There's really not much to say...
Every morning started with the synchronized sound of heels, click-a-clacking down the high school halls. A tall blonde, in pink pumps, strutting down her runway with her posse of clones close behind.
Every morning, I turned from my rusty locker door to watch as they proudly pranced down their halls and waved at their admirers. I, however, an admirer like the rest, never received a friendly greeting. Instead, I was looked over and passed by. Occasionally, when the brown paper bag covered books would fall from my sweaty palms, I would receive a quiet snicker, followed by a flip of her beautiful locks, and then she would stick her perfectly powdered nose in the air and continue on.
Her name was McKenna Stevens, a vision in pink. Always pink. She had it all. The looks, the friends, the boys. Every boy in school wanted her, while every girl in school wanted to be her. I, as pathetic as it sounds, idolized her. McKenna was everything I wasn’t and everything I could never be. But I would have given anything to spend a day in her heels.
The girl had a way of making you feel inferior, no matter how attractive you may be yourself. She made me absolutely hate who I was, then again, I never much fancied myself. Each night, I sat in front of my mirror. “Mirror, mirror on the wall, I’m quite aware I’m the ugliest of them all.” One look at me, and it was quite obvious why McKenna never gave me the time of day.
Me, a “string bean,” with absolutely no curves to speak of. Every day I threw on my faded green cardigan, which did nothing for me but create warmth and hide the fact that I was flatter than a little boy. This, paired with my straight legged jeans, was fashion a la me. And my beautiful locks – red frizz that hung down to the small of my back. Then there were the braces. Oh the braces! My mouth full of metal; I swear I could pick up radio signals. No, it was quite obvious that I was scum next to McKenna Stevens, and I was convinced that if I was her, my life would indeed be perfect. Funny how wrong I was.
It was our junior year, and a Monday like any other. I was at my locker, waiting for the click-a-clack of those famous heels, and my far from friendly morning greeting. It never came. I was actually late to class without the normal posse parade at 7:55 telling me it was time to go. My day was totally thrown off.
I returned home from school and flung my old faithful backpack, with one useful strap, on the floor and proceeded to the kitchen.
“Is that you, sweetie?” came the familiar voice from the laundry room.
Mom - always home from work early. She felt it was necessary for parents to be home when their children got done with school. I’ve long outgrown the days of needing her to make me my after school snack, but she insisted. And I digress.
“Hey hun, you know that sweet girl in your class, McKenna Stevens?”
Know her? I only idolize her. And sweet girl? I wouldn’t quite say sweet.
“Her father died this weekend, in a car accident.”
What? No no no. She must have had the wrong girl. McKenna Stevens’ life was perfect. Things like that don’t happen in perfect lives. That, however, explained why the click-a-clacking of her pretty pink pumps never came that day. The information was confirmed after opening up the local paper.
Everything I had convinced myself, disappeared in one afternoon. McKenna Stevens, no matter how perfect her life seemed, did not have a perfect life after all. And me ever becoming McKenna Stevens would not make me any happier of a person. It was like an epiphany, and I no longer had the desire to walk in her heels.
The next day at school, a sad, but strangely familiar click-a-clacking came down the hall. It was McKenna, a vision in black, alone, and lacking her usual bounce. I wanted to say something to her, sympathize with her, but instead my books fell. She stopped, and I was quite sure that the world would go back to the way it was meant to be and she would snicker, flip, and walk away. Instead, she bent down and picked up my books. She looked up at me, with rivers of mascara flowing down her pale cheeks. From her hands, I took my brown paper bag covered books. She got up, and before I could stop myself, I mumbled a quick “I’m sorry.” She worked up a smile for me and continued on. I watched as she walked away and smiled, happy to receive my own friendly greeting.