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Slot Machine by Chris Lynch [Excerpt]

Slot Machine by Chris Lynch [Excerpt]

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Published by OpenRoadMedia
Elvin just wants to fit in—but how can he find his place when he doesn’t know what to look for?

Elvin Bishop is about to attend a three-week-long high school orientation camp, where each student is “slotted” or placed on an athletic team. Chubby, fourteen-year-old Elvin knows this is not the place for him. From the start, he’s told that some kids get picked on more than others, and to “try not to be one of those guys.” His friends encourage him to toughen up, to avoid being a geek by acting more confident. The trouble is, Elvin doesn’t quite know what kind of guy he is. And what if the kind of guy he is now isn’t the kind of guy he’ll be in four years? At times laugh-out-loud funny, Slot Machine is a keenly felt story of the push and pull of wanting to belong.
Elvin just wants to fit in—but how can he find his place when he doesn’t know what to look for?

Elvin Bishop is about to attend a three-week-long high school orientation camp, where each student is “slotted” or placed on an athletic team. Chubby, fourteen-year-old Elvin knows this is not the place for him. From the start, he’s told that some kids get picked on more than others, and to “try not to be one of those guys.” His friends encourage him to toughen up, to avoid being a geek by acting more confident. The trouble is, Elvin doesn’t quite know what kind of guy he is. And what if the kind of guy he is now isn’t the kind of guy he’ll be in four years? At times laugh-out-loud funny, Slot Machine is a keenly felt story of the push and pull of wanting to belong.

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Published by: OpenRoadMedia on Jul 16, 2013
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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12/15/2013

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 PART 1: WEEK ONEChapter 1: A fine how-do-you-do.
HOW MANY FRIENDS DO you need? Two. You need twofriends.There’s the big circle of people you know, some of whom youlike and some of whom you don’t, which is fine. Then there’s thetighter circle inside of that, with the people you like a little more andalso including the ones you dislike a little more, which is also okay.Then at the core there are the real ones, the friends who wind upmeaning everything to you in the end, and this is tough, being soclose, but worth it, and if you’ve got more than two you probably havetoo many.Two was what I had. That’s what I wanted, and I wasn’t lookingfor anything more. I figured I was better off than most people, havingtwo good friends.I even had them arranged. Mikie was Friend One. Mikie was theguy who had begun to look like me because we had spent so muchtime together. Even if he was thin and fair-haired and I was not. Evenif no one could see it but me. Mikie was the guy who
knew
me. Mikie
SLOT MACHINEChris Lynch
 
 
 was the guy who could say things to me. We were on our way to The Camp. “Please, Elvin, please, stopreading the stupid brochure already,” Mikie said, snatching the glossy “Twenty-One Nights with the Knights” camp booklet out of my hands. Then he grabbed my neck, twisted my head so I was lookingout the window at the evergreens whizzing by. “We’re on the
bus
,Elvin. We’re
going
, understand? It’s not like you’re still making up your mind.”I didn’t fight him. I sighed. I stared. Fine, let him steal my  brochure, I already had it memorized anyway:Q: Who are we? A: We are the Knights, the flagship Christian Brothers Academy of the entire East Coast, representing the highest ideals andachievements of disciplined Catholic education.Q: What is Twenty-One Nights with the Knights? A: It is a leg up, a jump start, a fine how-do-you-do. It is athree-week camp for incoming freshmen, designed to ease theirtransition from junior high to the fast-paced world of high school,from young men to men. It is an introduction to the Knight Ethos, in which our students are welcomed into a tradition of excellence ineducation, spirituality, and athletics. It is where our students join ourfamily. After attending Twenty-One Nights with the Knights, yourfirst day at school in September will be not a journey into theunknown, but a homecoming.Q: What will we do during our twenty-one nights? A: You will have fun. We insist. We’ve designed a program of swimming, hiking, baseball, tennis... you name it. Invigorating.Thought-provoking. All in the idyllic rolling green hills of the StPaul’s Seminary Retreat Center. You will meet new friends you’ll keep
SLOT MACHINEChris Lynch

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