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Entry 1 -- I Hate Stories
How did I do this to myself. I wrote an essay that got me in to Honors English. The problem is I don't belong in Honors English, for at least two reasons: First, I suck as a writer. Second, I don't like stories and literature. I love to read books that tell you real stuff and how to make and build things. I like science and technology. Stories, though are stupid. I'm sorry if you are an English teacher. That is how I feel.
My essay by the way, was not a story. It was about a real event. I built a kite last spring and flew it with my brother, Stasch, in the contest in the city park. We won the Junior Home Made Division for best flight and got a hundred dollars. That really happened. I did not have to make it up. It was not literature.
The only reason I let them put me in to Honors English is it looks good on your transcript and I want to attend a big university some day. Call me ambitious. I have not decided which university or what I want to do. Heck, I'm only fourteen.
Anyway, there I am sitting in Honors English. We sit at tables in a big sunny classroom up on the second floor. The nice thing about Honors English is all the sharp kids are there. There's Joshua. He's looks like a cinder block but it's all soft fat and flesh and his glasses are even thicker than mine, but that kid's a walking encyclopedia. Joshua's weak spot is he has never built a kite or fixed a bike or done anything with his hands. He does not understand or appreciate that all knowledge should go somewhere physical. It sometimes doesn't.
In math, Joshua and I go toe to toe and sometimes I beat him. In social studies, Joshua gets better scores than I do on tests. In English we tie for some reason. I wish I knew why.
Then there's Lenny who is the math genius. None of us can touch Lenny. I think Lenny's parents who are wealthy professional people used pull to get Lenny in to Honor's English. Life is not fair. Say that three times fast.
Then there are the girls. What can you say about girls except that when they are smart, they are absolutely brilliant and English is their subject. They have three tables. We boys have a table to ourselves because we have to preserve our pride. We won't have much of it left when the girls take over.
And, yes, I'm very worried how I'm going to keep up. First, I'm not that good at English. Second, I can't write (I know I said that before), and third, I hate stories. That makes me a loser from the get go, but I can't be a loser. There is too much at stake here.
So there I was the first day of class in Honors English and the teacher assigned a free reading book report, a critique. We had to find a decent piece of literature, no Harry Potter or genre books. He asked the class to give him example and the girls snapped too talking about romance novels and Joshua mentioned Louis Lamour whom he must have read about somewhere because once he described the kind of books he writes, I can't imagine Joshua's parents letting him read them. Joshua's parents sit on him and make him spend all his time doing academics. Poor Joshua. Lenny even mentioned comics. I sat like a bump on a log.
I also found out we couldn't read nonfiction or technical books. This has to be a story but a good quality story and then we have to write this in depth report on it. What am I going to do? I'll fall flat on my face. I'll get stuck reading one book after another that I can't stand? There has to be a way to make Honors English bearable so I can keep up and maybe even do well.
So far, I am clueless, but we have to have our books for our critiques by our next class. What am I going to do? And...it only gets worse from here.