Anne of Teen Fables


Michelle’s Only Got 17 Minutes to Save the World
April 26, 2011, 12:31 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

The minutes were falling away effortlessly. I sat there on the bus leading a sort of vigil by the little clock on my iPhone lock screen. I assumed an expression of desperate hope and tried willing the clock to stop its periodic changes, but it was all to no avail. It was 4:43pm and the bus was stopped at Railway Square, waiting for the lights to turn green so it could glide in and pick up some MyMulti-clutching strangers. The deadline was 5pm. Seventeen minutes remained, and in this time I would have to take drastic measures in order to achieve the magnificent feat of handing in this wretched essay.

The Backstreet Boys were warbling stirring melodies in my ears – “Show Me the Meaning of Being Lonely” reminded me that I was friendless and abandoned on this mission. Yes, it was I alone who had to dash to the Woolley Building, wildly complete a cover sheet, staple the crap out of these papers, and then sashay my way over to the essay drop-box. Possible? Perhaps. My level of confidence was on par with Draco Malfoy’s level of evil – ultimately, not too evil, but the signs were there.

Sixteen minutes. 4:44pm. Looking grim, my friends. Quite. And yet my closest acquaintances (in the literal, geographical sense) seemed not to care; the man on the seat beside me kept on with his knitting (WHAT?), and did not sacrifice a single moment for sympathy or encouragement. A wayward youth was watching YouTube videos on his iPhone. Pah! The bus lurched forward, and my fingers pressed the pages of my essay together, making a little crease in the corner. I should have put it in a plastic sleeve to save it from my careless, sweaty fingers…

Some zany travellers clambered onto the bus, all seemingly unaware of THE CRISIS that consumed me. A middle-aged woman in a fuchsia beanie scratched her nose, and then sneezed with great fanfare. One concerned passenger muttered a shy “bless you” under his breath – perhaps they ought to marry? But more to the point, it was now 4:45 and all of Broadway, plus a sprint past the Holme Building, stood between me and a punctual essay turn-in. I took to feverishly refreshing the Facebook newsfeed in case Sabrina the Teenage Witch updated her status asking if anyone needed time stopped briefly (she’d oblige).

It was a painful six minutes to the bus stop. I got up from my seat a full minute and a half earlier than was necessary, warranting some “too keen” glances from the lady in fuchsia and her soon-to-be lawfully wedded husband. As soon as the doors pulled back I FLUNG myself from the vehicle, stopping only for a cursory wave at the driver, and then I was on my way. The refrain from a Katy Perry song ran through my mind, punctuating each step with profound and heartfelt lyrics. I ran, I scrambled, I leapt.

Approaching my destination, I felt for all the world like a sort of magnificent action hero. I turned the corner without slowing, and as I powered down the hallway, I felt the portraits of old professors and academics that looked down from the walls approving of me. An expression of pride replaced the look of desperation that had been on my face these last thirteen minutes. 4:56pm, and I now had FOUR luxurious minutes in which to scribble my word count and student ID number onto a pristine cover sheet in enviable penmanship.

And so I did. I reached the slot at 4:59pm, and looked around for some congratulatory smiles from nearby students as I pushed the papers in and heard them reach the bottom of the box with a dull thud. There were none. But all the same, I clapped my hands together in self-satisfaction, and left the Woolley Building with a swagger. Praise be to me!

On my way out I spied a young student running wildly towards the entrance, all aflutter. Her skirt was splaying out in the wind, and her eyes betrayed a sense of blind hope. Looking down at my iPhone, I saw the digits swap over to 5:00pm… My heart broke for her.

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2 Comments so far
Leave a comment

And this, Michelle, is why you are depriving us all by not blogging more often. My love of this blog post is on par with Voldemort’s level of evil. And that’s evil, man.

Comment by Alyssa

you are simply divine and hilarious. Please write more often.

Comment by California




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