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"Dear Tuna..."



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The bus ride to - and back from - high school every day was a long one, winding its way through four towns.  Our stop was the first in the morning, and the last in the afternoon.  That much time every day sitting in one place provides ample opportunity for "creative thought."

Several stops away (and in the next town), a fellow student (who shall be known as "Jackass" - why in a moment) boarded.  I don't know whether coming from a wealthier (and snottier) town than ours caused it, but he had an attitude, and would go well out of his way to give us a hard time.  Jackass hung with Fuckhead, another asshole who went to our school.

Why the names?  One particular day, during the bus ride home Jackass was being himself - giving us a hard time (as usual), and we were returning shit (as usual), when he says to us, in what I supposed he figured was his most macho voice, "Y'know I have a split personality..." (probably intending to follow it up with some gangsta tripe like "I can be your best friend or worst enemy").  One of us cut him off with "yeah, you're a cross between a jackass and a fuckhead."  From that point on, he came to be known as Jackass and - two peas in a pod - his friend was called Fuckhead.

Now... switch scenes: to the school science lab.

We sat in groups at these stations with little cubbies for books and papers... which were supposed to be kept clean. Well, that year I had science towards the end of the day, and kept coming in to find the cubby a pigsty (which it then became my duty to clean). Class after class it was like this - papers, wrappers from Hostess snack cakes, ... I vowed that, if I ever found out who was leaving this mess, I'd get even.

Well, I found out: one day, I found a crumpled note - complete with envelope bearing the recipient's name (Tina) and locker number. The salutation of the note read "Dear Tina" written in a girlish, scripty hand so it rather resembled "Dear Tuna" - this, of course, was all I needed.

I began the note that appeared in her locker "Dear Tuna" and, in my usual less-than-subtle manner, let her know what a pig she was.  I probably would have let it go at that, except that more trash appeared in the cubby thereafter.

At our school, homeroom and locker assignments were, generally speaking, alphabetical (by grade). Thus, when We of the Bus discussed it, we realized that her locker was only a couple away from that of one of our number - who was promptly engaged in a mission to gather intelligence. He reported that, yes indeed, the locker belonged to a girl named Tina, who happened to sit near him in homeroom.  And she began discussing with her homeroom neighbors what had, at that point, escalated to a series of "Dear Tuna" letters, the ultimate of which threatened to, um, "squirt tuna juice" in her locker.

At this, an opportunity was seen to take out several birds with one stone. He let slip to Tina that he thought he saw Jackass and Fuckhead in the vicinity of her locker, and overheard them saying something about tuna juice. Shortly thereafter, we were treated to the sight of Tina backing the two of them - each wearing a deliciously bewildered expression - against the lockers, screaming about what she'd do to them if they dared to (she shrieked) "squirt TUNA juice in my LOCKER!" (We discretely laughed our assess off.)

P.S. Tina's locker never received the prophesied dose of tuna juice - not from us, anyway. This didn't stop us from becoming rather handy with smelly fish substances generally, though. (But that's another tale...)

 
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