On Labor Day weekend, a few of the neighborhood kids knocked on my door and asked if I wanted to go to the beach. This week, one of them asked me to play in his band for an upcoming gig, and now I’m their permanent upright bassist. The band is tentatively called Llama Sanchez, which everyone I’ve run it by says sounds racist, but nobody can put their finger on why.

A boy my age sings and plays guitar. He’s a great musician, and we have a couple of mutual friends. His girlfriend sits next to me in history. Today she asked me if I was in her boyfriend’s band, and when I said yes, she gave me the most faux-pleased smile I’ve ever seen in my life. This should be interesting.

Llama Sanchez’s drummer is a very tall and thin middle-schooler. He goes to film camp, has a clock in his dining room that tells time backwards, and is on a competitive dance team. When I met him, he tripped four times, broke a ping-pong table, and threw a drumstick out the window by accident. He seems nice.

When my dad picked me up from band practice for the first time, he told me that these two boys were just dorky enough for him to be OK with my hanging out with them.

We’re working on some songs for a Halloween gig they set up before I joined: one or two originals, “Blister in the Sun,” and a ton of really obscure indie-rock songs that I had to Google before practice. I’m very excited. I’m going to be part of something exciting and teenagery! I’m practically Drake from Drake & Josh. Llama Sanchez is the coolest. ♦