Better for Us. Worse for Them.

October 9, 2010


With all the coverage lately in the media about bullying, young gay men killing themselves and the You Tube “It Gets Better” phenomenon, I can’t help but think back on my time in high school, remember the guys that bullied me, how my life indeed has gotten better and how their lives have become inversely depressing and miserable.

I grew up in a very  small town in the middle of nowhere Ohio. Sure, everyone said it was a safe place to raise children, but they didn’t add the caveat that they had to be heterosexual, addicted to college football, eat nothing but greasy, fatty foods and have a penchant for fart jokes and xenophobia.

Enter me.

I started public high school having matriculated from a small private school of only 100 students. My first day I donned the most impressive outfit I could find, confident that my superior fashion sense and glowing smile would have me at the top of the social ladder in no time. My confidence didn’t last long. Before first period, I slipped into the restroom to check my hair. I walked in and there they were: Jeff, Nathan and Lanny, all wearing their matching junior varsity football jerseys. “The girl’s room is down the hall” Jeff said with a smirk that’s only reserved for the dickiest of dick heads. With that, they all walked out, making sure to nudge me with their shoulders as they did.

And so began the four darkest years of my life.

Sure, I had some good friends and did well in school, but every morning I’d wake up thinking “What’re they gonna do to me today?” And, even though they were complete moronic boneheads, they did seem to think up some creative ways of making me feel substandard. There were the typical things like pantsing me in the hallway, knocking books out of my hands and walking behind me and calling me faggot or any other of their colorful euphemisms. But, sometimes they took it even further.

During gym class one morning, the class was forced to play a game of dodge ball (this was back in the days when dodge ball was still an acceptable activity). As was typically the case, I was sitting out of the game. I’d convinced my mother and doctor that I suffered from some unnamed disease that made it impossible for me to exert physical effort between the weekday hours of 8am and 2:30 pm. Anyway, I was sitting on the sidelines, minding my own business when, from out of nowhere, three balls came whizzing at me, knocking me down and breaking my glasses. I stood up, knowing that the gym teacher (who bore a creepy resemblance to Vanilla Ice) would, at the very least, put Jeff, Nathan and Lanny in detention, but like that first day of school, I was wrong. Not only were my three tormentors laughing, but the asshole gym teacher claimed he didn’t see anything and, therefore, couldn’t assign any blame to the situation.

The rest of high school passed by in a blur with the three amigos taking every chance to tell me what an inexcusable faggot I was and seizing any opportunity to make me feel less than. So, I studied hard, telling myself that one day I’d get out of that town, do something with my life and one day have the last laugh.

It’s been seventeen years and, thanks to Facebook and some sly internet sleuthing I was able to look up my three tormentors and see where they are today.

Jeff actually lives here in Atlanta. Well, not actually Atlanta, but a pitiful suburb that’s full of other small-minded assholes like him. I found his address and decided to give him a drive by. Pulling up to his piece of shit house, all I could see was a roof that was badly in need of repair, two cheesy cars with custom spoilers and personalized license plates (for my full feelings on personalized license plates, click here) and an unkempt yard full of weeds and dog droppings. Upon some more investigation, I found that he’s out of work and, according to a tiny piece of info that I dragged out of an old friend that knows his family, a complete disappointment to both his parents.

I couldn’t find that much information on Nathan. I guess he’s trying to keep a low profile after his arrest for counterfeiting fifty dollar bills in the late 1990’s. That’s right. The guywho used to treat me like I wasn’t worthy of breathing the same air as he, was caught trying to pass a fake fifty at a McDonald’s drive thru somewhere in the Southwest. Pathetic, I know. But it gets better. Through my friend Amanda, who was by far the one person who really got me through high school, I learned that he’s is living in Arizona with his boyfriend and writing a book about growing up closeted in the Midwest. I mean, how funny is that?

After high school Lanny joined the Army, was dishonorable discharged and, last I saw, was working in the deli department of the local grocery store in our home town.

So, even though I had it rough for four years in high school, it looks like the boomerang of karmic retribution has smacked my three tormentors right in the face. And I can’t stop laughing about it.

My advice to Jeff, Nathan and Lanny: Actually, I have no advice for you. You are victims of your own circumstances and deserve everything miserable thing that’s happened in your life.

My advice to everyone else: If you’re ever feeling down, look up that bully or person that tried to make you feel less than and see where they are now. I imagine their current situation will put a smile on your face.

My advice to all those people out there in high school and who are bullied or picked on for being different: The You Tube videos are right…it really does get better.

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5 Responses to “Better for Us. Worse for Them.”

  1. Amber Says:

    Thank you so much for your story! Gosh, high school…what a joke! Hope I was able to bring a little light to your time there. I adored you! 🙂

  2. Dan Says:

    Wow, I hope I was never an asshole to you. Although it might explain the condition of my yard. Seriously Michael, if I ever treated you in any sort of undeserved shitty way, I sincerely apologize . . . 17 years too late.

    • mnkey75 Says:

      Dan, you were always quite nice to me, as was your wife.
      Thanks a lot for reading. I appreciate it.
      Hope you and your family are well.

      • Dan Says:

        We are all doing quite groovy.
        I love your blog. It is one of three I follow regularly and by far the funniest. Keep it up.


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