stranger's disease



Myles, the archetype

There are lots of superficial archetypes in the same room. Adolescence itself gives way to their formation: we all need labels. 
Myles was exactly that. 

We were friends for a long time, in the first few years just acquaintances, but then we grew closer when we discovered we had many things in common, including music, books, friends, and past history. We would go to the cinema or maybe walk down together or go to book shops, once we went to a concert together and it was very nice. He was a sensible pal, he had a a broad back, and was a little bit taller than me. Despite his giant formation, Myles had deep blue eyes, sharp angular nose, blond hair and a perfectly square head. He was fun to be around when the talk was one-to-one, he was sensible and loved arts, he made good jokes and did not have problems with hanging out with a lot of women. All of this great qualities, and even including his massive intellect, where put behind his faults. Myles was desperate to be the best in everything: sometimes that would be beneficial to most of us, but most times it was annoying and unsettling. Failing wasn't an option to him, nor were second places. He wanted to be the winner of all challenges, to get the highest marks, to be the most attractive guy around, to go out with most girls, that sort of thing. 
I reckon it was because of his older brother, Paul, who was indeed every girl's dream. I'm not going into detail with Paul because like any other girl I could talk about his many qualities for hours. The only flaw you could find in Paul was his carelessness for a professional life. He was a skater, nomadic dandy, hot school drop-out who could count on his heir to live as he pleased for the rest of his life. Unlike Myles, Paul lived without a single concern. But Myles was a dreamer, hard-working, narcissistic dreamer, who had high expectations of himself. Every time someone (especially a girl) mentioned his brother to him, he would be clearly taken aback and would try to change the subject right away. Once, he gave a faint hint to me that he actually felt shadowed by his brother's image, and by all means he was going to try no to be him. Since the first day of High School, his aim was to best his brother and be popular.
He had bad struggles with accepting he was indeed different. He was a boy of an incredible nature talent for both language and mathematics. He could open great debates with one or two lines, and was a problem-solving machine. He was fluent in English and Spanish and Economics. Everything at school seemed to be easy for him, except for being normal. Like all geniuses, banal pleasures of life tended to bore him. Sure, he went out dancing, he went out with girls and kissed them, he smoke and drank, but it didn't last for too long. His true passion lay in stage drama. 
If you saw him talk about performing or actually performing, from reading out a simple essay to acting a role in the school's play, he was passionate about it. He loved musical comedies, pop music and literature about great royal families. He would spend his afternoons watching different versions of Sweeney Todd or reading boring books about English dynasties with fantastic melodramas, or mostly likely watching Game of Thrones. He was a nerd in nature, but he could hardly accept it to the masses. To his closest, this was fantastic. But because of some sort of reason, probably regarding masculinity, he started hiding what he liked from the rest and start enclosing his dreams more and more onto himself.
I don't know what exactly happened, but there was a click, in the blink of an eye. It was exactly after he came back from his trip to France, that he came 'renewed'. He wore coats two sizes too big, rolled up jeans, dark sunglasses, and scarves. He wanted to be a skinny, tall hipster boy, but in reality he looked like a failed beat poet who had just come down from San Francisco to try luck in a small town. He started combing his golden hair backwards, and even though it made his forehead look even more huge than it already was, he wore because "he wanted to let it grow long enough to tie it back", as gossip went. He also was letting his beard grow slowly, a shy blond beard that took its time to crept up from his jawline to cloud his cheeks. Even though it made me laugh, he wasn't going to change. When I saw him like that, I knew he didn't at all felt ridiculous, no, he was very proud. That was it, it was the making of Myles. 
We stopped talking after that.
He was the archetype I never understood: the genius who sacrifices his wisdom and knowledge for fame and normalcy, as if he could. Maybe not being normal, but if he was going to fit in, he had to be the coolest gal around. He even went out with many different girls and never established any relationships because "he got bored"! But like that children's story goes, people started growing tired of his boasting and his fake feelings, so he wasn't taken too seriously, especially by other men. Maybe he deserved it, I can't really say for sure what most people think because I am naturally not most people, I am those who knew him, or thought we did. What I do know for sure is that it was his fake, rehearsed attitude that made us stop talking. Strangely, I didn't miss him at all.
When we graduated, he left off to some expensive university to graduate in Medicine. He wanted to travel abroad and be a successful doctor. I never saw him again, and I probably never will. 

I hope he has achieved whatever the hell he was hoping for.

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