went to a fairly frightening private school from the
ages of 8 to 13. It was located on the top of Queen
Anne Hill in Seattle, and was super-expensive, and,
as a natural factor of that, super-exclusive. It was
supposedly a school for "gifted children," which for
the longest time I thought was just a synonym for
"rich kids," as everybody there had ducats to spare.
Except me, of course. I lived out in grotty post-apocalypse
Tukwila, in a battered old house owned by my grandfather.
other kids had private schools stretching in front
of and behind them like an Indiana stretch of road;
as far as the eye could see. They were, needless to
say, all WASPs, living in Laurelhurst or whatsoever.
X Tokuzo Garrigus. Middle name X. Not an initial.
Lived in an even more ghetto-area than I did; the
"C.D.", short for Central District, home of Sea-town's
pathetic excuses for Sir Mix-A-Lot inspired "gangstas",
but still not a great place to grow up. He was also
at the school on a scholarship; we were the only two.
was strange; we were obviously at the bottom of the
strata at school; my Value Village clothes, coke-bottle-glasses
and painstakingly achieved "please don't hit me" facial
expression (honed over countless hours of being hit,
sometimes by girls) all combined to make me an Untouchable.
Andron was another matter; he was reasonably good-looking,
"cool," not a total freak. He assimilated, but stayed
friends with me also. I was astonished and jealous.
class-consciousness didn't end with the last bell;
we were obviously superior to any public-school kids,
especially Black ones (there were no African-Americans
at SCDS, for reasons I don't even want to think about,)
and hence when students from nearby John Hay Elementary
rode our public bus, Andron took the opportunity to
loudly make fun of them, calling them "a bunch of
Neanderthals" and such.
upshot of this is they kicked my ass. Every day for
several weeks. They'd ignore my protestations of innocence,
ignore Andron completely, follow me off the bus, and
beat the holy hell out of me, usually in front of
a crowd of people who would do nothing to stop it.
If you've ever been beat up, you know it's terrible;
let me tell you, it's far worse when people are just
standing there watching it happen.
culminated with a particularily brutal beating in
which they pushed me in front of a car, breaking three
of my ribs. My mom decided it was time to call the
police after that, but after having undercover police
come to my school (much to the envy of my classmates,
who had never been victims of assault and battery)
and tail me on the bus, the Neanderthals never showed
again, making me look like a tiny, crying idiot in
front of two policemen, my mother, my best friend,
a bus full of passengers, and everybody at my school.
believe a suicide attempt followed shortly.