I know a guy, for tumblr’s sake, lets call him james, from high school.
Now James was in the same social circle as me, and was actually pretty good friends with my twin sister.
But I never was friend with James. Something always bothered me about him. He was big, and awkward, and I just got bad vibes from him. I was never mean, but I always avoided him.
I think he picked up on it too. At least I hope he did. I denied all facebook/myspace requests. I never answered any of him emails. I really just shut him out after high school.
Well, now my boyfriend and James are friends. James drives one of the new bugs, so he and my boyfriend have been talking cars. My twin mentioned Jame’s girlfriend went to Catholic school with us.
I was heading into middle school right after the whole Columbine School Shooting thing, and my mom thought private school was the answer.
My mother is Catholic, My Dad is Jewish. This was never really a thing any where else. I knew a lot of kids who came from mixed faiths. My Jewish cousins had the best Christmas tree every year. It never felt odd, and I never felt out of place. If anything, it made me feel a little special. I got Christmas, and Hanukkah.
I already went to a Jewish sleep away camp, where I had no problem being a mixed faith kid in a camp that held itself to orthodox Jew standards.
(We ate kosher, prayed before and after each meal, attended services, read from the torah, and had hebrew classes. We did all of the regular camp activities as well, but the jewness was tossed in for flavor. I still got to third base under volleyball bleachers, and learned how to paddle a canoe, like a regular camp)
And honestly, I really dug Jewish camp. For an OCD kid like me, Judaism was like crack. There are tons of rituals. There are even some funky dance moves to do during certain prayers. (ok not really, but we do take a step forward, Kneel, and bow during the Kiddish)
Because Jewish Camp was such a blast, I thought catholic school would be no sweat.
I don’t think Ive ever really discussed it, but the antisemitism at that school was off the wall. It was just so new to me. I came from Jewish camp, where everyone was my friend….
…………..to Catholic school, were girls I didn’t even know would walk over to me in 3s, and tell me I was going to hell. Boys spit on me, and called me a heeb, and I didnt even know what that was.
I remember a boy reading his essay about the new millennium, (it was 1999 at the time) he said all of the jew would die, because that was their job. Then the Catholics would make a new society. I’m paraphrasing here. He had a lot more hell fire.
This memory sticks out in my head the most. because I was dumbstruck. I could feel my pulse pounding in my ears, I kept waiting for someone to say something. For the teacher, Mrs. Bergin to reprimand. But it was business as usual. The next kid was called. I sat at my desk, mortified, trying to hide that I was crying.
I went to a different school the next year. For a really long time, if I ran into someone from St. Mary’s, I was automatically defensive. I felt humiliated and weak for what happened back there. For not saying anything. For not standing up and beating the shit out of that kid.
So I’d pick fights. Id spot that St. Mary’s School Tartan skirt walking around the mall, and I was priming for a fight. Here, you hate me, well fuck you, I hate you more, and I’m better at it, because I use fists.
So the other night my boyfriend and I were discussing James, and I was honest. I said I had no reason to not like him, but I had heard things. Rumors are rumors, and I’m going to give him a chance.
This morning I checked my facebook to see I was tagged in one of Jason’s Girlfriend’s photos. It was some stupid “some girls wear heels blah blah I don’t blah blah” I rolled my eyes and looked at her profile.
Its lovely to see that people don’t change, and I should really just follow my instinct.
Her profile picture is her brand new Swastika tattoo. That James gave her with his shitty basement tattoo gun.
My only thought is BEAUTIFUL. Now I have a more solid reason to not hang out with Jason and Ms. Aryan nation.