Death & a Fall Out Boy Album
Rhythm Reverie #15
Two months ago, a girl from my high school class died unexpectedly. I hadn’t thought about her in the 10 years since we graduated. Suddenly her picture was all over my Facebook timeline as I scrolled to read classmates’ condolences.
E and I had minimal interactions in high school, usually just brief exchanges of pleasantries in the classroom. I can’t recall a single moment when she was moody or upset. A smile seemed to be permanently stuck on her face, and it was almost guaranteed that she would crack a joke when you were around her.
If you wound up in a desk next to her and her best friend, the teacher was likely to find you guilty by association for disrupting the class with bouts of stifled laughter.
Despite serving mostly as a background character in my life, there was one distinct interaction I had with her that remains rooted in my memory. It was the first thing I thought of when I heard the news of her passing.
In our 8th grade year, I met her in the school hallway to return her Fall Out Boy CD. She’d generously lent it to me so I could copy the tracks into my iTunes library. *sigh* Simpler times.
“What’d you think of the album?” she asked me as we made our way to gym class.
I told her I thought it was their best one yet, sharing the names of standout songs and letting the conversation linger around the one thing we had in common — a love for scene kid music.
E’s death demands that one shake their head and let out the classic “gone too soon” sentiment. The news brought me right back to the school hallways, to her laugh, and to her joviality that enabled her to have acquaintances across every friend group.
In her memory, I’ve found myself listening to Fall Out Boy more in the past two months than I have in the past two years. One line from ‘Hum Hallelujah,’ off my still-favorite Infinity On High album, stands out a bit brighter now.
I sing the blues and swallow them too.