Displaced Stay At Home Californian in rural N. Carolina

The Many Faces of Joy

The Many Faces of Joy

Monday, September 5, 2011

Old School

When I was in high school there was a newspaper that came out every month or so and it had articles written by teachers and students it it, as well as pictures and poems. I can't remember what it was called, maybe Campus Connection or something prosaic like that, although I do have some old copies tucked away somewhere. It was very basic because you have to remember this was pre-internet and pre-photo-shop and pre-digital cameras - I'm sure there are some of you out there that can remember those days.

Anyway - I don't know about the other students at my school but I loved this paper. I loved reading about all the events at school and around school and seeing who contributed and if there were pictures of me, etc. I will have to admit that because I went to a small Prep school it made it even more fun to always be featured in some way in this paper. It made me feel like I was making my mark. It made me feel popular.

There was a section in this paper called Eyes and Ears. It was exactly what it sounds like, a gossip column. It was fantastic and whoever wrote it knew exactly what was going on and who was dating who and who was seen parking at the local make out spots and who held hands to Barry Mannilow during couples skate, who spent more money at the fall festival kissing Todd in the kissing booth and and more. I was always accused of being the person who wrote this but I wasn't and I would defend myself vehemently when accused because not only would I not expose my friends in this manner, I couldn't figure out who it was that knew so much but felt that also felt comfortable putting it in the school paper. When I look back, some of the stuff was pretty rude but the paper sponsor must not have had enough time to edit every article or maybe it was over their head.

I had a really good friend in high school who was always bemoaning my popularity, I didn't give it too much stock, I figured it was just a competition thing with her and brushed her off whenever she would start in about why she was never invited to parties or invited on dates by boys. I also felt very awkward whenever the subject would come up. I didn't want to admit I was popular because I didn't feel good about accepting that title but I also didn't want to have to address the things she was doing to cut herself out of social settings and invitations. Instead what I did was I went to parties and events and lied and didn't tell her or made up stories that my mother wouldn't let me go and had restricted my ability to go out. I lived in constant fear that she would find out I was betraying our friendship in this manner and would call me out as the fraud I knew I was.

It was either on graduation day or several days later we got together to talk about our lives when she revealed with great excitement that she had been the editor of the Eyes and Ears column and that she had gotten all her good gossip and tidbits of information from me! She said that she would giggle inside whenever I would get accused of being the editor of that column because she knew she could not tell me while she was writing it for fear I would stop telling her all the good stuff. I distinctly remember feeling sad and I knew that it had changed our friendship forever. I wasn't upset that she had taken the things I had told her and written them down, I was sad that we hadn't been honest with each other.

In the end, she never asked me how I knew all that stuff. And I never told her that her not telling me she was the editor of Eyes and Ears, had hurt my feelings. We are no longer in touch with each other and I ran into a mutual friend about 4 years ago and was told that she had told her that "Joy and I are no longer friends" and I wondered if that was part of the reason why?

1 comment:

Tyler Reilly said...

That's so weird. I'm going through something almost identical to this... It thought you take on your popularity was interesting and rather humble but I know what it's like to have a friend that isn't invited to the parties you are. And I do feel guilty for being friends with people that don't necessary like her as much as me.