Hail to the Chief
by Mahna Mahna
A truly competent individual is always in control, even when the unexpected happens. With the exception of Quinn, my first day of high school was planned to the very last detail. I wore the same outfit I had in middle school: deep gray overalls and a spring-green fitted T-shirt. I mean, why change something that had served me so well in the past? The only thing that had changed was my hair, which I left hanging loose in flowing brunette waves framing my face, opting to discard my now unstylish headband. Stacy, however, had decided to leave her hair in childish braids. I refuse to call them pigtails. Why some idiot thought that something growing out of a pig’s dairy-air would be a good thing to call a hairstyle, I’ll never know.
It was going to be a good year. I had worked my way from a…a geek with braces (it still pains me to mention it) to the goddess of Junior High. Knowing fully well that this year I would be a freshman and, therefore, the “low girl on the totem poll”, I had spent all my free time gaining as much power as I could, ruining other popular girls to eliminate competition and dragging my two followers, Tiffany and Stacy, with me. They had latched onto me in the 7th grade, realizing I could bring them up to the height of popularness. I was queen of middle school and I was determined to be queen of High School, even if it meant just being queen of the lower classmen. I figured it wouldn’t be too hard. I was well respected and feared. (Like it says in Leadership for Teens: Fourth Edition, you can’t have respect unless people are afraid that if they don’t respect you, you’ll destroy them. Good, sound advice.) It seemed like I had it all, but something was missing.
If you want to get specific, I guess, Tiffany was missing on that day. She was off doing…. something. I don’t really know where she was, and I’m not sure I care. All I know is, Stacy and I had to start our morning get-together without her. The two of us stood on the school’s front lawn, conversing before class, as we had done for years. “I love your new hairstyle, Sandi!” Stacy beamed at me.
“I do think it adds a certain …. Jem-Say- Kwah, don’t you?” I prompted, proud at the fact that not only did my hair look spectacular, but I had managed to use my Word-of-the-Day, and it wasn’t even 8:00 yet. WWW. POPULAR_TEEN.COM says that if you use big words, people will look up to you, so I’ve been doing Word-of -the-Day since I was 13.
“Oh yes, it---” she stopped in mid-sentence and turned to the school’s drive.
A dark sedan had pulled up in front. A pretty red-head wearing a pink baby-tee opened one of the rear doors and stepped out of the car like she was an actress stepping out of her limo to go to a premiere, or something like that. Really irritating. You could just tell that she thought she was sooooo cool. She was a new girl. Unexpected. But she was nothing I couldn’t handle.
When you meet someone new who is obviously attractive and cool (which this girl was, much to my unfortunateness), it’s best to get on their good side. Stacy now knows almost as much about how to be popular as I do. She immediately greeted the new girl. “Hi! You’re cool! What’s your name?”
“Cool name,” I said. ‘Why am I sucking up to this new girl?’ I thought to myself. ‘I’m the powerful one here! She should be sucking up to me!’
“Will you go out with me?” said J.J, a guy who I had liked in 6th grade, but had turned me down, the jerk. She was soon surrounded by all the better people in the school, including Stacy. All of them, sucking up to her, wanting to be seen with her.
This wasn’t a good situation. Quinn was becoming popular way too fast. When I saw her walking into school surrounded by the other freshmen, I realized she was going to be competition.
‘Quinn….. queen…’ I thought with distaste. It wasn’t fair. I was supposed to be the Queen! ‘That’s it. She’s going down.’ I followed them all inside, trying to plan how to get back to the top.
First period was wretched. Not only did the stupid teacher Mr. DeMartino talk about some lame war on the first day of school, but Quinn was there too. She sat a row or two away from me, but I could hear her all through class….
“Really? This old thing? I only wear it when I don’t care how my legs look!”
“Friday at 7:00 would be great, sure! Tell me, does this town serve French food? I looovvve French food!”
“Sorry, I’m booked Friday at 7:00. Is 10:00 okay?”
“The Pep Squad? I don’t know. Look, I'm new here. Give me a chance to get used to things. It sounds like fun and all, but I‘ve had a bunch of offers already and…."
It was all horribly irritating. She never shut up and people never stopped asking her out, asking her to be their friend, or asking her to join some after-school group. I spent all hour thinking about the situation. I could definitely to something to destroy her appearance or reputation, but maybe, I wondered, it would be easier to become her friend. The idea began to look appealing. I thought that the attention she was getting could rub off on me, adding to my already high social standing.
‘But how exactly am I going to be her friend with all those other people hanging around?’ I thought, scowling as Quinn began filling her schedule clear up to the following week. I had to come up with a plan… but what could I do? My mind was racing with a hundred questions….
‘How could I make her my friend?’
‘Will she want to be my friend?’
‘Why was she receiving more attention than me in the first place?’
‘Why should I be expected to answer a question about the War of 1820 or whatever when I had a major crisis on my hands!’
‘Why is Mr. Deee--something getting so angry? Didn’t I look like I was paying attention?’
‘And Geez! What in the name of Chanel is up with that teacher‘s eye, anyway?’
Luckily for me, Stacy and Tiffany shared my concerns. All of us agreed that it would be good to get her on our side.
“It’s going to be hard to get her,” I said. “She has a lot of people from, like, the Pep Squad and Student Council bugging her to join. She might not have enough time to be our friend.”
“But what if weeee were in the same grouuuup as herrrrrr?” said Tiffany.
I was surprised. Tiffany actually had a good idea, though I wasn’t about to let her know that. “Ohhhh, surrreee…. but at what risk? We might join a group that would make us mix yellow and blue in daytime and sweat! Of course, if you want to do that, Tiffany, go right ahead!”
“But you are right.” I’d give her that. “We need to make sure we’re close to her. Perhaps maybe we could start a club of our own.”
“Wow! Great idea, Sandi!” Stacy said.
“Yay, Sandi! Our leader!”
“An excellent idea, Tiffany. All in favor of making me the leader of our group?”
Of course, they raised their hands.
I was immensely pleased. “Then it’s settled. I am President. Now…next order of business….what is our club about, anyway?”
Everything was quiet for a minute until Stacy finally spoke up. “We like to talk about boys… Hey! We could be the Boys Club!”
“Stacy? Ew,” said Tiffany.
“I agree,” I said. “That makes it sound like we are boys, or something.”
“Sorry!” Stacy squeaked. Eager to try to redeem herself, she tried again. “Well…during breakfast, don’t we usually get together to talk about fashion?”
Tiffany‘s face brightened with realization. “Heyyy! We could beee….the Breakfast Club!” She grinned.
There was awkward silence until finally I smiled and said, “I believe I have a better idea…..”
“The Fashion Club?” Quinn looked genuinely interested---an excellent sign. Finally I had come up with the perfect club idea, something that me, Stacy, and Tiffany could like and something that would obviously intrigue Quinn.
“Dedicated to follow of current trends, styles of today, and current fashion…of course.” I worked hard to adjust my face to that of someone who is likable, yet not to be contended with. “You’re in luck. Our former Vice President was recently dropped from the organization.” We had appointed some random girl to the position without telling her and impeached her all within 20 seconds just so we could tell Quinn that and not get caught in a lie later. “I am the dicta-- I mean, President and I am considering bestowing you with the privilege of being Vice President.”
“Oh!” she said. Quinn, of course, seemed like she wanted to jump at the chance to grab such a prestigitatious job, but she held herself back. “Well, I have had a lot of offers from other groups---”
“I understand,” I said, letting out a fake sigh. “Too bad…. We really could’ve used you in the Fashion Club…”
I turned and began to walk away from her. ‘Three….two….one…..’
“Sandi, wait a second!”
I smiled. It was like shooting fish in a barrack, or however that thing goes.
And so, things were the way they ought to be again. After she agreed to be VP (at the same time agreeing to be my friend), I had power, especially over Quinn Morgendorffer. She thought she would be able to join more groups after she got used to Lawndale High, but the Fashion Club began to occupy more and more of her time. She would also have to comply with me unless she wanted to get kicked out of the Fashion Club. She’s under the Fashion Club’s control now. It’s been that way ever since. I remain on the top of the social ladder. All power is mine! All others are beneath me!
It’s good to be President.
Wallace:"The question is, what is a Mahna Mahna?"
-The Muppet Show (The Mahna Mahna Song)