. I knew this was going to happen when I volunteered. I’d become too emotionally involved. Even though I don’t know anything about him, I still care and I hope he’s all right. At least he didn’t mention hurting himself or I’d be reading the morning obituaries to see if a guy about my age named Robert died.
Okay, this is better news. I sat with Perry on the bus after school and I think Beverly told him she told me that he was gay. When I walked back to the seat, he looked up and his face turned a little red when he saw me. He looked down and then looked back up at me and kind of made a little smile. It was so cute. Neither of us said anything, though. I helped him a little with an algebra problem. Before I arrived home, I got up the nerve to finally ask him if he’d like to come to my house Saturday morning so I can help him with his homework. He said he couldn’t Saturday because he had to go with his mother to visit a sick aunt, but he would have her drop him off Sunday after he went to church. We came to my stop before we had a chance to discuss it, so I’ll talk to him more about it tonight. I’m kind of nervous, but excited. Now that I know he’s gay, I’ll feel a little more comfortable around him without having to worry if he’ll get upset if he finds out I am. I’m still confused why he’s known I was for a week and didn’t say anything.
I’m going downstairs to get something to drink and I’ll be right back. I only need about 500 more words and I’ll be done with this week’s entry. I might as well finish it tonight because I have to work on a research paper for history tomorrow. I’ve been putting it off and it’s due Friday. It’s something stupid about the Industrial Revolution. I hope I can stay awake long enough to write it.
WHEN IT RAINS, WHY DON’T SHEEP SHRINK?
Okay, I’m back, and I made a BIG mistake when I went downstairs. I went into the family room where Mom was watching television and grading some papers. I sat down and watched it with her until a commercial came on, and then I happened to mention to her that Perry was coming over Sunday morning so I could help him with his homework. So she gets excited and turns off the television, and then she goes into Mom Mode and begins asking me all kinds of questions about Perry. I tried to tell her he was just a friend, but she could tell by the way I was blushing that he was more than that. It sounded kind of weird when she asked me if he was my boyfriend. I mean she was so casual about it. I always thought there would be some kind of uneasy tension when I mentioned bringing a boyfriend home. Of course, I’m assuming way too much to even consider Perry a boyfriend. But Mom didn’t seem bothered by it at all. In fact, she got all excited and asked me what time he got out of church so she could have a nice lunch prepared. I tried to talk her out of it, but she insisted. She asked me for Perry’s home phone number so she can call his mother. When I told her I don’t have it, only Perry’s cell phone number, she told me to call Perry and get his home phone. So I did, and now I’m in my room while she calls his house. Hold on. Mom just hollered up the stairs and wants to see me.
I’m in big doo doo. This couldn’t get any worse. Mom knows Perry’s mom! She’s a 2nd grade teacher at the school my mom teachers at! They are best friends at school! I’ve heard my mother mention Mrs. Morgan a hundred times, but it never occurred to me that she could be Perry’s mother. Mom says Mrs. Morgan talks about Perry all the time. She even knows he stutters, and he’s had trouble making friends because of it. So now Mom is all excited because she thinks that Perry is my boyfriend. She even said that Mrs. Morgan is as thrilled as she is. I guess by the way she talked, Perry’s parents know he’s gay too. So instead of Perry coming over for me to help him with his homework on Sunday, Mom has invited his parents and little brother for Sunday lunch. I tried to talk her out of it and told her she was making too big a deal of all this, but she sounded really excited to have Perry and his family come to our house Sunday. When I left, she was in the kitchen making a list of things she’d have to buy. She’s going to make lasagna. Mom makes the best lasagna I’ve ever eaten. Now I’m afraid that what turned out to be just me and Perry being alone to work on his homework is going to turn into something bigger. I think Mom and Mrs. Morgan will try to become matchmakers, which is really, really weird. In fact, it seems kind of absurd that Perry and I just became friends and our own mothers are going to try to make it even more than that. I wonder if our state allows gay marriage because probably by the end of lunch, they’ll be suggesting it. I guess I’ll call Perry back and see if his mother talked to him yet about Sunday. I hope they don’t ruin our friendship by trying to push us too hard.
AT WHAT POINT IN MAN’S EVOLUTION DID HE START WIPING HIS BUTT?
I’m going to see if Mr. Byrd laughs when he reads this one. I wonder if I can find the answer if I google it? Hehe.