What “Crazy” Means to Me This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

By
As I drive down West Esplanade on my way to yet another monotonous day at school, I blindly fumble with the radio in search of a station playing actual music instead of mindless chit-chat. With no luck, I lazily change my focus from the radio to the road. Then I hear it – the sweet and cheerful tune that evokes painful and heartbreaking memories.

As I pull into my usual parking spot, my heart races, my thoughts become scattered, and my breath gets labored as my mind returns to the day this song crushed my spirit. To most teens, Britney Spears’ multi-platinum hit “Crazy” evokes memories of fun times in their childhood. However, to me, this song brings back the anguish I felt one fateful day.

The day began as any other. Late, of course, I grabbed my backpack, kissed my mom good-bye, and ran to my dad’s car in hope of avoiding another tardy on my elementary school attendance record.

As I arrived at school, I was instantly infected by the excitement of the other students. Today was the annual talent show, an event everyone anticipated. I longed to participate one day, to showcase my skills for the entire school to see, and be the envy of everyone. These thoughts filled my head the entire day and made it difficult to focus. The clock ticked slowly while I listened to my teacher’s monotonous voice. My excitement grew by the second until the clock’s hand reached two, and I finally heard the sweet sound of the bell ordering students to proceed to the auditorium.

We sat in blue plastic chairs and the lights dimmed. I watched in awe as students exhibited their dancing, singing, magic, and acrobatic abilities on the brightly lit stage. Then it happened. I heard the announcer introduce Girl Scout Troop #348, who would be dancing to Britney Spears’ “Crazy.” My stomach dropped to the floor; I was in Girl Scout Troop #348. I watched in a daze from my fifth row seat as my troop performed in iridescent floral shirts, matching headbands, and black spandex pants to one of my favorite songs. As my “friends” did jazz squares, partner work, and ripples in their awkwardly choreographed dance, I tried to hold in my tears and feelings of betrayal. This, however, failed.

When the dance ended with an awe-­inspiring pose, tears streamed down my face. As the curtain closed and the lights went down ­between acts, I made my stealthy escape to the bathroom, where I could fully express my hysteria without anyone noticing.

Why wasn’t I invited to be in the act? Was there something wrong with me? Did everyone hate me? Salty tears poured from my eyes and dripped down my face. The talent show ended, and I ran out of school to avoid revealing my emotions: panic, horror, anxiety, and hurt feelings. I was devastated.

As the song ends in the car and my mind returns from the traumatizing memories evoked by “Crazy,” I get out, gather my books, walk through the double doors of the school, and trudge up the stairs. When I reach the second floor hall, I glance at my friends’ faces – some of the same friends who caused me so much pain by excluding me from what should have been a glorious moment in my elementary school career. As I prepare for the day, I think about how my friends are oblivious of how that experience made me stronger, more independent and able to speak up – all because of a mediocre talent show act in which I was in no way involved.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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Little.Miss said...
Nov. 1, 2011 at 4:01 pm
This was good, but you should have spent much more time on the outcome of it. We get to hear about the event, and how it hurt you, but only a sentence or two about how it made you stronger! I wish it elaborated more on that, that's all.
 
AlexanderBurton replied...
Jan. 6, 2012 at 9:29 am
I like the way it was wrote it makes you want to know what happened. The couple of sentences explaining why it was heartbreaking was all that is needed. If she were to go into more details on what made the song heartbreaking it would have sounded like she was whining and it would have been boring
 
Nami, Lee said...
Nov. 1, 2011 at 12:52 pm
I just want to  tell you that they are not your real friend. If they were really your friend, they should have at least asked you about that, instead of not telling anything. I am glad that you figured out that they were not your life long friend and I am pretty sure that you can make another friends who really care about you. Have a nice day!
 
lit.rox This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Nov. 1, 2011 at 7:37 am
I know how much the incident would have hurt you, but i appreciate the way you took it up..thumbs up!
 
Lilies said...
Aug. 27, 2011 at 8:05 pm
Good for you! it takes a strong person to be able to learn something from unhappy experiences.
 
Steph0804 said...
Jul. 14, 2011 at 10:09 am

I remember having vocal lessons a few years ago... in the car on the way home right before a lesson, my mother told me, "I think you're good at singing, but not the best. You're kind of off tune. Maybe I should get you a better teacher; this one seems a bit ineffective."

This was a huge insult to my pride. The fact was, the teacher WAS effective; she taught my friend, who had the most beautiful voice you could imagine. I had dreamed of becoming a great singer someday; my mother crushed... (more »)

 
RanaHewezi1998 said...
Jun. 22, 2011 at 10:50 am
awwwwwhhhhhh :'( im happy it made u stronger thou...at least u got sumethin out of it...
 
reenay_95 said...
Jun. 22, 2011 at 9:37 am
That's so sad! I hate the feeling of exclusion. Kids will be kids, I guess.
 
CrystalMarie said...
May 9, 2011 at 9:20 am
This is really good.
 
PerfectMGymnast This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Mar. 26, 2011 at 7:57 pm
this was really good! :)
 
AnarchyIsMyFriend said...
Mar. 26, 2011 at 4:04 pm
Omigosh!  Didyou ever find out why they were so b*tchy?  That is just so awful!
 
DaisyLou said...
Mar. 4, 2011 at 9:25 am
This was an great article ! i really enjoyed it. I had an experience like this before,but just a little bit different .. Good Job
 
Daydreamish said...
Feb. 10, 2011 at 8:27 pm
This is a good story, but there seems to be a gap between small and devastated Catherine and, in the next paragraph, older and stronger Catherine. Still, it was published, so you get points for that, as it's probably more than I'll ever do. :)
 
IamtheshyStargirl said...
Feb. 10, 2011 at 6:36 pm

Wow. The way you wrote about this is heart wrenching. You have great talent :)

Congratulations on getting this published in the magazine, it really belongs :)

 
awesomeaugust This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Jan. 19, 2011 at 6:47 pm

It seems a little unrealsitic that an elementary school incident could actually still haunt you today. I felt liek the article should have a humorous yet bittersweet tone, the way childhood memories often do, but instead a tone of legitimate hurt and betrayal came across, which made the whoel ordeal seem a bit cheesy. I don't mean to slam you or your story, this is just my opinoon. For a more serious topic, I do think this is well written. And anyway, it's been published so who cares wha... (more »)

 
AVERAGE replied...
Feb. 10, 2011 at 10:04 am
TOTAL AND COMPLETE AGREEMENT
 
lostintherain replied...
Mar. 26, 2011 at 11:42 am
i agree here.  i think it was over dramatized a little bit.  I mean, something like that wouldn't be that hurtful.  Yes, at the time it would be for a girl in elementry school but i feel like it would just be a little bit silly to be that badly effected by it.  i'm not saying that the actually writing wasn't amazing, but the story as a whole was a little unbelievable.
 
bunny said...
Jan. 19, 2011 at 2:19 pm
I think that the story is pretty cool  it made my eyes want to read more i know hw it feels too
 
fashionluvr16 said...
Dec. 6, 2010 at 6:47 pm
Trust me i know how you feel. My friends once betrade me in something that I was looking forward to doing. I was all over 1 stupid fight, and thats it, u r not coming to the movies with us next week. I cried and i to went into the bathroom and cried more, thats were my friends came in and talked to me, the same friends that had banned me from coming to the movies with them. I still didnt get to go to the movies, but i felt better, that my friends came in to talk to me. If they are your true frie... (more »)
 
xAllegria said...
Jul. 27, 2010 at 9:07 am
Almost cheesey, but otherwise interesting. (i mean i sympathise but it's not the most original as a writing peice)
 
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