dear JOURNAL since Diary is a silly word. It makes you look like a snoot. Hidden in your secret book, you tell tall tales of your life as I'm Better Than You. I, Milla, am not better than other people and don't like to say I am. I simply want to write down the things that happen to me, truthful, real things, so I can remember the whole thing more clearly and not be forever confounded by the little pieces that slip through the cracks. THAT is my introduction. Till the next we meet (which is tomorrow), fair friend in bound pages.

dear Journal, I know someone who writes in a Diary. Never mind about her name. She's exactly the stuck up, fake goodie goodie that I KNEW kept a Diary. She is always mentioning it. "You'll never know what I told my Diary last night..." And then I let them all know what I WILL write in my Journal tonight, that G----e is a stuck up, fake goodie goodie with a very bad hair bow.

Notice, I was tasteful about omitting some letters of her name. I'm not pointing fingers unless I'm pointing them to your face, that's my motto. I don't hesitate to put a bad one down on their knees to grovel properly. Well, she didn't get down on her knees... She did a good deal of shouting and then she put her fingertips to her eyelids (how dainty! what fingernails!) and started pouting. I ran out the door and went to play under the willow before the teacher came. Teachers are bad news, unfortunately. I want to like them, but they're always on the Other Girl's side. I want to like school too, but you can't like it when everything comes back to Miss W-----n's husband's bad back and the board is obstructed in the middle by a head of sun-bright curls.

dear Journal, the reason I omit names is because I don't want anyone who finds my Journal of an accident to think I was being mean. All I'm doing is recording the facts so I can remember. To be perfectly honest, it is a bit like ranting in some cases...... Haha, that doesn't sound awful convincing, does it?

By they way, NOTHING happened today. It was a most tiresome day. The sun just sat and stared at me and the heat was invincible. Anything I tried to relieve the ceaseless sweat crumpled in failure. What is it with summer days? What's the point?

dear Journal, I've always told myself I will be a sensible young lady when I come of age, but there are things I must admit could turn me sentimental and dreamy-headed. One is boys. I'm fond of boys now—I'm only ten!—they're never faithless or unfriendly, and I play with them over girls any day. So what will become of me when I am older and am expected, as young adults are, to be buffeted with emotions? So I wonder about that, on a Saturday, with the cartoons laying on the floor beside me. It's best to read cartoons without snacks, I find. Snacks distract and you lose the thread of the joke. When you meet the punchline, you're thinking, what was this about anyway? I'd say, even if you managed a laugh, well, then there'd be cracker crumbs or whatsit all over Daddy's newspaper before he's gotten a chance to look. Sometimes the cook makes something irresistible for breakfast and I have to eat—though I disdain breakfast—and I wade through every traitorous mouthful before me, ignoring my stomach's happy mumbles for higher thoughts of proximate cartoons.

dear Journal, there is a girl at school who wants to be friends with me, but I want to know the reason first. She's well-behaved but most girls won't bite you in the face the moment they meet you—you can count on boys to be more honest with their feelings. I know I did her a bad turn a few years back and I can't help but be suspicious she's after a lesser version of revenge. And I think it plays very well by the rules to keep my 'bad turn' blanketed, as it did not happen today. I said sorry after all. I don't like to be thought of as the girl that was.

dear Journal, turns out it wasn't the same girl. They have similar names and both wear tired out dresses. I often used to look at M-----a's dress and pray for its eternal repose, or at least vacation. Both girls aren't pretty—not that it matters—but I know they could find dresses to suit their strange faces, if they would try. I didn't hear this one's last name, but perhaps the two are sisters—twins—and that's why they're almost the same. I can tell she wants to be friends because she asks me for things and doesn't talk to anyone else. I'm going to give it a go...to make up for my bad turn.

dear Journal, I talked with the school librarian today. He said sometimes people write Journals to remember, sometimes they write them to forget, and sometimes they write down everything they're thinking so they can better themselves. "You might have huge problems and you don't even see them till they're written and you reread them," he told me. I asked him what did he think the reasons a person started a Diary were. He gave me a quizzical look and said, "I don't know what you mean." Boys are so innocent.

dear Journal, all the girls at school have Diaries now. They got them as soon as they could, after hearing that G----e had one. They tell it all their little black secrets and they don't share. "It wouldn't be a secret if we told you," K-----n laughed. I got mad. "At the end of the year you can all read my Journal," I announced. They don't care. They say they don't want to read my Journal. Having a Diary really does make you a jerk.

dear Journal, it might as well rain. I found out right away that my new friend M----m also has a Diary. She even bought the same binding as G----e. I saw her sitting at her desk while the teacher was absent—the wicked words Dear Diary emblazoned on the first line of her book—happily adding curls to the tips of her letters. We're not going to be friends anymore.

dear Journal, I asked the librarian if he'd ever had any friends when he was a kid that turned out to be completely different than him. "Of course," he said. "I rarely found anyone exactly the same as me."

"But how on Earth could you be friends if you didn't have things in common?" I exclaimed.

"We did have some things in common, just not everything. We enjoyed each other as best we could," he added, laughing. 

"Were any of them bad people?"

He began to shelve the stack of books I'd returned. "Milla, you sound like you're getting in over your head again."

"I KNOW what a bad person is. I'm not stupid."

"I didn't say you were stupid... But you are judgmental."

I could hardly speak to him after that. ME? JUDGMENTAL? Sometimes boys are too honest.

April 11, 2020 01:47

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Gip Roberts
20:17 Apr 14, 2020

I love this character's opinion about the difference between a diary and a journal. Makes sense now that I think about it.


Hamadryad 77
00:27 Apr 15, 2020

Thank you so much for sticking around long enough to like and comment on my story!! I'm happy you enjoyed it. Yeah, haha, I guess the opinion is loosely based on my own (and my sister's) feelings about someone writing Dear Diary. I wouldn't even write Dear Journal usually in my own journal, but I put that in for the sake of the prompt. I don't like the idea of talking to the book somehow... But I wouldn't judge the writers of diaries as harshly as Milla does! Thanks again :)


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Stephanie Kaye
16:29 Apr 16, 2020

Reading this brought me back to my own negative feelings about calling it a "diary." Haha. Very well-done with beautiful lines. "a head of sun-bright curls" was among my favorite.


Hamadryad 77
01:39 May 06, 2020

Ah, sorry for the late reply! I didn't think that others would agree about how the word diary feels, haha. I'm really happy that you liked my story and the way I wrote it :)


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