Saturday night my roommate invited me to dinner with her and her friends, and I was like yeah sure whatever and was totally chill. We ended up going to the school cafeteria (becuz muny) and ran into two of their other friends, whom we’ll call Stoner Dudes 1 and 2, waiting in line for their sandwiches. Stoner Dude 1 was saying, “Man, I was so baked last night. Like I was tripping. It was so crazy. We watched The Dark Side of Oz. It changed everything.” Then Stoner Dude 2 was like, “It totally changed my perception of that album! I thought it was just these jaded dudes, but it’s so much more playful.” They talked for a while longer, mostly repeating SD2’s insight about The Dark Side of the Moon being playful.

We got to the front of the line, and I ordered a grilled cheese with tomato. One of my roommate’s friends turned to me and squinted and pursed her lips like she was contemplating a weighty matter. “Uhhh, hey,” she said. “Do you, uh, smoke?” She said smoke like sm-OH-kuh and winked.

“Like, smoke-smoke?” I asked before being all, “Yeahsuretotally.”

“Cool” she said, nodding approvingly.

So dinner was whatever and totally besides the point. (Not besides the point is that SD1 came up with the idea to heat up some brownies and smother them with ice cream.) We went back to the dorms and hung out in this one girl’s room for a long time. My roomie and her friends talked about getting weed and somewhere along the way I accidentally revealed that I thought that weed was super expensive, which I could immediately tell from their incredulous faces is probably not true. It was super awkward in light of the fact that we all now knew I had lied back at the cafeteria. Also terrible was when they talked about getting a handle and I was like, “A handle?” (I have since learned that it’s a half-gallon of alcohol.) Every time I open my mouth I announce to the world that I haven’t lived the quintessential “teenage experience.” Though I guess by “teenage experience” I just mean dating and weed and I’m pretty mad at myself for caring anyway.

I can’t help noticing that every time someone mentions drugs, alcohol, or sex in my presence, they apologize to me. Every single time. Even if they know me well enough to be aware that my attitude about all of that stuff is pretty relaxed. Do I just have an inherently prudish and judgmental face? Do I reek of innocence? Someone tell me, because I have no idea what’s going on.

Sometimes I wonder if my having gotten to this point in life without any experiences with dating or drugs means there’s something wrong with me. Like, if I had been capable of having any meaningful relationships in high school, I would’ve gotten high at least once by now, and I’d have a first-kiss story too, right? Ugh. I feel like I’m stuck being a Shoshanna, but I know there’s a Jessa in me waiting to get out and just be totally chill.

I will never, ever be chill. ♦