It is about time I confessed to something I did when I was a teenager that has caused so many people so much pain.
In my second semester of year 11 at school, I had to change schools because the backwater high school I was at was not able to offer Maths B & C which were pre-reqs for Maths 1 & 2 in my final year. I never missed that school full of future teenage mothers + dole bludgers :o) On I went to Darwin High School where I met an energetic, funtastic friend who I have now only recently rediscovered on facebook. Let's call her M to protect her anonymity.
Within the first week of turning up at the new school, M convinced me (and I can't say it took a lot of convincing) to wag all my classes after lunch to go and watch the cricket. Australia was acclimatising before going to take on India and they had chosen to do that against the NT boys at Gardens Oval. I wasn't then and am not now a cricket fan but M was a major fan of one of the Waugh brothers. Again, I'm not a cricket fan and they are identical twins so who knows which one it was? Not the point anyway.
We left school, went to the cricket and watched for a while. It got boring as I predicted it would, especially since no one was getting out ever so we went in to the city (it's close to the school and oval) to what would become a favourite hangout of ours - The Galleria (a shopping centre in the Smith St Mall).
We were there barely 2 minutes sitting in the aircon when M squealed with delight. There he was, her Waugh brother of choice and another cricketer. She pulled out her autograph book (yes, so 80's) and my shoulder and ran up to get his signature + acknowledgment. He was decent and smiled, said hi and signed her book. If I remember correctly it was dedicated to her with a large clear signature. I must ask if she still has it.
M was glowing with teenage stalker love as she quickly turned to ask very loudly if she should get the other guys autograph too. I looked at her, then at him and finally turned back to her and said with all my cricket knowledge backing me "Nah, don't bother. I don't know who he is." With that we turned and walked away. He looked hurt but teenage girls care not for such things.
I later recognised that guy who I didn't know on that day as a young Shane Warne. His signature would probably be worth more now than whichever Waugh's scrawl we got.
That is not why I'm sorry.
I am sorry because I am worried that on that day he decided that he wanted to be known. He wanted to be the best damn cricket player who ever lived and one that no young woman could reject so easily.
I created that bleach blonde, spin bowling, ciggy sucking, adulterous, Nike sponsored, txting monster and for that, all the women of the Earth have my sincerest apologies.