Thursday, July 31, 2008

Mean Girls

One summer, Kath and I took a Basic computer class. This was elective, so we did not take it as seriously as we should have. During the class, we were tested on what we had learned, and even though we didn't receive a grade for this, we didn't want the shame of being the only ones in the class without a certificate of successful completion.

One of the tests involved us turning in a project that we did not know how to do. So we leaned on Max, the resident smarter-than-you-can-possibly-imagine-nerd-type-who-was-not-especially-social-or-popular-and-is-probably-on-some-billionaire-list-somewhere-today guy in the class for help. He wasn't really a friend of ours, but he agreed to help because he loved computers (and probably also because he was just a nice and patient guy).

He saved our butts on this particular test so Kath and I decided that we should reciprocate by taking him out to lunch the following week after class. He seemed pretty happy with the plan.

On the appointed day, Kath and I both noticed that Max had taken extra care with his appearance. He was wearing a collared shirt and had obviously done something different to his hair. Even though we had not discussed this lunch at all in the past week, we came to a silent agreement that we just could not do it.

We still don't know why. It's not like our social status could have gotten any lower (note the elective computer class mentioned above.) We certainly didn't have anything better to do. We actually could have made a friend and learned something from this guy. Who the hell knows, except that our teen insecurities somehow made us decide to simply ignore the fact that we had asked Max to lunch. After class, we both scooted out of there and never again mentioned it. It was always a little awkward around him after that.

Now, twenty-five years later, we both still cringe whenever we think about this and are compelled to somehow make this up to Max. (Who has probably long since forgotten about it and is finding comfort in his bank account.) We have done Google searches to try and locate him and we're trying to figure out how to atone.

For someone who spent most of her life being the target of the mean girls (one in particular that I'm related to), I still cannot believe that I was capable of doing something that I knew would hurt someone's feelings. And to this day I feel like crap about it.

No comments: