At 19 years old, Devon O'Rourke finds herself in a precarious situation. She must explain to her boyfriend (and herself) why she cheated on him the night of their 5 month anniversary...with a girl. Her friends gone and her life upside down, it seems like the world has finally come to screeching halt, but what started as a tragedy soon becomes a necessary journey of self discovery. With the help of quirky roommates, old friends, and a bi-curious hairdresser, Devon attempts to find acceptance and
Have you ever been in love? I have.
I gave a girl my heart, and she stomped all over it. Maybe not just stomped…how about stabbed? Or chopped? Yeah, that’s good, and then sautéed all the little pieces with butter and garlic. In some cultures they still eat animal hearts, you know.
Well, not just because my ex-girlfriend has cannibalistic tendencies…also because I’m still in love with her, and my roommates are running out of ideas. See, Tiffany insists that she’s straight, but I know that she’s not. I know that she’s lying to everyone, including herself, but I don't know why, and I don’t know what to do about it. I’ve lost any hope of recovering from this. It’s not too late to join a convent, right? Do they take in girls with college loans?
Okay, yes everybody! I admit it! I’m the type of pessimist who always insists that she’s a realist, who always wishes her life were better, and wouldn’t know what to do if it were, but please! I haven’t always been this way, I swear! Life just has me down right now. I need my baby back…I feel like I can’t breathe.
Hey…maybe you all can help me. I mean, my friends and I are completely tapped, but you guys might have some good ideas on how I can win Tiffany back. Trust me, I’ve tried moving on, but I just can’t! I love her!
Right, so I guess I should actually fill you guys in so you know what happened. Should I give you the quick version, or the ultra long possibly boring version? Hummm…well, just to be safe, lets go with the whole story. You’ve got time, right? Why else would you be hunting around on here for something to read?
So, let’s start at the very beginning (a very good place to start).
My name is Devon. I come from a family of five (that is, a sister named Jennifer, a brother named Bo; my parents, Mary and John). I am a 22 year-old, Caucasian female with terrible eyesight, a proclivity for astronomy, and far too many Irish relatives. I played Lacrosse all through high school, but I’m sick of it, and I never want to hear about it again. I have an old cat named Napoleon that my sister walks on a leash. We think he’s senile because he meows at thin air, but Jennifer loves him in spite of his flaws. We used to have a chocolate Labrador named Tiberius. He passed away recently at the admirable age of 11.
My father names all our pets. I mention this because you may have noticed a theme. He’s a bit of an imperialist. Every animal we’ve ever owned has been named after an emperor. That includes Julius the fish (as in Julius Caesar) and Charlemagne the Terrier, who died when I was 9. I look forward to the day when I can have my own cat and name it something normal…like Boots…or Mango…
…None of that is interesting though, is it?
Get to the point, Devon!
Ok, ok…I’m stalling. Please be patient with me! It’s hard for me to write about personal things. I’ll do my best. Um…where to start…?
I guess my life can be divided pretty distinctly into two separate parts. Part one is very boring. I was a normal high school student in most respects. I had a 3.6 GPA most of the time. I played the cello, and I attended a private Catholic school with my older brother, Bo. My family wasn’t especially religious, but we went to Mass sometimes. I still consider myself a spiritual person, though I know very little about the finer nuances of religion as an institution. My parents valued a Catholic education more than they valued the Catholic faith, so my brother and I were allowed to skip the required Bible courses.
“Put your effort into something more practical, I guess,” said my mother one night. “Take advanced chemistry or something. You like chemistry, right?”
I do like chemistry, actually.
Things changed a lot after I graduated. I stopped hanging out my old friends the first chance I could. I also quit club lacrosse and cello lessons. When I’d finally earned enough money from my part time job at the QFC (a grocery store), I gave my wardrobe a massive overhaul, threw out every Hollister hoodie and polo shirt I owned, then went for a whole new look: alternative. Well, sort of…really, I just stopped trying to look girly all the time. Deep down, I’m a tomboy. When I was little, all I wanted to wear were my ripped overalls and light-up sneakers. Putting me in a dress was like giving a cat a bath. I wore pink and occasionally tried for skirts in my teenage years, but I was only trying to avoid social death. Those private school bitches were mean enough to scare anyone through the doors of Abercrombie and Fitch. I was no exception, but it’s funny how those people disappear in college. You know they’re still there. You still take classes with them, still see them at the football games, still watch them parade through the cafeteria. I don’t know. It’s like everyone makes this silent pact.
Like, god, those people were so awful in high school. Why did we worship them? Let’s just ignore them from now on, and maybe they’ll go away.
Finally, when I turned 19, I began to indulge my inner child once again. No, I didn’t go and buy a pair of broken overalls. I tried for light-up shoes, but for some reason they don’t carry adult sizes. (If you ask me, it’s a lost business opportunity.) I guess I was just liberated. I didn’t act so serious like I did back in high school. I used to pretend like I understood every joke, and I talked like an English professor around even my closest my friends. I was constantly worried about my image, and I made damn sure that nobody guessed at my real personality. See, I’m actually kind of an airhead. I’m a space cadet! It takes a lot of effort not to zone out in class. I fidget so much I can hardly sit through a movie. My own parents forbid me to tap my feet at the dinner table.
“I can’t hear myself think when you do that,” my father complained.
“You should have been a percussionist,” my mother added.
My school friends all believed I was serious and focused; a real intellectual, bound for med school first thing. I was happy to let them think that, but eventually I got tired of trying to impress people. We all do at some point. They were boring anyway. What’s so great about trying to be smart all the time? Everyone knows that the stupid kids have more fun.
Freshman year was a whirlwind of non-homework related activity. I went a little crazy. I felt like Pocahontas when she’s running through the forest with John Smith, and they jump off that waterfall. It was sort of exhilarating. I’d never had a decent group of friends before. Suddenly, we were hanging out all the time, and they called me for something other than the biology homework. They had great adventure ideas: piroshky runs at 1 am, pantaloons on National Talk-Like-a-Pirate Day, Heineken power-hours on Sunday morning, purple and gold body paint for the football games. Jesse and Eric use to crash club yearbook photos just to see how many they could sneak into. When they asked me along I was thrilled.
With their help I also became a bit of a party animal…but only in the best way possible, don’t worry! When my friends threw a party, all the cool people came (when I say “cool,” I mean quirky and interesting). There was the infamous plaid party (Jesse wore his clan’s authentic Scottish kilt), the dress-like-an-inanimate-object party (I was a cell phone, and people kept punching my buttons), the super-secret sparkly surprise party for Sarah’s birthday (it was also bar miztvah themed), and the alien party, my personal favorite. I dressed entirely in tinfoil, and Jack made me a tinfoil helmet. My costume was outta this world
Haha, get it? Get it?!
I got trashed on jello shots and danced like a robot under the strobe light until 3 in the morning. Tin foil looks really trippy in a strobe light. It reflects all the light everywhere. You become like a giant, walking mirror. Very Cool.
That was the same night I met Connor. Connor is very important to Part I of my life. He might be the only reason there was ever a part two at all. I think it was his alien costume that first attracted me to him. I saw him enter the apartment wearing a red velvet cape and a plastic fishbowl on his head. I had no idea they even made fishbowls that big. With the impetus of three jello shots behind me, I waded across the room, removed my shiny, foil helmet, and introduced myself.
“Hey!” I shouted, waving as I emerged from the crowd. “I saw your helmet from over there! It’s fuckin’ awesome!”
“Thanks!” He laughed brightly, but I barely heard him over the music.
“My name is Devon!”
He lifted the plastic rim above his mouth. “I am space commander Tarklotaz! The pleasure is all mine, beautiful alien princess!” Holding his fishbowl secure in one hand, he bowed stiffly and raised his arm to engage me in a Vulcan handshake.
I think that was the first time a boy made me blush.