The Shame of Stupidity

Once, I was told me that I liked to pretend to know things when I don’t and that I’ve always been, ever since I was kid. I don’t know where it came from but I felt the sting of those words. It wasn’t like a sucker punch or anything. I knew that already. I didn’t do it to brag that I’m smart and stuffed with all of these “fantastic” knowledge. Who’s going to be impressed anyway?

In fact, I’ve always hated how you had to go through so much trouble to come out with a lie and then having it explode in your face when you’ve forgotten about your lying pattern. It never does look good on anyone. Anyway I would’ve probably failed at being such a slick criminal, and it’s a pity though, since I’ve always thought that it would’ve made for an exciting career path. I don’t know why I do it anyway.

If I had to think properly, it could’ve probably been to survive the shame of stupidity. I grew up with my nose pressed against books just so that I can figure out what in the bloody hell the author was on about. My comprehension in learning was atrocious. I would literally run through the words over and over again but it wouldn’t make any sense at all. Besides, there’s nothing you can do if you felt so stupid the whole damned time. And that’s why you gotta ask questions. Except that in school, it wasn’t too smart of you if you had to be the idiot asking the most ridiculous of all questions every time the teacher finished saying something.

First of all, everyone hates the retard at the back, with his retarded face and retarded hands flailing about. I didn’t want to be that guy, the whole crowd making fun of him seemed to be having the greatest time ever and I didn’t want to be the party pooper and ending up like the other fallen hero by the corner victimized for his chivalry.

Besides, all of us knew he that he did it to prove something. It must be the arrogant air about him. I bet she was pissed as well but she never sent him out of class for being retarded. I got sent out along with this other kid for being disruptive but I didn’t want to argue since I liked it outside anyway.

There was so much more to accomplish when you’re out there and there were more fascinating things to see. But the fact is, no one seems to have a genuine interest in the retarded guy, no one ever talks to the retarded guy and no one ever asks him to hang out after class but I’ve got to admit it that it must’ve been terrible for him. He didn’t have it in him to fight back nor did he looked like he could’ve taken on anyone at all. Soon enough, he found refuge in a sympathetic group of girls. They don’t really like him though, the worst part was that they don’t even hang out with him after school. But anyway, they were annoying as hell and just like him, they started to develop this retarded sickness.

They were beginning to be like him. It’s like a zombie apocalypse that started right there in the heart of the classroom and everyone was suddenly aware of it. The one man island was now an archipelago of the deranged. When the doorbell rang, I picked up my stuff and trudged back home. I threw my bag across the room and plunged for the bed. I looked at my watch and decided that I had an hour of peace.

One hour was all I needed to let my imagination run wild with a pillow beneath my head and the pale boring ceiling above. That one hour of silence was gold. Preferably, I would’ve watched cartoons or something with sexual references if my parents didn’t pull out the cable. There was nothing else to do especially when I’ve finished reading my collection of Enid Blyton and Roald Dahl, courtesy of my mom. It provided terrific entertainment but when you’ve read it several times over and over again, there wasn’t any point in reading them again. I would’ve played football with the guys if the field wasn’t taken over by some stupid post-class activity.

Silence can be boring at times though, I’ve always loved it when the classroom was in utter chaos and beyond control. After all that crap they made us do, there was nothing like a rallied rebellion with crying teachers, flipped tables, torn papers, music in the air and that no one could ever stand in the way of our love affair for all things repudiated. When the hour of dreaming started closing down to minutes, I scattered the textbooks from my bag across the study table and plonked myself down onto the cold wooden seat.

In that same time, I heard footsteps outside the door and the fumbling of keys. So, I did what I was programmed to do, I reached over for the pencil and hurriedly scribbled down a bunch of jargon from the textbook that absolutely made no sense at all. I guess that when my parents saw me that way, they would be happy. I wasn’t happy because that crap was drowning me from the inside. I’ve always wondered if the other kids were suffering the same fate as I did.

The agonizing ordeal went on for a couple of hours until I decided that they’ve probably seen me studying too hard and that I was free to ride my bike out. The best part of the day is when you’ve got all that wind brushing against your face together with the feeling of dropping everything behind you with the leaves rustling in your wake. It’s like I could do it forever and not get bored. Tired, maybe.


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