3:57 am- shaken from slumber by sound of tiny paws frantically scratching (the term “scratching” is used loosely here, as the aforementioned tiny paws have been declawed. The sound more closely resembles that which would be generated by someone who is stranded on a desert island with only a pair of maracas and a desperate need to flag down a plane passing overhead)
4:02 am- as per usual, feigning ignorance did no good whatsoever and the cat is not giving up. Stumble lethargically to the door, open it just a crack, and whisper, very sternly and forcefully, “You are the most annoying cat in the whole world. GO. AWAY.” Hover imposingly over the unfazed cat, who does somersaults and meows as loudly as tiny vocal chords will allow.
4:04 am- retreat back to bed and go back to sleep, trying to ignore cat sitting creepily at the foot of the bed and staring at me.
5:30 am- first alarm of the day sounds. I have set it early with the earnest intentions of getting up and straightening my hair. However, I once again talk myself out of the extra effort, citing excuses such as, “Today’s a half day. Not worth it.” And “It’s supposed to rain today, anyway.”Check to see if cat is still sitting there (she is) and roll over, returning to sleep.
6:20 am- having somehow managed to ignore both of the alarms I had set for between 5:30 and now, I am jolted awake by the sound of Kyle’s alarm in the adjacent room. This is when I absolutely NEED to get up, and I am often thrown into a state of panic by this sound. Sprinting to bathroom soon commences.
6:35 am- shower completed right on time; panic has subsided. I open the door to find the cat, as I do daily, sitting immediately outside the bathroom door, continuing to stare at me. She appears to accept her name- Shadow- as more of an occupation than a mere name. An occupation she takes very seriously, as she will demonstrate to me by being irritatingly omnipresent for the rest of the morning.
7:10 am- my brother and I are technically “supposed” to leave for school in ten minutes. However, this has not been executed successfully since the first day of school. Even so, I feel a great sense of urgency every morning when the clock approaches 7:20. This is what causes me to come flying down the stairs and into the kitchen to drag the dog outside for a walk (the only exercise our dog gets is two walks, roughly ten minutes in length, per day. This is seen as highly disgraceful by our retired neighbors the Grays, who walk their dog at least six times a day)
7:25- still outside with the dog, who has failed to “do her business” as of yet. I am beyond Panic and have crossed definitively over into Fury. I stomp angrily through the neighborhood, hissing a steady stream of expletives at the eight-pound dog happily waddling along beside me. Worried that my neighbors might think I am an animal abuser, I occasionally stoop to pick up the dog and give her a brief, halfhearted hug.
7:35 am- burst dramatically through the front door and begin to gather all of the things necessary for school that I have yet again failed to pack up the night before. As this takes place, my brother stands in the center of the kitchen armed with skeptically raised eyebrows and an impatiently tapping foot.
7:40 am- board Thugmuffin (our ’97 Honda Civic who we believe secretly hates us) and head off for school. We may only begin driving after Brother spends an incredibly frustrating amount of time sifting through his assorted pretentious indie CDs in order to make the three-minute drive as enjoyable as possible. When I suggest he consider labeling his CDs in order to make them identifiable without first having to play them, he shrugs and makes a pretentious grunting noise. I hate him.
7:43 am- arrive in school parking lot, where, contrary to the desperate fear Brother has expressed regarding the limited number of parking space, there is, in fact, absolutely no shortage of places to park. Whatever.
7:44 am- our friend Dakota pulls up. He and Kyle think it’s cute to pretend to hate me. I think it’s annoying that they think it’s cute.
7:47 am- have dejectedly resorted to walking by myself. Being an exceptionally slow walker (average pace, tiny steps), I have trouble keeping up with Kyle and Dakota’s gargantuan steps. I attempt for a short while to keep up by speed-walking behind them and occasionally yelping out, “Wait! Hey, wait for me!”, but eventually fall victim to a great wave of self-consciousness and an overwhelming desire to avoid looking foolish. I slow down and try to look like I am only walking at this glacial pace because I am so absorbed in texting all 4,000 of my cool friends.
7:50 am- arrive in the band hall. Glare at Kyle and Dakota. I am menacing.
First hour (Band)- I don’t want to talk about it,
Second hour (AP Lang)- the sternest admonition we ever receive in this class is an arched brow and an exasperated utterance of the word “children”. It’sSoMuchFun.
Third Hour (AP US)- as my older brother, who took this class with the same teacher in his high school days, describes: “He [the teacher] does a stand-up routine loosely related to the subject matter, then gives you a worksheet.” It’sSlightlyLessFunThanAPLangButStillFunNonetheless.
Lunch- I return to the band hall with my lunch and experience the daily pang of shock when I see Brother’s backpack is there, but the owner is nowhere in sight. Despite the fact that he has never once been there when I’ve returned with my lunch, I still insist on looking wildly around the room and wailing, “Where’s my brother?!”, a question that is no longer dignified with a response. I choose my seat based on the content of the conversations different groups of people are having. Nine times out of ten, I will go with the group that is A) gossiping, B) making fun of someone, or C) both. Brother will eventually arrive with his lunch, occasionally armed with two lunches, in fact, and I will hastily push backpacks and trays out of the way to make room for him. I will pitifully squeak, “Hi, Kyle!” and pat the ground next to me. He will ignore me completely and I will watch, horrified, as he walks right past me and plops down next to someone who is NOT his twin. I will pout for approximately ten seconds, then grudgingly get up and shuffle over to sit with him. I was not aware that this was a daily occurrence until it was pointed out to me last week by Lunch Buddy Brian, though his version was rather abbreviated: “You save a seat for him but then he doesn’t love you and you freak out.” Indeed, Brian. Indeed.
Fourth Hour (Chem)- Our student teacher is from a town called Big Ugly. This makes it hard for
me to take her seriously. This is class is also incredibly boring. This makes it hard for me to take it seriously. In lieu of listening/learning, I draw pictures featuring my name written in a decorative fashion. I must have an entire notebook full of pictures of my name. I could easily plant said notebook in someone else’s backpack and frame them as my stalker. Which would be hilarious. It’sNotFun.
Fifth Hour (Alegbra)- I hate this class. Not only is it boring, but Brother is also in this class. Normally this would be cause for delight, but he is significantly better at all that mathematical jazz than I am and loves to gloat. I hate him.
Sixth Hour (Spanish)- Señor makes fun of people AND sells candy. SoMuchFun.
2:50pm - It is at this point in the day that I come to the grim realization that my prayers to Mother Nature have not been received yet again, and she has failed to provide rain in order to force tennis practice to be canceled. She is probably too busy pestering Serena Williams about her period. I am what you could call a Circumstantial Tennis Player. I have waivers for first and second term, but in order to avoid gym class for third term, I am required to take a sport. Hence the circumstantial tennis playing. I have technically known how to play tennis since I was eight or nine years old. I should probably be approaching pro level. However, I continue to play at a level in which celebration is called for when I successfully land the ball in the court.
4:30 pm- Tennis practice is over. I try not to look the coaches in the eye.
4:40 pm- If I rush home, I can catch the last half of Tosh.0. It’s like catching the bouquet at a wedding, only less awkward and more important.
5:15 pm- Steve (Dad) is home. Ew. Becky (Mom) doesn’t allow me to call her by her real name (to her face, at least), but Steve has no problem with it. Therefore, I end up referring to them as Mom and Steve, which she hates even more, as it makes them sound like a “Second-Marriage Couple.” I also enjoy switching it up occasionally in favor of Ma and Pa. Becky also dislikes this.
6:00 pm- Becky is home. Now the party can really start.
6:30 pm- Family dinner. Gag me.
7:00 pm- Time to watch TV with Becky. Our favorite shows include Castle (a crime show starring Nathan Fillion, who my father has clearly demonstrated is held in very high regard in geek culture), Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution (faithful viewers since the first season a few years ago, we loved Jamie before we watched the TED Talk in AP Lang. Posers), the Middle, Modern Family, and the Mentalist. Becky also watched NCIS: Los Angeles, but she claims she doesn’t like it and only watches it because there is nothing else on. This is absolute hogwash.
8:30 pm- Time to start my homework. This is soon followed by grumbling and whining about how much homework I have, then a complete disregard for Becky’s suggestion that I start sooner. I silently denounce her credibility- she doesn’t understand how important After-School TV Time really is.
10:30 pm- I head off to bed with roughly 60% of my homework completed, figuring I’ll do it during lunch or a boring class. I’m a really excellent student.
11:05 pm- Cat’s here.