As organized of a place as my head is, there are elements of my life that seem to be a bit out of control. My desk at work, for instance. For all my efforts to tame it into submission on an admittedly woefully sporadic basis, it bounces back with the same amount of clutter. It’s kind of astonishing, actually.
My paper files are another battle front for me, I’ll admit it. There is SO much paper in my life and I cannot seem to discard anything that seems like it could eventually be important. I so admire those people who can easily dispose of their mail. For me, it’s a painstaking process of sorting, shredding, and filing…or, more likely just pulling out the bills and procrastinating all the rest of it. Unfortunately for me, my tendency to keep everything has pulled me out of a few jams. If only that wasn’t the case, I would be much more cavalier about purging and moving on without a backwards glance.
Tonight I was on the search for an important paper that I must find. I went through all the most logical places I might have stuck it and came up empty-handed. So, I headed upstairs and choked on the dust as I pulled down my older filing boxes from my closet shelves.
I guess you could say that I’m a pack rat, but I can’t help it. I’ve always been a sentimental person, a fact much lamented by my super-organized mother, especially since a lot of my early day memorabilia (with which I cannot bear to part) is residing in their home instead of mine. Fiercely organized, of course. This is a woman that feels most comfortable in The Container Store after all.
It should come as no surprise to you that I stumbled upon a file marked “Memories”. And it should also not come as a galloping shock to you that 15 minutes later, I found myself sprawled on the floor in my dimly lit walk-in closet surrounded by various bits and pieces of my childhood. Some items brought tears to my eyes: a program from my Grammy’s memorial service, a birthday card signed with my now gone Nana’s familiar script , and notes that my parents sent me while I was away at summer camp. Shuffling through a few printed emails made me cringe and wish my older self could school my younger self somehow on social interactions…but, alas, the damage has been done. However, most of the memories I pulled out of their hiding places made me smile.
In the spirit of my walk down memory lane, I thought I’d let 11-year old Amy take this post with an original work of fiction co-written with a school chum for Mr. B’s English class. And so I give you this CLASSIC tale, which I might add, sported a title page so don’t get any funny ideas.
The Class War II
by Amy Haddock and Allison Reid
[There was no Class War I, for the record, and every single character was actually a student in our class.]
Thanks, Carolyn, for your books, to give us the wild and crazy ideas for ours.
[By Carolyn, of course, we meant Carolyn Keene who wrote the Nancy Drew series. I love how we addressed her as though we were real authors on the same level as she was and not mere 4th graders doing an assignment for class. I also didn’t realize at the time, but I know now, that Carolyn Keene wasn’t a real person.]
“Here they come!” shouted Allison in a loud whisper, as the girls frantically darted to hiding places.
There were a lot of loud whispers and giggles before Allison and Amy got everyone quiet. As they waited for the boys, Allison thought back to the sleepover last night at her house.
Allison’s mom burned the spaghetti sauce. The girls, at Beth’s suggestion, tried to dye the sauce purple and pink with food coloring. Unfortunately, the spaghetti sauce turned out to be a gooey, oozing, blackish blob.
Allison had no more time to think, just then the boys started to come in. As quick as a snap, Beth pulled the rope sending the pot of black goop onto the boys’ helpless heads.
“Good thing Aaron has Stain Master carpet!” Sarah said, chuckling at her own joke.
“This is no time to laugh.” Amy quickly said.
“Amy’s right.” Allison said, just as quick. “We’re going to be in dutch if we don’t leave RIGHT NOW!”
The girls started running but Beth looked back and all the girls stopped in their tracks. They turned just in time to see Brian recover from his shock.
“Mmm, this is pretty good.” The girls heard Brian say.
By now the boys had completely recovered. Their screams could be heard throughout the whole U.S.A. Above the racket, the girls heard Aaron say, “My mom’s gonna kill me!”
“But you have Stain Master carpet!” Sarah said, and the girls erupted with laughter.
Suddenly, they heard the soft purr of a motor. Aaron’s mom was home!!
“Oh oh”, Beth said. Amy’s heart dropped to her feet and Allison’s head started to throb.
Sarah screamed “Run for your lives!” The girls shot off; they didn’t need to think twice about that!
CHAPTER TWO: Cupid At Work
“This is Tyler Jackson”, Mr. B said. The girls sank back in their seats. Could this be their dream come true? They looked at each other in a dreamy sort of way. The boys exchanged glances that said, “Oh oh.”
After school, Amy called Allison but the line was busy. Allison was trying to call Amy (of course).
Eventually Amy gave up. Allison reached out and touched someone; that someone was Amy. Allison was shocked! She didn’t even have A.T.&T.
After Allison got over her amazement, she asked, “Did you see his beautiful baby blue eyes?”
“Ummm,” Amy didn’t seem to be paying attention.
“I’d better hang up”, Allison said abruptly, “I have to hear what kind of silly thing Aaron said to cover for us.”
RING RING…”Can I talk to Aaron?” Allison asked.
“Speaking”, Aaron’s voice came over the line.
“I was…”, Allison was interrupted.
“Be quiet, I’ll tell you.”
“Then come on, tell me, tell me, tell me!” Allison said, knowing it would make Aaron boil. She was right.
“I SAID be quiet.” Aaron said, scoring a point for Allison.
There was silence from the other end of the line. “You’re finally quiet!” he exclaimed. Aaron went on to say that he had built an electronic volcano and thought that the spaghetti sauce would be the perfect lava.
On Tuesday, the girls got into another dreadful fight. Beth and Sarah decided they couldn’t love the enemy, and yes you guessed it, Amy and Allison still did. But, they didn’t care, that just eliminated two girls that would have hung onto Tyler!
Just then Tyler “The Great” walked in. “I have a present for you,” Tyler said.
“For who?” Allison asked, her grin widening.
If looks could kill, Allison would have been definitely dead from the look Amy gave her.
“For both of you,” came the answer. Amy heaved a sigh of relief.
“Here,” Tyler thrust forth a big, beautiful box. Allison gave Amy a look that said should you or should I?
“I will!” Amy piped up. She slowly pulled the string on the package and at the end of it was…”A SNAKE!” Amy screamed.
At that heart stopping moment, Amy and Allison both thought back to the same thing; the spaghetti sauce. “The boys strike again,” Allison barely whispered.
“Hey, wait a minute, this snake isn’t real,” Amy exclaimed.
“And look at that piece of paper at the end of it,” since Allison loved mysteries she found that piece of paper really quick. It was from the boys. It said:
We’re sorry about everything. This has gone too far. Please forgive us.
(Tyler is Brian’s cousin, he won’t be staying here.)
Tyler and the boys
Tyler was gone by then. “They’re sorry, that will be the day,” Amy said with a giggle.
Are the boys really sorry? There’s only one way to find out: Read Sorry??? the next book in the series.
[There was no book two in the series, by the way, so I’m sorry about the cliffhanger. We thought it was cool, apparently. Also, now that I read this again, I realize that our view was basically that boys were intrinsically at fault for all things even though they seem to be the victims in this story. In addition, I should mention that I’ve chosen to leave all the punctuation and whatnot exactly as it appears in the original TYPE WRITTEN version. You’re welcome.]