The Maroon

“Crunchy Peanut Butter Stuck on Wooden Cabins”

Ella Jacobs, digital filmmaking sophomore

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I’ve always disliked tie-die shirts.  Probably because they remind me of our foyer’s closet – the kind stocked with your dad’s old ski clothes from the eighties that you always ponder how those colors ever got approved.  Who knew schemes of poppy snowball colors could ever get tiring?  Oh, boy, but I definitely did.  It’s the favorite set of colors not only for eighties fanatics, but also for camp counselors…

****

A group of ten awkward teenagers, such as myself, were waiting outside a whole thirty minutes earlier than when the buses were set to arrive.  The camp that we were “destined” for was named after some historic, misshapen and misused Native American name that probably stood for hugs and peanut butter.  The boy next to me was casually biting at his nails while he stared me straight in the eyes – he began squinting, almost grinding his eye lids up against one another so only slivers of his sight could make out my body.

“Is that a Ralph Lauren bag?”  The squinty guy began to strut over to my luggage with a quiver of a smile – slightly pleased with fine products, but much too blind to actually see the brand name.

“Nah.  It’s just an L.L. Bean bag I took from my brother’s closet – I sort of figured since we were going out in the woods I would just bring something sturdy and worn out…”  

I wasn’t exactly sure why I needed to mention my brother in our conversation – I hardly knew the guy, but it just slipped – minor details are always best anyways.

“Oh! Right.  That does make some sense – I guess I just mixed up the patterns, or fabric…or something…”

He shrugged his shoulders and itched his right arm.  I think his baseball cap made out a small, red alien with black eyes with the word “GENUIS” sewn on the side…

****

Time was being spare with its strength.  I couldn’t tell if we were moving in slow motion or if I was just hungry.  About half of the people had shown up with clunky duffle bags oozing with fuzzy, “lovey-dovey” sweaters that reminded them of campfires, and the thickness to shield them from mosquitoes; the rest of the space was usually full of black leggings, boots, and a comforter that gave them an excuse to wash it after camp.  

“Attention all campers!  The buses have arrived!  Please make sure to check in with one of our camp leaders and board the buses quickly!”  

Why did we have to rush?  I was just lingering through time a moment ago, and now to a sped up version of the Parent Trap where the girls were already piercing each other’s ears in the desolate cabin of “solitude” – unless, of course, you managed to convince everyone at camp that you had just met your twin.  Maybe I will meet a twin here where we can obsess over Oreos dipped in peanut butter, and stab needles through each other’s ears with only an ice cube to numb the pain and a lemon wedge for sanitation – it sounded beautiful either way….

When we all arrived at the campgrounds, there were multiple puddles dispersed through thick mud, and bumblebees sucking at the various flowers bordering the location.  

“I think I left my towel back at home,” the guy with the alien hat spoke into the air.  I think his name was Frances Peavey, or at least what I could make from his nametag coated in stickers.  I don’t think we were close enough to share towels.  I pulled out a remaining cookie from my left, breast pocket and began to munch into the crumbly bits.  Peavey began to look my way – he gave me a huge grin and paced towards me.  

“I think we’re in the same group!”  I looked down on my nametag to notice my name flourished with the same, glossy Disney stickers – was this fate, or was this karma?  Or perhaps this was my chance to eat Oreos dipped in peanut butter, steal his baseball cap while we sat around the campfire together, and meet my “twin.”  

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Since 1923 • For a greater Loyola
“Crunchy Peanut Butter Stuck on Wooden Cabins”