Look closely at the photo. This kid with the thick afro and huge acne. I grew the afro because I did not want to be seen by anybody. Needless to say, I was the center of attraction. I was a dumb kid in another world. Like I said on my previous blog, I was a shy and quiet kid with a very low self-esteem. At least, I smiled.
11 years ago, I graduated from St. Patrick-St. Vincent's HS in Vallejo, CA. Class of 2005.
Every morning, I enjoyed being late to my first period class. That way, I did not need to associate with people. I frequently had social anxiety. (By the way, 3 tardies is 1 detention. 1 detention was served after school for 1 hour. On your seated desk, detention was continually writing one sentence over and over. I wrote, something like, "I will follow the rules, and I will try my best to not do this again.") Preferably, I would rather serve my detention than talk to people.
In school, my "safe zone" was when classroom was in session. Until, I had a class presentation, then that was when my nerves really kicked in. Every time I presented in class, I robotically stuttered with my words, while I was extremely sweating. Since I had acne, my face was turning, even more red. Even though, I usually read my presentation word-to-word from an index card, I still suffered from "stage fright" anxiety.
During recess, I hid myself from everybody. Most people were outside talking. Everybody had their own cliques. I would go in a building upstairs, and sit alone in the corner. If the area was not empty, then I went to my perfect ideal spot, the library. Who would read during their break at high school? I am assuming no one would. Instead, talk with your friends. You can read anytime of the day.
Sometimes, I was exhausted from sitting alone in an isolated area. At school, I wanted to ease my mind off from things, like playing chess, basketball, or computer games. The Chess Club welcomed me and any one else to play chess. I was one of the worst chess players, or possibly, the worst player. 3-on-3 basketball was usually open, during lunch break. One time, I teamed up with 2 other classmates of mine, and we were the "king of the court." We kept winning. Nobody could stop us. We had our own type of style. I was the slasher, and normally, the passer. Tarren had the quick-release tear drop with the soft hands, while Anthony was the lefty catch-and-shoot player. At the computer room, I played Yahoo! pool (I wonder if that billiard game still exists) online, and checked on my Yahoo! fantasy basketball team.
My favorite sound was the loud bell ringing. Loud bell rang, then I walked slowly to my next class. My way of delaying time. Again, I hated talking to people. Also, I hated it when my classmates whispered to each other, and I could obviously hear it. They were negatively talking about me. Even worst, one of my teachers jokingly said, "Say something, Michael!" Then, my classmates laughed. Luckily, I was not in a horrible school, to the point, where I would get physically bullied.
Finally, I heard the last bell rang. Saved by the bell. I am now dismissed from school.
So, I did interact with people in high school, after all. I played chess and basketball. Also, I played for the tennis and soccer team, and ran for the cross country team.
Different ways of interacting with people. I had no problem interacting with people, like basketball, because we are teaming up together to achieve one goal, which is to win.
What if you had me (my high school self) sit in a room and just talk to people?
Highly unlikely because of my social anxiety. I would overthink, and run out of words to say.
One of my worst embarrassing moments in high school was asking "my crush" out. I rarely talked to her. This was the first time ever I asked a girl out in my life.
(When I was in 3rd grade, I did ask a girl out in Valentine's Day, but that was only through a Valentine's card. I creepily wrote on the card, "Will you be mine?" I gave it to her, and she only smiled. That does not count.)
After school, I wanted to ask "my crush" out but I kept stalling. She was with her friends in the locker area. 10 minutes later, I nervously asked her, "Hey ____. You wanna go with me to Hello Dance?" My "stage fright" and social anxiety really, really kicked in. I could hear her friends from a distance laughing at me. She answered, "Sorry." So I walked out quickly, like a sore loser. The idiot kid, myself, was mad at her.
I am glad she was being honest, that way, I know she was never into me. I respect her decision. At least, I tried. Now, I can look back and say, "Yuh, this is my Throwback Thursday."