I’ve never had very many friends. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with me, per se. I don’t smell bad. I don’t sit in the corner and talk to my fingers like Bonnie Trotsky, who has to go upstairs to Dr. Rudder’s room three times a week. I think it has more to do with the other kids in our neighborhood. They just aren’t interested in things the way I am. Here’s an example. They like parties. I like poetry. They like brushing their hair. I like looking at my hair under a microscope. You get the picture.
Ever since Deborah started high school, I’ve been hanging out with Rosie Baker. She’s not as good a friend as Deborah was, but we have fun telling secrets and hiding from the popular girls. Rosie’s funny and smarter than most of the kids at Carlton Middle School. She doesn’t care that her clothes are the wrong brand or that her hair is so curly it makes her head look like a bird’s nest. She gets good grades like I do. Plus she’s got an attitude. She’s smoked a cigarette, she knows how to make food come out of her nose when she laughs, and she says she once French-kissed Marco Yerardi for thirty-nine and a half minutes out behind the gym. I don’t believe the part about the kiss, but I like to ask her for details to see how good she is at making stuff up.
Excerpted from Freak
by Marcella Fleischman Pixley
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