instant results


When I was in third grade my best friend’s name was Raleigh. We were always in a competition for some reason and since she already had a cooler name, I really had to step it up. Once I got glasses we were kind of even, and so I felt smug about my poor vision. People would meet us and while she had a cooler name, I looked smarter.

I remember after the first quarter of grades her parents let her have a day off because she had good grades. I liked school an inordinate amount for a kid, but I was insanely jealous about that. What did she get to do all day? Eat and watch TV, while I worked on times tables and cursive, neither of which have helped me in the long run.

I asked me mom how she felt about me missing a day since I probably got better grades than Raleigh, but my mom didn’t really get it. What would you want to miss school for? I thought you liked school? Well, yeah, Mom, but …

Since I couldn’t really come up with an adequate reason, I became determined to fake being deathly ill. My mother never missed a day of school in her life, so she was not sympathetic to the possibility that I couldn’t handle school while sick. It had to be bad.

I recalled an episode of Full House where D.J. faked being sick by making her hands cold and falsey heating up the thermometer. I got a bowl of ice and the thermometer and holed up in my room. I wasn’t really sure what I was going for on the thermometer, but everything I tried wasn’t making it as hot as I thought it should be.

Somehow I reached the conclusion that holding it against a light bulb would be ideal. I took off my Minnie Mouse lampshade and holding it to the light bulb I waited for the beep. I checked the thermometer. The screen read “help.” Hmmm. That sounds good. Now what about the ice? It was partially melted by now, but I ran a few cubes around my hands, making them cold like I thought they should be, while also clearly dripping with water.

I ran to my mom and showed her the thermometer. What did you do? I explained that I was sick. She felt my forehead. I told her that I had read in The Baby-Sitter’s Club that feeling your forehead doesn’t even really mean anything, it has to be a thermometer and besides, my hands are cold, see?

She told me to dry my hands and to stop playing with the thermometer. The next day at school I tried again by going to the nurse’s office, but another girl I knew, Courtney, was there, so we ended up talking and laughing the whole time and the nurse deduced that we were not, in fact, sick. I still blame Courtney for this. She had a dog whose name was D-O-G, just spelling out the letters to dog, but faster than necessary. I always thought it was very stupid.


One Response to “instant results”

  1. When I first met my best friend from elementary school in 2nd grade I was super intimidated by her. She was THE best at wall ball. I was afraid that if I beat her she’d kick my ass. Despite my fears, we somehow became friends. We played on the same soccer team and in 4th grade would cheat on our reading only to prove to the other that we were the faster reader. As it turns out we ended up playing on rival club soccer teams from jr. high through high school, rival high school teams, and rival colleges! We are still friends to this day. 🙂 The end.

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