Onion

Onion3102

Australia

I drink way too much tea (with three sugars might I add), I like hugs a lot & thesaurus.com happens to be my best friend. It almost seems like the older I get, the more introverted I get.

Message to Readers

I don't usually write stories but here we are

a yellow raincoat

September 19, 2018

FREE WRITING

6
Being a washed out child-prodigy definitely had its disadvantages…
 If there was one thing Matthew Bennet did not understand, it was humans. Mathematically, not a single human had followed any prediction he made, regardless of how much data he had collected, graphed and hypothesised. He had always taken into account several environmental variables, making sure that each individual of an experiment was valid and it always puzzled him that when graphed, there was no consistency in attitude or reactions, what-so-ever.
 
It was only when Matthew noticed the blinding yellow raincoat of a puny girl on a Wednesday morning that he observed a new orange juice stain on his indigo tie. “You’re weird[1].” she had remarked as he nearly passed, completely irked by the face Matthew made in an effort to scrape off the stain.
“What makes you say that?” he replied, now psychoanalysing the girl that stood in his way.
 
“Well for a start, no one wears an indigo tie with a purple checked shirt,” He looked down at the small girl, now sitting to the side of the path, her hazel eyes fixated on the abomination that was his outfit. He noticed her ragged appearance, coming to the conclusion that either she had walked through a category three hurricane or was homeless. Considering the situation, he regarded option two to be more realistic.
 
“I like weird people,” she declared, sticking her grubby hand out. “Do you want to be my friend? I’m Sadie[2]
 
Unlike any other friendship Matthew had encountered before, the thing that annoyed him was the ever-growing list of unknown variables and inability to control social environmental factors. Every day was a new story and sometimes he wished she would stop talking. His brisk morning walk from Central station had now become a slow walk plagued with a plethora of bothersome questions about the weirdest things, which he was taught to respond to in some way due to the conventions of social interactions[3]. On top of this, she managed to wear the same yellow raincoat every day, regardless of the weather- something he found extremely irritating especially since he hated the colour yellow.
 
“Do penguins have knees?”
 It was a regular autumn Tuesday morning on Chalmers street and this was just the third question Sadie had asked Matthew, other topics ranging from the sustainability of rocket transportation to whether earthworms could see[4].
“I believe so, although they aren’t visible under the feathers of their bellies.”
“That’s cool… Why do I feel like I’m the only person who talks to you?”
 
The abruptness of the question caught Matthew off-guard, something that was quite rare[5].  
Matthew never really had friends, rather people who more or less tolerated his presence and that was a fact he knew to be very true. It was from this sad state of affairs that Matthew had taken up the responsibility of conducting social experiments with other humans in order to change see how he could change his situation- almost as if he was finding an equation for happiness.
 
“Maybe it’s because you are,” he replied before fixing his tie and speeding up in the attempt to lose her in a wave of the crowd that had just pushed through the street[6].
“Why do you seem to be judging everyone you meet?”
“Why do you ask so many questions?”
“Why aren’t you answering my question?”
“Why do you wear the same stupid yellow raincoat every day even when it isn’t raining?”
“Because that’s the only thing my parents left me!”
 
Staring each other in the face, Matthew noticed her stance slumped and demeanour darkened.
“I’m sorry. I didn-”
She didn’t give him time to complete his sentence before she was off, another thing Matthew was very used to. But this time it felt very different, almost a bit disappointing.
 
To Matthew’s surprise, he never saw Sadie again. A slow but interesting walk had now regressed into the simple brisk walk he was used to, only now it felt like something was missing.
 
In the end, Matthew figured out why: someone that wasn’t his mom[7] cared for him enough to spend time with him every day. Although her impact on his life was small, she always seemed to brighten up his day from the start with her questions and gleaming personality. He realised that no matter how many equations he formulated, not one could ever explain the complex simplicity of a friendship.  
 
 
[1] Of course, he had been told this before; the first being when Simon Gilbert stole his spotlight of winning the spelling bee by yelling out ‘weirdo’ in year three.
[2] According to the BOS, the chance of meeting a Sadie spelt with an ‘ie’ instead of ‘y’ is 11.2%
[3] This is what his father told him at age nine after not answering his mother when she asked whether he would like chips or wedges with his fish. 
[4] In fact, earthworms have special nerve endings that can detect light.
[5] The last time being when Stacy Brien asked him to be her boyfriend in year five.
[6] In fact, the m52 had just pulled up, a bus that Matthew despises due to its popularity.
[7] She did really call him every day and although he loved her, he didn’t have the heart to tell her that she always called during his study session in the library.

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