Have you ever felt different? Not different simply as an individual, but as an entire class of person?
We had a “gifted” class back in middle school. For homeroom, each class was assigned a number and a letter: 7A, 7B, 7C, 8A, 8B, 8C, etc. But the gifted class was different. They were “the kids with the sofa in the classroom”.
Luxurious, plush, brunt sienna brown.
A very nice sofa, nestled in a cozy corner of their spacious classroom. They had study centers with tables. Dioramas and posters of Winston Churchill. I believe they had wallpaper. It had patterns; flowers, math equations. They had computers that they used in the classroom, which saved them a trip to the room we all used, the one down the hall. The common room.
It was OK, though.
We probably weren’t going where they were going and, likely, to where they already had been. All things being equal.
We knew it.
It helped that they were nice. You know, gracious.
They let us sit on the couch sometimes!
One day one of the best of the brightest – no lie, she was a kind of god among gods among mortals – she was all this and more, and yet she failed to show up to her final exam. No one knew where she was.
It was a mystery that lasted hours.
Later it was found that, on the day of the exam, the student’s mom had found her passed out on the bathroom floor.
She had put the Q-Tip in too deep.
I like to imagine her, standing there in the harsh relief of the setting sun. Standing just outside the bathroom door, agreeing with her mother that telling the school the truth would be the easiest Thing. Standing there and solemnly nodding her head, knowing that word would get out, eventually, inevitably.
Human, after all.
 She was allowed to make up the exam.