Early in life, Lisa has realized that if a person can’t be gorgeous, she should at least strive to be smart. She rationalizes, “what’s the point of being skinny and white-skinned if you’re tongue-tied when your teacher calls out your name on recitations?”

That’s absolute humiliation.

She keeps as many friends as she could. She replies to their tough questions as long as she could. Boys or girls- they’re all the same. They come to her when they need answers that matter.

Not that she’s very studious. She just manages to hide her folly fully well. Like most students her age, she tosses out her books after school, turns on the TV for afternoon cartoons but she makes sure to peek at her notes before class starts. It’s not so difficult to maintain such a habit of rote memorizing. Mimicking notes is the simplest way to look a bit smarter than the rest with just the littlest effort.

For as long as she knows, most teachers just ask what, who, when, where and which. Rarely do they raise ‘why’s’ and ‘how’s’ – and those are taken care of by the few book-monsters, the gifted or the zombies for fame’s sake.

For Lisa, such honor doesn’t really matter.

What worries her is just the piece of metal her mom aspires at the end of each term. Unluckily, she (mom) doesn’t like it to be so dark, neither light-colored, but gold.

She thought, “Why mom would want such a thing that can’t be sold?”

Her mom’s heart swells in injustice whenever she is not on top of her class. Trouble is she doesn’t attribute it to her daughter’s sloth. She refuses to go on awarding ceremonies when Lisa makes it to the 3rd, 2nd and not the 1st. So Lisa resents every time March comes. It always is war between Mom and Ma’am. Good thing, her aunt’s door’s always open on vacation time or her ears would have been filled with school’s memories bitter rewind.




By Issa

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