Per a friend’s recommendation he wrote a note to his crush detailing some facts about himself that he thought she’d find interesting (if not endearing). It didn’t matter that words had literally not been spoken between them, he opened strong and shared his interest in inky gel-based pens, the piano, “and herself.” Several more bullet-points and a poem – paraphrased from a Good Charlotte song — later, he folded up the carefully written document and handed it to the messenger.
You were nervous. As the unfortunate student who’d drawn the first slot you were responsible for beginning each round of the spelling bee. It seemed inevitable you’d crack but you didn’t think it’d be from the moderator’s pronunciation of a word. At least that’s what you tell yourself when you think of how you doubted yourself and used the letter ‘f’ in place of ‘v’.
Every summer the public library hosted a reading competition for children to see who could read the most books within the spam of those several months. The year before I began fifth grade my parents received a call letting them know that I’d won a prize and that I could pick it up whenever was most convenient. My efforts had won me an autographed baseball cap. It wasn’t until middle school that I took the time to figure out what sport the team actually played. To this day, I still don’t know who signed it.