Fiction On Odyssey: By The Glass
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Fiction On Odyssey: By The Glass

"pour your heart out; watch your blues turn gold."

Fiction On Odyssey: By The Glass
Owen McGonigle

An Excerpt from By The Glass

I never really questioned how wine was made. Never really sat down and thought about how the grapes would somehow produce alcohol, or how alcohol even had an effect on the brain.I knew that the grapes would get stomped on and all that, but everything after that was a fucking mystery.All I knew was that eventually, it ended up in a packaged bottle, and then in one of my Lenox glasses that I held so near and dear to my heart.I knew that I would have those Barefoot Sweet Red and Pinot Grigio bottles in my refrigerator and that I would definitely be drinking them in the near future.Ah, the joys of teen living.

On top of it all, it was summer 2017, so my levels of teen living were at an all-time high.All I wanted to do was have fun, and avoid anything that would prohibit me from doing so.The cork stopping me from pouring out my Sweet Red was no bueno to my summer mentality.

However, as I swung open the fridge door and stared at the bottles that I had described, I looked past them and reached for a bottle of lemon sparkling water.The wine is for later, I thought. Lemon sparkling water would definitely do the trick in the moment. Lemon sparkling water and the mac and cheese that was being made on my stove was the perfect couple I was waiting to meet. Ah, the thought of it literally made my mouth water. Confession Hour: I am a high key fat bitch. Don’t tell the boys. Oh yeah. Confession Hour: I am gay. I assume the narrator should be completely honest right off the bat.

With the thought of the mac and cheese in my mind, I was in a particularly good mood.I had already finished all my daily household duties, which meant I could eat lunch and then retreat into my bedroom until my friends decided to show up later.Which in turn meant that I could binge watch hundreds of Youtube videos for hours upon hours.That was basically the summary of my summer of teen living.Chores, eating, Youtube.I tried to write here and there, but nothing was working out for me.It was an uncomfortable mix of a lack of motivation and a lack of ideas.All in all, I was lounging around doing nothing all day.I had gotten used to it over the course of a few weeks.It was pretty chill compared to my schedule during the school year.

But until then, I had to wait for my mac and cheese.

“Spence!” Henry exclaimed, “I’m hungry!”Henry was my younger brother, who had recently just turned 14.He was still highly dependent on everyone around him, hence why I was stuck making him lunch.I did not mind too much, as I had to make my own lunch.The only thing that truly bugged me was how Henry never had to do anything.He lounged around all day, only played video games, got food served to him, and then went back to bed.I loved him, of course, but I wanted to slap him.

“Give me a minute,” I replied, as my voice lost volume and momentum as I went forward.But the water still sat flat in the pot, and the noodles laid hard in their bag.I shuffled in my light wood chair and clicked on a new makeup video.It was the same routine I practiced day to day and the same routine that I had become indifferent to.It was not really something I found particular joy in, nor was it something that I held complete disdain toward.

One More Week, I thought to myself.Only one more week until I moved into college.One more week of my summer routine.One more week of my false sense of freedom.It was an odd mix of excitement and dread, something that I had truthfully never felt before.I did not know how much my life would change, or wouldn’t.I did not know anything.As concerning as that was, part of me did not even think about it.A part of me was just chilling with the idea of the unknown.

But the water in the pot began to bubble, and I was pulled back down into the world of the known.

The passenger seat of Veronica’s car was basically my seat.It was a fairly-new silver Hyundai Elantra, which was technically her mom’s, but she never used it.Every week, Veronica would pick me up, then we would pick up Cassandra and go into full “teen living” mode.The new car smell made my nostrils flared, which was strange, as the car wasn’t too new.

Veronica was a girl of fair complexion, dark, long hair, and an average build.She was desired by most, and not even limited to the hormonally charged boys around us.Cassandra, on the other hand, boasted olive skin, short dark hair, and had a very short built.Both of them made me feel very tall, even though I was a fairly short, five foot eight, boy.It was a good way to live, get yourself short friends to make you feel taller.

I held my venti caramel macchiato in my hand, and my phone in the other, as Veronica had occupied both cup holders with keys, her own drink, lipstick, and more.Veronica’s phone, which was rose gold in color, also occupied one of the two cupholders between the driver and passenger seat.Veronica’s phone was pretty much indestructible, and even survived Veronica intentionally hurtling her phone toward the ground.The image of the moment flew into my mind like a flash and proceeded to leave just as fast.

“I want to buy a whiteboard for my dorm,” Veronica expelled as she turned the car into the Target parking lot.“I’m telling you, doing your math homework on a whiteboard first is so much better.”

“Can’t relate,” I quickly replied, “I’m not taking a math this semester.”Cassandra let out an exasperated sigh at my words, and sulked deeper into the backseat.

“Lucky you,” Cassandra cried, “I wish I wasn’t taking a math course.”I chuckled, as I did consider this fact lucky.Not having a math course did shock me a bit, but I was overall pleased with my first semester schedule.

“Yeah, but I am still going to have to take a math course eventually,” I continued, “It’s a core requirement.”Cassandra shuffled in her seat a bit, and took another heavy breath.

“I hate how math is still a requirement,” Casandra thought aloud, “Most of it is just so useless and time consuming.”Veronica nodded in agreement as she put the car in park, and swiftly turned the car off.

“Eh, I kind of like math,” Veronica remarked, while she bustled her way out of the car, “And I’m taking precalc so I’m okay with that.”I chuckled at the thought of taking a college level math course, or anything math related in the future.

“Again,” I stated, as I began to exit the car, “Can’t relate.”By then, I had fully exited the car, and my skin instantly retaliated against the summer heat with the mild sweat building up on my forehead.Veronica and Cassandra were both standing by the trunk of the car, and looked as if they had been waiting minutes for me to get out of the car.

“Well you guys are English majors,” Veronica remarked, “Your academic preference is kind of evident.”Veronica had been completely correct, as my preference in academic subjects had been clear since practically middle school.Little 12-year-old me, with his glasses and flat hair, pretty much knew that he wanted to go into English.English had always been my favorite class, even when it had been split into “Reading” and “Writing” because kids apparently cannot handle the two disciplines together.Now there I was, six years later, and I was actually going to become an English major.Confession Hour: I sometimes like to get weirdly deep about little things like the passing of time, and other nostalgic things.But hey, that’s just good ol’ me and I won’t apologize for that.Especially not as I walked into the home of all my teenage nostalgia, Target.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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