An Impractical Joke

My first semester was when I met Peter for the first time. Of course, along with him came Kai and Simon. But we’ll get to them later.

So, where had we left off? Oh yes,  at shit.

Zoe had just left and I was dreading returning to college after mid- term without the support of not just the person who shared my feelings of mutual dislike for the course, but my only friend in the whole course. I knew I’d have to make more, that’s the obvious option. But it’s difficult, when the people around you love something you so desperately hate. And yes I had begun to hate the course. It’s not like I hadn’t tried either, the first few weeks both Zoe and I had made countless attempts to start up a conversation with someone but never really getting much back. So, it’s safe to say I was pretty anxious the night before and morning of. Very anxious actually.

Oh first day nerves, why do you insist on coming back to haunt me.

I can’t remember exactly how we became friends, but I realised I sort of got along with Peter. Or at least, he got my sarcastic wit, which often confuse many (apologies in advance). Peter was an 18 year old teenager, but dressed like a politician in rehearsal, impeccably clean- cut- always, and incredibly formal. The most affection you’d ever get from Peter was a hand shake. Already in his group was, who we’ve already met, Victoria, and, who we haven’t, Kai and Simon.

Simon was a shy sort of person, and used to be in a relationship with Victoria (awkward…). An awkward individual, Simon was tall and skinny he didn’t really say much, at all, but he was nice and was probably the friendliest towards me in the end, but it didn’t start that way. It started with him being afraid to say hi to anyone, but still somehow apart of their friendship group.

Kai, on the other hand, was probably one of the worst human beings I’ve ever met in my life. I honestly don’t know where to begin with Kai. From his racist comments, to extreme sexist ones, Kai was the definition of an asshole. From the moment we met, we did NOT get along. I think the first thing he ever said to me (which of course was some sexist comment) I glared at, which he replied with “well the girls where I’m from aren’t as high maintenance as the ones here”. No matter what I said, or opinions I had, he would always try to begin an argument, disagreeing with me at every turn, instead of letting me have my own opinions like the rest of the group handled others’. I knew why, it was because fought for what I believed in, instead of letting myself be walked over at every chance he got. I cannot count the endless arguments we had, with just a few being; his belief that a woman belonged in the kitchen and should be the one to look after a baby if she had one;  his lack of remorse or compassion for any human being other than himself, those in famine, or war, or refugees. Kai was like the devil in a clown suit.

It was nice to think for a moment I  had someone to wave to after class and exchange a small word with on occasion. We were friendly, but by no means were we friends, as at that stage I felt, they didn’t want me a part of them.

And they didn’t. It was nothing personal. It was just that all the time I had spent becoming close with Zoe, everyone else in my course had spent getting close with each other. So when I’d wave I’d sometimes get one back, but I had learned to expect nothing, because that’s usually what I got. I felt like the butt of an inside joke I wasn’t yet let in on. No texts from them, no eating lunch with them, or studying together, no saved seats for me, I just didn’t belong with them.

And so, it was pretty lonely. Thank God Harley (my best friend) was on the same campus as I was, and when she didn’t have class I would cling to her like the only thing that was keeping me afloat. But when she did- which was a lot of the time- I was alone.

I was either in the library trying to make it look like I was busy, or pretending to read a textbook I couldn’t understand or which bored me beyond existence. Or I was in the café curled up in a quiet corner, trying to practice my writing (which is after all what I’ve always wanted to do), but lost for words, always, and blocked, constantly trying to write, with nothing good ever coming out, and feeling frustrated by my loss of words.

And forever feeling like I didn’t fit in. And no, I’m not trying to be a dramatic teenager writing in my bedroom listening to “The Cure”. I just really didn’t fit in not just with them, but with the course and the people there. Do you ever get that, when you don’t understand what everyone else is laughing at, or you do but you don’t find it funny? And suddenly there you are, laughing for the sake of laughing. It really is the worst feeling, a smile so genuine that holds no substance, such a craving for normality.

It was at this time, this moment, November 2016, that I knew it wasn’t right, and I began to look into my options aka, ways to get the hell out of there.

And to you, my reader, whoever you are, please don’t laugh at my bad joke, it’s not funny.

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