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by terry ernest halfway there A-LISTS
FruIt LooPs
In My LoCker
If you’ve ever spent evenings trying to figure out how to stifle your sister’s
Chatty Cathy doll while ensuring your little brother takes the rap… you
might be halfway there. With 400 million subscribers world wide, Facebook
has become the largest ‘social networking’ site on the Internet, a veritable reposi-
tory for mindless hours of senseless prattle and superfluous detail: where profile
pictures are as lifelike as Joan Rivers and promises of privacy are as dependable as
bipartisanship. While I do love my friends and family I don’t need their moment-
to-moment itineraries. If God wanted us to be that close to our families he
wouldn’t have invented moving out. As for all my wonderful friends, if you tell it all
on Facebook, what are we going to talk about at happy hour? Facebook does have
some value and of course room for improvement. I recently got a friend request
from my first official girl friend back when I was around 14. I became awash with
vivid memories of her silky long hair, dark eyes, more than generous cheerleader
boobs and silver braces that would sooner divide your tongue than let it slide
by. We’ve had no contact for more years then I am willing to admit and while our
Facebook exchanges were wonderfully nostalgic, I really wish I could have seen
the look on her face when I told her that she… was the one who turned me gay.
But Facebook is not really new; it is the evolution of millions of community
bulletin boards gone by, those communication hubs where we used to advertise
everything and everyone. At church, the pastor’s wife would regularly butter her
thighs, squeeze into a white satin dress three sizes too small and post a note, with
her picture on it, announcing the next charity pancake breakfast.
In high school the bulletin boards were a bit more complex, restricted by class
and then by primary social group. The freshmen class had the first floor, nerds on
the south side, greasers on the north. Nerds caught even reading the contents of
a greasers’ bulletin board would soon find themselves knocking on their locker
doors, from the inside. Thought that was just a high school movie cliché? No,
no, no. I tell you this as one who has experienced grinning up at the dean as he
popped open my locker door with the master key. And it all happened so fast too.
One minute I was doing what I thought were stealth runs past the juniors’ activity
board, trying to find out where bad Johnny and his buddies were gathering for
the homecoming game. The next thing I knew I was chewing a button off the left
sleeve of my favorite fall jacket and tapping for help with the heal of my boot.
Fortunately for me the school leadership was quite used to the sound of their
boys banging for release. I could only dream that bad Johnny was as well.
I’ve tried to impart that bit of locker-smart wisdom on today’s high-schoolers
equipped locker had to have snacks for trading, toys for detention, tricks for the
but every time I’d get started I couldn’t help but reminisce my dad’s old stories
hall monitors and of course, room for your best friend’s stuff as he will undoubt-
about walking five miles in the snow to buy a loaf of bread… and I couldn’t go on.
edly forget his locker combination tomorrow.
We had to have lockers in those days. Unlike today, where many boys could hide
Do I feel sorry for the kids today that have to schlep 25 pounds of books back
a small refrigerator in their low hanging baggy jeans, we wore our pants so tight
and forth every day? Not really. Like bulletin boards this too shall evolve and it
that there was barely room for your bus pass. Lockers housed our most valued
won’t be long until children carry all of their books on tablet computers and use
possessions like an assortment of sweaters to complement any ensemble, par-
Facebook to send infirmed home videos to their teachers instead of having mom
ticularly one where you only had 40 seconds to pull it together else miss the bus.
call in sick. If you ever had your ear tweaked for giggling whilst reciting the
Then there was the requisite extra pair of socks for when you had to run through
Pledge of Allegiance… you might be halfway there too.
big puddles in the parking lot to avoid getting a wicked wedgie or worse, having
someone dissect your shirt by yanking your fruit loop. And of course every well
feedback? or
March 2010 | RAGE monthly 25
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