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on not being a popular kid in high school

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I guess I achieved a certain measure of notoriety by the time I was a senior in high school, the kind that comes from whispers about "the little genius" in AP Lang (whispers I never heard directly), "the child prodigy," "the published author," "the girl with the Wikipedia page." This was cute, flattering, and constantly surprising.
But notoriety is different from popularity.
Someone might have heard of me, sure, but that was different from the kind of all-consuming desire to be with me, to be me, that shadowed the popular kids.
In tenth grade I was a shy fourteen-year-old, the kind of person who sat back in my chair and watched events I didn't fully understand. But I quickly realized who was "popular." They were carefree, rich, and beautiful. They had cars which they talked nonchalantly about crashing, and cabins at Steven's Pass or Whistler. I wasn't old enough to drive. I'd never been skiing. The popular kids all seeme…