Friday, November 30, 2012

Historical Donuts Part III: Jr High

Jr. High and unassigned lunchroom seating. I never could have expected the impact this would make on not only who I would become but on who I wouldn't stay. (Profound! Give me a medal!)

The first day of Jr. High is traumatic for everyone. At least, for everyone who is me. I was late to a class (Mr. Gideon the clock in your room was five minutes slow.) And immediately, upon arriving to that class was made the butt of the joke by the teacher. The teacher. Wow! Today, that would be bullying. Especially, since the 29 other kids in the class were desperate trying to home on to some sort of driftwood on the Titanic of Day 1: Jr. High, and Captain History Teacher knew this ocean, he was king of it.

But this is not about the first day of Jr. High. It's about doughnuts. 

Because the lunchroom seating was a free-for-all for the 7th grade students to figure out their own places and with whom to sit. I quickly found myself not as part of the massive cool-girl table that was made up of my former classmates from 6th grade. It wasn't obvious shunning but they didn't care if I was there, and they weren't keen on my new friends that I invited to sit with us. So my new friends and I bailed from that table and formed our own group of four, we ate lunch together every day. 
Looking on that now, it is awesome to have lunch with the same group that you love every day. (Working at the retail store I got the same thing when I was in the design department, the same yahoos everyday.) Part of that group was my new best friend, Jessica. Every day for lunch, she would get the cinnamon sugar mini cake mini donuts for sale in the Snack Bar of the cafeteria. I was never one to even think of those donuts. I usually stuck to foods that were cooler than the 'hot lunch meal of the day' but that also didn't cost a million dollars (sorry, big slice of pizza). Which meant I ate a lot of cold sandwiches from the Snack Bar the beginning of that year. When I discovered the mini-donuts, it was fun; cinnamon sugar on a donut! Never heard of that. And soon the mini0donuts were making a regular appearance on my lunch tray, along with my boring cold sandwiches. We would eat those mini donuts every day. It became a joke, and lunch was never complete with out them

Seventh and eighth grade is marked by my constant eating of those cinnamon mini-donuts. I learned later that sometimes my friends would steal a mini-donut from my tray when I wasn't looking. Even now, far removed from 19--, my friends and I still laugh about the mini-donuts. Because, yes that group of four stayed friends all these years, on the tennis team, through different colleges, different cities and what has become very different lives. We were in each other weddings (well, they haven't been in mine because I am not married but it is assumed [so I guess I will cross that bridge when/if I get to it {I don't know what I think about marriage, let alone bridesmaids}]).

Had I stayed with the group I though I 'belonged' too, the former 6th grade classmates that became the cool girls, I don't think I would have eaten mini-donuts every day.  I don't think I would have even discovered them. I probably would have been very lonely, sitting on the edge of that massive table of budding queens and divas jostling for a place. I am not a very good jostle-er, or jouster, but that is a very different thing.  But this isn't about cinnamon sugar mini donuts, it's about realizing there are other worlds out there, even if you don't know what they are. 

 The is essay is part of a multi-part doughnut essay.

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