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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Young Adult  |  House: Booksie Classic

“Almost all absurdity of conduct arises from the imitation of those whom we cannot resemble.” – Samuel Johnson, The Rambler

Submitted: June 17, 2017

A A A | A A A

Submitted: June 17, 2017




Monday, Term 2, Week 1

“I really need to go on a diet.”

That’s exactly how she said it. Just like that. All casual, like she didn’t know exactly what it meant sub-textually. I mean, I know Riley’s my best friend and all, but what a bitchy thing to say. She’s always looked great – tan, clear skin; the greenest eyes; short enough to be the perfect ‘hugging height’ of any guy in our year (barf); thin enough to wear a bikini in public and flaunt that stupid belly ring. If she thought she needed to lose weight, what did she think I was, a blimp?!

Her message couldn’t have been any clearer: “You need to go on a diet, Tara.”

Still, I kept my cool. Even knowing what I know, even seeing through that total BS façade, all I said was: “Oh, what diet do you think you’re gonna try?”



Monday, Term 2, Week 1

“Oh, what diet do you think you’re gonna try?”

I couldn’t believe the audacity of Tara. She knows how sensitive I am about how I look! Her comment was so shady – she clearly thought I should’ve started dieting months ago. She’s my best friend – she’s meant to lift me up when I feel like crap, not drag me even further down. We can’t all have her sporty figure – she’s all legs and blonde hair and possibly the only person in our school who can really wear glasses. She knows how jealous I am of her, so why would she say something like that?

“I don’t know, I’ll have to look some up – I want one that works fast, but also stays off, y’know what I mean?” Like I was gonna tell her even when I did figure out how to get thin quick. She’d only steal my diet, and no doubt lose the weight quicker. She’s like that; always one-upping me.

“Well when you find one, we should do it together,” could she read my mind? “I wanna lose this tummy,” she slapped her (toned, flat) stomach.

I knew she’d do this. I should never have told her. Now she was gonna get even thinner; look even hotter; get even more attention than me.

There had to be a way to stop, or at least hold up her progress. But until I figured that out, I was going to have to make sure I was shedding the kilograms at the speed of light.



Monday, Term 2, Week 1

If she’s seriously going on a diet, I’m not going to just be the ‘fat friend’ she leaves behind in the dust. I want in. Sometimes I have no idea what kind of Duff-y, Mean Girls-esque world Riley thinks she lives in, but this is the real world, and I know exactly what she’s up to.

Anyway, I’m not going to wait around for her to send me a total bust diet that isn’t going to work, either. It’s just the type of thing she’d do – send me a diet that makes me put on weight while she sheds pounds and gains popularity. So Regina George. Sometimes I don’t even know why I’m best friends with someone who can be such a snake. I wouldn’t ever say that out loud, though. I’m not even sure she’s even aware of how catty she can be half the time, so I can’t blame her completely. Still whatever competition she thinks she’s started up with me, I’m going to win.

She probably isn’t even concerned with a ‘healthy’ diet – I bet she wants to just lose the weight fast, so everyone thinks she’s a dedicated gym junkie when she’s really starving herself. Well, two can play at that game.



Thursday, Term 2, Week 2

How is it that it was my idea to start dieting, my idea to actually catch up with Tara’s looks, and she’s the one who’s losing weight faster? I don’t know what she’s doing, but she looks great, and make no mistake: I’m pissed. It hasn’t even been two weeks and she looks great – you can see it in her face, in her neck, that she’s lost weight.

It’s not fair. I’ve been skipping breakfast every day and only eating an apple at lunch, and she still looks better than me. And get this: I offered her a slice of apple today, and you know what she said?

“No thanks, I really shouldn’t.”

Can you believe that? I can’t believe she’d try to make me feel guilty over a piece of fruit, like it was where unnecessary carbs go to die.

I’m gonna have to start halving my dinner portions.



Tuesday, Term 2, Week 5

Riley got called into the guidance counsellor’s office today. In front of the whole class, the counsellor walked in and had a few words with the teacher, and then called on Riley. She hauled ass out of her chair, of course, and looked back at me with this really twisted look on her face. Almost an I told you so look.

In case, Dear Diary, you’re unaware of what a big deal this is, I’ll break it down.

It’s been 5 weeks since Riley and I started dieting (a diet she never did e-mail me about, by the way), and she is looking so much better than me. She gets so much attention in the corridors, everyone looks at her when we walk to class together, ignoring me (no surprises there). Her cheekbones are so much sharper than before; her legs must be ¾ the size they used to be; and, needless to say, her stomach is even flatter than it was.

She is a lot paler now – and, I know it’s kind of petty, but that does make me feel a little better. She’s told me she’s lost 14 kilograms (in five weeks!?) but she won’t tell me how much she weighs. I’ve only lost ten, even though I’ve been throwing up like I’ve had the stomach flu for weeks. I know, it’s not exactly healthy, but it works. And it works fast. Though not as fast as Riley’s ‘diet’ apparently.

It’s about the only thing that works for me – ‘cause I have no self-control, apparently, and this way I still get to eat.

Anyway, so whenever a girl at our school loses a heap of weight (and, as it would seem, I don’t qualify as one of these girls) they have to go talk to the counsellor about their, like, feelings or whatever. Everyone knows this.

So when Riley gets called out of class – essentially for getting skinny – and I’m left sitting there, you can’t even imagine how humiliating that is. Every eye that wasn’t trained on her was looking at me. Staring. Taunting. Why aren’t you that thin, Tara?

They don’t know it yet, but I’m going to be.



Friday, Week 5, Term 2

I don’t know how she does it.

I don’t know how Tara is still eating all that unhealthy food, and still shedding the weight the way she is. I mean, I’m still in the lead at the moment, but who knows? She could easily catch up.

I think I’m onto her little scheme anyway. On Wednesday, we got to talking about our diets again at lunch. There I sat, chewing gum and sipping water (my newest dieting rule: only gum and water during the day; only eat half your dinner at night), while she ate a totally full lunch, as per usual. I couldn’t even count the kilojoules of it. So anyway, she told me – with the bitchiest look on her face she could manage – that all she’s doing is exercising and cutting out junk food! Yeah, right. There’s no way that that’s all she’s doing. I wasn’t buying it at all, and when we went to the bathroom, I had the opportunity to snoop.

She went into a cubicle, and then asked me to pass her a tampon out her bag (I’ve skipped a period, by the way, Diary). As I was searching, I noticed a receipt for some kind of shady things from the pharmacy. Amongst everything else, I saw listed laxatives, breath mints, and mouth wash.

And that’s when I knew she totally wanted me to see that receipt. She probably wasn’t even on her period. She just wanted me to see that she knows I’m on a starvation cleanse, and that she’s purging everything she eats. I don’t know how I’m gonna speed up my weight loss to beat her. I think I’m gonna have to double the kilometres every day. Start telling Mum and Dad that I’m ‘going out’ for dinner.



Tuesday, Week 7, Term 2

I could stop. You know, if I wanted to, I could stop all the purging. I kind of want to, if I’m being honest. My throat is perpetually sore; I’m always hacking those awful, dry coughs; and, in terms of my other digestinal tract… things aren’t so good down there, either. And besides all that, I’m actually starting to be happy with my progress. I like the way I’ve been looking, and… I guess I want to know that I’m in control enough to stop any time.

Oh, did I mention that I’m sooooo sick of throwing up every day?

The problem is Riley. All the smug looks she gives me, knowing that she’s lost so much more weight than me, knowing I’m nowhere close to catching up. She knows, and I know, that more people are talking about her than me. My weight loss is necessary, it “looks great.” Her weight loss is controversial. It’s a talking point. It’s everything Riley wants it to be. It’s all that attention she’s been so starved of (pun intended) since we were kids.

I know I could stop all this. Stop it for myself. But knowing she’s beat me out at something – yet again – just isn’t fair. She can’t win at everything.

And just to fuel even more rumours about herself, I think, she’s been taking more and more time off of school. Unexplained absences. And, naturally, it’s all anyone can talk about. It’s enough to make me sick – which is a welcome change, because usually I have to stick my fingers down my throat to do that. Ha, ha.



Sunday, Week 9, Term 2

It’s working. It’s working well. I haven’t been so light since I was in fifth grade.

I went for a run today. It’s weird. Even though I know I’ve been getting fitter, lately it’s been getting harder and harder to keep exercising.

Anyway, now I don’t feel so great.

I’m winning, though. I’m beating Tara. I’m winning.



Monday, Week 10, Term 2

Riley wasn’t in school today. Not surprising. But she hasn’t returned any of my texts or calls. I hope she’s okay, but I’m not gonna talk to any of our other friends about it. Or I wouldn’t hear the end of the speculations.



Tuesday, Week 10, Term 2

My mum told me Riley’s in hospital. Her heart, or something. She’s not awake, but we’re going in to visit her tonight, anyway. I’ll write more when I know more.



Wednesday, Week 10, Term 2

I guess I won.

© Copyright 2018 E Bowshall. All rights reserved.

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