BROUGHT BACK TO HIGH SCHOOL
The last year of High School found me in a group of 4 girls. Nariz was always the happy, oblivious one who never dated anyone from school... and who had this history of possession when we were in 1st year... so nobody really bothered with her except us. She's closest to Jaymie, this Arabian-beauty who was conservative, gentle, very lady-like, very prim... Then there's my bestfriend Lota, also a crush-ng-bayan with her luscious beauty and childlike charm. And then there's me, a pimply girl struggling with her temper (to which Lota found the best defense... she'd keep quiet when am throwing a tantrum but reprimand me in letters which humbles me enough to apologize and thank her for her patience).
Yes, I was easily the smartest and the most empowered. But imagine having to walk the halls with two beauties (actually Nariz was also pretty, only Lota and Jaymie were both white-complexioned so they stereotypically get more votes) in high school. Imagine having boys sending them love letters and flowers all the time. Imagine having your bestfriend tell you about being insecure of Jaymie, who commanded attention like girls do in commercials... really cute boys would do more than a double-take for her, everywhere... and hating the fact that boys would only notice her after finding out that Jaymie is aloof (worse, imagine guys you're interested in only giving you the time of day because they feel that they're not good enough for Jaymie). And me, I was always just left dumbfounded... how do i react to the competition when firstly, they're my friends, and secondly, I was already aware of what beauty I do and do not possess?
Am sure there were moments of insecurity on my part too. Then again, being aware early on that I wasn't genetically-gifted that way and not really keen on the idea of having guys attracted to me because of my looks, I was never really bothered by this aspect.
Fast forward to 8 years and beyond from high school. I heard Nariz is already married. Jaymie has jumped from one relationship to another between just two guys, both of which only kept being unfaithful to her. I'm not sure how she is now. Lota has just last night gone berserk at learning that I actually hope to get married someday... having played mistress (using the term loosely) for a while to different married men and also having declared that the worse karma for her would be to get married herself. Lota has also dated and slept with the greatest crush of my life, which has made me feel wistful at most. He was, after all, one of her admirers in 2nd year, even before I met him in 3rd year. And it just saddens me to know that the boy I was crazy for grew up to be a man I cannot really deem respectable... gaining so much weight, dropping from one university to another, drinking his nights away, and being too rough a sex partner. Worse, my bestfriend has been avoiding him for months, seemingly scared, because he wants to impregnate her.
And me, I was riding a jeepney for home last Thursday when I realized that the man in front of me who is secretly checking me out is Carlswell, one of Lota's former crushes. Since I was sick and wearing my uniform, I was in no mood to even smile at him, not that we were really ever introduced. But I know he knew who Lota was, and of course wondered if he recognized me as someone he used to go to high school with. And so we spent the ride home surreptitiously glancing at each other. I even saw him really stare after me after i've gotten off the jeep.
So, I texted Lota about the weird encounter with her former crush. And she replies with this:
"Si Carlswell? How can i forget him, he used to reply to my notes pala kasi he thought I was Jaymie!"
BROUGHT BACK TO HIGH SCHOOL