Yesterday I was an oddity. Yesterday I was downtown in fashion class again. Yesterday I was a giddy little girl (ironically, the oldest in the group) on my lunch break, walking in a pack with four other kids each a year my junior, all of them taller than me. A boy and three girls. The boy dressed in stylishly normal attire, and each of the girls wearing tights and three-inch heels and mini skirts and glamorous fitted jackets. And then there's me, wearing the bland fleece jacket covered in cat hair and dirt, and the jeans patched in one knee and torn in the other, and the muddy sneakers with the pinky toes all eaten through. My shoes and the calves are just beginning to dry after getting soaking wet from riding my bike through large puddles of melting snow on the lakefront bike trail, but I can still feel water and grains of dirt squishing between my toes in my left shoe with each step, because my left foot was to the east and the wind was blowing the water east. I am at the back and grinning like an idiot because I think they are all so beautiful and I am just glad they asked if I wanted to go with them, even though no one is talking, and it is such a fucking gorgeous day, and for some reason being downtown makes me giddy and angry at the same time.
And then it is the evening. And I am still an oddity. I am the only girl in a car with two boys. They are silent in the front seats while I sit in the center in the back giggling to myself because being in cars with music on just a little too loud with people my age makes me giddy.
And then we arrive. And the first band takes the stage and my friends and I start dancing. And for most of the band's set I am the only girl dancing. And all I think about for some reason, while I am running into young men and the smell of their deodorant, is that part in West Side Story when the Jets are teasing Anybodys, saying she wants to be in the gang because "how else will she get a guy to touch her?" And while this is totally not my motivation, it is all I can hear in my head, and I guess I must be wondering what other people are thinking. And really, I don't care, and not a crowd full of closed-minded indie rock boys could have taunted me into standing to the side, but I suppose some little part of my brain takes joy in finding myself different and wondering how others see me. When the second band takes the stage, the new scent of hairspray joins the old one of sweat, and more girls are now dancing too. Some half-heartedly, others just barely, others totally in it. And everything is disjointed and okay. And I wish I had some sort of wise statement to end this with, but alls I know is that I'm achy and tired of looking at flashing cursors.
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