When I arrived at Bayside High on that fateful day, before I got a boner for Kelly Kapowski, before I got a secret boner for Zack Morris, I had a story. A secret story. My cover was that I was a military brat, and no one questioned why my father was white. But it was a new start. A new, secret start.
I was born Mario, not A.C. Legend has it I came out of the birth canal in acid-washed denim. I had dimples because the nurses couldn’t stop squeezing my cheeks. And the ones on my face! Hahaha. This was in Mexico, where things were bad. My parents sent me to live with a strange man who traveled a lot because he had a habit of not making any real human connections. The first place they sent me was Miami. Miami? Where was the Miami that Will Smith was singing about? This one was filled with old ladies.
And one old lady, in particular, payed way more attention to me than was necessary. She subbed for my civics class for one day, but for some reason she invited me to her house for extra tutoring. I ended up going because really, what else was I going to do among all these old folks in Miami? But still, did no one from the school intervene?
It turned out to be quite entertaining. Ms. Zbornak lived with some real pieces of work. One was mentally challenged, and one like to validate herself through her sexual conquests. Pretty textbook. They doted over me like crazy, like they never saw a puberty-aged Mexican boy before.
Ms. ‘s old mother had some dirty vhs tapes that she let me watch one time when I came over and Ms. Z wasn’t home yet. “Where can I see more of these?” I asked her, and she gave me the address of a theater in downtown. I would go there constantly to see all the naked ladies and all the banging. Strangely, no one asked me my age or forbade me from going. Dimples can get you anywhere!
I could not stop thinking about naked ladies. All the time. It got so bad that when Ms. Z asked me to write an essay, I almost wrote it about naked ladies. Instead, I wrote about the actual dirty movie theater. I said something corny like, “this is what America must be like.” (I meant, a land where it was okay for a bunch of dudes to sit together in a dark theater watching nudie pics.)
Ms. Z shit herself and entered me in a district contest, and of course I won because no one gives a flying fuck about those contests. Well, somehow, the judge of the contest was an Immigration Offer, turns out he was on my tail and had started the contest because he knew I would enter! Dammit! Always one step ahead!
Ms. Z found me in the movie theater in the dead of the night and she proceeded to have a heartwarming convo despite others trying to watch the movie.
I flashed those dimps like no one’s business but they still decided I should get deported. Well, I wasn’t having it. Me and my fake Dad went on the run. At one point I posed as a girl at a Catholic school and let me tell you, wacky hijinks ensued. But all during that time I wanted to make sure I was ready when they came for me. I worked out six hours a day and bought anabolic steroids off the street.
By the time I ended up at Bayside, I could no longer pee without screaming in pain and my biceps were bigger than a fetal pig we had to dissect. But looking thirty five in high school has its advantages.
But I sure do miss those old ladies.
I miss them something fierce.