Re: Alvin Ever After: Alvin in the Second
Sure enough, the day after we arrived in this God forsaken city, I had to go to school and my first day at my new school was just as bad, as you might guess it would be.
Things started going wrong, right after I got out of the shower that morning. However, I didn’t really know that it was going to be a bad day until I was standing at the bus stop, waiting for the school bus and this girl whom I thought might be flirting with me, bursts out laughing. She proceeded to point out to everyone at the bus stop, that I was wearing two different socks. I mean, not just different colors, but different kinds; one white tube-sock and one brown and gray argyle sock.
“It’s not my fault!” I wanted to say, but I didn’t.
Back in California, I knew were everything was in my bedroom. Heck, I could tell you where just about every single item was in our entire home. However, here in Maine I had felt lucky, that I was able to find two socks to wear that morning. I had rummaged through that whole dang armoire, looking for socks. What I was wearing, was what I was able to find and the only reason I found them was, because they had been wadded up and stuffed into the pocket of two different pairs of pants. Don’t ask me why or how, just believe me when I say, that is where I found them.
The socks weren’t the worst of it. At least, no one at the bus stop knew that I wasn’t wearing any underwear, because all of my underwear also seemed to be suspiciously absent from the armoire. My, you-know-what, was so cold that it would have taken the Hubble Telescope to find it; that’s how cold I was without underwear.
Later that same day, after returning from school, I had the chance to ask about my socks and underwear. Come to find out, my socks, underwear and t-shirts had all been put into the drawers in the bathroom vanity under the sink. Now it seems logical, that I should have looked there. I mean, when you get out of the shower or tub, besides a towel, what is the first thing you go looking for? See what I mean? Totally logical! However, at the time, I didn’t have a clue where all those ‘under clothes’ had managed to get lost to.
All the way to school, people were pointing at me and snickering. I really wanted to say something, but most of them were bigger and older than I was, so I had no choice, but to sit there and take their verbal bullying.
Heck, even the bus driver had some wisecrack, as I was getting off the bus. “Nice fashion statement kid! Next time you should try wearing your underpants on your head and your belt as a necktie.”
Then, on the way into the school, I stepped on someone’s freshly discarded bubblegum and it stuck to the bottom of my shoe. When I leaned against the flag pole to pick it off, this crabapple of a teacher began to yell at me.
“You there!” she shouted.
I looked around and seen this flabby skinned old woman with big white curly hair and so much loose skin under her chin, that she looked like a featherless turkey. She was pointing at me from across the quad, with a long judgmental finger. When I looked around and didn’t see anyone else nearby, I pointed to myself questioningly.
“Yes you!” she started to tromp toward me, all the while pointing her accusing finger my way. I don’t know, maybe she thought, that her finger has some sort of magical powers, to keep wrong doers like myself from fleeing the scene of the crime.
“You’re not supposed to walk on the grass! Can’t you read?” she croaked and I could see the skin under her chin flapping with each step she took.
“Not supposed to walk on the grass?” I thought; “If I hadn’t stepped aside, I would have been trampled to death by the herd of students pouring into the school.” However, I didn’t want any trouble, so I quickly grabbed the mashed wad of gum, pulled the majority of it off my shoe, flung it hard to the ground and slipped back into the crowd, before the old hag could get close enough to see who I was. At least, I hope she didn’t get a good look at me. Maybe that finger of hers wasn’t meant to keep me from escaping, but maybe it had marked me somehow, so that she could later hunt me down.
Now, in my old school, on the first day of the school year, everyone went to the main auditorium, to stand in line to find out, what classroom you were supposed to be in that year. However, in Boyd Junior High, everyone seemed to already know where to go, except for me. They were running to their lockers, dialing in their combinations and then racing off to different classrooms. When the bell rang, I found myself standing alone by a row of lockers, feeling lost and scared.
“Why aren’t you in class?!” a high-pitched voice blasted behind me.
I must have jumped ten feet in the air and spun around, before I touched down again. I was standing face-to-face with a Hall Monitor. We had those in California too and I have had more than my share of run-ins with them.
“Didn’t you hear the bell?” she asked, while waving a pencil eraser in my face.
She had spiked blonde hair that pointed in every direction with the back was long and hanging down to her shoulders. I think they used to call that hairstyle a Mullet or something like that. It isn’t a particularly flattering way to wear ones hair, but on her, it somehow worked. When she spoke, her head jiggled like an enormous blob of Jell-O. She was also built like a linebacker, with the broad shoulders and thick neck that typically comes with those types of sports people. I instantly assumed that, besides being a dorky Hall Monitor, she must also be a jock, either volleyball or… do they let girls play football in Maine?
Wait, do they even have volleyball or football in Maine?
Sure, Hall Monitor slash jock is a weird combination, but it’s not unheard of. Back in my old school, we called the Hall Monitors, Hall Nazi’s, among many other, equally derogatory names. I must confess that besides my many encounters with the Hall Nazi’s… back in the fourth grade, I also used to be one of them for all of about two days, before I got busted for sneaking out of school to go surfing. Gosh, I miss surfing!
So there I was, being stared down by the She-Hulk-Nazi and wondering, if she was going to jab me in the eye with her pencil, or put me into a headlock. It turned out that the big sport here in Maine isn’t volleyball or football; it’s hockey and of course, I know less than nothing about hockey.
“Let me guess, you’re the captain of the football team?” I said, trying to sound cool.
“What? Are you some kind of retard? I wouldn’t be caught dead, playing that pansy sport.” She said and I noted the throbbing vain, that had sprouted above her left eyebrow.
She turned to show me the back of her sweater. It read, ‘Boyd Bears’ and had an embroidered image of a bear wearing a hockey mask and holding a hockey stick.
I guess I know a little more than nothing about hockey, because I knew what a hockey mask and hockey stick were.
“Sorry, I-I’m new here.” I managed to say without my voice cracking and giving away, how scared I was at that moment.
“No excuse!” She said pulling a red card out of her shirt pocket and handing it to me. “Homeroom assignments have been hanging on the front doors for over a month!”
“Huh?” I moaned in confusion.
She pointed down the hall to the doors I’d walked through only minutes before. I could see several sheets of paper, taped to the insides of the glass.
“But I didn’t know. We just moved here yesterday.” I said.
The girl sighed, “Alright, what’s your name?”
“Alvin, Alvin Holloway.” I said nervously.
“So Alvin-Alvin Holloway,” man, I couldn’t believe she used that old lame joke, “go look at the lists. Find your name and beside your name, there is a class room number and a locker number.” She stopped and scratched her left ear, “Well, seeing how you’re already here, you can’t very well find out the combination the normal way.” she said and I got the idea that she was talking to herself more than to me just then.
“Normally, you call a special number.” She said, while scratching her head with the eraser, “and get the combination before school starts. I guess you’ll have to go to the office to get it now.”
I looked at the red card; it was just a normal piece of construction paper. It didn’t say anything; it was completely blank.
Now, what I wanted to say, was, “Hey thanks for the new book mark!”, but what I actually said was, “Uh, what am I supposed to do with this?”
She wrinkled her nose, as if I smelled of dog droppings. “Why do you look and talk so weird?”
I looked down at myself to make sure, my fly wasn’t open and then said defensively, “I don’t!”
“Yes you do! Where are you from?” She looked like she was getting tired of talking to me.
“California,” I answered proudly.
I must have surprised her with that answer, because her eyebrows jumped to the top of her forehead and her eyes got really big.
“No kidding?” she said in a higher pitch, “I never met anyone from California. Is everyone as lazy out there, as they say?”
Now I was tired of talking to this girl and I probably should have kept my mouth shut, but I didn’t. “No more than the people here in Maine are rude jerks.” With that, she spun around and walked away, without saying another word to me.
I was left to fend for myself yet again. I walked back to the doors, walked outside to read the papers, found my name and my locker number and then spent the next ten minutes wandering the halls, trying to find the office. I finally did locate it, but when I opened the door, I saw, that there were twenty or more kids in there. It was nearly a half-hour before it was my turn to ask for help, but when I stepped up to the lady that was sitting behind a big wooden desk, she saw the red card in my hand and pointed down the hallway behind me.
“You’re in the wrong line! Down that hall and sit on one of the yellow chairs. Mr. Casting will be with you shortly.”
“But I just need my combination.” I said.
The lady repeated herself word for word, “Down that hall and sit on one of the yellow chairs. Mr. Casting will be with you shortly.”
“But I…” I tried again.
Once again, she repeated, “Down that hall and sit on one of the yellow chairs. Mr. Casting will be with you shortly.”
I figured that the line for locker combinations must be down the hall, so I did, what the lady told me to do. Five minutes later, I was standing in the Principal’s office, receiving a lecture about why students are not supposed to be wandering the halls after the class bell rings. Principal Casting was a short, partially bald man, with a bad comb-over and wickedly crooked teeth. Never once did Principal Casting look at me, while he recited, what must have been a memorized speech. He ended with, “And seeing how this is the first day of school, I will let you off with a warning, but only this one time. Now get to class.”
I was heading back up the hallway to the open area of the office, to once again, try to get my locker combination, when a door to my right opened and a boy taller than me came out. Our eyes met and he suddenly blushed so red, he looked like he had a wicked case of sunburn. He made a sound like someone had just kicked him in the balls, turned, ran back into the room and quickly closed the door. I had no idea why he had been so embarrassed when he saw me, however, I was quickly learning that the people living in Maine are quite a different sort of people than what I am accustomed to.
At first, I didn’t give this any thought at all, but while I was standing in line, waiting to talk to the lady about my locker combination, I saw no less than a dozen boys and girls going in and out of that room. However, I never saw that first boy come back out again.
It was during lunch period, that I saw that same guy again and just as before, when he spotted me, he spun around and took off in the opposite direction. I got a better look at him this time and though I couldn’t put my finger on it, something about him seemed … well, something just didn’t seem right about him.
Believe it or not, I was actually wishing I had Micah’s horrible Machewie fish stuff instead of, what the school was serving for lunch. I sat alone, eating my rubbery, tasteless macaroni and cheese, with limp broccoli, what I imagine was supposed to be a ham steak and milk so cold, it had ice crystals in it. Maybe it was just me, but it felt like I was being watched the whole time I sat there, trying to choke down that awful stuff. Then again, I was probably just being paranoid.
It was nearly at the end of the day, when things really got interesting, and I don’t mean in a good way. Despite missing nearly all of my first class, I was beginning to get a little more comfortable and getting the hang of the schools layout. I had all my textbooks piled into my locker, except for my last class, Social Studies, which was where I was heading when I got the sudden urge to pee. As luck would have it, the bathroom was all the way at the other end of the hall and I knew I wouldn’t be able to make it through the crowded hallway to the bathroom and then back again before the bell, but I also knew that there was no way I would make it through a 45-minute class, without having to ask for permission to go to the restroom. I decided to chance it and try for the bathroom. I put myself against the far wall and squeezed past everyone, only getting rammed into three times.
Of course, you know, that the bathroom was packed, mostly with other boys flapping their gums, while others stood around doing the pee-pee dance, as they waited for a toilet or urinal to become available. There were still three kids ahead of me when the bell rang, but by then I was in extreme distress. I was so glad when all but the three boys ahead of me vacated the bathroom in a hurry to get to their classrooms before final bell. Four of us manned a urinal and let loose our bladder contents, like golden laser beams firing against the white porcelain. The boy furthest from me let loose a fart loud enough to wake the dead and all four of us started laughing.
“Ahhhh that felt good!” he moaned and laughed.
One of the others shot back with, “Yeah and by the sound of it, you might need to wipe yourself now!”
The boy who farted laughed, as he belted out loudly, “Who wipes!”
The boy closest to me piped in with, “Man Larry, you stole that from the movie Madagascar!”
“No, they stole it from me!” Larry laughed back.
Almost in unison, the three of them zipped back up and flushed. I expected the three of them to haul butt for their classes, but instead the boy who had farted, the one they had called Larry, stopped behind me while I was still peeing.
“What’s your name kid?” he asked.
“Alvin, Alvin Holloway.” I answered.
“I’m Larry, this here is Fish, and that is BB.” Larry said.
I finally finished peeing and zipped up before turning around.
“So, you new here or something?” the boy named Fish asked me.
I nodded, “Just moved here yesterday.”
“Yesterday? Whoa, so where from?” Larry asked.
They seemed fairly nice so I didn’t mind the third degree and continued to answer their questions.
“California,” I answered.
“Is that why you talk so weird?” BB asked, trying to imitate me.
I suddenly got the feeling, that maybe they weren’t the friendly sort I’d thought them to be.
“Listen, I better get to class.” I said, trying to squeeze past Larry who was partially blocking my escape route.
“Wait a sec’,” Larry said, putting a hand against my chest, “You didn’t flush.”
“Oh yeah, sorry.” I said turning my back on them, so that I could give the flush button on the wall a push.
However, the second I pressed the button all three of them rushed on me and shoved me forward into the urinal. Before I could react, they zoomed out of the bathroom. When I regained my balance, I looked down and saw that the lower part of my shirt and the front of my pants were completely soaked.
“Son of a bitch!” I cussed aloud.
“HEY!” someone shouted behind me.
Momentarily forgetting about my pants and shirt being wet, I spun around to see, that it was my good friend, the Hall-Nazi from this morning.
“Cussing is an automatic Red Ca…” she started to say, but stopped short when it dawned on her, that we’d already had a run-in with each other earlier in the day. “Oh hey, I remember you!” she said and then she noticed my obvious wet spot.
“You piss yourself?” she asked.
Trying to cover the front of my pants with my hands, which was a feeble task at best, I snapped back, “No I did not piss myself!” and because we were in the bathroom, my voice echoed off the tiled walls and sounded louder, then I’d meant for it too. “Some mother fu…” I started to say, but the girl cut me off with, “Hey-Hey! No cussing or I’ll have no choice, but to Red Card you.”
Was I just imaging it, or was that girl actually trying to be nice to me? Anyway, I was too mad and too worked up to care. If my good friend Gary from back in California had been around right then, he probably would have chewed me out for cussing. Gosh, I miss Gary!
“Some GUYS,” I said with strong emphasis on the word GUYS, “shoved me into the urinal!”
But then something occurred to me, “Hold on a second! You’re a girl! You can’t come into the boy’s bathroom!”
“Never mind that,” she said with a snap of her fingers, “let me guess, you didn’t even see who they were, right?”
“I can do you one better than that; they told me their names, Larry…” I started to say, but then she finished for me.
“Fish and BB?” she knowingly asked.
“Yeah, that’s right!” I agreed.
“Well, you’ve just had the pleasure of meeting the worst we have here at Boyd’s.” she said and then she smiled, stepped toward me and stuck out her hand. “Names Hillary Thennings; but most everyone just calls me Stacks.”
I sort of held out my hands and shrugged, “I’ve not even washed my hands yet.”
“Don’t matter! Wouldn’t be the first time I’ve had a little pee on my hands.” She said, eagerly taking hold of my right hand and shaking it vigorously. “I’ve got two younger brothers at home.” She announced as if I needed to know that about her.
“I’m guessing you’ve had a fairly horrible first day?” she said, releasing my hand and stepping back to get another full view of my wet clothes.
“You can say that again!” I said, sounding practically defeated.
She pointed at me and cocked her head to one side, “It’s Alvin-Alvin, right?” she asked with a smirk.
I nodded and grimaced at the same time.
“Thought so, I’m good with names and faces.” She said proudly.
“What did you say they call you?” I asked as I missed it the first time.
“Stacks,” she answered quickly.
“Is that because you’re built like a brick smoke stack?” I asked, hoping that it sounded halfway humorous.
“Nah, nothing like that. I got the nick Stacks because I’m known for stacking up the goals, one right after the other.”
“So, you are on the football team?” I joked, knowing full well, that she was into Hockey.
“Anyone, who’s anyone around here, plays hockey.” She said and then asked me, “You play?”
“I don’t think I have ever seen a game, unless you count the movies. Uh, they do call them games, right?” I asked sheepishly.
“Yeah. A game or a match.” She said with a slight shrug.
“Say, why don’t you come with me?. I’ll escort you to the office and we can get you some dry clothes.” Stacks suggested.
For nearly a full minute, I had actually forgotten that I was standing there, wearing clothes that looked as though I had peed in them.
“I don’t suppose you’d look the other way and let me hide out in one of the stalls, until my clothes dry or school ends.” I asked hopefully.
“No need to worry.” Stacks continued, “You’re not the first to fall victim to Larry and those other hooligans. They’re well known by the staff, so when I tell who did it to you, no one will even second guess it.”
“Whoa, hold the phone… Did you just say hooligans?” I asked.
“Uh, yeah!” Stacks said, as if I’d just asked the world’s dumbest question.
I waved my hands in the air like I was erasing my words from a chalkboard. “Never mind,” I mumbled.
Thankfully, Stacks had been right. Once she told the lady in the office, the one I’d seen early, who was still sitting behind the same big wooden desk, what had happened, she grimaced and said, “If you ask me, they should take those three and that girl they hang out with, and lock them away.”
She then waved us off with the back of her hand, “Go on; take him back.”
Down the office hall and to the right we stopped before a flat wooden door, stained a dark honey color. Smack-dab in the middle of the door, was a poster of a large green frowny-face. You know, like a smiley-face only it was frowning. Just under the frowny-face, it read…
Is It Friday Yet!
I’m not sure what I was expecting to find behind the door, but what I saw when Stacks opened it, was not something I would have ever expected to see in a school. How do I describe it? Oh I know: Pepto-Bismol! The entire room looked, as though it had been hosed down with Pepto-Bismol. Pink walls, pink ceiling, pink shaggy area rug, pink metal desk with a pink vinyl high-back office chair and on the pink desk was a lamp with a pink lampshade.
There wasn’t anyone in the… uh… office, but that didn’t seem to alarm Stacks who sashayed right in like she owned the place. When I didn’t follow, she reached out, took hold of the front of my shirt and pulled me into the room.
Stacks left me standing near the door, while she went behind the desk to a low, wide filing cabinet. She was rummaging through the cabinet and stopped every few seconds to look back at me, as if she expected me to abruptly disappear from the room.
“She always keeps extra clothes in here for just such an emergency.” Stacks said.
“She who?” I asked.
“Oh, the school nurse.” She said off handedly, “This is her office.”
“Why’s it pink?” I asked, not really meaning for the words to come out of my mouth.
Stacks turned back around with some clothes in her arms. “Because she likes pink, silly.” She said with a humorous snort.
She held a white shirt with bright blue buttons up to me.
“That should fit, though it might be a bit big on you.” She said and had she left it at that, it would have been just fine, but she had to go and add, “Are all the boys in California scrawny like you?”
I sucked in my bottom lip and chomped down on it with my teeth to keep me from saying something smart back to her. That was twice in two days that someone had called me scrawny and it was already getting old.
She didn’t seem to notice as she held a pair of green, yes I said green, pants up to me. “Oh no, way too big.”
I think I may have sighed a breath of relief when she said those horrid green pants were too big for me.
After holding up a pair of blue jeans and a pair of dark blue slacks, she unobtrusively announced, “I suppose you can roll up the jeans.”
After setting the shirt and jeans down on the desk, she said, “I’m afraid there aren’t any underpants in the cabinet so you’ll have to go Commando.”
“Excuse me?” I said with a nervous cough.
“Commando… you know,” she blushed slightly as she flicked her hair back.
“Commando means, you wear your pants without underpants.” She said and now she was really blushing.
Why I said what I said next, I don’t know, but oh how I wish I hadn’t. “I’m not wearing any anyhow.”
Oh my gosh!!! I thought my face was going to burst into flames, it got that hot. Even my ears felt like they were on fire.
Thankfully, Stacks left me alone to change and I had time to recover from my embarrassment, but she returned quicker than I expected. With a gentle knock, she announced her return and without me saying a word, she came back into the room. I had on the pants and was buttoning up the shirt.
“Oh most definitely, we’ll need to roll up those pants.” She said and knelt before me, to begin rolling up the hem of the pants.
I felt really uncomfortable, having this strange girl helping me dress, but I didn’t feel like it would be right to object, seeing how she had just saved me from a fatal case of embarrassment, had any other student seen me with my clothes wet.
She looked up at me, “What’s with the socks? Or do they wear different socks in California?”
I shook my head and said, “Oh yeah, everyone who is anyone wears their socks like this! Haven’t you seen all those Hollywood stars?”
She make a teeth sucking sound like she wasn’t sure if she believed me or not. She went on to roll up the second pant leg. However, when Stacks started to tuck the shirt in for me, I jumped back, “No, I can do it myself.”
“Oh sorry, I’m just used to helping my brothers.” She said, blushing again. “You look a little bit like my youngest brother… I mean in the eyes.”
She picked up my wet clothes and said, “I’ll put these in a plastic bag and you can put them in your locker.”
“Sweet!” I said.
“What?” She asked back.
“Oh, I meant to say thanks.” I said.
“You can have your mom wash that shirt and pants and bring them back tomorrow.” Stacks said but then she stopped abruptly and adopted this concerned expression, “Do you have a mom? I mean…”
“Yeah I have a mom and a dad.” I assured her with a laughing smile which put her at ease.
The rest of the day, I didn’t see Stacks or those three jerks. Anyway, it’s probably a good thing I didn’t see Larry, Fish, and BB, because I would have had to attempt to beat the crap out of them. Yeah, I am sure I would have lost, but that wouldn’t have stopped me from getting a few good licks in before they pummeled me to death.