The Nameless Chronicles



The Year Book – Minus a Few Years

My elementary school had a year book each year we were in school.  Did yours?  They published those awful, toothless pictures to the whole school that made you actually feel good about yourself as an awkward teenager.  I started at my school in the 2nd grade and it seemed that, even missing those first two years in that district, made it hard for me to get friends.  I still felt like an outsider graduating from there and I spent 11 years with those other kids. 

Typically, at the first arrival of the school yearbook, you run to allow your best girl buds sign their names inside the covers or by their pictures (we were so senior high back then) and then you spend recess going through all the grades above you and yours to talk about the cute boys and giggle like a pack of rabid geese.  The next part of the process was to, in the privacy of your bedroom, go through your year book and circle your friends, X out your foes, and put hearts around your true love.  You’d then bring it back to get any extra signatures that you might have missed the day before and hope to God that your true love doesn’t see his picture. (But really, what a dumb thing to do…unless you just never hand out your yearbook to anyone else, ever.)

Which is what I did, every year.  And from the first year at my school, I fell for JB.  He was gorgeous.  Some of the lightest blond hair in the building, and blue eyes.  He was funny and had a great smile.  I admired him from afar, even though he sat two desks away from me.  He wasn’t quite a jock, but he was definitely already in that “popular kids” category.  I pined.  I swooned.  I blushed.  I’ve always been a blusher.

We got our 5th grade year books, the last year before going into junior high.  I withheld my urge to fill my book with circles, X’s and the all-too-familiar hi-lighter heart around JB’s picture.  A week or two later, the craze for the yearbooks had died down and so I decided it was safe to go ahead and fill the pages with my own sentiments of that year.  JB got his monster huge heart around his photo and then I went on to take care of the other kids in our class.  For some mystical reason, I took my year book back to school and had it with me at lunch.  The cafeteria was filled with those fold-up tables that have the bench seats built onto the sides.  Each class sat in a long line on one side of the table and ate their lunch.  You couldn’t really pick where you wanted to sit either.  I managed not to get the seat next to my friend and had to sit near some of the guys in the class.  Alas, my  yearbook was there, a girl wanted to see someone’s picture and the guys saw JB’s face surrounded by hearts.  They immediately passed the message along the row down to him and to my chagrine, I heard a chorus of “EWWWWW!’s” resounding.  My cheeks were burning with embarrassment!

The following day, I went through the yearbook and stealthily marked a line through JB’s picture…over the massive heart.  No one could ever tell that I had a crush on him now!  To throw anyone off who might decide to lurk through the pages, I also managed to expand the circles around certain boys into hearts, even some of the X’s.  To make sure it took, I refused to talk to anyone about JB at school.  When one of the boys would try to poke fun at me, I would stick my nose in the air and not utter a word.  However, my cheeks always gave me away.  Blasted cheeks!

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