An Introduction to Death

The first time I was introduced to death, I was 16.

I was working the concession stand at my high school’s production of Cinderella. Normally, I was on stage, but it was a musical and no one wanted to hear me sing. It was opening night.

I was called into a side room by my principal and my English teacher, Mr. Harris. I was scared. I called on my acting skills, begging them to provide for me. I thought I was caught, that my teacher and principal knew where I’d been that morning, that they’d smelled pot on me and I was scared they wouldn’t believe me when I told them I didn’t smoke it, that it was David’s, that he smoked it that morning, not me, that he was mad that I didn’t, that truly it wasn’t my thing. I preferred a pilfered Mike’s Hard Lemonade or a grape juice-infused shot of everclear.