Anyway, backstory. There's kind of a lot, which is the main reason I don't want to type it all up. I have other things to do with my time than sit here being angsty. So maybe I'll just work on it a little at a time. I'll just start typing and see how far I get before I decide to stop.
It all started long, long ago... Okay, so I'm just being weird, but the point is, we've always had a hard time making friends. The main reason for this, I think, is that we're very shy. The other reason for this, I think, is that we're weird. We can totally thank (not sarcastically) blackhope for this, for teaching us very early on that being weird is usually more interesting. Anyway, while being weird is in fact more interesting, it also makes it harder to get along with people. For example, at Young Women's activities for church, all the young women would be standing around talking after the activity, or sitting around talking during the activity (we both have different memories of this that stand out; we're not sure if that means it happened more than once (though I'm pretty sure it did) or if it just means we filled in the blanks differently), and we would have joined the circle of course, but as the conversations evolved and shifted as conversations do, the participants moved around with them, and by the end of it, we always found ourselves outside of the circle.
It wasn't out of any kind of malice or anything--the girls at church were all very very nice. That's just how it happened, and it's probably partially our own fault for not being interested in the same subjects. I don't think it's that we got fed up with talking about Hanson, for example (big Hanson fans in our YW group); I like to think that we're interested in listening to almost anything someone's talking to us about, especially if they're excited about it. Anyway, I don't really know the reason, but it probably has a lot to do with the fact that we were all teenagers. Fortunately, we had awesome leaders, so it wasn't all bad. We also had a couple of friends who weren't from church that we were able to spend time with and not feel like complete loners.
That all being the case, we graduated from high school and it had been decided that we would be attending BYU for college. (We didn't care so much about college as we did about translating the Fushigi Yuugi novels we had recently discovered where to buy, so Mom took care of all the applications and everything and we just wrote the essays she told us to write. We applied to two colleges and got accepted to three (when you apply to a UC school, they send your application to all the other UC schools, so even though we applied to UCLA, we were accepted to UC Riverside and UC Santa Barbara), and Mom and her father (who would be helping pay for everything) decided BYU would be the best.) We had never been away from home for very long, so it was kind of scary, but things were rough at home, so we were kind of relieved to be getting away, and most of all! I was excited about meeting new characters. Yes, college was when I first started treating my life story like a manga.
When we got to college, of course our favorite class was Japanese. On the first day, our professor wanted everyone to stand up and introduce themselves. I think we were supposed to say our name, where we came from, and why Japanese of all things. Athena and I have no shame, so of course we flat out said we were taking Japanese because we were obsessed with the cartoons. Two other girls in the class were bold enough to make the same statement, and we all made sure to talk to each other after class. It wasn't long before we were inviting the other two girls to our dorm to watch anime (we were the ones with a TV and no other roommates to bug). We later found out another girl in our class was into anime, and we started inviting her, too. She brought her otaku roommate along, and the six of us became what we called The Anime Posse. To us, the emphasis was on the "posse" part, but whenever we tried to do something that didn't really relate to the "anime" part, most of the rest of them bowed out. There was a stupid falling out between us and one of the newest members, revolving around her roommate. I don't remember the details, only that it was stupid. But I will admit that if we had had better training in dealing with people (think Shigure's talk with Kyo), it might have gone better.
At any rate, the roommate got married, and at the start of sophomore year, the Posse was reduced to four plus one auxiliary member. I'm realizing that I need to give these people aliases to make things easier to follow, but I'm having a hard time coming up with good female pseudonyms. Let's see... we'll just call them after Neo Romance heroines. Angelique and Kahoko are the two girls who were bold enough to admit that they were taking Japanese for the anime. And Rosalia (not a heroine technically, but once we remembered Rosalia, it fit) is Angelique's roommate, and the new auxiliary member of the Posse. (Not to be confused with the new girl and her roommate, who are now out of the Posse.)
Rosalia was of course acquainted with the Posse since freshman year, being Angelique's roommate. When we first met, she adamantly declared that she did Not like anime. She even made it a point of telling us that one of her friends back home was a huge anime fan, and that she would have no part of it. From what I heard later, I suspect she may have been doing it to purposely be annoying (she told someone else she was purposely trying to annoy them when they first met--I'm not sure why she did it, but apparently it worked for her), but at any rate, we didn't buy it. As we all know, anime is awesome and anyone who thinks otherwise is either bigoted or ignorant. Or maybe just has better things to do than sit around watching TV, but we're ignoring that option. We figured it was probably the latter (of the non-ignored options), and thus it was decreed that she would be watching Fushigi Yuugi whether she liked it or not. As it turned out, she liked it. Still, she didn't join us for most of our Posse excursions, and I think it's because she had a boy, but it was a long time ago and I don't remember all the details.
Anyway, back to sophomore year. Rosalia's boy had left on his mission, and so she didn't have much better to do than tag along with Angelique to our Posse meetings. Of course we didn't want to leave her alone and bored in her dorm while her roommate was away, so she was welcome. Unfortunately, she was also the type of person that Athena and I have a very difficult time getting along with. It was mostly just personality clashes--nothing really big--and we could get along well enough when we tried. There was even a time we started to think she was kind of cool. I don't remember exactly what changed that opinion, but we weren't getting along anymore the next year. Because she came to so many Posse meetings, we agreed to make her a full-fledged member. I have to admit that Athena and I put up some resistance to this, and we probably thought we had a good reason at the time, or at least something that could pass for one. But Angelique and Kahoko convinced us to do it anyway. And actually, as far as we know, that has nothing to do with the angst that would follow.
Things went pretty well sophomore year. There were times they didn't go so well. Angelique, Rosalia, and the two of us all lived in the dorms, and Kahoko lived in a house on the other side of campus. Because of the way schedules worked, Kahoko would usually go to Angelique's dorm first, which wasn't a problem, except for Angelique and Rosalia's apparently very skewed sense of time. We would be sitting in our dorm, waiting for people to let us know that people were around so we could get together and do Fun Stuff, and we would be assertive and IM and say, "Hey, are people here yet?" And Angelique would IM us back and say that Kahoko was there and they'd be down in a bit. We usually wouldn't see them for at least half an hour, often more. One time, we were waiting for people to come over, and we weren't hearing anything from anybody, and it was getting late and we were really really hungry, so we decided it was time to finally go get some dinner at the cafeteria. (It wasn't uncommon for Angelique to treat Kahoko to dinner there because she had a meal plan that made it really easy for her to do so, so we'd all go down together.) When we got there, there everybody was, already eating dinner, without having said a word to us.
Now I forgot to mention the very important fact that we've had an irrational fear since long before college that everyone hates us. Seeing everyone having dinner without us only served to prove that fear, and we were Not Happy. I don't remember what happened after that, except that there was crying, and they invited us to sit with them. We've always been suspicious of people being nice to us when we're crying, and this didn't help.
Incidentally, I don't know if it was because Kahoko seemed more genuine or because of her super charisma powers that we never blamed her for any of it. See, Kahoko has super charisma powers, and some people even seem to want to be her slave for no discernible reason. I like to think that Athena and I were immune to it, but it's difficult to say for sure. At any rate, Kahoko is the one who started seeing a problem and trying to fix it. Like sometimes she would come to our dorm first. Example of her super charisma in action: when she got to our dorm, we would IM Angelique and Rosalia to let them know, and despite always taking hours to come down before, they would be down in mere moments. One time, Rosalia had to put a bandaid on her toe and she didn't even wait to do that before coming down. Of course, on the other hand, that could easily be seen not as an effect of Kahoko's charisma, but more evidence that they really only "liked" us out of some sense of obligation. Or because we had the TV.
Anyway, I think I want to stop here for now, but it wouldn't be fair of me to only talk about the bad things that happened. Angelique and Rosalia had their shining moments, too. For example, because I'm so thoroughly obsessed with cosplay, as soon as we had some otaku friends, I kind of decided that we would all cosplay together, but that meant (because Mom wouldn't let me bring the sewing machine to school) that I had to spend long hours in the basement by myself sewing things together, using the community sewing machine. But Angelique would come down and keep me company, which was very appreciated. (We can't remember why on earth Athena would stay upstairs.) And one time when Rosalia was working at the Cougar Cove, they had stopped selling Cornadoes (like french fries only made of corn meal), but she knew they still had an extra bag and she was kind enough to cook some for us. And they would both treat us to curly fries every so often. And when we went to hang out in their dorm, they would play "Slayers 4 the Future" because they liked to see us squee about it. And Angelique helped us register for classes second semester of freshman year because we had no idea how to do it since Mom had taken care of everything for first semester. I'm sure there's more, but it's kind of hard to remember. We're still working on how not to forget all the good things after the bad things start to cause problems.
Okay, that's enough of that for now. Today I'm thankful for having a newly scrubbed bathtub, not having to walk to the 7-11 anymore, our new Schubert CD, walks down memory lane, and having Reese's crispy crunchy bars for Valentine's Day treats (I'm pretty sure we had some after the peanut butter recall before...).