But there’s this thing that still bothers him. It has to do with an incident last year in the computer lab. It was a Friday, near the end of the period, and Ryan waited by the exit. He began absentmindedly opening and shutting the door. This girl he didn’t really know told him to stop. When he did it again, she smacked him in the face. He smacked her back. She clawed at him, and he fell into a row of computers. The bell rang, and the girl ran off. “The teacher asked me to report it right away,” he tells me, “but I had a bus to catch.”


Thanks for sharing. Man I feel bad for Ryan. I think at that age it's impossible to not be controlled by every authority figure around you and you feel like one wrong move will lead to your inevitable downfall. Which fucking blows.

    After school, Ryan usually goes home. He doesn’t drink or do drugs. “Parties are stupid,” he says, “because it’s where guys get drunk and talk about threesomes. It’s lame.” He isn’t part of any social clique—not the football guys, the volleyball girls, the Pokémon players, the anime lovers, the choir kids, the guys who work on cars, and definitely not the “white guys who all hang out with their trucks and guns and say, ‘Heil Trump’ and all that.”

In my experience not feeling like you fit into one particular "clique" was the best part of high school. I hung out with literally everyone and it was fucking beautiful. Also, blowing off party culture doesn't mean you can't go outside and have fun. The absolute worst thing you can do is stay inside all day, play video games and only focus on school. I'm early-20's now, and nobody regrets having fun in high school (unless they completely failed out). The people I've met mostly were sad at how miserable they were. They envied the adventure.

I hope he's able to find peace and have a good time. We need all the love we can get.

posted by OftenBen: 243 days ago