One of Those Days

February 7, 2008
As he rolled out of bed, he realized that today was the day, the day he was going to jump of the dock, take a leap, and see if he was able to swim. Of course he didn’t really mean in the form of jumping into a lake or even about a jump at all. He was simply going to take a small step towards living the rest of his life. He knew that he was either going to sink or swim in this decision. Then again, he was only supposed to take the first step, everything else would be out of his control. Nearly no one knew of his plans, but if they did, they were only a selected few, handpicked for how much they wanted him to succeed. He had each step set up in his mind. All he had to do was retrace every step he had made the night before. He knew that everyone, friends, family, maybe even teachers would scrutinize every move he made. He wanted everything to be perfect, and that is why it had to be today.
As he stumbled towards the shower, little things would catch his eye. The Star Wars Lego that his brother had been working on all of last night was lying in the middle of the room, waiting to be broken by even the tiniest of feet. The dirty clothes that were laying not two feet from the laundry shoot. Any little imperfection would catch his eye, because today everything needed to be perfect, nothing should have been out of place. Taking a step into the shower made him let go of the perfectionist that had suddenly taken over his body. As soon as the warm water started hitting his body, he started singing his favorite song, not caring how off tune he may sound. He showed off his moves to the showerhead, swearing the showerhead turned a bit green with jealousy. He practiced his jumper, visualizing every shot he might have to throw up during the game that night. But ultimately he mentally executed everything that might occur during the day, every rendition, and everything that could go wrong.

As he threw his unneeded books into his locker, he couldn’t help but look around to see if any of his friends were even at school yet. To no avail, he made the executive decision to wander, no one would care, he could clear his head, and he could join the first person he recognized. Even though this was his usual morning routine, today seemed different, everything was quiet, almost as if someone had taken the volume knob to the world, and cranked it so low that you can barely hear the wind blowing. Once again he replayed the steps in his mind, making sure that he would know exactly what to do when the time eventually arose.
Halfway through his second walkthrough, something tapped his right shoulder. Noting he had just walked under some trees, he decided to think nothing of it. The tapping persisted, whipping to his right, where the tapping had come from, he realized he had just fallen for it, again. “WOW, how many times are you gonna fall for that?” giggled the anonymous trickster.
“How many times are you going to do it before you find out I’m not going to remember?” he retorted.

“Hmmm, well I think that maybe you should learn from your mistakes,” her helpful side was getting the better of her. She was an odd girl, she wasn’t what you might call a girly girl, but she also had those days, where she would mix it up and wear a pink skirt, a nicely fit shirt, and she might actually do her make-up, he noted that today was one of those days. She had a presence about her, no one but her closest friends could really tell what she was thinking. Some of her friends would call her, odd, different, hard to understand, strange, needy, tough, and but he knew that those were all understatements.
Her personality was another thing in and of itself, one day she would be talkative and would make everything seem important. And the other days she would make everything a fight, and nothing would happen because anytime he wanted to talk to her, she would make it seem like he was the bad guy. She was one weird chick, so weird in fact that for a split second, he contemplated whether or not to follow through with his plan.

The rest of the walk was silent, but it was almost a mutual agreement because he didn’t want to say anything to start the day as one of those “other days”, while she didn’t want to start a conversation that could be misinterpreted. So there was silence, but both were fine with this abrupt silence. He could feel people’s eyes following their silent stroll, probably wondering if there was something going on between them. It was all he could do to not just face her right there and then, and skip the first few steps of his plan. But he knew that if he did skip those little steps, he would have no opportunity to change his mind, should the need arise.

The walk seemed almost surreal, he couldn’t believe that it was all falling so perfectly into place. He might just do it then and get-… he was alone. Patty must have seen her gaggle of groupies, but solitude was still solitude. He knew he had to find his gang, or risk being made a mockery of, for being a loner. No sooner said than done, he felt the morning lump in his arm. For the second time this morning, he was not alone, but this time he didn’t have to worry about making a fool of himself. He was now with only the loyal of loyal, the cream of the crop, and his buddy since elementary school. Frankie was one of the few people who knew of his plans, matter of fact, he came up with half the steps.

As they caught up with the on goings of each other’s weekends, he couldn’t help gazing over every couple of minutes, looking to see if Patty might be gazing back. “Wow dawg, you really need to get better about that,” stated Frankie.

“Better about what?” he questioned, not lifting his gaze for a second.

“Well playing dumb for one thing, and paying more attention to her,” motioning at Patty, “than your buddy since birth for the other,” pointing at his own cocky mug. “You’re just lucky I want you to succeed with this, ‘cause if I didn’t, you’d have a lump the size of Texas, right in the middle of your face.”

“Great, thanks for letting me know you got my back…” sarcasm lingering on every word that came out of his love struck mouth. “Say, any word about what her reaction might be?”

“Nah man, but I’ve been hearing rumors, man, rumors,” Frankie said casually. “And those rumors a’int, going in your favor,” he said apologetically.

“Frank? What are you trying to say? Should I still plan on this or should I back out now and keep my sanity?”

“I don’t know man, really, this choice is up to you, I can’t do anything more for you. I can keep looking out, but this is your life, live it how you wanna,” Frankie replied philosophically.

The friends then decided that Frankie would let him know of any other rumors that might start circulating. While the other would spend his time in class, clearing his head, making sure he was going to do right, and not make a decision that he might regret. Math was an easy class just to space out, get your head on straight, but at the same time, keep up with all of the work that is assigned. So clearing his head was as easy as pie. But he still needed to make a decision, should he take the leap, or give up and spin again? With five minutes to spare, he decided that at break he would see if there was any news from Frankie, and then play it by ear.

The rest of his day was a blur, before he knew it, Frank was telling him that the rumors were true, and Chris had had the same idea, but had simply pepped stepped it, and beaten him to Patty’s heart. He drearily went from class to class, showing no emotions, neither remorse, nor relief. It was just one of those days, where everything may seem to be going according to planned. But really there was a greater plan, and it was to throw the first plan in the blender, just to see what kind of new day could be created. It was one of those days, where there is nothing you can do, but move on and hope for a better tomorrow. He may have another shot at Patty, but today was not that day, today was a day to focus on other things. He had a basketball game that he needed to do well in, he had friends he enjoyed talking to, and a family who would love him no matter what. Life goes on, and what ever happens, happens.

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