Celebrating Twelve Years of No Longer Being in Junior High

I read Lola's post today about her jr. high blues and it caused me to reflect on some of my own jr. high experiences. In celebration of being out of jr. high for twelve years, allow me to tell you twelve jr. high experiences.

1. My First Break-up
I had a boyfriend in sixth grade. Sorry Mom, if you're finding out like this. He was one of the bad boys, of course, because all girls love the boys who don't do well in school and spend loads of time in detention... er... Okay, so he met my two criteria of 1) liking me, and 2) not being physically repulsive. So he was my boyfriend. In sixth grade, we'd go for bike rides after school, or I'd go over to his house. My mom didn't know, of course. And for the record, although he was my "boyfriend," there was absolutely no physical contact between us ever. We just played together. But he dumped me in seventh grade because he liked a girl named Jenny.

2. My Second Boyfriend
And he passed me on to this other guy whose name I can't remember. He met one of my criteria; he liked me. But when he put his arm around me during a field trip, I realized that he really was physically repulsive and I dumped him immediately.

3. My Third Boyfriend
One day a group of friends decided that a boy named James and I should be boyfriend and girlfriend. They decided it. We never discussed it, but we reluctantly agreed that we would give it a try. We never had any physical contact and our friendship didn't change at all. But someone told my mom that I had a boyfriend and I went home that day to find out that I was grounded for a week.

4. Writing Lines
My eighth grade homeroom teacher (meaning that she was responsible to teach us half our classes while we'd go to other teachers for the other half) fought to have me in her homeroom. Apparently, during the summer between seventh and eighth grades, during a meeting where all the teachers were dividing the students, she said, "I don't care what losers you give me, as long as I get Cicada." Her specialty was physical education, so she was also my gym teacher. Sometimes I'd purposely forget my gym clothes so that I could sit out and write lines instead of participating in class. I'd rush through all the lines I was supposed to write and then I'd write funny lines. They were always complimentary to her, of course. Then she'd hang my lines on her office wall. She never gave me an A in her gym class. But I always knew I was one of her favorites, and that was enough.

5. My Fight
I have already talked about my fight in great detail.

6. Sorel Boots
Although it was northern Ontario and winters were terribly cold and we had to spend an entire hour outside during recess, we as kids dumbly decided that it was not cool to zip up your coat. It was not cool to wear a hat. It was not cool to wear mittens. It was not cool to wear a scarf. And it really was not cool to wear Sorel boots. One day, my dad made me wear Sorel boots to school. I cried. A lot. They were so huge I could barely even shove them in my locker once I got to school. Later in the day, he brought me roses because he felt bad for causing me extreme humiliation. Some people might have been embarrassed to receive roses from their dad in jr. high. I was just convinced that I had the greatest dad ever.

7. Burned Pancakes
Mom would make us pancakes in the mornings on a fairly regular basis. She'd make them and then stick them in the microwave on 10% power for a half hour so that when we were ready for breakfast, we could just pull the pancakes out of the microwave. One day, Reggie Tenenbaum and/or The Boy put the pancakes in the microwave on 100% power for a half hour. After about twenty-give minutes, the entire house stank. It stank so bad that we couldn't go to the main level of the house and breathe. The mustard-colored silk shirt that I wore that day was permanently ruined by the stench. Our microwave was thrown out.

8. El Senor Hated Me
There's enough material here to write an entire post some day, but let's just say that El Senor and I didn't get along when we were growing up. Problems between us marked my entire childhood. One particular jr. high experience was learning that he had composed a song for his high school music class. It was called "Dropping Bricks on Cicada's Head."

9. I Had Really Bad Hair
Mom, what were you thinking? Not only did I have bad hair (my mom hasn't bought a scanner yet, so I don't have proof, but really---think a tight, short-haired perm, that I would gel... sick) but I had bad makeup. For some reason, my mom thought that jr. high was an appropriate time for a girl to start to wear makeup. My pictures from this time period have convinced me that my daughters won't be able to wear makeup till high school and then, only under strict supervision. Oh, and braces. Ugh.

10. I Liked Star Trek...
...way too much.

11. I Can Finally Admit I Had a Crush on My Geography Teacher
I did! I really did! But I haven't ever told anyone, I don't think, and now I'm telling the whole internet. I have denied it for years, but I may as well let it out now. The funny thing is that I swear I found him in our local paper's classifieds. I'd read the classifieds with a friend and make fun of all the single people putting ads out. One day, I read one aloud to her and asked, "Who does that make you think of?" Without any hints from me, she immediately identified the man as our geography teacher. The ad started with the words "No more games." The next day in class, I told him that I had had a dream with him in it, and then the words "No more games" appeared. He went practically white and I asked him, "What do you think it means?" He said, "I think it means you need to get back to work." I said, "I think it means I should stop reading the classifieds." Oh, the witty banter we had... Mr. Geography Teacher, where are you now?

12. I Had Big Boobs
It's true. I may as well admit this, too. And one day, I had to run a race for gym class. I was competing against one girl and I simply wasn't fast enough. After the race, my above-mentioned third boyfriend commented to me, "You would have won, but your boobs got in the way." And I know that I can share this with the internet, because it always made my mom laugh when I told her that, so she won't be mad that I just shared it with everyone.

Lola, I wouldn't trade places with you. But live it up while you can.


Cicada said...

Hello? Hello? Is this thing on? Or did my posting a jr. high picture of me just frighten off my entire readership?

Brinestone said...

If I had gotten roses from my dad in junior high, I might actually have one good memory from that time.

As it is, I'm glad I was only in junior high for one year. And my fashion sense, hair, and makeup was worse than yours, so you can shut up about that now. ;)

Stupidramblings said...

I read it.

I always do.

I have a rule about not participating when people write blogs about:

1) breasts.

Please be advised...

Squirrel Boy said...

I liked Star Trek way too much, too. Of course, I bet you don't own the encyclopedia and the technical manual.

Mary said...

Yaaaay! Cicada joined the junior high post brigade! I love that you had a crush on your geograph teacher. I bet my french teacher could kick your geography teacher's trash, though.

You are so stinkin' gutsy to confront him with his personal ad!

FoxyJ said...

Now I need to post about why Junior High was hell. I have some even better pictures. I had to get glasses in 7th grade and for some reason I let my mom pick them out for me. Eesh. And the big hair thing--why was that ever a good idea?

Cicada said...

Brinestone: I actually like the picture I posted. It gets worse... way worse.

Stupid: 2) Bitter posts about being single.

Squirrel Boy: Not at all surprised that you probably owned those things.

Mary: No way. My geography teacher owned a great big truck. He'd have run over your teacher.

FoxyJ: I think our mothers should be punished for the fashion they inflicted upon us in those years.

ambrosia ananas said...

Hahahaha. You should've seen what I did to my hair--I was convinced that gelling my bangs and combing them slightly up and to the side was the height of coolness.

All the girls were convinced that my science teacher had a hot butt. I was, of course, appalled (and shocked) that any decent girl would be looking at a man's butt.

daltongirl said...

Question: Does this mean I have to write twenty-eight things about jr. high? That makes me groan for two reasons. 1. I never realized it's been almost thirty years since I left jr. high (it can never be long enough, but still), and 2. That's way too many things.

I love the picture of you. Adorable. Lola does not agree that it proves she should not wear makeup now. She claims SHE will not do a bad job of it.

Geog. teacher confrontation was hiLARious!! I was never that witty or brave in jr. high. I'm still not that witty or brave.

Good to know that if I write about breasts (and my jr. high post will definitely include some of that--how could it not?) Stupid's failure to comment should not be taken personally.

Stupidramblings said...


You may be right about me not participating in the "I'm single" posts--though I haven't thought about it.

Maybe I just don't have anything to say about those...

Cicada said...

SR: I know that you've said it once before. But now that I think about it, maybe it was Th. But I swear that you once said that you don't comment on posts about being single and bitter. But now I can't find it on my blog, and I don't know if it was in an email to me or in a comment on my blog...

Puckish Mitya said...

Ha ha ha.


Splendidly hilarious post. I was laughing out loud for practically all of it.

You have got to find some pictures of that hair, Cicada.

Squirrel Boy said...

Owned those things? Yes, that's right. As in past tense.

marriedin said...

I can't believe you just slid in an admission to wearing a mustard color silk shirt and 12 comments later no one has even mentioned it. Just because you were in Jr. High doesn' t make that ok.

Did anyone else notice how much teachers butts jiggled when they were writing on the chalk board? Man that was distracting.

And for the record, I never lost an arm wrestle to my mom.

redlaw said...

This was a good one...but it made me remember my jr. high days and then I passed out from embarrassment...I just regained consciousness but will lose it again in a moment if I think any more about that hideous time period.

And the picture? The best one yet.

Cicada said...

Marriedin---The best part is that the silk mustard shirt was a hand-me-down from El Senor. Ooo la la.

Also, I think that your wife is the one who ratted me out for having the boyfriend. Thanks, Mrs. Marriedin.

AzĂșcar said...

Sand-washed mustard silk shirt! That you undoubtably wore with stirrup pants!

Oh yes, a comment must be made.

marriedin said...

Thank you carina, someone had to say something.

So I just read your fight story. Wow! Wow! Wow! I loved it. I could picture the whole thing.

It reminded me of being punched in the face and with a bleeding nose telling the kid, as he held me by my shirt at arms length with his fist recocked, that I didn't want to fight. Repeated 3-4 times. He was smaller than me and I was pretty confident, but didn't want to fight. Then I remember my elbows on the trunk of a car, my head down with my hands trying to cover, while 3-4 of his friends helped him pummel me.

Ahh... the good ol' days.