This boy still follows me on social media. I don’t even know if he remembers this, and I doubt he reads my stuff, but I’m going to be extra careful not to give his identity away. So for the entire post we’re going to refer to this boy as Winchell McNelson.
I’ve always been one to approach guys. Even before my feminist spirit was awakened, I liked the idea of approaching a boy and telling him I had feelings for him, or I wanted to go on a date with him. This way, I didn’t have to sit around pulling flower petals and wondering if Billy Joe Jenkins liked me or not. Ya girl didn’t and still doesn’t like to waste time.
Being the one to always approach guys gave me a tough exterior. As long as you are respectful and mindful, the worst thing a person can tell you is “no”, and then you just move on with your life (take notes gentlemen). And if someone is extremely mean to you because you expressed interest in them, then you dodged a bullet because you don’t need a dingle wad rat like that in your life.
In the seventh grade, I had a crush on this adorably smart boy, Winchell McNelson. Winchell was quite the popular young man, but for all of middle school I was sprung entirely on the fact that I thought this boy was beyond brilliant. I was scoping for a young Bill Gates. I’m pretty sure this guy graduated at the top of his high school, was accepted into a bunch of stellar schools, and is now doing super successful in life. Like I said… I was scoping for a young Bill Gates, and I’ve got the eye for them.
Pretty much everyone knew I had a crush on this kid. All my friends knew and random kids in my class did, too. I wasn’t really secretive about it. I was a trusting kid, and I figured it would never get back to him, and if it did, at least he knew that I liked him. That’s the ultimate goal, right?
So one day I got tired of just waiting around, and I decided to ask him to an after school dance. He politely declined and said he wasn’t going to go. Of course, he showed up at the dance with his friends and that stung a little, but I wasn’t trippin’. He just didn’t like me in that way, and that was A-OK.
Crap hit the fan when he told his buddies about me asking him out. You know that feeling Cady Heron talks about in Mean Girls when you know someone was just talking about you? Well, it’s real, and it happened to me. I am Cady Heron, y’all.
I walked into Biology class and saw Winchell McNelson talking to his good buddy Cody Jackson*. They stared me down like I just said “Bush hates black people” in front of millions of Americans so of course I had to approach them and figure out what was happening. Before I could even open my mouth, Cody Jackson says in the most patronizing of tones, “Why are you telling people that Winchell is your boyfriend?”
My jaw dropped to the floor. What kind of devilish nonsense was Winchell telling people?? First of all, it was incredibly false. And second of all, if I were the kind of psychopath to pretend a boy was my boyfriend, I would aim a little higher and choose the actual Bill Gates before this kid, but I digress.
I, being the terribly shy and non-confrontational person that I am, whispered, “I never said that,” and slumped into my chair. I was mortified. I was mostly upset because even though I had a crush on Winchell, we were pretty decent friends. I wasn’t just crushing on some random boy. I was crushing on someone I had gotten to know. And I felt like he betrayed my trust. Also, middle school drama spreads like wildfire, and I didn’t want everyone to think of me as an even weirder weird girl.
I’m not sure how I moved past this, but I did, and believe it or not Winchell and I remained friends. He even invited me to his Bar Mitzvah. Crazy, I know. I think he sort of liked the attention I gave him. I was the Roger to his Tia and Tamara.
I eventually moved on developing many love interests in middle school. Some of these boys who actually liked me back and got to experience what it was like to be adored by the wonderful me. Too bad Winchell McNelson missed his chance. I would’ve been the best girlfriend in all of seventh grade.