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Being different is a curse. It is best to blend in.
I keep my ear buds in as I walk to my first class. Algebra is the worst class possible. It is pointless and you never use what you learn in real life. I file into class with the people I am forced to be with for the next three and a half years. I sit in a seat way in the back. I was assigned to a seat up front but there is a substitute teacher today and I just want to hide in the corner.
My favorite band t-shirt clearly showing under my uniform button down shirt is only one of my many faults. My thick frizzy hair with more split ends than you can count is hanging down today because I broke my rubber band on my way to school. My makeup consists of sparkling green eye shadow, black eyeliner, and mascara. If you look at all the other girls at my school, I am all wrong.
Fault two: I am isolated. I am not isolated by only by choice but by the idiots who sit all around me in class. I choose to stay out of the group that sits in front of me and brags about who got drunker last night. I choose to stay out of the group of girls who know how to roll their uniform skirt and show cleavage through their ultra tight button down shirts. Their parents pay a lot of money to the school so no one can tell them not to wear their clothes right. When they cross their legs their skirts go up higher and show off their perfectly tanned thighs. I am pale and wear my uniform right. I do not get drunk or high and sleep with every guy at school. This keeps me isolated.
Fault three: I listen to “bad” music. Through the screaming lyrics and brain melting guitar solos I hear people quieting down as the substitute walks in. Once they see it is an easy subs and not one of the subs they get out of the marines, everyone goes back to talking with their clique. I keep my headphones in even though it is against school policy. If a teacher sees an IPod out of a student’s backpack, the teacher is supposed to take it. I do not worry because this sub has no idea what he is doing. He writes and assignment on the board as Motley Crue goes into another chorus of “Girls, Girls, Girls.” Heavy metal, eighties hair bands, and guys wearing eyeliner is out of style to the group of people surrounding me. People want me to ditch my Avenged Sevenfold music for the God-awful Miley Cyrus and happy cheery pure little Jonas Brothers with their perfect dance moves and cotton candy coated lyrics. I want to listen to what is real like pain and suffering not about your newest crush. People do not realize that the music I listen to is not devil worship music but beautiful lyrics about the lifestyles of people and their pain. “Girls, Girls, Girls,” is just a fun song so it does not fall into the “real” music category of mine.
I remember freshmen orientation. They talked to the entire freshmen class about how important our four years at this school will be. They told us about the friends we will keep and the friends we will lose. They told us how this school is like a big extended family. They told us we will get along with everyone. They told us that these would be the best four years of our life. I wonder when the good part starts.
They told us to be ourselves and everyone will like us for who we are. Tell that to the girls with makeup in thick coats on their skin who pretend to like football to impress the meat heads at this school. Right now I watch Kathleen Seymour pretend to be into Nascar to get Byron Meyers, who is a “super hottie” according to the bathroom wall, to go on a date with her.
Sometimes being someone else is the only way to get liked in this world. The world wants you to fit into the mold they create and if you do not fit into the mold you are considered an outcast, a person to be ridiculed, a pariah.
I do not fit the mold. I am the odd girl out. I wear black on hot summer days. I listen to bands who wear scary masks and more eyeliner than any girl should. I have a lip, eyebrow, and belly button piercing. I am a Catholic mother’s nightmare.
The day starts to brighten when Kelly walks though the door. She hands the substitute with a name I cannot pronounce a pass stating why she was late and that she is excused. Kelly walks my way with her long brown hair bouncing in a pony tail. She smiles sweetly at me before she sits in the empty broken chair next to me.
“What you listening to?” She sang as she leaned over and stole one of my ear buds and placed it in her ear. “Slipknot?” She smiled. “Good choice, but you aren’t playing it loud enough.”
We laughed and listened to music until the bell rang and we poured out of the classroom. We faded into a sea of people but stood out like dead dolphins. We stopped at Kelly’s locker before going to our next class.
Kelly’s locker is covered in pictures of Kurt Cobain. If we were alive when he died I am pretty sure Kelly would have had a mental breakdown. Instead, we worship his music. Kelly puts her ear buds in and blasts Nirvana. She sings along with every word louder than she should until a nun comes up to us and tell us that we should not be listening to music in the hallways, especially “satanic” music. We wrap up our IPods for show and laugh when sister was out of our sights.
We walked to our second period class when we saw Kathleen Seymour and her group of drones walk up to us. They sneered at us. When they started to walk away they pushed us into some lockers. I am surprised they did that because it could have broken one of their perfectly manicured nails. The hitting of the lockers did not hurt but we were caught off balance. We sat in front of the lockers until the bell rang.
“Time for history,” I chimed sarcastically.
Kelly laughed. “Chloe,” she sighed, “I’m going to make history, not learn it.”
I laughed as I helped her off the ground. The hallways were empty except for a few stragglers searching through their lockers. We hooked arms at the elbows and skipped off to history class. I know why Kelly always said not to learn history but to make it. It was something to keep us from getting sucked into the world of Kathleen Seymour and drones. You cannot make history if you do not have something unique to offer.