Is This the Real Life? Is This Just Fiction?

Chapter 3:

So I’m at John Widener’s house for what seems to be his 18th birthday party, and suddenly the house is empty. He probably wouldn’t take it very well if I walked out now, after everyone else had left, because I wasn’t invited. Now, I know you’re thinking “Well, neither were the Rovers and the swim team.” Well no one asked you what you thought.

And another thing, I’m almost a social pariah. The way I see it, there are the actual social pariahs, like the homeless and the drug addicts, then there are the people who choose to be social pariahs (I guess they would actually be called misanthropes. Thank you useless SAT prep course) and then there’s me. So even the socially incompetent nerds like John feel like they have some excuse to look down on me.

Since I was quite happy to continue examining his parent’s collection of old computers and considering that they would undoubtedly move to the basement to start playing nerdy rock songs soon, I decided to stay put.

What? No, I’m not from a poor family with a single parent and three kids. I mean, nothing against those types of families. Those are the types of families where if they work, you know they’re good people. No, I’m from a well off family created by two people who decided that since they had everything else in life, they might as well have a kid as well. So they curated me: the best preschool, the best music lessons, the best high school. I got so tired of their crap that I just wanted to go to a normal public high school. That’s how I ended up at Davidson. Of course, I had to do something in return, quid pro quo. So now I have a bunch of useless words like lexiphane and bifurcate. Anyways, back to the story.

What was I talking about…? Oh yeah, the computers! Now, I don’t know if geekiness is hereditary, but John’s parents were definitely geeks. They had an IBM PC. 1981. You don’t just find an IBM PC in some junkyard. Maybe if you lived in Silicon Valley, sure, but that’s still a super old computer. Like museum-worthy old. I wasn’t going to touch that. They would definitely know of that was missing. But I did grab some older integrated circuits to fiddle around with.

John’s band was mucking around with seventh chords so I decided to take that as my cue to leave. Wait! You. Sit back down. This is the best part. I was almost out the door when the swimmer guy came up from the basement. He was probably going to get some more pasta or something. Anyways, he gets all excited because apparently “no one ever stays around” after this weird think he and John do. Then he invites me to go and “chill with the guys,” but all he really wants to do is show me off as some strange species. So I say, “There is not enough time in the world to enumerate the infinite reasons I would not want to meet you or your friends.” Then I walked out with a bag of integrated circuits under my arm.

OK, now you can ask a question. Yes, you can be a social pariah and a motormouth. Ever watch The Usual Suspects?


 

Chapter 2

Chapter 4

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