How many times in a row you going to wear that purple sweatshirt?
What? I like this sweatshirt. It has a zipper . . . it’s a jacket.
Yeah, thank you for clearing up the mystery of that shiny silver thing . . . a zipper, you say?
I was just explaining that it’s a jacket. I am allowed to wear a jacket several days in a row.
Except now I’ve mentioned it.
What does that have to do with anything?
No, what do you mean?
I mean you won’t be wearing it tomorrow.
For a best friend, you are a pain in the ass.
Ooooh, look at you. What if your mommy hears you?
Shut up. Stop sucking the joy out of my jacket. Anyway, what are you holding? What is that?
This? Nothing. And believe me, on the list of things I would suck, your jacket is way down in the double digits.
Talking like that? That’s why my mom won’t let me do a sleepover at your house. That’s how my mom thinks you talk all the time.
What, in double digits?
No, idiot . . . about the things you would suck.
Yeah, well . . . that’s because of that time she walked in when I was demonstrating how to deep-throat a popsicle.
That required some explaining. Did I ever thank you for that, by the way?
What was I supposed to do? Someone dares me to deep-throat a popsicle, I am not backing down.
OK, but the dare was to eat the popsicle in less than 30 seconds.
What’s your point?
My point is that when my mom walked in and asked you what you were doing, you said, and this is a quote . . . Hello, Mrs. Jenson. I am showing your daughter how to deep-throat this popsicle.
I do like to give the gift of awkward.
Yeah, thanks for that. Seriously . . .What is that you’re holding? We don’t have a poster-project due this week. Why do you have a poster?
Is that your explorer report? That was due last week!
Want to know a secret? When you turn in assignments late, nobody cares.
But don’t you get a bad grade?
Let me see it . . .
Be careful. Here, let me hold it up so you can see it.
OK, your explorer is Magellan?
Why is there cereal glued to South America?
Because Magellan discovered Froot Loops. Duh.
Magellan did not discover Froot Loops. What is wrong with you?
Are they hot-glued?
Yeah, but you can just peel them right off. Here.
So you’re going to turn in a poster that says Magellan discovered Froot Loops?
What the hell, right? Froot Loops are playing the role of spices. Magellan was all into spices.
Wait . . . are those ships Baby Ruths?
Genius, right? Want one?
You’re going to get an F.
Nah . . . you’d be surprised how hard it is to get an F.
Wow. Did your mom see this poster?
I thought so.
What do you care? Here, have a yogurt-covered pretzel. Let me just peel it off of Spain.
What are they supposed to be?
Nothing . . . I just like yogurt-covered pretzels.
You’re maybe insane.
Hmmm. It’s looking a little ragged, this poster. OK, here’s the plan . . . I am going to eat all of the crap on this poster before school, leaving me with an empty map of the world with bits of ripped areas where the hot glue tore off.
And then when I get to school, I will give them a big sob story about how some kid pushed me down and messed up my project, and then I will point sadly to where the ships and the spices and the treasure were glued.
Want an M&M?
I’ll take a red one, thank you.
Anyway . . . they’ll believe me. I’ll get a C and some sympathy. The end.
What if I tell on you?
What if I do?
Fine, let’s pretend that you would tell on me. Then you would be my mortal enemy.
Meaning maybe I call your mom and express my concern about the text messages you have been sending Benjamin.
I have never texted Benjamin.
So you would say. But the texts would speak of heaving bosoms and swollen lips. Your mom would fly into a parenting frenzy. She lives for stuff like that.
Heaving bosoms and swollen lips? No one talks like that.
You get melodramatic where Benjamin is concerned. Seriously, your mom is going to explode with joyful earnest concern.
Where would you get these texts that I have supposedly written?
Oh, they would be from my phone . . . because you used subterfuge. Stole my phone and used it to text Benjamin. I would of course report the phone stolen a few days before ratting you out. Then I would manage to wrestle it back from you, and what’s this? Texts! To Benjamin! Oh my. It would be my duty to report your misdeeds to your mom. I can see her face creased with motherly concern already.
Why are we even friends?
Your mom’s probably already got a speech prepared for just such an occasion. She’s just waiting to be able to talk to you about your newfound interest in heaving your bosom. You’re a teenager now . . . she’s waiting to pounce on you with lectures about becoming a woman.
Fine. I won’t tell on you.
Where is the stupid bus, anyway?
Guess it’s late. The bus driver probably had to pull over and yell at those idiots in the back to sit down and be quiet.
It’s not fair . . . those boys take up the whole back of the bus, and they never let us sit back there. We get on last and always end up sitting in the front with the little kids.
Not today. I just had a great idea.
What’s your idea?
Here’s the bus. Follow my lead.
I already know this is a bad idea.
COMING THROUGH! COMING THROUGH! WE NEED TO SIT IN THE BACK OF THE BUS SO WE CAN PRACTICE DEEP-THROATING.
Oh my god.
What’s that? No, Madam Busdriver . . . I said we were going to practice deep quoting. For a play. We are actors. What did you think I said?
Oh my god.
Benjamin, move your ass. My friend in the jazzy purple sweatshirt and I are going to sit here.
Oh my god.
Really, Benjamin? I’m sorry you have such a poor attitude about this . . . seems like the least you could do is move your ass over in the seat after RUINING MY PROJECT. IT’S RUINED! ALL THAT WORK GLUING MAGELLAN’S LIFE AND TRAVELS TO THIS MAP OF THE WORLD . . . ALL FOR NOTHING! Also, did you see her jacket? It has a zipper! Excellent, right?
DON’T APOLOGIZE TO THIS BEAST!
Sit somewhere else. We need to sit down.
YOU, SIR? I WILL SEE YOU IN THE PRINCIPAL’S OFFICE. I AM BEREFT! I AM DEVASTATED! ALL OF YOU ARE MY WITNESSES! PREPARE TO BE SUBPOENAED!
What’s that? No, Madam Busdriver . . . I told you . . . We’re actors.
I am going to kill you.
Ok now, wait just a second. Yes, we are best friends . . . but KEEP YOUR BOSOM TO YOURSELF, YOUNG LADY!
Want an M&M?
Red. Yes, thank you.
Want to come over after school?
I always come over after school.
So you’ll be there?
You are so weird.
We’ll text Benjamin.