I had a dream last night about Danielle Johnson- this completely random girl I went to high school with who was neither an enemy nor a friend- just a total nothing in my life. I was speaking on the phone with her about something.
Isn't it weird the people your brain pulls out while you sleep? I remember I once had a dream that Kelly Cross, the mother of one of the boys who lived on my street, came out of her house and screamed at me because a rocket crash landed in her driveway.
Again- totally random person who I've barely spoken to and more and less never thought about.
So I started thinking about Danielle Johnson. She was one of those girls that everyone said was "cute" because she talked like a baby- I assumed it was an act, but now that I'm older I give her credit for probably just being a nice person.
Then I started thinking about Melissa Johnson (I don't think they're related), another girl from high school who was very sweet and had a little baby voice and I remembered the most hilarious thing that happened when we were on a choir field trip.
Mike Anaya was always a sucker for Melissa because she was so pretty and sweet and he wanted her to sit next to him at the concert we were attending.
She decided to sit behind him instead, with Carly Walker- but unwarily left her coat next to Mike. He pulled her asthma inhaler out of the pocket and boldly threatened to lick it if she didn't sit with him.
That may sound a little bizarre, but if you know Mike, it's right up his alley.
Melissa didn't think Mike would actually lick her inhaler- I mean, she has to put it in her mouth. How disgusting! So she just turned on that sweet charm that made Mike want to sit with her in the first place. I can still hear her little baby voice "No Mike, don't."
Well, me and Katie and Mary (two of my best friends who were also close with Mike) heard the whole thing, and we turned on him so fast it'd make your head spin.
"MIKE!" We yelled. "You'd better lick that inhaler!!!"
A- We had a love-hate relationship with Melissa Johnson. She was beautiful, smart, talented and perky- combine that with the baby voice and she was ripe for hatred. But we all had to grudgingly admit that her sweetness was not in any way an act- she was the real thing, never an unkind word to say about anyone. Which in a way made us hate her more simply because we knew we couldn't really hate her.
B- I can't even begin to describe the indignities we went through as close friends of Mike Anaya. You know in Dumb and Dumber, how Lauren Holly cutely throws a snowball at Jeff Daniels and he reciprocates by viciously attacking her and rubbing snow in her face? That sums up being friends with Mike. When Katie came to school looking cute in a new pair of jeans, Mike grabbed her by the arms, yelled "You cheap and dirty whore!" into her face, and threw her across the marching band field, totally reducing her dignity as flag captain in front of the freshmen she was supposed to command, and ruining the jeans in the process. He wrote all over my face with black permanent marker one day after play practice- and not in a slumber party way, like I fell asleep and deserve to be painted all over while a bunch of tittering girls look on- but in a pin me to the ground with his entire body and dig the marker into my flesh to make sure it REALLY won't wash off way. But Mary had the best story, which she always brought out after a couple of minutes of Mike Anaya war story one-upmanship- I don't remember the entire tale, but it ended with him pinning her to the ground (as in so many Mike stories) and spitting into her mouth. And the thing about Mike is that no amount of begging and pleading will get him to veer from his course of action and no amount of anger on your part afterward will bring him to apologize. If he decided against licking Melissa's inhaler, after blatantly WARNING her of his intention, it would clearly demonstrate that he respected her far more than he respected us, who were supposedly his best friends. Sure, in our heart of hearts we knew that Melissa DESERVED more respect than us, but that just fueled the flames of our rage.
So- here we were at this choir concert, ironically bringing ourselves lower than Mike had EVER brought us by chanting "Do it! Do it!" as poor little Melissa continued to beg. "Mike... please..."
"Mike!" I yelled. "If she doesn't sit with you and you don't lick that inhaler our friendship is over!" (which doesn't sound as bad as it really was, considering that Mike "ends" friendships or threatens to probably a hundred times a day).
For about fifteen minutes, they pleaded with each other- "Melissa, I don't want to do it. Please just come sit with me."
"Mike, no...please don't do it."
Meanwhile, the three of us looked on like cats at a mousehole waiting for the inevitable moment when that sweet girl's inhaler would be saliva'ed. The fact that Mike pleaded with her for fifteen minutes should have told us all we needed to know about who Mike respected more- let's be honest. If I had been in her position, the very minute I'd moved he'd have had that inhaler in more disgusting places than I could probably imagine.
But we continued to cheer on the lickin', while the rest of the choir looked at us from on high. "God, how immature can you get?" I heard someone say.
But our only response came from Mary, who yelled- "And a REAL lick- no fair just touching it with your tongue, you've gotta really french it!"
And finally, with a last "Melissa, I'm sorry," - he licked it. And, as per Mary's request, it was every bit as nasty a lick as he would have given to something of mine or Katie's or hers.
Our lust for blood finally satisfied, we quieted- but were still angry inside because we knew it didn't mean anything- Mike actually felt BAD about defacing Melissa's things. Just because we forced him into it didn't mean that he respected her any less or us any more. Melissa was mad about her licked inhaler. Carly and the others were mad at Mike for doing the licking and even more mad at us for cheering him on. So everyone was kind of subdued for the rest of the night after that.