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A Memorable Encounter

I was new at school, but even I had met Gavin, top contender for cool-dude status, and his part-time girlfriend Patricia, top contender for cool-chick status.

The thing about Patricia was her wonderful flair for flirtation. I’d never seen anything like it. There was not a single new boy in school who went more than a couple weeks without Patricia coming around to meet him and eye the fresh meat, as it were. At least, that was the case until I came to school.

I think I had just come out of the bathroom and was bending to pick up my backpack when I heard a tap-tap-tapping behind me – it was mini skirt and high heel day. I groaned inwardly – whatever else she had against her, Patricia was a pretty girl. And I was not at all a relaxed person when a pretty girl came around.

“Hello! How are you – you’re new, right?”

I gritted my teeth and forced a smile.

“Nathan Waterson. How are you?”

“Oh great! I’m Patricia!”

She paused, expecting something.

I didn’t know what it was, and she finally ended the awkward silence as I nervously pretended to fumble for something in my backpack.

“So, how do you like it at this school?”

“It’s fine.”

“Oh.”

I stood up but kept my back turned.

“Well, it was nice meeting you!
Can we shake hands?”

Ah, the test. Where she forced any reluctant boy to face her so she could judge his appearance.
I’m not, well, strikingly handsome by any description. I’m a shrimp, well below average height. I have no muscles. Nor do I have a tan. I do have zits, though. In fact, I was going through a great deal of trouble with zits on that particular day. That’s what I’d been taking care of in the bathroom. At least, I’d meant to get that big one on my forehead, the one that was the size of a peanut.

I turned in my nervous haste and forgot that I had forgot that I should take care of that zit. I had been distracted with thoughts of my literature lesson that day, and forgot to double check the mirror before I walked out. So I turned towards the prettiest girl in school. The combination of my face with my zit caused a look of horror and revulsion that I’ll never forget. I still have nightmares about it.

By now my palms were sweating with nervousness –she’d remembered all her makeup, and she was actually quite beautiful. I reached out awkwardly. She involuntarily drew away as she took my hand.

I could hear the squelch as she shook hands with me.

She was gulping, trying to hold something in that desperately wanted to come out.

I felt a tingle on my forehead and realized what I’d forgotten.

“OH NO!”

I frantically reached for the zit. As I felt a relieving pop I glanced back, realizing that this was neither the time nor the place.
Patricia whirled and ran down the hall, screaming. I didn’t have the heart to tell her, as she receded into the distance, that I’d accidentally winged her. My zit was hitching a ride on the back of her blouse.

Nah. She had enough on her mind.



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