Today is the 10th. One month from today, we will no longer be living in Georgia but will be living about an hour north from here in South Carolina.
When I was in middle school, a set of twins transferred into the school. John and Susan were instant celebrities in Smalltown, Midwest. Fresh blood. There were only about 100 of us in our graduating class, so anyone new was obvious. And these two were interesting in so many ways.
We had one other set of twins in the class, two muscular farm boys who, by the end of high school, were coloring themselves orange and entering weigh-lifting competitions. They were big guys. And not bad looking. And so full of themselves that sometimes it was hard to fit down the hallway with their ego.
It’s been a handful of years since high school and middle school, and my memory isn’t all that great, so I hope you’ll forgive me if I get some details wrong in my story here. I was a loner through the later part of middle school and not much better through most of high school. It was a difficult time and I usually try not to think about it too much.
John and Susan were from South Carolina. When they transferred in, they had the most delicious southern accent I had ever heard. It was smooth and sweet like butter and syrup. Knowing what I know now, I suspect that they were preemie-babies, they were both very small with delicate bone structure. Their mother was also fairly delicate looking, so they may have simply taken on her genes, but they were both quite small.
John was taken in by the cool guys, among which, the other set of twins. They were athletic and brash and everything I wasn’t, so I stayed away as far as I could. I had no interest at all in being involved with anything these guys did.
Susan, on the other hand, moved between several groups. She was sweet and smart and not prone to the bitterness and cattiness I often saw in the other girls. She floated into the group of girls where I found myself in seventh grade and I was glad for her company.
Toward the end of the year, Susan and I were partners for a project in our literature class. We were reading The War of the Worlds and making a diorama of a scene. We had a plastic bubble and pipe cleaners as an alien and Lego men running away in terror.
And then, while sitting in gym class, I found myself exiled from the group. A very painful, lonely couple of weeks followed, during which I learned how vicious former friends can become. And the project in literature became very awkward. And I never spoke with any of those girls the same way again.
I don’t think Susan had anything to do with any of the situation with those girls. She was just there. I don’t hold any specific bitterness for any of those girls because I don’t know why it happened like it did and middle school is a time for a lot of really stupid behavior.
But when I think of South Carolina, I tend to think of those twins and how they were my first introduction to the state. And I thought it was so far away and that I’d never live there.
One more month to go.