The judge says I’m sposed to write in this stupid notebook to trace behavioral progress and he’s gonna read it to decide if I need ore drastic behavoral rectifications. Whatever those are, that’s just what it says on the letter. I dunno what the hell any of it means in real English. All I know is they got me doing the writing and seeing this counselor lady every week to talk about what’s going on at home and did I feel bad about making Kyle’s face bleed all over the place when I broke his jaw and why did I do it. Even thow it don’t really matter to anyone why I did it. Adults always talk about how they don’t care about what the other person did first, they just care about what you did second. Stupid if you ask me, but they usually think I’m the stupid one. But I ain’t stupid, even if Mrs. Rescinardo says I better work hard or I’ll be in seventh grade again next year.

I’m sposed to make this sound like I’m sorry so that the rectications don’t happen to me, but truth is I ain’t and I don’t care who knows it. People should know they mess with my family they mess with me, and it ain’t my fault if they can’t understand that.

In every jernal I’m sposed to write what I learned in counseling that day. Well today in counseling I learned that Mrs. Nelly asks too many questions and has big ears like Dumbo.


Mrs. Nelly says that it’s never okay to hit someone when your mad. She says it don’t matter what Kyle did to me, there’s always better ways to solve argumints. I’d say that’s what I learned in counseling today, sept it ain’t true. It does too matter what he did and if he won’t listen when I tell him he better keep his big mouth shut, then what am I sposed to do? Let him go around saying sh talking bad about my family?

She says I should always be thinking about how things I do make other people feel but who ever asks how stuff makes me feel? Kyle can act like he’s my friend and then tell the whole school how I live in a junky little trailer that smells like cat pee and weed and that’s sposed to be ok. Cording to Mrs. Nelly anyway. How’s that momma’s boy even no what weed smells like? Besides, it’s not like I hit him first thing, first I told him to shut the hell up asked him politely to stop talking bout my family. But all he did was say he never said nothing and he don’t know where people heard that stuff from. Yeah sure. Like I said I ain’t stupid.

And I guess that’s what I learned in counseling today too, cuz no one else is smart enough to understand that I didn’t do nothing wrong. Mrs. Nelly read my jernal from last time where I said I ain’t sorry and started saying I should learn to be and why ain’t I. I just ain’t is what I told her. I ain’t gotta be sorry cuz I didn’t do nothing wrong. But she kept trying to make me say I did. And also she said that I’m too smart to be writing words like ain’t and sposed. Like this is English class or something and that matters more than the stuff Kyle did that no one wants to here about.


Mrs. Nelly says she wants to hear my side of the story to and she thinks before next week I had better just start from the begining and write down exackly what happened so we can talk about how I can use this expeerience to make myself a Better Person.

I ask her will any of the stuff I say in hear get me in more trouble or get my family in trouble? She says no, she’ll sign a paper saying my jernal won’t be missable in court sept for the part about tracing Behavioral Progress and More Drastick Behavyoural Rectifations. Sept it seems to me like I want it to be missable so no one will see it. But whatever, as long as everybody shuts up about me being wrong and bad for what I did.

The begining probbly is when my dad got me a Wii for my birthday. Last year when I turned 12 all I got was a football, and it wasn’t even new. The white paint was all rubbed off the part where your fingers go and someone had wrote “Johnson” on the side in black marker. My last name is Allen. But Dad’s got a new job now and he makes alot of money, so I got a Wii just like I asked for and also a brand new game, Call of Duty.

Anyways in homeroom while Mrs. Rescinardo was taking attendense I was very quietly wispering to my nabers about my new game since really I just wanted to skip out on school and go home and play it. But then after attendense and social studies we got to play dodgeball which I like cuz I always win. I can throw harder than anyone in seventh grade so it’s not true that they’re all better than me like they think.

They always act all scared like they think I’m gonna jump them or something and no one ever talks to me which is dumb cuz I don’t jump people unless they deserve it. But they’re all dumb sissies anyways I like being left alone. Kyle didn’t act that way thow even thow I’m big for my age and he’s so short the only person he could be partners with for square dancing in gym was Allie Licht who is as short as a 2nd grader. Maybe it’s cuz he’s new and don’t know better but he followed me around and tried to talk to me about stuff like he wanted to be friends or something. I don’t know why cuz no one wants to be friends with me he thot that would work since he’s a teacher’s pet and always gets out first in dodgeball. But then when we were going outside for gym he started asking if he could come to my house after school and play Call of Duty, which was weird cuz the week before his mom came in during social studies to tell Mrs. Felter that she didn’t presheate her little Kyliekins watching a vilent movie like Mulan. We watched Mulan one day when Mrs. Felter didn’t feel like teaching and it is a sissy movie ain’t scary at all and Call of Duty has lots more vilents. But no one outside the trailer park ever wanted to come home with me before so I told him fine he could come over but since we should always obey our parents he should ask his mom. I said that cuz I didn’t want him to get in trouble and not to make fun of him since his mom probbly still reads him bedtime stories and holds his hand when he crosses the street.

My hand hurts now so I’m done. Mrs. Nelly says to finish the story for next week so we can have a conversation about the flaws in my prescriptive. I don’t know what prescriptive means but if it’s that there’s something wrong with what I did then next week she’ll see that ain’t true.

What I learned in counseling today is that Mrs. Nelly always thinks she’s right when she ain’t if I asked myself all the questions adults want you to ask before you decide to do something, I’d probbly never end up doing anything at all.


When I told Kyle to ask his mom if it was ok to come over he got all mad even thow I was only trying to help. I ain’t never seen him get mad before and it was kind of funny cuz he’s so little. He said he can do what he wants and don’t have to ask his mom. I was suprised that visiting me was what somebody wanted so I said fine come over, but good luck beeting me cuz I rule at Call of Duty. Later we got on my bus and he showed the bus driver a note from his mom saying he could come with me, so I guessed then that his mom thought it was okay for him to come after all.

The bus stops just once for the whole trailer park a ways from my house and Kyle complaned how it was cold and it was to long to walk, and I told him but I didn’t say quit being a crybaby and suck it up cuz that would be mean. When we got to my house Kyle just stopped before we went in and asked me you live here? Which is a dumb question cuz did he think I was just walking into some random house? I kicked the cat Blackie out of the way and walked around to the back door. We have to use the back door only now cuz Dad and one of his friends that always visits got in a fight and knocked the third step out in the front. Dad says that’s kinda good since the steps were all rotted anyways and he’ll build us some new ones, but Mom just laffed when he said that. She said he’s never got his lazy butt off the couch long enough to even sweep the steps so she ain’t holding her breath for him building new ones.

Dad was back in the shed behind the trailer which is where he is alot since now he has a bizness fixing up old motorcycles to sell, and he says that’s the best job ever cuz he can sell the motorcycles for a lot of money and he don’t have to work for a boss. Bosses don’t ever like my dad. Mom says that since he’s home alot that means he should do more stuff around the house, like do the dishes instead of leaving them in the sink with food all stuck on them. Mom’s always gone now cuz she goes to Jess’s dad’s house so he can help fix our car’s radiator. That’s where she probbly was when I came home with Kyle. I wonder why it takes so long to fix a car, but Mom just says it’s cuz Jess’s dad is taking the time to do it right, and that’s something you won’t find at any mekanic shop. And plus he’s doing it for free. Jason and Dougie were watching something on E! with a bunch of hot girls but they’d probbly been doing that all day since they’re too little to go to school and get to just stay home and watch TV.

They wined when I kicked them off the TV but I just switched it to TV2 and pushed them off the cowch and they got lost Kyle was my guest so I had to be polite and play Wii. After I set it up I looked over at Kyle and he was just standing in front of the door kind of scared like he thought something was gonna jump out of the cowch. I asked him if he wanted a snack and I got out two Snickers bars from the cabinet and gave one to him. He didn’t open it thow and he said he didn’t want to spoil his dinner and did we have any yogurt. He’s so bad he don’t care about coming over without asking his mom but he’s afraid to spoil his dinner. What a Wierd. And who eats yogurt for snack anyways besides old people?

But then we started playing Call of Duty and we played until it got dark. Kyle couldn’t play worth anything and after a while he started just watching me cuz I’m awesome at it and it felt kind of cool that I could do something someone else wanted to watch. But then when I’m in the middle of a battle Kyle starts saying he’s hungry and when is dinner. Who does he think is gonna make him dinner is what I wanted to know? I told him there’s hotdogs in the fridge and he could put one in the microwave. Mom wasn’t gonna be home for a while and plus she don’t make good food anyways. Like for Thanksgiving once she said we were gonna have turkey like they did back when there were Indians. It ended up all black and tuff like eating cardboard so instead we just had PB&J.

Kyle said maybe he better call his mom. That was good cuz I think she probbly has a heart attack even if he takes too long in the bathroom, getting worried that he fell in and drowned or something really misses him when he’s gone.

And okay, I ain’t gonna finish this before counseling but Mrs. Nelly is gonna have to deal with it cuz I’ve been writing this thing for a whole half hour and I can’t write no more.


So we have a sub today and I figure I mite as well finish this now since I don’t wanna do this stupid worksheet about naming angels I’m done (with) all my work.

Well when Kyle called his mom she was real mad and came over quick. She has this fancy silver Lexus car that she drives real fast and I herd her slam the door and then come up the front steps like she was thinking hard about pounding her feet down as loud as she could. But then when she got to the third one I herd her make a sound like Blackie does when you step on his tail and it was real funny I thot but Kyle froze with his eyes open real wide and scared.

She started banging on the front door like she was gonna knock it down so I yelled come in and it was hilaryus to here her scream when Blackie ran out between her legs after she opened it opened it for her and said hello Mrs. Stevenson, but she just looked over my head at Kyle and said Kyle Michael Stevenson, do you have any idea what I’ve been threw and you get in the car rite now and there will be conskweneses. And the hole time while she waited for Kyle to get his stuff and come out she stood in the doorway tapping her foot and sniffing the air like she smelled a skunk or something. And after they left I decided that even if it was fun to beet Kyle at Call of Duty I wouldn’t let him come over no more cuz it ain’t worth lisening to him wine about dinner and having his mom look over my head like I ain’t there.

So that’s what happened that day and see I didn’t do nothing wrong. It ain’t my fault if Kyle don’t tell his mom stuff and it also ain’t my fault that the porch stairs are broken and my house smells funny.

I was sure Kyle was gonna be in big trouble from his mom but the next day at school he seemed all happy and even raised his hand to take the attendense envelope up for Mrs. Rescinardo like a sissy good helper. So later after I got him out in dodgeball I asked him did his mom get him in lots of trouble. I’m so good at dodgeball it ain’t hard for me to play and also talk at the same time without anyone getting me out.

Then Kyle said his mom didn’t punish him at all cuz it ain’t his fault it’s mine. He said he told her what really happened which is that I told him to ride my bus and I wrote the fake note from his mom for him. He said I wouldn’t let him call home from my house until he played Call of Duty with me for a long time just cuz I like to win. what a load of bulls None of that’s true AT ALL. I got real mad then cuz I’m always getting blamed for stuff that ain’t my fault. Teachers always beleve teacher’s pets people like Kyle over me and Kyle said his mom was gonna tell the principal. Then I’d probbly be suspended cuz Mr. Bilton said I would if I got another referrel this marking period.

I told Kyle he couldn’t prove that stuff cuz it ain’t true and I’ll tell everyone the truth. For a minute Kyle looked scared like maybe he thot they would beleve me, but then he took a big breath and said I better not cuz if I did he’d tell the cops on my dad. I said tell bout what, my dad ain’t doing nothing to tell on. But Kyle just laughed his little sissy laugh and started to walk backwards while he said yeah right well at least his dad don’t sell mariwana which is a bad thing to do cuz they say so in D.A.R.E.

Like that kid even knows a joint from a cigaret. I bet he ain’t ever been within 20 feet of eether one. I said he better keep his big nose outta my family’s business and watch himself before he goes telling lies my family’s business ain’t his so he better stay out of it and also my dad fixes motorcycles and don’t sell weed and he don’t smoke it neither. But he said his mom smelled it when she picked him up and she knows that’s what it is.

I got real mad then, madder than I’ve ever been, and it was like on cartoons when the good guy catches the bad guy and the good guy stops doing anything but thinking about how to hurt the bad guy the most. And Kyle was the bad guy cuz nothing was my fault, it was all his but that didn’t matter to no one cuz they would all beleve him and not me. He was gonna turn in my dad to the cops and send him to jail and all the kids at school would make fun of me and we wouldn’t have no money and none of it would be fair at all cuz my dad don’t sell weed. But he’d go to jail anyway cuz everyone knows how the cops have it in for people who live in trailer parks.

And my arms and legs just started going, all the mad inside of me just making them punch and kick and knock that sorry loser Kyle down on the ground and make him pay. For acting like he’s my friend when really he ain’t, for being scared at my house when there ain’t nothing to be scared of, for letting the cops take my dad away just so his mom won’t be mad at him. Then all of a sudden we weren’t standing up no more, we were on the grass with me sitting on top of Kyle. My fists were still going, punching so that blood came fast out of his nose all over his blue gym uniform. It made his brown hair shiny and his mouth hung open weird like a door that’s not connected all the way to the wall. There was blood on my fist sinking down into my nuckles and I heard screaming and then I felt Mrs. Murphy trying to pull me off but I’m so big she couldn’t. Then other hands pulled me back and it was Mr. Bilton the principal and he kept his big hand down hard on my shoulder the whole time we walked to his office. He didn’t say nothing at all till we got there and he dialed a number in the phone, my number, and said hello Mr. Allen.

And that’s why I punched Kyle. Cuz if someone wants to send your dad to jail so that he can never take you four-wheeling like he keeps promising he will some day and he can’t watch in two years when you’re old enough to play on the high school football team, then what are you sposed to do to make them listen?


I already rote a lot today but Mrs. Nelly says that I still need to rite the what I learned in counseling today part of my jernal. I tell her my hand hurts so she says I can skip doing that part for last time as long as do it for this time right after I get home.

Mrs. Nelly read my jernal while I played this computer game where your caracter is a stupid-looking kid with a big smile and really white teeth and has to make all these choices at school like wether to talk to a new kid and what to do when someone makes fun of you. I was sorry it took so many words to tell what happened with Kyle cuz that meant I had to play the game for a long time before she was done reading.

When she finished the first thing she said was I’m sorry Kyle treated you like that. I just said yeah. But I was saprised that was what she said and not that I shouldn’t make fun of Kyle for holding his mom’s hand when he crosses the street or that she don’t believe me about Dad not selling weed.

She asked me how did I feel when Kyle said he would tell the cops on my dad. I said angry cuz he didn’t have no right to go after my family. And then I said that it made me a little scared. Cuz maybe my dad don’t play ball and come in every night for dinner like Jimmy’s dad who coaches middle school football, but nothing would feel right if he was gone instead of in the shed fixing motorcycles the judge should get Kyle in trouble for what he said just like he was getting me in trouble for what I did.

Then she asked me if I thought Kyle was scared when I was on top of him punching him. I said I dunno. Maybe I guess. But I remembered how he looked lying on the grass without really moving anything sept his lips to make noises like that dog Dad accidentally ran over once in our driveway, and how my hand had blood all over it that stuck in the little cracks of my skin almost like a glove, and how I saw my body hitting his but couldn’t make it stop or change direction or do anything sept act out being mad. And suddenly I just started crying right there in Mrs. Nelly’s office. Even thow I never ever cry and everyone in seventh grade knows it. But I couldn’t help it, it just started coming out and I couldn’t stop even thow Mrs. Nelly was right there and she could see me. She pulled a tisshoe out of her Mickey Mouse tisshoe box and gave it to me and also gave me a big hug, like the kind moms give their kids in cheesy little kid shows. And the hole time she didn’t make fun of me or tell me to stop being a baby like my mom did the time I was nine and I cried cuz my fingers got shut in the car door. I liked her hugging me.

Mrs. Nelly said she knows it’s hard not to do something bad when someone wants to hurt people you care about, but did it make me feel good when I hit Kyle? Was I happyer now that I did it? The same shi things and adults always ask when you screw up, sept that Mrs. Nelly sounded like maybe she actually wanted to hear an anser. But it’s her job to say things like that so then I wondered if maybe she was faking. Some people are pretty good at faking. Like me sometimes.

She looked at the clock and gave a little jump cuz it was already 4:00 and the special programs bus leaves at 3:45. My mom always has the car over at Jess’s dad’s house and I don’t no their number so I said maybe I could just sleep on the floor until school tomorrow. Plus then I would be there in time for school breakfast since my bus always comes too late. She kind of smiled and she said that wasn’t nesasary, she could take me home. I said ok and I was kind of glad cuz even thow I’m 13 it might be scary to stay at school all night by myself I was ready to go home and blow some Natseys up on the Wii.

Mrs. Nelly let me sit in the front seat of her car and even pick a CD to listen to. She had alot of country which I like so I played a Keith Urban one. Her car is really clean, not like my mom’s old van that has chipping paint outside and Wendy’s wrappers in all the cup holders. She opened the box between the two front seats and pulled out a bag of gummy worms and she gave the whole bag to me. She let me eat them right there in her clean car and she said that she thought I was a great kid and she liked spending time with me. She said I was really smart and that she thinks if I learn from this expeerience I’ll make the world a better place when I grow up. She said I can even start doing that now if I try. No one ever told me I’m a great kid before I like gummy worms.

What I learned in counseling today is that Mrs. Nelly is nice to talk to and she don’t care that my front porch is broken.


Holly Kays is a December 2011, graduate in English and Natural Resource Conservation from Williamsport, Maryland. Holly would like to thank Matthew Vollmer, English, for his assistance with this piece. Holly is currently pursuing a career in environmental magazine journalism.