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i went up to the store today and ashley was back working, just for break. she said hi to me and we exchanged all those formal pleasantries that i've never been so good at. at least this time when she asked me how school was, i remembered to ask her about her school in return. jennifer gave me a hug and was glad to see me and i was glad to see her too... i always sit here and wish i wasn't so lonely and that more people would touch me, but when it actually happens, i hate hugs from most people, her included. they feel awkward and make me uncomfortable. i know that's not how hugs are supposed to be because i got a good hug once. it was at a week-long soccer camp. i met this girl and her name was julie. i liked her a little too much, and she (big surprise here) thought i was a cute little kid (or i think that's what she thought). she was straight (or at least bi, becuase i know she liked guys). one day, somebody got the idea to de-pants somebody else, and from then on, it was our little game. she was always sneaking up behind me and yanking my shorts to my ankles, and i did the same to her. she started one day with my shirt too. she'd grab the back of my t-shirt and pull it up over my head and down over my face. then while i struggled to un-do that, she'd pull my pants to my ankles. no matter how it sounds, this was not a sexual thing, honest... i don't know exactly what you would call it. just how we bonded, by half-undressing each other. this sounds bad. ok, forget that explanation. the point is that we got sort of close. in free time, she would hang out with me and katie and fly and jamie and that was fun. we would sometimes partner up for drills, and when we played games like tag (not tag really, but i don't know what you call it, and it had the same basic idea), she would always come after me. on the last day, we were wrestling each other in the hallway, and somehow, i wound up squirming on her lap while she tickled me. then she just stopped fighting me, and leaned back, with her arms around my waist. i leaned back into her, and while everybody else moved around, packed up their stuff, and got ready to leave, we sat just like that in the hallway for about 5 minutes. we would talk to all them and each other and joke around and stuff, but we never moved. it was comfortable. then we had to get up to pack. i was sad because i was really going to miss her and lots of other people i had met too. this had been a great week, and i didn't want it to end. it was rather depressing... then it was time to go. she came to me with outstretched arms and i was scared. at this point in my life, i hated hugs way more than i do now. i had never met a hug i had liked. hugs were something i would only give to my relatives (becuase my parents made me), and i hated every second of it. but she puts her arms around me, and, without even thinking, my arms wrapped around her. she held me close and rubbed my back and said she would miss me, and it felt good. not really good like sexual, becuase i was still young, and it just wasn't like that. it felt good like i think a hug is supposed to feel. it made me feel not so sad, and it made me feel loved. i felt like everything was only half as bad, becuase julie was right here, holding me and my sadness, so she could take some of it away from me. it felt good and right and comfortable and i wanted to stay there forever. i snuggled closer and squeezed my eyes shut, and she just held me and kept stroking my back. then, eventually, we let go. she went home, i went home, and i never heard from her again. i don't think about her very much now, and i'm not even sure if i'd recognize her if i saw her, but i'll never forget that hug. that's how i know what hugs are supposed to feel like. since then, i've had a lot of uncomfortable hugs, a bunch of average hugs, that don't bother me too much, but don't feel all that good either, and a few hugs that are completely neutral, or maybe just barely on the good side, but i've never again had a hug that felt quite so comfortable, or did so much to make me feel better.

this was supposed to be short. i hadn't meant to remember julie...

moving on:
i got no reply from jim or brandy.

holly was online, so i mustered up all the courage i could find, and wished her a merry belated christmas. we talked for maybe 10 or 15 minutes. nothing too special, but it was an improvement over the last time i tried to talk to her... i just wish i could see her sometime while i'm still here. tomorrow we're going out of town to celebrate christmas with the other side of the family, and by the time i get back, there's less than a week until i go back to school. i wish i could see her... talking to her in real life makes me so happy...

when i said i never argued, i forgot about jake. i finally found something the jackass is good for! jake and i usually fight by name calling, but i've been working on having intelligent arguments with him. sometimes it's impossible, because a lot of the things we disagree about (like who should get the last piece of pizza) don't lend themselves to in-depth arguments. other times, though, it would be possible. somehow, we always resort back to name-calling anyway. i'm working on it, though.

would you believe i still haven't adjusted to a normal sleeping schedule? in what country is it bedtime now? i think i need to move there, becuase the world here has been asleep for hours...