I had it in my mind to talk about bullies in this post. I was going to say that while we think of bullying as happening in the schoolyard, it transcends all that into our adulthood. It takes on more hidden, and more vicious forms. Then, through a status update of a girl I went to highschool with, I found out that a boy I knew in highschool was beaten to death over the weekend. It made my topic seem trivial.
Did I know him well? Maybe not. He had the same spare period as me and my friend Jen. It was empty and boring and there was only about ten of us wandering the halls. We sat outside the closed cafeteria, smelling baking cookies and yammering on about whatever it is teen girls yammer about. We flirted with boys, as a product of our boredom. He was blonde, and tall (always an asset in my books) and smiled at me in the halls. Through some contrivance (mine, his?) we ended up going to a dance 'together'. This just meant we met up when the dance started and stood, awkwardly, in the same viscinity. He offered me rum that he had poured into a coke can. I refused. He shrugged. We danced, slowly rocking back and forth in the graceless slow dance of childhood. We kissed. Our braces gritted against each other and I winced. He was the second boy I ever kissed.
I didn't know him well. I'm still shocked and appalled that this long weekend he was beaten to death for 'looking at someone weird'. It's very unfair. I'll remember him well as part and parcel of my highschool years, for whatever small part he played in making me myself.
Rest in peace, Brad.