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What I Always Wanted
There’s nothing that excites me more than exaggerated deals at low prices. And the deal that caught my eye was a brand new “Super Ultimate Schwinn Supreme Smart Bike” that came with training wheels of course. The image shot out at me like a cannon that came from my TV. Beautiful wheels that could glow in the dark. A solid red paint covering the metal that shined so bright, if you looked at it directly it would blind you. And a little bell that alerted the whole neighborhood I was coming and to witness the greatness that is my bike. I wanted that bike-no, I needed that bike more than anything else in the world. And I get what I want.
I love a girl that makes me look good. I remember when I saw her from across the room. She was undoubtedly, the most beautiful girl I had ever seen. She wore big full lips with lipstick smoothly glossed over it. A freckled face, crimson brown hair that resembles wood but on fire. And fierce yet attracting eyes that were ironically covered in sparkles. I went to her; she could sense that I was a man who knew what he wanted. And I wanted her-no, I needed her, and I get what I want.
Once I had that bike, I rode it everywhere. Neighborhoods, the woods, hills, highways; death didn’t really matter to me. Because when you’re a kid, you don’t really believe it will happen to you, just everybody else. I remember climbing up huge hills, then going down them and not pedaling. My mom hated it, she thought I would get hurt. But I didn’t care, I would let gravity take me and the bike and ride with it. Riding that bike was some of the best times of my life.
My most prized possession; I flaunted her to everyone. Everywhere we went; I made sure the world knew who she belonged to-me and me only. We did everything together and had fun in whatever we did. Go to movies and make out in the back of the theater. Go to parties and dance the night away. Or just stay up talking about whatever came to mind. My mom hated her though. She said she would break my heart and I would get hurt. But I didn’t listen, I just let life take its natural course and ride with it. Because while together, it was some of the best times of my life.
But once you finally have something you’ve always wanted, it gets pretty old really quickly. I just didn’t look at it the same way when I first got it. The paint was rusting, the wheels’ lights got dimmer and the bell wasn’t as loud. The bike became yesterday’s news and I was about the here and now. So I stopped using it. I still loved it, but I decided, I deserve something better.
But as time went on, I started to see her through her glorified persona. She was insanely jealous; always assuming I was cheating on her. That resulted in me losing all of my friends that were girls. She was incredibly stuck up; always expecting gifts but they were never good enough. And God forbid I ever got one. Plus I had deal with her ex, who would constantly text her and flirt with her and she loved it. I couldn’t believe it, so beautiful, yet so ugly and empty on the inside. She wasn’t funny, she wasn’t nice and holding a conversation with her was like pulling teeth. I wanted her for all the wrong reasons and I couldn’t go through with it. So I ended it. She wasn’t mad, just disappointed. She had believed I was different, better even. And the sad thing is, so did I.
Time passed as did the kids on my street. They would ride their own bikes up and down it and I couldn’t help but reminisce on mine. But their bikes were brand new and nice while mine was old and dirty. So I tried to get a new bike, thinking, once I got this new one, I’ll forget all about the old one. As I tried riding new bikes, there was always something wrong with it. Too bright, too loose, too tight, no bell, or the bell was too loud. No matter how many bikes I tried, none were the “right” bike. Because it wasn’t my bike.
I moved on, or at least I tried too. As I would walk around, all I would see were lovely dovey couples unafraid to show PDA. It was gross and it made everyone feel awkward; but I couldn’t help but reminisce on when that was me and my ex. I had to get her off my mind, so I went on with as many dates as I can. But nothing worked. They were too pretty, or too ugly, or too sad or just too happy. I couldn’t find that perfect girl, but then again no one is perfect. But my ex, she was perfect for me.
They didn’t name it the, “Super Ultimate Schwinn Supreme Smart Bike” for nothing! It’s priceless; how could I give it up? Once I fixed the tires, replaced the bell, covered up the rust with paint and cleaned the dust, it was like brand new. For some reason the chain kept messing up on it though. It would be annoying, but I would fix it really quick before it became a problem. But it would keep happening over and over and over again. And one day, I was riding the bike and the chain messed up and it caused me to fall, face first. I just couldn’t take it. The bike was beyond repair and I couldn’t fix it anymore. So I just left the bike there and went home, alone.
You don’t know what you have until it’s gone. So I gave my girl another chance, but she had to change her ways. She couldn’t be jealous anymore; if she did, it was over. She couldn’t be stuck up; if she did, it was over. And she couldn’t text her ex anymore: if she did, it was over. Once she did that, it was perfect. Sometimes I would get the eyes that screamed jealous or the occasional stuck up text message. But I would fix it real quick before it came a problem. But one day I texted her to see if she wanted to go out that night. She said she was tired and was going to stay in. I said ok, but I didn’t believe it. Call it…intuition. I remembered going through her phone and seeing her friend mention a party that night. So I went too. She didn’t know of course, she didn’t need to. I went to the party and after looking around for an hour I couldn’t find her. But right as I was about to give up, I saw her. I stormed straight to her and confronted her. She tried to explain herself, something about me being too much. But I didn’t listen. She had hurt me to the point of no return. So I just left her there and went home, alone.
I hated that bike, I never wanted to see it again and I made sure I never did. Until one day, years later, late at night, I saw some kid riding the exact same bike. It was impossible, I couldn’t believe it, that guy stole my bike! So I caught up to him, pushed him off the bike and took it back for myself. I then proceeded to ride it home with me, where it belonged. But as I was riding it home, I saw my ex in the car with some guy! And I couldn’t believe it, she was cheating on me! So I blocked the car in the middle of street by putting my bike in front of it. I then got out, went to her window and said we needed to talk. She then proceed to flip me off as the guy ran over my bike. I just stood there as they drove off, I looked at the destroyed bike on the ground. And I realized, the thing about exaggerated deals at low prices, they always break in the end.
Shumon Jenkins ’18