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 Pinata or Bust (the Wall)

Joined: Fri Feb 02, 2007 11:47 am
Posts: 7216
Tue Nov 24, 2009 12:16 pm
You're all going to hate me after this... *headesk*

Piñata or Bust (the wall)

I’ve made a lot of decisions in my life that I regret, but the problem is that I didn’t see the consequences as I was making them. I’m the type of person who needs to sit back and think before jumping to do anything, only that I’m the idiot who’s usually the first to jump… which usually doesn’t end very well.

            One such faulty decision was made at a friend’s birthday party back in fifth grade. We were all gathered in her apartment, playing games and having fun… I’ll call the birthday girl Anna… and Anna’s dad suggested we do a piñata. Only that it was raining out, so we had to do it in her living room. Well, we all lined up and took our turns swinging. No one was making much progress, but we were having fun doing it. I mean, how many times does a kid get to swing a metal pole around while inside a building? Without getting yelled at? Not many.

            When it was my turn up, I swung at it harmlessly, and then took my place back at the end of the line again. The next girl up was my best friend of the time.

Her name can be Nellie.

 Nellie was on a softball team, so she was really good at swinging at things. So, like a pro ballplayer, she wound up, and then swung with all her might. As the magnitude of the swing ran down the pole, the half further down it broke away and went straight into the wall opposite, plowing a hole all the way through, and sticking a good few inches out the other side. Everyone screamed. Nellie jumped down so that she was kneeling on the floor, shaking with her heart pounding. It was such an incredible feat— breaking the piñata pole— that at first we didn’t know how to react. Was this a good thing, a bad thing? A tragic thing?

The parents quickly went around, checking to make sure that no one was hurt, and then got us all to settle down enough to analyze the situation. The pole was still sticking out of the wall, and showed no signs of coming loose. Nellie sat quietly, staring up at the hole with large eyes. It was obvious she felt horrible, even though it wasn’t really her fault.

What came later on, however, most definitely was mine.

At that point, Annie’s mom and dad examined the hole, said that it wasn’t that bad and could easily and cheaply be fixed, and let us return to the party. Needless to say, piñata time was over.

Some increment of time later, the party was over, and all the moms were coming to pick up their kids. When we spotted Nellie’s mother walking up the stairs to Annie’s floor, we all scrambled to get a good view of the showdown that was sure to follow. Annie’s mom went and answered the door when Nellie’s rang the bell, and we all stared as we waited for the confrontation. Nellie shook with anxiety beside me. Inside, I was completely jittery. I felt like I had the biggest inside joke of the century on my hands, and it was my duty not to let it out.

“Hi!” Annie’s mother greeted Nellie’s.

“Hi! I’m here to pick up Nellie?”

And it was then that I couldn’t hold it in any longer, and I burst. “Look what Nellie did!” I shouted, pointing at the wall. The pole was still sticking out of it.

“Nellie!” her mother was flabbergasted and angry beyond belief. As the woman reprimanded my once best friend, Nellie glared daggers into me. I stared helplessly at my feet.

I’m sorry, I kept repeating in my head. I’m sorry…!

Sadly, Nellie wasn’t psychic then, and she isn’t psychic now. She had no idea how much underlying guilt was held behind my glassy eyes, watching her mother warn her about groundings, and the potential loss of her allowance, and all sorts of things as they left.

As soon as the door slammed behind them, everyone turned to stare at me. They couldn’t believe I’d ratted out Nellie like that. “Oh my gosh,” was all that I could say, “Oh my gosh. I didn’t mean it! I didn’t mean to get her in trouble!”

“You’re going to get it from Nellie now!” Annie said from the corner of her mouth. My own mother stood in the background through it all, watching with trepidation.

The next day at school, I went to apologize to Nellie, but she walked away when I tried to approach her. For weeks, she just ignored me. I was dying inside as the time increased. We had been best friends for two and a half years, and we had never gone more than a day without talking to each other since we’d first met. Even during the summer, when we were on vacations, we wrote letters back and forth and such. We were in constant communication.

Those were the longest three weeks of my life.

Then, one day, as I approached Nellie, she finally whirled around to face me. Tears were running down her cheeks and she glared with such hatred in her eyes, I couldn’t believe she was the same girl who had laughed and shared secrets with me just a month before. “My mom took away my allowance for the rest of November, and grounded me for who knows how long. Plus, she’s making me pay to get the wall fixed. How am I supposed to do that when I’m not getting any money!? Oh, and guess what else!? She cancelled my birthday party on me! I hate you!” She spun back around and stomped off, leaving me feeling even more horrible than before.

That night and for another several weeks afterward, I received angry, threatening emails from Nellie, telling me how I was horrible. Telling me what a bad friend I was. Reminding me of my guilt every moment I was just managing to get over it. I cried myself to sleep almost every night.

Even though it seemed impossible, Nellie did eventually manage to forgive me. Not completely, but enough to rekindle the friendship and try to put it behind us. We were never the same after that, though. I found us spending less and less time together, and when sixth grade came around and we were in different classes, we only spoke to each other once every couple weeks.

In seventh grade, we died out altogether, and just went our separate ways.

Since then, we’ve had to see a lot of each other. We’re into the same things— theatre, performing, getting good grades— so it’s hard to not see one another all the time. Every time I run into Nellie, I wonder what would have happened to our friendship if I hadn’t blurted out the way I had, getting her into a ton more trouble that she would have been in if I’d just let Annie’s mother explain what had happened. I wonder how we would be different, what people we would hang out with, which habits and hobbies we would possess today. How we would dress, how we would talk, if I would be into acting more than writing, whereas now I’m a writer over an actress. I wonder what our perspective on life would be.

But those are all just a bunch of what-ifs. They’re things that can never be changed, and as much as I would love to, we can never go back to being friends the way we used to, because the truth is, we have both changed. And since all that bickering, all those feuds, since everything that led to the end, we’ve changed separately; developing different assets and skills. So who we once were might have been compatible together to create an awesome friendship, but now we’re just so different that it doesn’t work. Whenever we try to talk, it’s awkward. The girl that I once watched Disney Channel with, and dreamed with, and went to plays and movies with is gone. There’s a new Nellie here, and I’m a new me. That’s just how life works.

And all I’m left to do is wonder how everything could have turned out… how we might be if I wasn’t such an idiot all the time.

But then I wouldn’t be me, would I?




"Don't declare defeat. Declare determination."

 Re: Pinata or Bust (the Wall)

Joined: Thu Jul 23, 2009 4:05 pm
Posts: 858
Sun Jan 03, 2010 2:25 pm
I think it's brave that you tell us of your wrongdoings! We all make mistakes, and we won't hate you for yours! Nice memoir, by the way :)

 Re: Pinata or Bust (the Wall)

Joined: Sun Mar 22, 2009 11:56 am
Posts: 4314
Fri Jan 29, 2010 11:37 pm
Great decriptions, pretty funny, perfect storyline!

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