“You look like a nerd with that giant backpack,” Megan said to me after school. She held back her giggles as we walked to the car.
“I know! But I can’t use my hippie bag anymore. I have too many books.”
My face was parallel to the ground. If I stood up straight, my backpack would pull me downward and I’d fall. The weight on my back was too heavy, so I balanced it out by leaning my head forward. I’m a walking ninety-degree angle. …Did I really just think that? Who thinks that?
“What’s in the bag?” she laughed. Along with my fat backpack, I was holding a plastic sack filled with more weight. “Books. More books,” I replied. The sack pulled my body to the side. My shoulders would look deformed and unsymmetrical in the morning. Falling over ninety-degree angle.
She didn’t ask me what books they were, so I didn’t tell her. That in itself was another story. My English teacher asked us to bring a copy of Hamlet to school. A week ago, I asked my mom if we had a copy already. “Of course we do,” she said. So I didn’t worry about it for the rest of the week until the day before I had to bring it to class. “Where’s the Hamlet copy?” I asked her. Then she went upstairs to grab it and came back with a monstrosity. “We don’t have a separate copy of Hamlet, but this is the Complete Works of Shakespeare.” I should have prepared for this. Mom was the one in college who didn’t have a pocket dictionary at home. Instead of buying one, she brought the giant Webster’s Dictionary from the bookstand in our living room and dragged it to class with her.
Now I haul the giant Shakespeare book to school every day. Along with the US history book, math book, and the other million books for English.
My eyes hurt and I get headaches in class. I realize that I’m squinting to see the white board. Time to get out my good ol’ glasses again from the nightstand’s dusty drawers. Here comes Anne. Giant backpack, giant plastic sack, a falling-over-human-ninety-degree-angle-with-shoulder-deformations-AND-GLASSES. Nerd times a billion.
This is why nerds are nerds. Because they go on a foreign exchange, come back having to take all the class requirements for the year they missed, PLUS the current year’s requirements, go home with books and books and books shoved into their backpack until the zipper breaks, do homework until ten every night, stay up staring at their computer researching, get bad eyes, get glasses, wake up exhausted, leave for school and forget to brush their teeth, and DO IT OVER AND OVER AGAIN FOR THE REST OF THEIR LIVES! Muahahaha!