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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Embarrassed (07/19/07)

TITLE: I'm Thinking
By Catrina Bradley


Now that Iím 18, supposedly an adult, I should know better. How many times will I see only as far as how funny something will be? After yesterday, I donít think Iíll ever fail to look past the immediate.

It all started when Jen commented on the new girlís dress. I probably wouldnít even have noticed that her hem had started coming out, let alone the thread that fluttered behind her like a wispy tail, if she hadnít pointed it out.

I saw the scenario play out in my mindís eye. As New Girl walked by, Iíd grab hold of the thread, and when she kept going down the aisle, the stitching would pull out and the whole hem would come undone.

What damage could there possibly be? It would even be a blessing in a way; the bottom of her dress would at least be even. A little harmless mischief; a joke to break the ice; a laugh between new friends.

It all started going according to plan. I stood up nonchalantly as New Girl approached us with her full lunch tray. As she passed by, I casually bent down, seemingly looking at something on the tile floor. I grasped the thread and wound it around my hand. New Girl kept walking; the stitches started popping out.

Thatís when it began to go horribly wrong. It turns out the thread wasnít from her hem; it was from her back seam. Too late, I saw the slit in her skirt grow longer and longer. Before I could get loose of the snarled string, and before I got the brilliant, but belated, idea to simply snap the flimsy thread, New Girlís bottom was exposed to the entire lunchroom crowd. She must have felt a breeze on her behind and realized something was amiss. She balanced the tray on one arm, and reached back to see what was going on. When she felt satin instead of skirt, she dropped the tray and frantically tried to cover herself.

Unfortunately, the schoolís ancient principal, Mrs. Hickey (who bore an eerie resemblance to the Wicked Witch of the West), chose that moment to totter along in the cross aisle. The second she shuffled into the spilled goulash, pudding, and iced tea, topped with a smattering of grapes, her feet came up and her backside hit the ground, causing her own unwilling display of what God never meant to be displayed.

I was mortified! I had caused this calamity. I was personally responsible for the humiliation of two innocent, undeserving souls. And I still had that thread wrapped around my hand. I couldnít even feign innocence.

Later, the vice principal asked me that dreaded question. ďWhat were you thinking?Ē

Iím never bold enough to give the true answer: ĎPeople would have laughed, and I would have gotten attention. People would like me.í

Instead, I looked at my shoes, and softly but clearly said, ďI wasnít.Ē Adults usually seemed satisfied with that answer. I guess it validated their opinion of me.

Thatís when the deeper truth hit me for the first time. I really hadnít been thinking.

I didnít think about the other places that thread might have been attached to. I didnít think about how simply speaking kindly to New Girl would have been a much better, and safer, way to introduce myself. I wasnít thinking about a lot of things yesterday.

I think today will be different.

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This article has been read 1140 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Dee Yoder 07/26/07
Too late for your main character, but never too late for us to learn a lesson! I tried something with my teacher's chair once, and it didn't turn out the way it was supposed to either! My worst moments usually happen when my brain is disengaged. :)
Julie Arduini07/26/07
Any age group could learn from this story. Great humor, story telling, and overall lesson here. I enjoyed this very much!
Joanne Sher 07/26/07
Love the lesson AND the excellent description of exactly what was going on. Perfect ending, too :)
Kristen Hester07/29/07
This is a good story with a good lesson and it's well told. I enjoyed it and I'm glad the MC repented. I like to make people laugh also and have to be careful not to get carried away. This is a good reminder.
william price07/29/07
Very Kool. Great message expertly delivered. Only if all pranksters would learn this lesson. ENjoyed your entry very much. God bless.
Sharlyn Guthrie07/30/07
Great story for many reasons: It's well-written, funny, right on-topic, and I like the explanation of the teen's actions...no harm intended, just not thinking. That is so often the case. This gets an A+ from me.
Loren T. Lowery07/30/07
Loved this story, because I've caught myself thinking exactly the same thing...just a simple, harmless prank. Oh my goodness, how many times have I been proven wrong.
Myrna Noyes07/30/07
Great story with the right balance of humor and seriousness! Your descriptive writing helped me see the whole cafeteria scene in detail, and your message was delivered clearly. Exellent writing! :)
Patty Wysong07/31/07
I love how showed the MC's remorse throughout the story, yet kept it humorous at the same time. Very Good writing!! Definately one of those situations where you start out snickering and end up groaning. The feelings came through brilliantly. Great job!! :D hugs!
Jan Ackerson 07/31/07
I love the realism of the last line: I think today will be different. It reflects the good intentions of teenagers, not always followed through. Great writing.
Verna Cole Mitchell 08/01/07
This is an excellent story. I really enjoyed reading it and was impressed with how you managed to mention the unmentionables so delicately!
Joy Faire Stewart08/01/07
Your descriptive words are perfect. The reader is immediately drawn into the drama. Fantastic message too.
Pam Carlson-Hetland08/01/07
Great story. Excellent writing. Message we can all use. Your humorous description of the cafeteria scene is wonderful. Good job.
Sara Harricharan 08/01/07
Painfully embarassing! I had a feeling the whole thing would come apart instead of just the hem, what a lesson for us all to learn. Great job.
Pamela Kliewer08/01/07
What a lesson learned. Good job with the telling of this.
Helen Paynter08/01/07
Fun story - great ending. I was wondering how you were going to end without it being an anticlimax, but you pulled it off. Well done.
Betty Castleberry08/01/07
A painful lesson learned at the expense of New Girl and the older lady. Good narration, and a good read. Well done.