You know which ones I’m talking about: the control freaks who have to have every moment planned out. Typically, they’re portrayed as having a completely out-of-control sister/mother/brother/father (often an identical twin) and their own need to control is born of the lack of control they have over everything else. I have none of that and yet the need for control still managed to manifest in me...at the rather un-ripe age of 15, no less.
I realized this as I was standing by my locker last Friday with my two best friends, Madison and Rebecca. It was before the first bell so we were discussing the parties that would be happening Saturday. It is a point of fact that Rebecca’s boyfriend - Lars - turned 16 on Saturday and had a huge party.
This is what we do, really. Birthday or not, there was always a rather large party at someone’s house. On nice nights when we feel like doing something vaguely different, we head the forty minutes or so down 45 to one of the last remaining drive-in movie theaters in Texas. Mostly, though, it's the parties.
“I had to practically force my mother to stop at Northpark yesterday so I could buy him a gift. I mean, come on! He’s my first real boyfriend! You’d think she’d be more supportive of my need to spoil him. But no....she’s all freaked out because she thinks there’s been some royal screw-up at Bliss and so she’s hell-bent to drive directly to the Hotel Palomar. She would have run every red light if she weren’t on probation. I swear.” Rebecca is always swearing. “Luckily, I convinced her to drop me off, run to the hotel, and come back. So I’m all set.”
“What did you get him?” Madison was reading a text that came in halfway through Rebecca’s rant, so I asked the question I knew she was dying to answer.
“That new Gehry watch from Tiffany that he likes so much. I hope his mom didn’t get it for him, too. That would be embarrassing.”
“Oh. Em. Gee!” Madison doesn’t swear. So she literally says the letters and leaves it to the listeners to interpret.
“What?” There’s a tone of irritation in Rebecca’s voice because it’s clear that Madison had tuned her out. It was tempered by curiosity.
“New girl. Hawaiian.”
“So?” Rebecca didn't care. I did, but I tried not to show it. New girl! From Hawaii! This. Upsets. My. World.
“She got here this morning and the first thing she did was sign up for newspaper and yearbook. She said something about being photo editor at her last school and wants the position here.” Ah. Competition. And not just for me. Madison is the photo editor for the sophomore sections of the yearbook and for the social and arts section of the newspaper. Since her quest in life is to be the next Annie Leibowitz, you can see why this rattles her.
“Meh. She won’t get it. She might be assistant editor or staff photographer, but they won’t give a new girl a top position. She’s got no idea about the pulse of the school.” I say. What I’m thinking is that I hope she doesn’t want to be the sports photo editor. That’s my job. One I take very seriously on my quest to be...whatever it is that I’ll be. But the fact that they could -- and have been known to -- give this position to a newbie is very real. And I don’t like it.
“You’re right,” Madison sighs.
“How are you always so calm? I swear, it’s like you do yoga in between classes or something. Get ruffled every now and again, why don’t you?” Rebecca demands, but I am saved from answering by the bell.
The rest of Friday was completely uneventful. Went through classes and not one glimpse of Hawaii-Girl, even though there are only, like, TEN people in our entire grade. Fifteen if we're all healthy. Then I skated home, did my homework, and met Madi and Bec at the little courtyard park thing by our building and skated some more.
Saturday morning I woke up, did yoga... Bec was almost right - I do yoga constantly. I used to not because it's so fruits, nuts, and flakes, but then I pulled a quad on a really bitchin' ollie and my mom...who teaches yoga...made me. Then I realized that it improved my balance and my flexibility, which definitely improved my skating. So here I am. Downward dogging daily. (hee hee....alliteration. Mrs. G would be so proud.) Anyway. After yoga, breakfast and then no skating because there were birthday presents to buy so I hopped on the train to Mockingbird Station and went to Urban Outfitters and picked up some t-shirts. A couple for Lars and a couple for me. And then Mad came up (she sleeps waaay later than anyone I know) and we had lunch and saw a movie and then took the train home and got ready for the party. Mad lives in my building - One Arts Plaza, but Bec lives two blocks over, actually in Deep Ellum.
Luckily, Lars lives downtown, too. Madi skated over to our building and got ready with us. Then we walked to the DART station and took the train to the station a block away from his building. Generally you want to arrive at parties looking as though you've showered that day, so no skating. Not in May, at any rate. We get waved through without pause because the doorman knows us. All good, all good and then WHAM.
Hawaii Girl is there. We walk in and she's just standing there, looking like Angelina Jolie and Pocahontas had a love child. All cute in her waist length black hair and beach dress. And she walks right up to us and starts talking like we're long-lost friends. We are not friends. We are not even acquaintances. We're barely at Smile In The Hall Because We're at the Same Tiny School.
"Rebecca, right? You're Lars' girlfriend? I have Geometry with him. He's very nice. I'm Mackenzie but my friend call me Mac."
Ok - she held out her hand. Like we're old and are going to shake it. Maybe Dap hasn't made it to Hawaii, yet. And yes, you read that right. Her friends call her Mac. Like mac-n-cheese. Gag. And she was buddying up to one of my best friends. I only have two. No room for sharing.
To my horror, two hours later we're out on Lars' terrace with a bunch of guys and a hacke-sack. I'm not hacky-sacking. I wore a skirt. Dumb. Dumb. Dumb. Bec didn't. She wore these little shorts that are so almost r-rated. X-rated unless you're Sharon Stone. The boys are loving playing with her more than normal. Madi and Mac (I really hate the way that looks) have bonded over a shared love of sushi and I'm looking at the stars waiting for the clouds to roll in as promised earlier by Troy Dungan.
Finally Bec gets tired of kicking hacky-sack ass and pockets the thing. The boys wander over to a corner to burp the alphabet or whatever they do and she and I leave Madi and Mac and go inside to be catty. Bec is worried about Lars.
"Whatever!" I say when she voices this.
"I swear. She was totally flirting with him when we brought out his cake. She's like, totally flirtcore."
"Bec." I told her, putting my hand on her arm and trying not to laugh at the ridiculousness of Hawaiian Barbie upsetting our world that much. Well, laugh or cry because I'm clearly in a state, myself. "Did you see the look on Lars' face when he opened your present? Do you see him now? He's in deep smit. Trust me." And since I'm completely believable she smiled and we hit the snack table and had some cokes and then Madi came in completely freaking out because her mom had called and heard all the people in the background and therefore knew we weren't back at my place like we said we'd be by then and so we had to cab it home because her mom called my mom and it's way too late for young hotties like us to ride the train alone. You know how this goes. Bec freaked out in the elevator about leaving Hawaiian Barbie with Lars. Luckily/unfortunately it took forever for the doorman to get us a cab and while we were waiting HairandButt herself got out of the elevator looking tired and lost and a little lonely and revealed that she lives in my building and then Madi offered to cab-share and we were stuck with her.
Quietest Cab Ride Ever. For Reals.
So yesterday was quiet (yoga, skating) and today was school, but it was Monday and it's the end of the year and I didn't see Hawaiian Barbie all day. I can live with that.
Thursday is the last day of school. Who transfers a week before school lets out? She came in for finals? WTF?
Speaking of finals. I need to Apply Myself. I have parents. They have expectations. Word.