Authors: Jorie Saldanha
Teen girls: the reason for all parents’ agony. They suffer from PMS, bad attitudes, and perms. WRONG! Let me just reflect on the thought that when parents always say, “I was there, I know what you’re going through,” I scare myself silly thinking that someday I may be that pathetic excuse for a mentor that has as good a chance to understanding me as Bill Clinton has to being the most popular president ever. Okay…yes I’m a little cynical and sarcastic, but I’m in the middle of enduring my teen years. Humor me.
This is an insight to what most teens, in my opinion, think. We go through a couple phases of teen-hood. There’s an I’m-not-going-to-do-what-you-say-because-you-tell-me-to phase, you-don’t-know-what-I’m-feeling phase, and my favorite, the-world-can-bite-me phase. All of these phases aren’t represented in the light that they should be, so I thought that there should be a teen book out there written by a teen that isn’t one of the lame “coming of age” stories. From now on teens will get the real thing shown to the world.
High school! This was the place of drooling over guys I couldn’t have, looking at girls who I wish I were, and trying to get over my insecurities. I can tell you right now that half of the girls at my school are anorexic. How else could they
have chicken legs and
hips? Oh well, I’m getting off the subject.
Let me just start out by breaking down my school’s social ranking for you. I like to compare its make-up to a cake. So, let’s call it the “social cake.” (Imagine me making finger quotes in the air.)
First, at the very top are the popular snobs with their jock boyfriends/boy toys. These are the type of girls that say things like, “Do I look okay in this skirt,” “Does my hair look okay,” and “Does my butt look big?” The guys who only listen to their hormones just say, “I don’t care if your butt is big! Let me smack it!” But there are good people in this group. There are a few nice guys who just can’t seem to finally tell those girls that they don’t care what type of perfume they use as long as they stop talking about it. And they give the girls what they want: a smile, nod, and a few “Yeah, sure,” kind of comments. And there is usually one girl, though I haven’t met one, who isn’t like the rest of the girls, and just goes with the flow because she’s scared to show that she has a brain.
The next group, the second tier, consists of popular people who just aren’t good enough to make it to the top. They are the kind of people that I, the less popular person, would become friends with. Only these friendships between second tier preps and lower class kids are the in-school-only types of friendships. You know what I’m talking about. These friendships are the, “Hey! What’s up?” “Isn’t this teacher way harsh?” and the “See you in class tomorrow,” friendships where you don’t actually ever see the person outside of school.
The next group is a group all on its own. These are the people of the third tier that are somewhat friends with the second tier, but pretty much don’t have anything to do with anyone, except for the people also located in their social standing. They don’t bother anyone so in turn no one bothers with them. This is where I belong.
The fourth tier is the potheads, and wastoids. They really don’t deserve a spot on my social “cake” at all, but they do exist. These are the kids that usually maul each other against walls in the hallways (although popular people do too), skip class to light up, or just plain sit on their butt and stare into space. They may be nice people, but they’re just too stoned all the time for anyone to know.
The last group is the group that is at every school, the geeks. This is a name that I really do hate to use, because some of these “geeks” are really nice. Although, when these people start going off about how Napoleon really never “existed” in a matter of speaking or how astro-physics is the make-up of the world, as we know it, I get really scared and want to run/hide. These are the people that are totally off and in another dimension, and who some think need to be put away with the “nice men in white jackets.”
Pretty much all these people coexist at my school. Amazingly, it seems to work somehow. My group of friends are very down to earth. We overall belong to the third tier on the social cake.
Now is the time to break my group of friends down for you so you can get the general idea of what kind of people I associate with.
Jack- The “ladies man” who likes to give all the girls hugs, and flirts all the time with them not really meaning anything by it.
Keri- The giggler of the group and my best friend. She thinks that everyone likes her and likes any guy who so much as looks at her.
Tina- She’s the spunky girl of the group that befriends all the guys and, in turn, wins their hearts. I can never tell if they like her more than a friend or think of her as one of the guys.
Allie- She’s the “different” one of the group. She’s a mixture of the 80’s, 90’s and now all rolled up into one. Allie pretty much is the oddball that we all know and love. She, too, admits it.
Tom- He’s the quiet antisocial one of the group that never really talks unless spoken to.
Ben- He’s the loud, but lovable guy of the group. He’s always going on about how some girl is hot and how he wants her. Even though he’s a pervert sometimes, he still cracks everyone up.
Big Al-This is a nickname we gave because he’s so short. Big Al is funny, weird, and creepily cute all at the same time. He’d be grossed out if you admitted to him that he was “cute,” but I think he knows he is too.
Tad- The punk-pervert who has some weird obsession with oranges. He has to have one daily.
Jennifer- She’s the sweet, outgoing girl of the group who is my party buddy!
Betty- She’s the gorgeous, high-pitched voice, sweetheart of the group. She’s really nice, has lots of friends, and goes through guys like hotcakes (in a good way).
Now that I’ve told you about my school’s social ranking and my group of friends, I can fill you in on the high school experience: my high school experience.
High school is an amazing experience, but nothing represents it more than football. This is the place where the cheerleaders cheer, the football players play, the marching band marches, and the spectators watch.
The girls always ogle the jocks, and I’m sure those guys can get any girl they want, which is beyond me. Have you ever noticed how jocks are very similar to rock stars? I mean, come on, even Meatloaf had women. How is this possible? These uglier than sin guys can get anyone just because they have some form of fame? That’s just plain gross. I know any girl who’s reading this is saying, “Right on, Sister!” And I know the guys are thinking, “Yeah! Go Meatloaf!” Either way the battle of the sexes is still alive and well. Anyway back to the jocks…I’ve found that most, not all, but most are homophobic. They have something against gay guys. The weird thing is that as soon as they put on their helmets and go onto the field, they’re always grabbing each other’s butts. Now what’s up with that? I mean, come on, talk about hypocritical!
Then there are the cheerleaders that have “spirit fingers.” I’m sorry, but what is that? What are those cheerleaders reaching for? It’s not as if they can reach the crowd. The cheerleaders will stand around in their ultra-mini skirts and jump up and down. (You know you guys that are reading are thinking, “Ahhh…cheerleader’s jumping…mmmm.”)
Then there are the spectators who just sit around and watch. The only thing I could do without at a high school football game is seeing all those nasty “big” guys without shirts on. The fact that they have spirit colors painted on their chests just makes it ten times worse. Get some clothes on! Nasty!
At one of these average teen football games, my friends and I decided to go see what all the fuss was about…
“Where’s the defense? You guys suck!” Ben was the loudest of football fans.
“Shut up! That’s our team that you’re talking about you loser!” Jennifer wasn’t ever afraid to speak her mind.
“Well, they do suck. It’s so pathetic that we can’t even…holy-!” Just as Ben was about to say something else, he suddenly stopped. I knew what he was staring at. All the guys seemed to come to attention immediately, well except for Tom, but I don’t think he went that way, if you know what I mean. Lena Bobbins and the cheerleaders had just reached the sidelines.
“Well, if it isn’t Miss Giggles herself! Her skirt looks exceptionally high today, don’t you think?” Allie said mockingly as all the guys shushed her.
“Quiet! You’re ruining it!” Big Al exclaimed, with what looked like drool hanging out of his wide-open mouth.
“But we’re not even winning! What does it matter?” Keri chimed in with disgust.
“Did I say I was talking about the game? Now shut up! It’s moving art!” Big Al stared at the girls, who at the moment, were on trampolines.
“God bless whoever invented the trampoline,” Tad sighed. “Wow, Lena looks great!”
“Please, she looks like a skank. Not only that, but why do they even have a trampoline?” I asked.
“But a good skank, and trampolines are good!” All the guys said together. I knew at that moment that all the girlfriends were smacking their boyfriends, the guys were salivating, and the rest of the girls were rolling their eyes.
“Why do you hate Lena so much?” Tina asked me. “What have you got against her?”
There was no way I was going to tell them what Lena did to me. There was stuff that they didn’t know about. They had all moved in sometime after fifth grade so they didn’t know what had happened.
Lena and I used to be best friends. Ever since the first grade we were inseparable; we were like sisters. Everything was great, but then I told Lena in fifth grade how I really liked this one guy. (If I told you who, you’d laugh, so let’s leave his name out of this.) I told her I liked him and she told me she’d do everything she could to get him to become aware of me. Then I started to notice how she was always flirting with him, and she’d tell me it was just a ploy to get him to be her friend. She told me as soon as she could, she’d invite him over and then have me come over. As soon as we were in a room together, she’d leave and let me handle it on my own. That’s not what she did. Later I heard a rumor that they were “going steady.” I was crushed, but I thought I’d ask her first. (At that time going steady simply meant putting your names together in the same sentence. You never actually went anywhere if you were “going steady” with someone.) I went to her and asked her why she did this, and I told her I didn’t want this to ruin our friendship. She had changed somehow. Suddenly she was wearing skanky clothes, push-up bras, and eye shadow that, as Keri put it, you could chip off with a chisel. She and I started to argue not about the guys, but about stupid stuff that I can’t even remember. We threatened each other, and then we started playing mean pranks towards one another. She started by putting sand in my locker, and then I would hang her underwear up in the cafeteria. She would put water on the floor the day I wore a skirt so that I would fall and show the world all there was to know about me, and then I would sneak into her house and draw clown faces on her in permanent marker. (She was such a deep sleeper that usually the day after I’d draw on her she would be absent because she was “sick.”) Finally, it got to the point where I was in detention every weekend for what I did to her. So, I decided to stop, but Lena wanted to have the last laugh. She somehow had overheard how I was going to ask a guy friend of mine to go to the fifth grade dance with me. There was an assembly in the gymnasium on the day I was going to ask him. Every fifth grade class in the entire district was there because we were talking about where we would go to middle school the following year. Right before the assembly was over, Lena stood up and yelled, “Ashley used to be a man!” For a moment everyone was silent. I thought that everyone was just going to blow it off and tell her to sit down, but then the gym erupted with laughter. I know it’s funny now that I was embarrassed by such a stupid thing, but because of that no guy will so much as look at me, and its all Lena’s fault. Because of the embarrassment I felt, I never told my new friends what Lena did. Instead, I’d change the subject or lie.
“Nothing. Lena is just a skank that’s all. Right, Allie?” I lied.
“Yeah! You go girl!”
“Don’t say stuff like that to me, it reminds me of the Spice Girls,” I advised. Just as the first quarter was about to end, I noticed how every game Lena would stand as the other girls held her feet above their heads. I’d stopped playing jokes on her ever since the assembly, but I had the greatest idea. I just wasn’t sure how to execute it. I decided to ask the girls to go down and walk around for a little while, because we’d lost the guys’ attention for the night.