So the other night I was sitting on my balcony overlooking my adorable, albeit dry, creek and minding my own business when—wait, back up. That’s not correct. I was inside at this point in the evening. There may have been wine involved, so bear with me. Rewind.
Yes, so anyway, I was inside enjoying an episode of Monk (or twelve—I’m a spy, remember? So it’s okay), when there was a crash on the balcony (overlooking my adorable, albeit dry, creek blah blah blah. Alright, the creek isn’t mine. But the view is, so there you go.).
My first thought was, “Godammit! That rascally opossum from the creek finally figured out how to swing from one of those tree branches onto the porch!” Now, despite the fact that the ‘possum would have to swing a good fifty feet from any tree to reach my porch is part of why it was so terrifying. It would have to be a high-climbing, industrious, and probably plagued ‘possum. And that has basically been my worst fear for the entire month I’ve lived in this apartment, so it would only make sense that I had willed it to happen. I half-expected to see his gnarly, rabid face all up in the glass of the sliding door. But no. The opossum was out somewhere in the neighborhood minding his own business as well. Opossum don’t care. Opossum don’t give a shit.
|Rogue opossum swinging onto my porch. Nightmare realized.|
It was people that made the crash on my porch.
I turned on the light and saw my coffee cup from earlier all smashed to shit and a paper airplane stuck inside what looked like a broken coffee machine piece (a cup holder?) or some such bullshit. I don’t know what things are called, okay? Here, I’ll show you:
|I think I get easily carried away by Hipstagram and photo effects. Can't help it!|
And all masking-taped around the side was “You’re cute! You’re cute! You’re cute!”
And the paper airplane had some UT student’s 8th-grade-level algebra homework all over it.
My first thought was, “Oh wow, someone has a huge crush on me!” I wondered if it was that little undergrad Tyler in the apartment above and to the right of mine who brought me incense one time and had friends over all that night making noise and having “deep” conversations about what they liked best about themselves.
For a second, I thought it was kind of sweet.
Then, as I was cleaning up the shards of glass from my balcony, I started to get a little pissed. Where’d those fuckers go, anyway? They threw a note onto my porch, broke my mug and then bolted? That’s not nice. And if I’m so cute, why not stick around to apologize for breaking my shit?
And then the thoughts spiraled. I thought to myself: I bet none of them really thinks I’m cute! Besides boys never say you’re cute, girls say that. Those turds think they’re really clever and funny and they’re making fun of me! Those fucking jive-ass turkey shits!
There was more evidence that the love note wasn’t legit: the algebra homework belonged to some girl named Jenell, and girls are always the ones who decide to do mean things to other girls (and say “you’re cute!”). I was thinking about how I was going to march upstairs and beat the shit out of Jenell, and then smash a bunch of shit on Tyler’s balcony and then unleash an opossum into their apartment! They’d be so sorry…
But I’m kind of shy. And Jenell’s math homework made me sad. She’s clearly in some sort of remedial math class for morons, so life isn’t going to be too easy on her unless she happens to be really pretty (we already know she’s not smart or interesting).
As I stepped out onto the balcony an hour or so later to talk to Regan on the phone, Tyler came outside.
“Hi,” he said. He was alone.
“Hi,” I wasn’t fuming anymore, but I didn’t know how to act.
“Did we break some of your stuff earlier?”
“I’m really sorry about that. My friends were really drunk. They didn’t mean to break anything.”
“It’s okay, I guess. Do you need your paper airplane back?” I was joking.
“No.” He was really serious. I think he actually felt super bad. I guess if it were I, I would’ve hidden for months until the whole incident was a distant memory, so I had to give him credit for apologizing.
“Have a good night. I’m sorry.”
Regan told me that if it’d happened to her, she’d take it as an omen from the spirits that she was super hot. I think she used the word “fine,” but she’s never really gotten over the 90’s, so we have to make allowances.
I just can’t imagine what weird time warp I’ve fallen into that has me dealing with the ins-and-outs of a 19-year-old boy’s mind again. I've also kind of been thinking since I was 18 or so that I wouldn't have to deal with 19-year-olds again until I had a kid that was 19. I guess I’m just lucky to be back in college doing my thing, even if there happen to be 19-year-olds who live in my immediate vicinity. Life isn't perfect.
I’ve also decided to take the note as a sweet gesture that went awry. What's the point in being negative? So I can work super hard to not like myself? Even if those kids don’t actually think I’m cute (though obviously I AM), they could’ve written something truly mean. And I don’t think they meant to break my mug. And the paper airplane was pretty decent. Maybe Jenell has a some kind of future in paper airplanes. (I certainly hope she never gets her hands near a real airplane... just based entirely on her math skills.)
*Jesse Pinkman on Breaking Bad (Vince Gilligan, 2008).