January 6, 2019:

The little rapist in waiting.

At this point he's merely mercurial. One day he's sweet, the next he wants to shoot you with your own bb gun.

Later after puberty he's too rough with the girls. It's not good-natured and it's not flirty. It's force, where he'll throw them on the ground, hold them down, grope them, laugh like it's all a game, but, it's not.

The girls laugh too.

It's a rough culture. The boys are physical, the girls are too. There's a lot of sexual play, truth-or-dare games, never rising to actual relationships, just group play, punctuated by individual acts of force by the little rapist in waiting.

Somewhere in that phase after puberty I drop him, as a friend. His behavior's uncool, and I'm loyal to the girls. Not long after that I abandon the neighborhood altogether. My girlfriend there has moved away, and I need a new crowd. I'm increasingly full-time on the University campus, where I begin to learn in earnest just how uncool this kid truly is.