The Day I Skipped School

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Tsuru the Japanese goody-good girl is sitting at the front of the class and I totally want to throw darts at her back, or a knife, blades, needles. Just something to ruin her perfect posture. So uppity and alien and show off-y, her white polo shirt sitting perfectly on her statue body. Her hair is shinier than mine, her eyelashes thicker; her bra is newer and sturdier, her tits harder than everyone's. This school is a write-off and we all wish we could stay away and it's frustrating that Tsuru seems oblivious to the shithole her parents have dumped her in.

The mean girls from my class throw a Green Rocket which crumples as it hits her back. It's a paper dart with boogers in it. Tsuru feels the snotty plane tap her spine, shivers once, adjusts her shoulder blades, continues to absorb the lesson, acting oblivious.

Bitch. Fuckwit. Dumbass moron. Girls High sucks balls, Tsuru. The least you could do to, like, raise the level of dignity is give us some push-back by reacting when we hassle you, girl... Jesus. Things are different where she comes from, I suppose. Tsuru is from Japan. Her mum is a grumpy lawyer and her dad is an accountant for the Japanese embassy downtown. I saw them once and they looked frightened of the world, walking in front and behind her, protective of Tsuru like she was a little baby bird. It just made it worse, at school. Kids still call her Slanty or say 'Love you long time' or biff condoms at her.

Our class right now is geography. It's boring as hell. Mz Bowker is tapping the whiteboard where she has projected a map of the world, showing all these exotic locations, Polynesia and Easter Island and Tierra del Fuego and shit, talking about human migration and blah blah blah Koreans have more Neanderthal DNA than the rest of us and the land bridge from Asia to Canada and how the Japanese Crane Wife fairy tale was transported to the Aleut people of Alaska through continental drift or some shit, cultural memetics, and the Kamchatka people and the Kodiaks and...

I've tuned out, honestly. I have two things to care about, hunched in my corner: I care about hiding my manga comic under my geo book, and I care about Connie and Francine and Hannah not fucking with me and stealing it. Uzumaki is this super-violent seinen comic about a curse that's taken over a Japanese town in the form of a spiral. It pulls people's heads into vortexes, curls people's spines into ropes and stuff, bends people like a cinnamon rolls... it'd be super-awesome if the Uzumaki curse hoovered up the Bitch Trio and contorted their faces with agony, let them know what it's like to suffer. Sitting midway down the class, far enough away that Mz Bowker can't hear them, the bitches are planning a keg party and they're discussing the invite list loud enough for Poppies and Losers to hear if they've made the cut. I know I'll be on the Pop list because I play my way through the ranks, I put in effort to not-be-a-loser so I can survive school, throwing out strategic compliments and lending the bitches money and giving them cans of Monster energy drink. Honestly though, I barely keep my head above popular-water; I'll go to their party if they invite me, but I literally hate crowds. My idea of a good time is sneaking out of school to throw rocks at the windows on an old factory, or wandering by myself round an art gallery of naked drawings, something that'll really give my parents reasons to fret over me. Or breaking into the basement of Mr English's big white house and looking for an old lamp with a genie in it, yeah, that'd give me the thrills I need. Al English is the saggy-necked 56 year old gold silk dressing gown creep with the Jaguar draped in a tarpaulin who hits on me every time I accept one of his smokes when I'm dawdling in the alleyway to get to school slower. Mr English stains my day every time his yellow alcoholic eyes touch me. I'll be kicking through drifts of leaves in the alleyway then find myself accepting a cigarette while he rests his fat frog-throat on the fence, breakfast cocktail in his right hand, stroking the cord of his dressing down, and prattles on about how his property management business has like a thousand clients, how he gets to spend all day in his slippers, how many kids he's put into this world, how dating is better than ever in his 50s, how his pescatarian diet gives him increased "virility," whatever the fuck that means. The gross old paedo just starts my day dirty, that's the point.

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