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Problems BFF

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Author's note: Elizabeth Ababio could have been cruel right back to the bullies who taunted her.Or, she could...  Show full author's note »
Author's note: Elizabeth Ababio could have been cruel right back to the bullies who taunted her.Or, she could have cowered. Instead, “Lizzie” got creative and penned her feelings in the hopes that others would heed her message of how anyone can overcome adversity.
“I think [the bullying] started in Grade 4, but I never realized it,” she recalls. “Either I ignored it or I just didn’t notice. People were laughing whenever I walked in the room.” Elizabeth felt so tormented that she started faking illness to avoid going to school. Luckily, she was able to talk to her mom and a counselor at her school about her plight. “I’ve always looked to my mom for support – as well as teachers that I trust – and family,” she says. Now, whenever she senses she is being bullied, Elizabeth stands up for herself and it stops immediately. The 16-year-old Frank Hurt Secondary student has written a book titled Problems: BFF. “It just came from a bunch of stories that my mind put together,” Elizabeth says.  « Hide author's note
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Problems BFF

I can’t say that I’m as flattering as other people.
I wouldn’t say that I’m beautiful or talented. I don’t even know if I would be classified as “abnormal.”
To be honest, I think of myself as average. I believe I’m an average teenager living in an average house with an average family who make an average living. I have an average GTP score and make an average amount of money at my average job.
All in all, I think I’m just like everyone else.
My best friends clearly disagree.
“All I’m saying,” Susie (one of my best friends) said to me at work one morning, “is that you should quit with all this whiny crap. I don’t care if you think you’re average. You’re not.”
She looked around to make sure that no one was eavesdropping, then (in a not-so friendly whisper) she added, “Your parent’s own half of this city. I honestly have no idea why you’re working at this place. All you’d have to do is ask your parents to give you some of their loot for college. Hell, you don’t even have to go to college. Just buy out a huge company and make it your own.”
She leaned back against the counter and waited for me to reply.
“I already told you I don’t want to do that,” I said as I put some glazed donuts in the display cases.
I turned to face her. “I want some work experience. You and I both know a lot of businesses hire people based on the fact that said people know what they’re doing, and not based on how cute they are.”
“Well, alright then,” she said as she pulled her long black hair into a ponytail. “Just don’t look to me for any sympathy on the whole ‘abnormal’ thing, because Lord knows there won’t be any.”
I knew that much. One look into her piercing dark brown eyes would tell me that.
“Excuse me,” a voice said behind me. It sounded slow and calm, kind of like an old lady’s. “I’d like to get a donut.”
I began to turn around as I said the employee’s mandatory line, “Hi, welcome to Tim Horton’s, what may I get for you?”
It took me a moment to recognize the face, but Susie’s laughter in the background helped me remember.
“Derek?” I sputtered.
He smiled slightly and put his elbows on the ordering counter. He cocked his head to the side and asked in the same old lady voice, “I would like you on a silver platter if you wouldn’t mind dear.”
I began to laugh. “You’re getting better and better at impersonations Derek. I almost didn’t recognize you.”
He put his hands at his sides and made a mock-angry face.
“Say’s you!” he said in a perfect imitation of Susie. “I had you completely fooled! Girl, if you weren’t my girl, I’d knock you upside the head! You know you lucky right?”
He turned to face Susie, who had momentarily stopped laughing. “I’m right aren’t I? Sisters unite!” He finished this statement with a fist pumped in the air, which only caused Susie to break into hysterics.
Even I couldn’t hold it back anymore. I was soon holding my stomach alongside her. “Stop it Derek,” I begged. “I can’t take it anymore!”
“Oh, all right,” he said in his regular voice. “If you’re begging.”
“Oh please,” Susie said, finally regaining her composure. “You’d do anything for that girl. You’ve got a huge crush on her!”
He put his hands to his sides.
“That is absolutely TRUE!” he said with mock-anger. “How dare you say something like that? I thought we were homies!”
“And I thought you were ordering something,” I said as I land my hands on the cash register. “Now hurry up Granny Smith, time is money.”
He put his hands on the counter and batted his eyelashes flirtatiously. “Fine. Can I get a dozen Honey glazed Timbits, one hot chocolate and dinner with you?”
I picked up his hand and brought it towards me. I batted my eyes the same way he did. “The donuts and hot chocolate I can deliver… but I’m afraid I can’t get a date for you. I have better things to do than go to dinner with you.”
I then proceeded to throw (or chuck) his arm off the counter.
“Oh,” he said. “Girl’s got fire. I like that.”
I could hear Susie smirk in the background.
“Derek, you’re one of my best friends, but let me make this clear,” she said slowly. She was clearly trying not to burst out laughing again. “The chances of you going out with Samantha are like the chances of you getting run over by a steamroller and surviving.”
“Well I don’t know about that,” he said while crossing his arms. “I have pretty strong bones.”
“Not under a steamroller.” I couldn’t help but mutter.
“What did you say?” Derek asked.
I pulled out the Timbits and hot chocolate. “Only that your food is done.” I handed it to him.
We continued to talk until I heard the doorbell (it signals that someone has just walked in). It took one second for me to recognize the woman, and the minute I did I muttered an, “Oh crap.”
Susie and Derek knew who it was the minute the words came out.
I plastered on my biggest smile as my mother walked up to the counter.
“Hi, welcome to Tim Horton’s, what may I get for you?” I asked as if I didn’t know her.
“My daughter.” She said. I knew she was trying to get a reaction out of me so that we would start a fight, but I wasn’t about to give her the satisfaction.
“I’m sorry, but I don’t believe ‘my daughter’ is on our menu, or ever will be for that matter. We don’t force our employees to do things they don’t want to do here. Now if you would just look at the menu above me, you would see the number of food items to buy. So then, what can I get for you miss?”
I could see Derek giving Susie a look out of the corner of my eye that basically said, Is she crazy? If I ever talked to my mom that way, you wouldn’t be able to recognize me the next day!
My mother gave me a look, gave the menu a glance and sighed. “I’ve been craving a caramel mocha latte anyway.” She finally said, “I’ll take 2 Boston crèmes and a caramel mocha latte.”
“Thank you,” I said. I told her how much she needed to pay; She paid the amount (plus a forty-dollar tip. She wanted to help her daughter somehow and I, for one, was much obliged).
“Oh,” Derek said once she had left. “I hope I never have to speak to my mother like that. She looked heartbroken.”
“I agree, you didn’t have to add the whole ‘force your daughter’ bit on her,” Susie pointed out. “She got the message when you came to work here.”
“I know,” I said solemnly. “And I feel bad about it. But my parents have to listen, even if I have to be harsh.”
The doorbell rang again and I could hear Susie sigh.
“Those boys could pass for gods,” she said randomly. “They’re that hot!
I craned my head around Derek so that I could see what she was talking about.
She wasn’t kidding when she said those boys were hot.
The boy on the left had dark brown hair that seemed to frame his face perfectly. His dark blue eyes were stunning, and seemed to make everything he looked at shine to match his beauty.
The boy on the right was slightly taller than he was. He had short, strawberry blonde hair and dark brown eyes. It seemed that everything he looked at simmered down, as if he were cooling down whatever the boy on the left had heated up with his eyes. They both had tight fitting shirts and jeans that made them look all the more muscular.
It was like staring at good cop-bad cop. They both compared and contrasted in some ways, but looked good together.
“You weren’t kidding,” I commented as I put my chin in my right hand. “Those boys are fine!”
Susie nodded in agreement. Derek took one look at them and shrugged.
“They’re all right,” he said. “Nothing special.”
Susie and I looked at him as if he were crazy. “Are you nuts?” I asked in surprise. “Those boys are delicious!”
“I don’t think so,” he said simply. “I think they’re average.”
“Of course you do,” Susie said. “You’re looking at them from a boy’s point of view.”
He crossed his arms again. “Oh, am I? Please explain.”
“Gladly,” she said. “You see, all boys think they’re hotter than the other. There are some that know they are ugly, so they give up the fight, but the others stay in the game. That’s why you looked at those two gods and thought they weren’t anything special.” She made air quotes around the “anything special”.
“But women are always sizing up everything,” she continued. “We want to know exactly what is good for us and what’s not. So when we see rare exceptions to our ridiculous rules…”
“Something to make us lust over.” I added.
“We believe they are gods sent from the heavens to us foolish women who have done good on this earth.” She finished.
“So, in conclusion,” he said with a smirk. “It’s like that old rhyme ‘Girls go to Mars to get more knowledge but boys go to Jupiter to get more stupider’?”
She began to smile. “Your words, not mine. That has nothing to do with what we’re talking about. All I’m saying is those boys are fine. So sue me.” And she put up her hands as if to say, “take me away.”
I began to laugh and threw my head back. When I had managed to stand straight up again, some of my long, brown hair fell in front of my face. All I could see was a clump of brown.
“Now that’s sexy,” I could hear Derek say. I blew a few strands away from my face.
“Go back to Jupiter, space boy.” I said while I playfully punched him in the arm.
“Beautiful and funny,” I heard a voice say. “I think we made the right decision coming to this Tim Horton’s.”
I turned my head and saw both of the boys staring at me with their stunning eyes (I’d totally forgotten they were there. What horrible customer service!).
I whipped my hair back in an attempt to look sexy, but I must have done it wrong, because all I ended up giving myself was whiplash.
My head stayed in that crooked position as I tried not to hold my neck in pain (it was hard. My hand was shaking on the counter).
I tried playing it off to look like I was looking at something on my right, but all it ended up looking like was me ignoring them.
So I looked like I was rude, possibly deaf, and had a short-term attention span. I also had whiplash aftershock where I couldn’t move my head for a few minutes.
This was turning into a lose-lose scenario.
“Hello.” Cute boy #1 called impatiently. I couldn’t hold them off for much longer. I forced my head to turn in their direction (bringing a whole lot of pain, I might add) and looked him in the eyes.
“Hi, welcome to Tim Horton’s. What may I get for you today?”
“Good customer service would be nice.” Cute boy #2 muttered under his breath.
“My apologies,” I said, making it pretty evident that I heard him. “I was spacing out for a moment. What can I get you?”
Cute boy #2 blushed furiously. Cute boy #1 said, “Can I get two turkey subs, ten Timbits and two mocha lattes?”
I typed it all in. “Okay. Anything else?”
“Just dinner with you on a silver platter please.” Cute boy #1 said confidently.
I could hear Derek huff. “What the hell,” he said under his breath. “I just used that line. If it works, I’m going to rip that pretty boy’s eyes out.”
Lucky for “pretty boy”, I didn’t accept.
“Oh,” he said, obviously not used to being shot down. Cute boy #2 stepped up.
“What about me?” he asked.
“Sorry,” I replied. “Not interested.”
His chipper face immediately deflated. “Oh,” he said as well. “Well, can I ask your name?”
“It’s Samantha,” I answered. I stuck my hand out. “Nice to meet you.”
Cute boy #2 grabbed my hand. “I’m Jeff,” he pointed behind him with his other hand. “That’s Terry,” Terry waved. Jeff brought my hand to his lips. “It’s a pleasure.” He said as he kissed it.
I could see Derek biting his tongue. He was really trying not to rip Jeff’s head off. I decided to respect that and pulled my hand back.
“Thank you,” I said. “Very kind.” He smiled warmly.
My God, I thought. Even his teeth are perfect.
I could see Susie coming up behind me.
“Hi,” she said while putting her hand out. “I’m Susie, Sam’s best friend.”
Terry grabbed her hand and kissed it.
“Charmed, I’m sure.” He replied. Susie began fanning her face with her hand. Her face basically said I’m never washing this hand again!
Derek bit into his donut angrily. I could only imagine what (or whom) he wished that donut were.
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Bookworm1998 said...
Nov. 5, 2011 at 9:02 pm:
really funny! this seems good and i cant wait to see where you go with it. keep up the good work! :)
 
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