Some idiot on Uranus

H,
Il ya trios très, très étudiants ennyue (‘cuz 2 boys) dans cette class.  (There are 3 very, very bored students in this class.)  J.S, C.R. & Moi.  HELP!  I’m all done with my homeowork so I is faking doing it in order to fill my desire to write to you.  The 3 of us elected not to take the test.  Ain’t we smart?  We get to put it off until Friday.  Mr. C (hope he doesn’t come over here) gave us a lecture on things to come.  Blew my mind!  Talk about things from outer space!  Some idiot on Uranus decided to give us these stupid formulas to confuse us and weaken our minds.  Then they’re gonna invade our souls!  Watch out!  I feel them crawling through my skull!  Help!
Oh-oh!  National emergency.  Here he comes.  Gotta go for a sec.  Hope you studied some more for the spelling test.  I didn’t.  I guess I’d better if I have time after bestowing you with my wonderous flow of elegant & colloquial vocabulary & enhancing your unfortunate surroundings.
I’ve been thinking about it, & I really do want my jewelry back.  I really love my Frampton ring, my French ring & my skeleton necklace; plus the others.  Problem:  I don’t want to create trouble.  I’m almost sure that that’s the girl who took my stuff.  If I see her again & she has my stuff, I’m gonna get Mr. P.  No, Ms. H.  She’s more into it.  I really don’t want to get beat up, but I’ve got to look at the bright(?) side of things.  Maybe it’ll improve my looks.  If not, then at least I’ll have a ligit excuse to cover my face.  Also, I’ve wanted to get in a good knock-down fight, but it’s just be dreaming.  I certainly don’t want a gang fight.  At least I never go anywhere alone.  Maybe they’re like C.W.; all words but no action.  I sure hope so.
I gotta game today.  I’m soooooo nervous!  This is gonna be the real test if I made the team, what string, & what position.  So far I’ve been playing left & right wing, 1st string, no substitutes.  But with my ankle, I don’t don’t know.  I usually don’t express pain very well, even if I’m dying.  So when I mutter & complain ‘bout something, that means it seriously hurts.  And this is about to do me in.  I’m in so much pain & agony.  It hurt so bad to walk down the stairs.  Going up is not too bad, there’s not much pressure on my foot.  But going down, “THUD”, it hurts like merde.  I don’t know how I’m going to play today.  Is it better to be a benchwarmer or play crappily?  Maybe I’ll play then keel over when I inevitably get kicked in the same place.  Make it look good.
Well, I’ve got 30 seconds ‘til the bell rings.  Luv ya,
C. briiing


Organizing these notes first by school year, then by writer, made it easy for me to see patterns in their subject matter.  These are the main topics I noticed, in order of their prominence:

  • Boys
  • Girlfriends and associated activities (sleepovers, roller skating, shopping, bicycle-riding, watching soap operas)
  • Academia (classes, homework, tests, teachers, grades, extracurricular activities)
  • Popular culture (movies, music, products, TV shows, etc.)
  • Family/parents/siblings
  • Riding the bus

If I were to make a word cloud out of the above topics, “Boys” would be in, like, 150-point font, and everything else would be maybe 14-point.

C. has been one of my closest friends since sixth grade.  She was a competitive athlete and our class valedictorian.  Needless to say, much of the content of her notes has to do with A) field hockey and soccer practices and games, and B) classes, tests, homework and grades.  As you can see, she also took French, as did several other of my girlfriends.  I was quite vexed when they wrote in French, because the only French words I knew were “moi,” “bonjour,” “adieu,” and “merde.”  (I took four years of German, which was far more useful in my very ethnic family.)

By the way, I selected the title phrase because I recently shared a Facebook post entitled “What is Uranus Made Of?” on Husband’s Wall.  We’ve been asking each other this question for weeks.  It never gets old.

Finding my way back to me. For realsies.

Recently, while Husband was on a business trip, I re-watched “Julie & Julia.”  I still like the book way better than the movie.  But this time Julie Powell’s experience really spoke to me.  Here’s why:

My family and friends know that I’m a little . . . um . . . different, and that one of the more irritating characteristics of this difference is my obsession with the past.  Apparently I started working on this obsession at an early age because, from seventh grade through twelfth grade, I saved close to 600 notes my girlfriends and I passed to each other during those years.  These notes have moved cross-country with me multiple times, biding their time in a large plastic storage bin with other assorted detritus from the 1970s and 1980s.  I’ve transcribed more than 400 of them since December, and they’re going in my book My True North:  Finding My Way Back To Me.

I’m not going to commit to releasing one note every day for the next year, like Julie Powell cooked her way through Julia Child’s Mastering the Art of French Cooking.  But I am going to dive in and hope you enjoy this as much as I know I will.  I figure if so many others can morph from bloggers to book writers, so can I.

1/23/78
H,
Well here I am babysitting again. My mom found out that we broke-up. She said D’s mom told her that she didn’t think that we were getting along or something. My mom kept asking me why he didn’t come over or call, all I said was “don’t know.” Then she kept asking me if there was another girl. I said “I don’t know” (as usual.) This dumb dog is jumping all over the house (she’s about as big as a wild boar & acts like one) I didn’t exactly tell her that we broke up cause she thinks that “going together” is what you do when you’re about 18 or 17 maybe 16 or 15. So if I tell her that, she’ll tell a long stupid story or sompin’. My mom says that I shouldn’t like just one boy. So I told her “Well, T.’s nice & P. plays tennis. And then there’s T. but he’s taken.” So then she says, well just be sure that there nice. Then I told her what a butt & a jerk S. is. She tells me to be nice to him. Like hell! (‘scuse my Portugese) She says that . . . . Better just tell ya. Re-mind me to.
Bye—W/B
C

We were in seventh grade when this was written.  As you can see, things haven’t changed much in more than 30 years–except maybe the means of communication.  We’ve gone from pen and paper to texting and tweeting.  One of the things I hope to get across in the coming months is how blessed I feel for having access to this window into the past through the pages of these notes.  Most other people may not care about reliving times like these (or even want to), but I enjoy it immensely.  It’s both entertaining and humbling.