Redefining the Middle: a tale of before and after
The kids are just at school today, after all

Day 12: a song that reminds you of your first crush.

For my #31musicfest project. You can see the first 11 if you are in my Extended Circles at Google Plus.

But for this, I have a little tale, and thus have added it to my blog. Contrary to what a few lofty little boys thought earlier on, I didn't have my first real crush on a boy until 9th grade. Before that, it was all singers, classic movie stars, and baseball players.

I was still so awkward. But trying. Many things began to change the summer I turned 15, things that would affect me for the rest of my life, but while I was still 14, I was the girl in the movie before the one special boy notices her, out of their usual setting, and they hit it off and all is magic. Except maybe he's shallow at first, and pretends at school that they don't know each other, that they never held hands while watching crawdads scutter around the creek under the railroad bridge. Ugh. But what could you expect from him? He was all symmetrical, and had that to live up to. Her teeth stuck out a mile, and she probably had a pimple on her big nose, which had grown in advance of the rest of her face.

Where was I? Yes, 9th grade. Lee's Summit High School, 1979-80. French class. A boy called Bob. We talked a lot, sometimes when we weren't supposed to. He seemed supremely confident to me, smart, funny, and a little goofy. He did not look like the boys girls were supposed to have crushes on, at least according to those boys themselves. Hah. Anyway. Our school was enormous, and the French class was in the upper class section, so it was a long walk to and from it every day. I remember for a time we walked together, and I remember how that felt, like something new I didn't have a name for. There probably isn't a good name for that.

In June, after school was out, I went to Montreal and spent five weeks with my brother, often wandering the city all day on my own while he and his then-wife were at their jobs. When I came back home, I was a different person, rather more myself than I'd been in awhile. Mom and I ran into his sister working at Winstead's on the Plaza, and Mom asked about her brother, and it turned out he'd moved away with his parents, to Arizona or something. So that was that.

This song comes to mind when I think about these things. More accurately, when I hear this song, I start thinking about these things, that boy. I think he'd get it.