- Age / Gender:
- 22, Male
- Keizer, OR.
- All Stats >
- Community Stats
Level 9 Blank Slate
Ranked as Scout
So, I was told I should write a book. I don't know where to start, really. Or even what it should be about. So many ideas, but I'm afraid that they wont fit together. So I get discouraged and don't want to even bother. I think I'll just start somewhere after this paragraph is over.
I think it would be highly appropriate to introduce myself, as this is the beginning of the "book". My name is Dylan Justen Patten. I currently reside in Salem Oregon. I recently moved from Keizer Oregon. Keizer is essentially Salem, but a bunch of townies decided it would be a smart economical decision to emancipate themselves and create a new town.
I lived in Keizer for my whole life, up until a week ago. Actually, I lied. Up until around my first birthday my family and I lived in a trailer park in Salem. Recently, last year, I lived in north-east Portland for a few months with a few friends. I had to move back to Keizer because I couldn't get a job. Well, I admit I was lazy and didn't look hard at all, so I could have prevented moving back, but I didn't really see a reason to stay.
The school are cheaper down in Salem, no rent, or food money if I live with my parents. So, it sounded like a better idea to move back anyway. Speaking of school, I'm a high school drop out. I did get my GED, though. I don't feel that high school diploma holds much merit of anything anyway. I figured, with 7 credits out of 22 my junior year, dropping out was a great idea and it saved me a year of unnecessary school.
Getting my GED was the most fun I have ever had in any classroom environment. I don't know, it just seemed like the perfect place for me. I, personally, like to "people watch". Well, it isn't so much that, I like reading people, understanding the way they work. Everyone in my class, which was portable #20 at Chemeketa Community College, was ridiculous.
I feel bad, because I don't remember their names at all. I'll just give them fake names, to make it easier. So, you had the dozen Cholos, the two pregnant girls, and the rest of us mutts. Everyone was real. It wasn't like high school or middle school at all. Maybe this is why it was so fun, people weren't a giant lie.
This one kid, whose name I remember, Edgar, was very interesting. Apparently, everyday we had class, he would steal two dollars from his sister, who worked at a cabaret. He would take the money from her bedroom floor and buy one liter of Lipton green tea. He seemed to always be full of confidence, as if he owned the place, but it was cool if you put your feet on the table, because his dad wouldn't be home for another hour.
Edgar and this girl named "Sarah", who was very shy and introverted, had a thing together at the end if the year. It was weird, Edgar, this overly confidant guy who can't speak more than three words on English and this mildly overweight, fair skinned, blond haired girl cuddling in class.
This guy named Adan and Sherry had a thing too. It was great, I'm not sure if I'm supposed to say that, but it was. They were so happy together in a very immature way. Talking about going to parties and that they get cross-faded a lot. Sherry was one of those girls who always wore her hoody with her family name,in Old English, on the back. Adan was the pseudo basketball player type. The kid who wore jerseys and wore those hats where it was cool to not take the sticker off.
Oh! This kid, who I will call Jeremy was the best. Not really, but he was fun to watch. I know, I know, that sounds a bit crazy, but hear me out. He was one of those kids who didn't need to be made fun of, he did it to him self.
Pony tail, eighty pounds overweight, Canadian tuxedo, and three two-inch thick sci-fi novels. He had a very pudgy face which made him look very young. I assume he was home schooled his whole life, due to how severe his social anxiety was. Or, maybe, he has been picked on so much, that he tries, but knows that he is going to be ridiculed so he lowers his resolve.
See, he was a real nice kid and smart too. I actually thought he was pretty cool, because of his subconscious way of expressing his philosophies in nearly every conversation. But, one thing made me want to destroy him. He had the strangest speech impediment. Words like; ocean, occasion, congratulations, salutations, and anything else with "t'shun" at the end would be pronounced "sinn", not "t'shun". So, he was explaining something and said "Oh'sinn" about four times.
My teachers were all very smart and mature. They weren't book smart, they just knew what the fuck was going on smart, if that makes sense. Maybe it wasn't that they were smart, maybe it was that they were all 27 and were okay with that and confidence turned to intelligence.
I really feel like a jerk, because they were my favorite teachers I have ever had, but I don't remember their names. Oh, I forgot, there was a near 70 year old lady, who was also a teacher. She was an awesome liberal who had her kids shortly after Woodstock, so I assumed she had fun at Woodstock. She had coffee stained teeth and spiderweb hair. She seemed happy that she was teaching, it was strange. I believe she "taught" us Reading.
We read that book about Sadako Sasaki. I more than likely violated her name, but I'm way too apathetic to look it up. Anyway, apparently, this girl lived in an area where radiation surged through after the nuclear bombs were dropped in World War II. She seemed fine, but eventually she became very ill. Her friend, or brother, or someone gave her paper to make paper cranes. There was a legend that went along with making paper cranes.
Apparently. if you make one thousand paper cranes your wish will come true, or something. Anyway, Sadako made like seven hundred or so before she died and her wish was something that belonged in a Hallmark card.
Okay, please don't get me wrong, the book was amazing and her story is epic, but I just didn't care for it much, I don't sympathize very easily. Perhaps I'm repressing emotions until they form some terminal illness. If so, fuck it, if I grow crazy from not crying my eyes out, then what the hell ever.
Anyway, there is a memorial in a park in Japan and it is a tradition to for kids in school to make one thousand paper cranes to remember her and everyone who died. My class had to do the same. I believe I made about three hundred paper cranes. There was about twenty two students in the class, so one thousand shouldn't be that bad. But, no, everyone else make like 10 a day and gave up. We finally finished in a week. Biggest waste of time ever, I just wanted my GED.
I was a bit of a teacher's pet with my other teacher. I still don't remember his name, but I do remember that he was white. He had very subtle glasses and a part in his hair. He looked like he was a closet steam punk.
It was weird, he was a friend, not a teacher. Not to brag, but I was the only competent one in the class. I seemed to be the only one who understood sentence structure and essay formation. That's all we did in that class, we wrote essays. Essays about random shit. This was Writing, if you hadn't assumed so.
For awhile, things got awkward. He started treating me too nice. I think he realized this and stopped. He would just focus on me and none of the other students, which was really awkward. But I knew he wasn't a pedophile, or anything else of the sort. I just guess he thought I was interesting and got carried away. It makes sense to me. You meet someone new and they're very interesting, so you want to get to know them more and spend time with them. Then you start over thinking things and become paranoid. You think you're a creep or a stalker.
Okay, maybe I AM insane, after that paragraph, I feel that I am. Or would acknowledgment and suspicion ensure one's sanity? Either way, I think way too much too often.
Yes! I remember this teacher's name. Her name was Karla. She was... she, let's just say that she wasn't the shiniest dime in a pocket of change. You could tell she went through some tough shit in life, just by her face. I would say she was embarking on forty and pre-mature menopause. Her laugh was like dirt road. Acne scars and tiny dimples covered her cheeks.
Her teeth weren't the best either. Stained by coffee and cigarettes. Crooked too, but that wasn't her fault, that was genetics. She was one of the nicest and sincere people I have ever met.
Have you ever noticed that? People who aren't super models by any means. You can tell that they have dealt with a ton of shit their entire life. But, they're always the nicest, generous, and sincere people on earth. Perhaps, through being influenced by such zeniths of terrible shit, they agree that they will not tolerate such negativity in their life. So, they make sure to be kind to others, because that is all they have ever wanted. They understand that since they went through rough times, that other people are to.
Maybe, one day, when they were really low, someone showed them sincerity and kindness. Possibly, such a small action of kindness inspired them. Perhaps it gave their spirit unbridled hope to keep going on. From then on, they would never let ANYTHING get them down, because there is no point. Life is short, why live miserably?
So, they disasociate themself from all of these bad influences and break free. Their once hunched over shadow of a spirit is now a bold upright blaze of light. I don't know, I like to think that is how some people are. I feel those are the only people worthy of Heaven, or whatever is after this. By their ascension from misery to love and hope, could that be Heaven?
She was our Science teacher. Basic Biology and Chemistry, really. We did a lot of experiments. It was great, because, they were very childish experiments. Like taking baking soda, vinegar, and putting it in a sandwich bag, then shaking it up. We then threw them up in the air and they exploded. Most of the bags just burst open the ziplock tracks. These experiments weren't part of our curriculum of course.
I just imagined you thinking the GED classes were designed around a third grade class curriculum. It made me laugh when I realized this. So, you made me laugh, without doing anything, thank you.
My last teacher, who was the most memorable, doesn't have a name. Well, he had a name, I just can't remember it. He was Mexican and the youngest of my teachers. OH! His name was Hector. Fuck yes, I knew I knew his name. Anyway, he taught us Social Studies. We basically learned about the Great Depression, the Cold War, and how the Congressional system works. We silently read a lot, which was awesome.
I never had my own book, because, before this, I didn't like reading. Hector brought a stack of books from his personal collection, changing each day. I read a few chapters out of random books, but they never caught my attention. One day, Hector brought some books in and said "Hey guys, today. I have brought my favorites in, so please read them and tell me what you think."
What's weird is that he picked up an orange book from the pile and walk around the room to me. He reached it towards me while simultaneously turning it to the proper orientation so I could read it. "You'll like this book." I took it and read.
It is now my favorite book. "The Toughest Indian in the World" is what it is. In the most generalway to describe the the book, it is a book where each chapter is a new story. The stories are always related to sex and human relations and difficulties expressing such emotions with another. They're all about Native American's in present society, but I don't think that matters much, it indirectly explains and acknowledges that we're all human. It is an amazing book, especially if you have a more metaphysical mentality.
I was about four stories in when I was done with my GED. Hector told me to keep it and give it to someone else when I was done. I gave it to my friend Thomas for his birthday, as he seemed like type of person who would appreciate it.
I believe the bare minimum to receive a GED is an average score of four hundred fifty. There are five tests and pertaining categories. Writing, Social Studies, Science, Lit & Arts (reading), and Math. I got an average score five hundred thirty and a total score of two thousand six hundred fifty.
Four hundred ninety on the Writing. I don't mean to make excuses, but I got a really dry subject. Now my alibi sounds even worse that I can't recall what it was, but still, I remember there wasn't much to write about and I had to stretch everything to the minimum length. Six hundred twenty on Social Studies, apparently that is higher than 80% of all seniors in Oregon. Five hundred sixty on the science, which I'm proud of, I loathe science, as a subject. Five hundred twenty on the Lit & Arts.
I'm going to admit, I am completely oblivious as to how Math works. I don't trust it, it has never seemed sincere enough as a system to to make sense in my head. I got a score of four hundred sixty on the test. It's passing, but just barely.
I received a "degree" explaining my "accomplishment". I also received two little cards, one shows my scores and the other a "Certificate of Equivalency". They're behind my Social Security Card in my wallet. Not the safest place for a Social Security Card, but whatever, not like it is worth much in this economic situation.