You Gotta Be Cool

I went to private schools all my life. Until high school. But from ECI {Early Childhood One} at Cassidy in Oklahoma City to Holland Hall in Tulsa where I wrote my first play in the first grade, to All Saints, where I threw a fit when I moved to Fort Worth and said I would NOT go to school in a trailer park and cried for days about not going to FWCD {Fort Worth Country Day}, I was scared to enter the foray of public high school.

All Saints only went to the eighth grade until it was time for us to embark on high school, and all the cool kids transferred to Arlington Heights, so clearly I was too. And I was terrified. Was I going to get raped in the hallways? Beaten in the parking lot? To say I stressed about it would be the understatement of my life.

Two weeks before me and all my friends were making the change my best friend and mentor told myself and my other four best friends in order to “be cool” at Heights and make the right impression we had to start drinking and smoking.

Seemed legit.

So we gathered together at my friend’s house and she broke into her parents liquor cabinet. She poured one shot of something brown and 6 of us shared it. It was disgusting.

Then the queen bee told me I was to take Her parents suburban and drive to 7-11 and buy cigarettes. I was 14. I’m not sure why I was chosen to break the law, but I did as I was told. Queen Bee {QB} put me in a body suit where my boobs were hanging out and instructed me to purchase Marlboro lights. The six of us piled in the Suburban and I drove us to 7-11.

I got the cigarettes and we went back to Sarah’s to continue are ‘cool’ training.

QB instructed us on how to inhale {Bill Clinton should have taken her course} and we went through the pack learning. Four of the six of us puked.

Finally, we were ready for high school.

So many rules.

You had to park in the West parking lot as the East was for losers. A cool upper class man had to drive you to and from school. You had to smoke at lunch, and you had to act like you drank every weekend.

We were instructed to take a stuffed animal and cut the bottom open. Take out some stuffing and this is where we would keep our cigarettes at home.

The plan was flawless.

High school was a success.

And started me on several bad habits that would last me until my forties.

I’m just now starting to regret feeling the need to be cool and not care what others think. To be true to my authentic self. Talk about a work in progress. A lifetime of work…