16 May 2011

To a Highschool Hero

Dear Molly Erwin,

I thought of you yesterday when I was looking in my rearview mirror to put on lipstick, because I noticed that there was a little bit of lipstick that had found it's way onto a tooth, requiring the delicate business of reaching in past the painted lips and removing it. I had to make a funny sort of buck-toothed bunny face. "This wouldn't have happened," I thought, "if I'd done Molly's no-lipstick on the teeth trick." You know what I'm talking about. The trick where you put your finger in your mouth and drag it out, taking any errant smudges with it. It's not for polite company yet somehow it never seemed anything but ladylike when you would touch up before Mr. DeGrandmont's 3rd period chemistry class.

When I met you, though we were only a year apart, you were an upperclassman and I was a lowerclassman. At such an impressionable time, it is possible to become someone's hero with only a year of life to put you ahead. I loved your smart dark brown bob and your powdery pink skin and your wine colored lipstick. I loved how you wore neck scarves and handmade clothing and didn't give a hoot what people thought of you in a black-and-white highschool (and town) made up of the popular people and the losers. I didn't know you to be cynical about it, though. I knew you to be a comedienne; the kind of person who is only half serious (or exactly half-serious) about applying wine-colored lipstick before Mr. DeGrandmont's 3rd period chemistry class. I also knew you to be kind.

It had been a long time between the last time I thought of you and putting on lipstick in the car yesterday. I bet you're doing pretty good; I bet you're a happy person. I think it would be interesting to see what your house looks like, find out if you are married, have children. I also bet you have made beautiful things and have friends who love you a lot.

Your friend,