I don’t know if I’ve already told this story or not, but anyway, people have been asking me how I met Chad Robuckle, so I figured I would give them the scoop. Like I said, I may have already written about this and if so, I apologize. My brain was frozen for 46 minutes, give me a break.
Anyway, when I was a kid, my mom got it in her head that I wanted to be a writer. What a bitch, huh? So she signed me up for all these “creative writing” workshops and classes and whatnot. Don’t worry, I wasn’t one of “those kids”, because, despite her best efforts, I resisted any attempt to make me over as some fruity “creative” type.
One of these creative writing classes took place in some lady’s house. I’m not sure if her son was in it or whatever, I can’t remember. So anyway, we had to write a story about our saddest memory. I was like eight or nine years old at the time, and by far, the youngest kid in the class. I had led a pretty sheltered life so when I went home and tried to think up a sad memory to write about, I drew a blank.
Another problem I had back then, continuing up until I was in college, was that I used to focus on what I thought people wanted me to do. If you’ve ever tried this approach, you know that it’s the only sure-fire way to ensure failure in anything. So I sat at my desk and thought, “what am I expected to write about?” rather than honestly approaching the subject.
My real saddest memory was probably not getting to go to Disneyworld or something. If I had written about that, it probably would have been really funny, but instead, I brought in something I thought everybody wanted to hear. Boy was I wrong!
So I bring in my story, I don’t even remember if it was true or not, but I read it in front of everyone. It was all suspenseful and wrought with anxiety, a masterpiece in my own mind. I described how I walked downstairs to breakfast one morning and I noticed my mother had been crying. I then went into detail about the grief I felt upon discovering that my favorite goldfish had died.
I finish my story and everyone’s just sitting there, perhaps they weren’t clapping because they were all just blown away by the gravitas of it all? Then one of these “creative” types speaks up. He was this cocky little bastard who prided himself on being an asshole.
“You know, if your story had been about a dog or a cat or even a bunny, I think we all would have been like, ‘aww, that’s a really sad story’. But a fish? Who cares? I’ve gotta be honest with you, I’m glad your fish is dead.”
I didn’t really know what to say, I just kinda sat there in silence, deciding to never write again. Everyone laughed and patted Chad on the back for really “giving it” to me.
So that was it. Ever since then, Chad has been interwoven into the fabric of my life, despite my best efforts to extricate him from it.
And I remained true to my vow. I never wrote again.