[name taken out]

Totally Random Essay

7/26/03

The War of Social Life

"'Happy birthday Jen, from your best friend, Amanda!' Ohmygod, that is just so sweet of you! Thanks so much!" Giggling females embrace in an insanely hyper act of undeniable sisterhood. They are both fifty years old. Friends are young women who accompany each other throughout the process of maturity, through tender moments and painful mistakes; they learn from each others' successes and downfalls, and subsequently grow stronger and more beautiful. It is important as we grow up to realize the types of people who surround us from within the sandbox, the classroom, the SAT testing area, and the sorority house. The kind of girls we choose to be around will either come with us to our senior years, neither leading nor following, or abandon us at the slightest chance of gaining more for themselves, such as social status, or even the dreaded boy. It is because of these possibilities that we must seize the chances of finding the sister that Fate decided to give instead as a friend. Friendship. "Strong enough for a man, made for a woman." Amazing how deodorant can make a fascinatingly accurate parallel to such an important matter.

Diiiiiiiiiiiiiing! Racing down the hall, I screech to a halt at my locker, twirl the combination at a velocity that could produce a tornado, yank my books and calculator out of the box of metal, and sprint toward the abhorrent class of Algebra II/Trig. Heaving an immense sigh, I violently rummage through my pencil bag, grab the nearest pencil and eraser, slam them onto my desk, and slide my TI-83 graphing calculator onto the writing surface. There. Thirty seconds, a personal best. Jesus Christ, must I always be over punctual? Almost immediately after, a Clingy Follower I know far too well excitedly leaps with the energy of someone who has just eaten Lucky Charms to my desk. "Hi Vicky I closed your locker for you since you always forget to close it on your way to trig I know 'cuz I time it you see and then I brought that dollar that I owe you but I decided for your kindness I'd give you two dollars they're right here if you want them now which I would totally understand and by the way what did you get for the word problem on section 12-3 'cuz I know when I tried to call you for help last night you were in the shower and God forbid I should interrupt you in the middle of a shower, so instead I called Tiffany that's okay right, you're not offended right-good okay well anyway..." She pauses to take a strangled gasp for air, telling me only that there is no way this girl acquires the average recommended amount of oxygen intake. "How are you?" My level of exasperation cannot be put into mere words once she completes her daily spiel of five-hundred-and-one Chicken Soup words for the soul. Unfortunately, the Clingy Follower acts this way because she is in debt; because we accepted her as an acquaintance after she was "ditched" by her former allies, she feels the need to assure us that we will not regret recruiting her in the eternal War of the Cliques. Her perpetually gratified face will eternally haunt us in the near future as we sleep-no wait, that really is her standing in front of my bed, making sure the bedbugs don't bite. It's all we can do to keep from silently fingering the nozzle on the pepper spray. The Clingy Follower, though thoroughly believing she has dedicated her life for our well-being, is ironically one of the few "friends" it is hardest to rid our lives of. If the time comes when her being on our army is simply causing more casualties, there is a need to break the news to her tactfully and sensitively. Write a caring, compassionate letter in which the whole group states the reasons why she is being so annoying. Carefully word the letter bit by bit, so that each masterfully crafted sentence carries a clandestine message with its thought-out essence. When one of our own reads the note as an editor, she should feel an impulse to cry with tears of understanding; the letter should not be one that evokes feelings of pain, misery, or depression. Leave the message anonymous, or sign "From Someone Who Cares," so nobody will be hurt by the wounds of friendly fire. Mission accomplished as she softly reads the letter aloud to herself, deciding that she will change for the benefit of herself and others in the future, thrusting her fate into her own hands, and carving the start of her new sculpture of social destiny. We hope. Grenades can be rigged into lockers, you know...

In front of us, many boys lump in a group, laughing at the latest episode of "South Park." A friend and I briskly walk past, making sure to get to drama class on time, while still discussing certain matters. "Why are you doing it? WHY? Because I want you to, Vick, that's why! Please, do it for me! Do it for me as a friend..." The antithesis of the Clingy Follower is a detested [censored], a Forceful Leader, who keeps an amazing facade in the face of the enemy. We who know the truth behind her mask remain faithful to her in a shameful, unspoken fear of the blackmail she has the right information to unleash upon the harsh social world. We know that she throws herself into the middle of the commotion, always the center of attention. It is because of this that even with her lack of skills and looks, this machiavellian Leader is able to manipulate the right sailors in the right battleships. Battleship officers report to their superiors, who report to the Head of the Navy, who reports to none other than Mr. POTUS himself, and there we have it, an enormous victory for her through the work of others. All she had to do was suck up to the bottom of the chain, and the flammable power of persuasion would rapidly proceed with a fiery roar up to the top like an inevitable missile. However, to the common bystander, the Leader's semblance of a heroic jack-of-all-trades is obviously rather misleading. She has the looks, the grades, the "right crowd," and even hordes of admirers, from boys who are content with love from afar, to young men who are willing to declare their affection from the top of the building over the intercom, which they readily stole from the school secretary on her coffee break. Of course, a closer look will show us that the Forceful Leader doesn't really have any of those naturally, except maybe the masses of idiots following her every move with infrared binoculars. Otherwise, it's makeup, tutoring, and blackmail: the key ingredients to her commandeering success story. If one has a "friend" like this plaguing the normal lives of many, it is suggested for health and sanity reasons that the friend be left behind. Move on; it's not worth it to have someone allegedly there for us when they only support us due to convenience. It is best to distance oneself from her as soon as possible, and if one is able to, never get close to her at all. Nobody merits being in the shadow of someone supposedly at the top, when in reality, she is a leech who sucks all talent, glory, and self esteem from those surrounding her. Get help now; this is a parasite needs to be betrayed by those she trusts most in order to truly comprehend the intense agony she causes when she hews the mind with a psychological ax. Fight missile with missile. Yes, yes, there is a reason why the guy she likes is tied up in my office...

Break is over, as we heard the first time, although the bell spastically vibrates jerkily every two seconds. Period three P.E. girls trod on over to the soccer field, waiting for the coach to grab her clipboard and come over. Though there are many more types of girls "given" to us by Fate's mistake, the girl we meet with as we take our laps around the field will be the rare friend of stained glass: the Butterfly of our life. If we should befriend such a person, the force of our gratitude and bliss itself would cause the Earth to spin on its own. The Butterfly possesses so many details in her wings, her soul. No matter how many times I peruse the transparent glass of her heart, the more opaque coloring that makes the patterns so intricate stops me from reading too far. I know everything about her, and she knows everything about me, yet we know nothing. I understand her in every way, and could exchange minds with her without feeling different at all, yet I will never comprehend anything past that stained glass. We could be the exact same; it is those colors that make us unique, but similar. So many shapes leaping and twirling around her wings; I could never hope to find them all. We know each other better than family, yet there is always a barrier. However, in the short times when we are together, our friendship flourishes and thrives in the soil and nourishment of our imaginations, buds blossoming in the former battlegrounds. It is friendships like these that sustain our souls throughout the rest of our lives, the glow of their warmth at heart making the world a better place, no matter how sappy and clich├ęd that one line sounded. Which would be very. When my butterfly lands on my hand, I want to take flight with her, and soar into the heavens where we can make up "what if" theories about aliens and magic, as we glance down at the trees and see unicorns bursting with loud whinnies from the leaves. Everyone wants a butterfly, and I'm fortunate enough to have one. Thank you for being the breeze I needed to get off the ground; you know who you are. I think.

(a/n: NOTE. THIS WAS NOT WRITTEN BY ME. IT WAS WRITTEN BY ONE OF MY BEST, BEST FRIENDS.)