I hadn’t talked to him in about a year. We had been friends in high school, gone to the park at midnight with girls, played in gym, been high school boys. I went to college, he joined the Air Force.
Teke is getting married.
In college I felt as if I was maturing, as if I was learning things my other friends hadn’t. I felt like I was slowly turning into the real Bacon, the man who could handle things that were thrown at him. Planning concerts, parties, dorm events, tutoring, joining a fraternity, I was busying myself in ways I hadn’t ever done before. But in the back of my mind I knew I was faking it.
Teke invited me to his wedding.
He joined the air force, been through basic training, learned how to fix any aircraft, and is the crew chief for C-130’s at Braggs air force base in North Carolina. He was engaged. He told me he was going to the Middle East in a couple of months.
I was invited to Teke’s wedding.
He had a career he loved, a woman he loved, and a future. I had memories of dorm parties that few people came too, of failed relationships, and a slight dread of working. I told him I felt like a child talking to a man. He said he gets that a lot.
Someone is marrying Teke.
I’ll be 20 in December, finally shedding the binary digit that has been with me for almost a decade. I will no longer be a teenager, and become by definition a young adult. But talking to my friend with his career and his wife to be and his future made me feel younger than I have felt for a long time. Suddenly all the soap operas I have been involved in recently have seemingly melted away, and my mental priorities have been slightly rearranged.
Teke is getting married . . .
. . . and I’m tired of being a kid.