My high school girl-friends Marguerite and Angie were also great friends and my protectors. Love those gals! Many a time, they stood up for this geek and I appreciated it. Again, I was lucky. I even actually really enjoyed the majority of my high school. My senior year was great. I had plenty of friends, was pretty well liked, and was active in not only varsity sports but also held some officer positions in a couple of clubs.
Luckily, Marnee and I remained good friends. (Blush and beaming smiles)
|If only I had known that Steven McQueen wore a turtleneck.|
Let's think about this for a second (as adults). WHAT THE FUCK? What does that even mean? Only Jew wear turtlenecks. That is one of the most ridiculous statements, as an adult, that I have ever heard. BUT, as a 15 year old, it was truly damning.
I was so embarrassed. I felt so obvious, so noticeable in my turtleneck. I felt like a Jew, because only Jews wear turtlenecks. This kid had been tormenting me for 2 years since 7th grade, but now he had tormented me about something different, my religion, the one thing which at this point in high school, had set me apart, made me different, but it was never negative up until this point.
With regards to turtlenecks,I had never worn one for at least 15 years because I hated the way I looked in them, always thinking back to that incident in the cafeteria.
This bully was a monster, grabbing at anything which made a kid different and then negatively capitalizing on it. Asshole yes. Monster (in my eyes) yes. Pathetic and pitiful ... yes.
He tormented me through high school. It was Hell. But luckily a couple of good guys by the names of Mike, Chris, and Joe (of our Gateway HS football team) befriended me and I got through it unscathed. He seemed to back off. I have always (mentally) thanked them for this, maybe not publicly until now. Mike, unfortunately passed away a couple years ago and it pains me that I never was able to thank him. That's what happens though after high school as you more than often go your separate ways. I feel Mike somehow, somewhere, knows how much I owe him.
I saw the bully at my 25th reunion back in November 2013 and was cordial and pleasant to him. His wife though was sooo nice. I had all of these grandiose plans that I would finally confront him and tell him what an asshole he was. Then I realized, why am I talking to this asshole? After a short meaningless conversation, I pretty much walked away from him mid sentence.
I finally bought a turtleneck in the mid 2000's. Wore it, got compliments, and kept it until I wore it out. It's a shame we are scarred this way. Luckily my "scarring" has faded, as true scars do. The pain grows less each year as the scar fades. It sucks though that I still have pain. I recognized that at the reunion and there is nothing wrong with that. I choose though, to not have to talk or acknowledge that individual anymore in my life. I can say he doesn't have any power anymore, but sometimes he does, sometimes he doesn't. I can honestly say though that he still is such a fucking asshole.