Just Gotta Say...

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Just Gotta Say...

Postby Dazhbog » Tue Oct 11, 2011 10:09 pm

“Heh, another one of these silly ‘spirit’ days, eh?” Jamie smirked in her chair, elbowing her buddy. “It’s the same thing every year, I swear. Teachers in crappy printed shirts trying to tell us how we’re all progressive and liberal and diverse.” She rolled her eyes on the last word. “Because if there’s one thing this town knows about, it’s fucking diversity. Right?”

“Yeah.” Her friend’s reply was almost lost in the sea of chattering students. They’d all been forced to come to this fake “Diversity Day” bullshit presentation, pulling Jamie out of her favorite class to listen to presenters drone about their hard knock lives while the administration nodded along with plastic, sickly-sweet smiles. It made her want to hurl. “We should just walk on out of here, eh Rudy?” She nudged him again, glared at him when he didn’t respond. Rudy, short and fit with freckles spattered across his nose, was staring blankly at the front of the auditorium. Jamie frowned and bit her lower lip. “Rudy?”

One of the faculty strode towards the front of the auditorium, wearing one of the few genuine smiles and applauding gamely against the rising tide of cat-calls and yelling that was all that might be expected of an auditorium packed with high schoolers. An elderly black man had just finished speaking, and she shook his hand before moving to the podium. “Let’s all give Mr. Roseau and big hand, kids!” she tried stoically, waiting. A smattering of applause was thoroughly stamped out by more hollers and impolite whoops, mostly from the shadowy upper corners of the seating referred to by the students as Jock Corner. The susurrus began to rise again, given a few moments to build by the teacher before the corner of her mouth quirked and she made a short slash with her hand under her chin. Jamie jerked and clapped hands to her ears as the penetrating shrill of feedback roared over the sound system, stopping the tumult as easily as a sledgehammer to the knee.

“Well, now that we’ve heard from our guest speakers,” the woman intoned warmly into the sudden silence, “we’d like to open the microphone to any of our student body who’d like to say a few words about today and its message.” Suddenly the room was quieter than the library stacks, students looking aside as her gaze wandered the auditorium. “Come now kids, I’m sure someone has something to say.”

“Hah, did you see that?!” muttered Jamie under her breath as slowly, begrudgingly a few students shifted and got to their feet. She saw Holly and Jennifer, the class presidents, and a few others from the Upper Class gliding towards the podium; as the heads of team popular, they’d have to chatter our a few polite nothings to keep up appearances. “Ms. V’s pretty cool, ya know? For a teacher. Betcha Elliot’s fuckin’ ecstatic…” She twisted in her seat, eyes searching behind the blackness of the auditorium’s tech booth to catch the glint of diamond plat glasses and acne, flashed a thumbs up. “He loves scaring the crap outta… Rood?” Untwisting, she’d glimpsed her friend still stock still in his seat. Her frown returned. “Rudy?” She poked his arm. “Rudy Doody pa-Loody? Earth to Rudy.” The boy unconsciously leaned hi shoulder into her half-hearted punch, and shook his head as if coming out of a daze. “You good there, buddy?”

He turned and flashed a half-hearted grin at her. “Yeah, yeah. Sorry.” His eyes flickered back down to the stage, back to her. “Hey… watch my stuff, yeah?”

With that he was off down the aisle, before Jamie even had a chance to register what was happening. “RUDY!” she hollered as loud as she dared, not wanting to draw attention away from the idiot at the mic who was recounting a tale of woe and childhood bedevilment, the laughter and lies bright in every phrase. He never turned, just quietly took a place in line behind two chattering girls. Her heart lurched as the line shifted forward; now both girls were at the microphone, going back and forth with feigned seriousness. One even started to sniffle with feigned tears, but Jamie wasn’t listening. He wouldn’t. Of course he wouldn’t. There’s no way that he’d…

Minutes passed, and finally the girls twittered off. Rudy stepped up behind the microphone, the too-warm stage wash hitting him full in the face, and waited silently. The tide of whispers oozed into the quiet, then built, and built, finally jittering away as the students looked around, confused by the break in the pattern. Rudy cleared his throat, glanced once directly at Jamie.

“I’m gay,” he said, swallowing once with a nod. Silence. Nodding again, Rudy hunched his shoulders and walked tensely away from the podium, back up the aisle as the Ms. V swept to the microphone in his wake.

“Let’s get a round of applause for the courageous Mr. Westerman!” she cheered, following suit loudly. Slowly applause filled the room, more than the speaker had received, still filled with a few shouts and cat-calls but a few Atta-boys as well. A ghost of a grin tugged at the boy’s lips as one exuberant upper-class girl called out a “You go, boy!” as he passed. Dropping into his seat, he flashed a tired grin at a pale and wide-eyed Jamie.

“What the hell,” she hissed at him. “What the hell, Rudy!”

He shrugged. “I had to,” he said lamely, “I just had to, Jamesy.”

She risked a flash of a glance over her shoulder, back towards the shadowy upper-corners. “You had to? You HAD to? You know what happens now right?”

“Yep,” Rudy sighed, tilting his chin knowingly in the direction she’d glanced, catching the same glint of hard stares his friend feared. “But you know what? It was worth it.”



“Well kids, good morning.” Mr. Lewis smiled. A tall man with salt and pepper hair, he glanced up from his papers as the room filled up, caught the flash of binders being produced and others carefully hidden. He grinned quietly in his head, already knowing he’d be spot checking on the take-home. “After yesterday’s hubbub, let’s get right to it. After morning announcements, we’re going to check the quiz then move on to the next lab setup; I hope you’ve- aah. Quiet kids!” He shushed them as the speaker in the wall coughed to life, the drone of a loose wire cutting through the classroom. A crackly voice harrumphed loudly.

“Good morning, children; this is Principal Merris-”

“We know who you are, cheez-zus!” muttered a guy in the front row grinning. “He thinks we’ve forgotten since he did it yesterday?” Mr. Lewis made a quieting noise absent-mindedly, a grin on his face.

“- normal morning announcements to give to you.” A harrumph. “But first, I have a student here who wishes to address his peers.” The principal’s voice, jowly and full of gravel, had taken on a certain cold steel formality that caused eyebrows to raise and Mr. Lewis to glance with sudden tenseness around the room.

“Has anyone seen Ms. Armstrong?” he said quietly to everyone and no one in particular. “Or Mr. Westerman… oh.”

“Hey.” The next voice to come through the speaker was slurred slightly, as if the speaker had a cold, and was quiet enough that they strained to listen. “Hey, this is Rudy.” A pause. “I wanted to say something. I wanted to let you know… well, I’m not going to be in, for a couple of days. After yesterday, well,” a sudden cough, “I wanted to make sure no one was worried, ya know. About me. Or what I might say, and all. Heck, I’m rambling. Well this is it. Coupla fellas and I had a… discussion, yesterday. I just wanted to let them know I won’t be doing anything about it, like, with the administration and all. It’s cool, fellas.” The students all heard an angry shout, muffled by the PA system. “Just don’t do it again, okay? Not sure I could smooth things over, again. I don’t want any more trouble.”
The voice cleared his throat, “Anyway though, I’ll be back soon. I won’t hide what I… what I said. But don’t make a deal out of it okay? I’m just me. That’s all.”

Whatever remained of the morning announcements was never actually heard.

——-

~ written for National Coming Out Day
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Re: Just Gotta Say...

Postby Flex » Tue Oct 11, 2011 11:04 pm

TL;DR
We live in a society where people born on third base constantly try to steal second, yet we expect people born with two strikes against them to hit a homerun on the first pitch.
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Re: Just Gotta Say...

Postby Levantine » Wed Oct 12, 2011 5:03 am

Flex wrote:TL;DR

/spit
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Re: Just Gotta Say...

Postby Euphoria » Wed Oct 12, 2011 7:28 am

Flex wrote:TL;DR


Wow, that wasn't fucking rude at all.
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Re: Just Gotta Say...

Postby Nikachelle » Wed Oct 12, 2011 7:33 am

It's only rude because he's unaware that it's supporting Coming Out Day. His reaction was the same reaction I had when I saw that wall of text. It wasn't till I scrolled down and saw Lev's response that I went back up to read the paragraphs because I figured it would be something I was interested in.
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Re: Just Gotta Say...

Postby Shyrtandros » Wed Oct 12, 2011 7:38 am

Very Random?
"Warning: AA posts may cause severe urges to buy or rent games you may not have been interested in, known about or would normally consider playing. If you experience sudden urges to purchase said games please consult your wallet, bank account or significant other to see if these games are right for you and your budget."
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Re: Just Gotta Say...

Postby Nikachelle » Wed Oct 12, 2011 7:39 am

Shyrtandros wrote:Very Random?

Not overly. Yesterday was National Coming Out Day.
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Re: Just Gotta Say...

Postby Barathorn » Wed Oct 12, 2011 7:41 am

Everyone seems a trifle touchy round here at the moment. Perhaps if everyone took a few moments to fiddle with themselves/their significant others then the amount of tension within the community might lessen.

Michael Winner/David Cameron.

Good luck to anyone having the balls to do something that they know will mark them as different for the rest of their lives. I have nothing but respect for such actions.

If people can't play nice then .......

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Re: Just Gotta Say...

Postby Shyrtandros » Wed Oct 12, 2011 8:02 am

Nikachelle wrote:
Shyrtandros wrote:Very Random?

Not overly. Yesterday was National Coming Out Day.


First time i've ever heard of it. The OP makes some sense to me now..
"Warning: AA posts may cause severe urges to buy or rent games you may not have been interested in, known about or would normally consider playing. If you experience sudden urges to purchase said games please consult your wallet, bank account or significant other to see if these games are right for you and your budget."
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Re: Just Gotta Say...

Postby Doz » Wed Oct 12, 2011 8:40 am

Don't make a big deal out of it; but also, make a big deal out of it.
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Re: Just Gotta Say...

Postby Sabindeus » Wed Oct 12, 2011 8:42 am

I read it but I don't get the ending. Did he get beat up and was saying that he was just going to take it over the PA? That seems odd.
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Re: Just Gotta Say...

Postby Arnock » Wed Oct 12, 2011 9:23 am

Sabindeus wrote:I read it but I don't get the ending. Did he get beat up and was saying that he was just going to take it over the PA? That seems odd.



I think he was announcing that he wasn't going to report it to the administration, which seems odd, seeing as he was announcing over the PA with the principal right there....


I'm not sure, the whole thing was somewhat hard to follow.
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Re: Just Gotta Say...

Postby Nikachelle » Wed Oct 12, 2011 9:24 am

Arnock wrote:I'm not sure, the whole thing was somewhat hard to follow.

Pretty much this. I didn't find the story compelling or interesting. It was written in a rather drab and childish manner as well.
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Re: Just Gotta Say...

Postby Sabindeus » Wed Oct 12, 2011 9:26 am

Arnock wrote:
Sabindeus wrote:I read it but I don't get the ending. Did he get beat up and was saying that he was just going to take it over the PA? That seems odd.



I think he was announcing that he wasn't going to report it to the administration, which seems odd, seeing as he was announcing over the PA with the principal right there....


I'm not sure, the whole thing was somewhat hard to follow.


Yeah that was what threw me
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Re: Just Gotta Say...

Postby cerwillis » Wed Oct 12, 2011 9:38 am

Somewhat back on topic, a gay civil rights pioneer died on coming out day. :cry:

http://www.npr.org/2011/10/12/141261645 ... dead-at-86
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