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Yesterday I Choked to Death on a Peach Pit

Yesterday, I choked to death on a peach pit. Some dig their grave with a fork and a knife, some are poisoned by the elixir of life; and then there are kids like me who simply bite the big one. When I was alive, I had that gnawing notion that my parents, teachers, doctors, shrinks and the World’s Smallest Adults, otherwise known as my friends; were plotting behind closed doors what the future had in store for me. In my defense I think we all have succumbed to Holden Caulfield syndrome at least once; a little paranoid flatulence never hurt anyone. All I wanted was to find my direction but there was nowhere I seemed to belong; and if there was anything I could not stand it was being a Nowhere-man. You see my high school was this educational circus with more rings to jump through than I ever imagined. Anyone with a brain stem can already tell that I was no ringmaster. Nor was I a knight in shining armor-coincidentally I never wore armor; it didn’t fit me very well. And as for mixing with those happy-hour smoothies; hell at the bar on Saturday nights if I was shunned into the spotlight I usually walked away sunburned. My friends thought I was a fruit. People that knew me better thought I was a fruitcake. I prefer Walden actually, nice to meet you.

I never thought I would be remembered for the way I died, but that’s what happened. That’s how I finally shed my invisibility cloak and started living rent-free in the minds of every kid in my old school. For starters, an enormous school picture of me from last year was mounted in the cafeteria. Can you imagine! Just the big honking shot of me sporting this obnoxious, lopsided grin starring everyone in the face. No one wants to look at that while their eating for Christ’s sakes, but they did; they all stomached it. So I thought that was gonna be my legacy, as the biggest buzz kill that ever hit the school until I saw Rita Rezzelle, the girl I crushed on in my photography class, stop in the middle of the hallway to stare at one of my old pictures. It was nothing but a lousy bowl of fruit, nothing original, but now it apparently serves as a symbol of my death to the art department, go figure. I liked Rita because she always dressed real swanky like she had just stepped out of an old 1920’s silent film; but for the first time she looked frazzled. Her dress hung from her body like a sack, her rich auburn locks lay askew while her rabbity face grew longer as her heartbeats came quicker. She wasn’t unpopular but all the same no one gave the girl with the gone-away expression in her eyes a second glance as she stood there alone breathing in my art. Later I watched in awe as her hand slid a kitchen knife into her delicate frame as smoothly as if it were cutting into cake batter. Poor Rita; its remarkable how one tragic part of your life can so easily intrude on every other part.

Not long after, our town Gregory held a small reception mourning the pair of us. I didn’t get to watch it though because my induction ceremony was scheduled at the same time. Mhmm, try this one on for size: my old town just now takes notice of me after eighteen years while after only a day in this joint I get inducted into the Hall of Famous Fatalities. It’s quite an honor actually; I’m right up there in the Cookery Calamities section alongside the woman who drowned in her bowl of minestrone and the man who got poisoned from digesting part of a Yankee Candle. Yup, Walden the Wonder: How Death Can Be Peachy; tell your friends. But even though I’ve found the limelight I so desperately craved, it doesn’t really makeup for the lifetime of loneliness I underwent. My death was an accident, pure and simple. I mean who would’ve thought something as life-giving as a seed would send someone pushing up daisies? But no one should have to die to be noticed. I guess that’s what I’ve been trying to say all along. Luckily, I’ve been given a second chance in death to really live, and I don’t intend to waste it. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m sure Rita Rezzelle has checked in around here somewhere, I’ll see what she’s up to.



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