I didn’t know if I told you, but back when I was in secondary school, I was a hopeless tomboy. See, I studied high school in an all-girls, Catholic school where to be boy-crazy, boorish and loud are considered mortal sins.
But trying to wean away teenagers with raging hormones from the opposite sex is like withholding Cookie Monster from his Cookie: impossible. If you want to have a whiff of testosterone, the girls of St. Anne Academy had very limited options: hook-up with the elementary school boys (a bit euuuw, considering these boys were still fetched by their nannies and most likely to be still drinking milk); seduce the boys from the neighboring school, St. Francis; hook-up with the male teachers, who to tell you frankly aren’t even that good-looking to begin with; and the most desperate of ’em all — train your attention to the many boyish, androgynous looking students littering the school hallways. And well, I used to be one of those kids.
Back in high school, I think I turned boyish due to these reasons:
1. there were no boys anyway to bat my eyelashes with, unless you count the slightly cute Christian Living teacher with a reputation for quoting verses from the bible or the two Computer Lab instructors, one of whom was very much married but flirting up the students Great Teacher Onizuka-style
2. I didn’t exactly look girly when I was in high school. I was a nerd, with barely any money to buy make-up or those expensive clothes that my classmates used to flaunt in class and was hopelessly awkward with anyone, boys included.
3. My interests were very far from the worries of my high school classmates which was owning the latest Tretorn, collecting stationeries from Gift Gate like the ones decorated with KeroKeroKeroppi, Sazhikibuta, Bad Badtz Maru and Hello Kitty and lastly, never running out of Angel’s Breathe Cologne. I was listening to SilverChair, Nirvana, Greenday, Smashing Pumpkins and the most rockstar of ’em all…New Kids on the Block 🙂 I was into drawing and arts and writing poetry. No one seemed to get me. I barely had any friend in school and most of them were weirdos themselves.
4. It was cool getting attention from girls who speak in a lilting voice and getting small gifts like gel pens and stationeries ain’t bad either.
Anyway, one of my closest friends in high school is R. We were dubbed “RL” by virtue of our names and were known to spend time in the bleachers near the auditorium, or seated on the hallway writing poems and practicing air drumming by account of R who was a pretty good drummer at sixteen. We broke a few hearts, along with a long list of school rules.
Of course, college came and we went our separate ways. I got married, got busy with work but we still managed to keep in touch. Got the time to spend with R today and we spent time talking about anything and everything under the sun, most of which are insane senseless chatter between two good friends.
And so, twenty years since I first saw R with her Pippy Longstockings-type braids, we were still good friends. I guess the difference in personality doesn’t really matter much when you have two kids who grew up to discover that the world isn’t actually fair, whether you are boyish or not.