HIGH SCHOOL NORMALITY contains strong language and some themes not suitable for audiences under 17. Viewer discretion is advised.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Me and My Gang (Series Premiere)

"Dude, I have got to tell you about this girl..."
It was Mark Adams on the phone, of course.

"Fire away." This was my usual response, considering Mark called me with this kind of information at least twice a week.
"Okay," he began in his best storyteller voice, and described every detail of the girl. I was pretty used to this, so I tuned it out and when I realized he was done, I simply said, "Good for you, Mark."
I don't know why it was always me that Mark called. I didn't exactly have very much experience in the area of girls, but it was always fun to listen to his crazy hook-up stories.
My name is David, and I'm a normal high school student.

Well, as normal as anyone, at least. I'm in choir, I write for the school newspaper, I eat junk food, etc. But mostly, I hang with Mark, and our two other best friends, Michael Florence and Aaron Stanwick.

The following day after my conversation with Mark, I met my boys at the Coffee Plantation, where we convened every Saturday to unload with some coffee (hot chocolate for Aaron because he's Mormon), and just relax. Occasionally I would bring my laptop and do some writing while we were there. I find that I do my best writing at the Coffee Plantation (I know it's cliche, but...).

"She was really that flexible?" Hearing Michael's inquiry as I entered the room was an indication that Mark had told them about his latest "escapade" as he liked to call it. Aaron, looking disturbed (as was his usual response to Mark's stories), interjected excitedly, "Oh look, David's here! Everyone, it's David!"
"Wow, Aaron, I didn't know you cared that much."
"David," said Mark, "I was just telling the boys about Rhonda."
"And he was finished telling it, right Mark?"
"Aaron, it's all natural."
"I don't really think God intended for tongues to be in that general region," said Michael, not making things any better for Aaron. After a moment, I decided to grab a coffee while my friends could continue making the Mormon more uncomfortable.

There was no one at the counter, which was strange. "Is anyone back there," I projected.

"Coming," said a girl's voice from the back room. I turned around to observe my friends. They seemed to be on a different subject considering Aaron looked much more at ease. After a moment, I heard her voice again. "What can I get for you?"

I turned around and saw the most beautiful girl I had ever seen.
"I, um, I, um..."
"I find myself not so much in the mood for caffeine." And I turned around and walked back to the table.

"Dave," Michael said, "didn't you get a coffee?"
"Yeah, that didn't work out so well."

This statement caused Mark to look at the beautiful girl behind the counter. "I'd like to drink her coffee."
"Don't talk about her that way!" My comrades looked at me, almost astonished.
Mark had one response. "Why not?"
"Because, she's, well, special."
"You talked to her for like five seconds."
"That's all it took Romeo and Juliet to fall in love."
"Yeah, and they died."

After a couple more hours of meaningless banter, we decided to go home--me in my charcoal Pontiac (named Rebellion), Aaron in his red GMC truck, and Michael in his Jeep Wrangler, taking Mark with him considering the latter was the only one out of the four of us that couldn't drive.

The entire way home, all I could think about the girl behind the counter. She had brown hair, an angelic face, a nice body, and a very nice speaking voice. She was beautiful and seemingly perfect, yet all I could do in her presence is say that I wasn't ordering anything. What was her name? Was she new to town? I had never seen her before.

I pulled into the driveway, locked Rebellion, and came in the house, where my mom, dad, older sister, and little brother were in the midst of a family battle. Mom was yelling at Dad for once again making my 29 year-old sister Libby pay the rent. Jake was yelling at him too (he's 13 and has this problem with holding his tongue--he doesn't do it). Without saying a word, I went upstairs to my room. My family drives me insane sometimes with their arguing, even though most of it is completely valid. But I try to stay out of it. After all, normal teenagers don't have to worry about this kind of stuff.
As I was in my room alone, Mark was in his room--not alone. In a later conversation that we would have, Mark told me about the following "escapade"...
Rhonda had stopped by to tell Mark that she thought he was a jerk and hated that he played her like some old CD (his words, not mine). She originally had come to blow him off, but instead, she just blew him.
"It was the most incredible thing ever," he said on the phone later that night. "It was like the ultimate vacation--refreshing and full of paradise."

"Thank you, Mark, for those wonderful words."

Most would look at this exchange and ask me how I can be such a complete idiot to be best friends with a guy like him. Well, truthfully, I don't know what to say. When you've been through everything with people like Mark, Michael, and Aaron, you almost owe it to yourself to be a little bit of an idiot.

David Adler
Normal High School Student

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