“And out of nowhere emerged, like, six other pickup trucks, and I’ve never felt so Michigan country in my life”

When I was a sophomore in high school, there was a senior basketball player who kind of took me under his wing. We were both playing varsity basketball that year, and he helped me prepare for the season, et cetera. One of those ways he tried to take me under his wing was to help me flourish socially, so, um, I was fine with that to a degree, but then I remember there being this night where he took me out in his Ford Ranger, his light Sienna Brown Ford Ranger, and — is that even a color? Burnt sienna? I think what I meant to say is burnt sienna. But it wasn’t. It was just light brown, so scratch that from the record — in his light brown Ford Ranger. This guy took me out. He said “We’re gonna go to a party.” He’s like, “I know there’s this, there’s this girl in your class who I can tell is, you know, all about you. Let’s go see if we can find her, blah blah blah blah blah.” And I sat there just kind of quietly like, “Uhh, uhh, I don’t know, can’t we just, can’t we just hang at your house and play Nintendo 64? You’ve got NBA Live 2000, isn’t that enough?”

But he took me out and drove me to a cornfield. He drove down this little, like, dirt track, which is kind of sketchy the way I’m painting this picture, and maybe it was, but. And out of nowhere emerged, like, six other pickup trucks, and I’ve never felt so Michigan country in my life, and there was a fire. And when we got out of his Ford Ranger, there was, like, the popular girls from school that I had known from school and school alone, but they were smoking cigarettes and it was just like a — like I’d walked onto a movie scene from the 1970s, I don’t know. And there were the guys wearing their plaid shirts tucked into their jeans, their Abercrombie jeans, already completely wasted, you know, throwing back beers, and everyone was just sort of standing around. And I’ve — I was gonna say I’ve never been more uncomfortable, but I’ve had many uncomfortable moments in my life. That was, that was among the more uncomfortable social moments for me in high school.

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