Dear 11-year-old Ryan,
My name is Venice and I’m writing to you from the future. In case you don’t believe me let me say a few things. You’re allergic to mushrooms, you have a turtle shaped birthmark on your shoulder, and you get up five minutes early every morning to put your sheets in the hamper because of a certain kind of “accident.” Just kidding about that last one…no I’m not!!! We won’t meet for a few years, but I have a few things to tell you before we do. I’m writing to you as your wife of over 15 years. I know that must answer a few questions like, “Will I ever live to see 30?” “Will I ever get married?” The answer is yes and yes! I don’t really want to ruin your future too much, but as a 11 year old boy, what could I possibly talk about that you’d be interested in?
Okay, let’s talk about your future girlfriends.
In a few months you will have your first kiss. You will be followed around the skating ring by a cute girl, and eventually, at the end of the night, kiss her. The next week you will find out she talked to another boy and when she walks up to you to give you a hug, you will scoot her out of the way without saying a word. In fact, you never talked to her again.
In the 7th grade, an Indian girl will have a crush on you. She and her friend will call your house and ask you why you are so mean to her or why you don’t like her, and even write letters saying the same. You will think she is very cute, but to everyone else in class she is seen as very clumsy. Sadly, you will think she is nice and pretty, but because of race and because of her being known to be clumsy, you would rather be single than deal with your classmates wondering why you would date someone like her. You will never date her. At Christmas she will give everyone in class a lollipop and a small note. Your note will be super long. After you read the first few lines, you will ask your friend to see his note and it will be like, “It’s a good time to be happy!” (end note). You letter will start, “All year I really have been nice to you and don’t understand what I did to make you so… ” You will stop there and throw the note in the garbage. Don’t feel bad. You’re not the only one who has missed an opportunity to be happy because of peer pressure. Like the time when you were 4 and you had a crush on your neighbor, the one who everyone said you were boyfriend & girlfriend with. Yes, I know about that 🙂 I know that you played together every day and made mud pies, but after everyone teased you, you were purposely mean to her because you’d rather be “single” and not make mud pies than be teased for having a girlfriend. You really liked her but society made you hate her. I had a friend just like that when I was your age who I played with every day, got teased the same way too. And, like you, I was purposely mean. But what I did was knock him down as he was sitting on the trunk of his parents’ car and made him land on the car hitch. I walked away as he stood crying. Anyway, you will end up marrying a very dark Filipino woman to make up for your racism. You and I are cut from the same cloth, which is probably why we are drawn to each other.