As I mentioned, I want to write some more fiction, so here it is: fiction installment number 1.
I’ve never written realistic fiction about people my age, so I decided to try it out. My hope is that I can write a longer story in several parts, similar to what Charles Dickens did with his stories, but much, much shorter. The “chapters” will be approximately 500 words, and should come out every other week. They won’t necessarily make sense or have literary merit, but hopefully I can emulate (and create) a young-adult novel. Enjoy!
Birthday parties are funny things. It’s your responsibility to host the party, so you don’t really get to relax during the party because someone might choke on a piece of cake or break a lamp or do something awkward that makes the party not fun. Then it’s your responsibility to make it less awkward. Also, birthday parties are kind of expensive, especially if people are expecting something more than paper birthday hats and a fifteen dollar cake from the grocery store. Speaking of cost: why do presents have to be so complicated? If it’s a nice party, then you’re kind of obligated to get something nice, but if it’s too nice then the other person might think that you’re trying too hard, or other people might think that you’re trying to show off how much money you have. It’s even worse if it’s not nice enough, because then the person whose birthday it is wonders why they invited you to the party if that’s what you really think of them, and other people think you’re too cheap to get something nice. That’s if you’re a guest. If you’re the “person of the hour” then you have to appear grateful for the present, even if you don’t like it, without seeming greedy and materialistic. And then there’s the fact that you’re celebrating your own life, which seems kind of narcissistic to me. I mean, who runs around telling the world that they ate breakfast or drove safely? You made it another year without killing yourself. Whoop de do. Now, you can get around the “celebrating a lack of my own stupidity” problem with a surprise birthday party, but that has its own problems, because you don’t actually know that a party is happening. What if you decide to switch up the routine and go out for a run before dinner, and then all your friends and family are in the living room holding cheap kazoos and getting pins and needles because they’ve been sitting behind the couch for thirty minutes wondering where in the world you could have gone? Or maybe you had a terrible, crappy day and all you want is to curl up with some tea and a nice book, but then you have to force smiles for three hours while people congratulate you. Now, none of these things have ever happened to me, a fact for which I am eternally grateful. I think we should just abolish birthday parties altogether in favor of sincere notes letting other people know that we appreciate their existence. Would that be too hard? Apparently, yes, it is too hard, because I’m standing in the middle of a room, bottle of Coke in my hand, at my own 18th birthday party. And I am terrified.
My name’s John, and if you can’t already tell, I have a tendency to over-analyze things. I have a sister, Sarah, age 9, a brother, Alex, age 5, and a golden retriever, Golden, age 3. This is my life.