Cheerleading Tryouts

She wanted to be a cheerleader because she thought the only way two guys would ever fight over her was if she was perky and pretty and popular, if she wore her wiry box-dyed auburn hair in pigtails and popped pom-poms in the air and pretended to care about football. But then she remembered that episode of Gilmore Girls, the one where Jess and Dean brawl in the front yard during a house party, and that other one, when Jess and Logan spat at each other like the Beat Poets’ worst nightmares. Even Lorelei had Max and Luke swinging dicks and that was seasons before Luke and Christopher got into a fistfight near the town gazebo.

Maybe she didn’t have to be a cheerleader. Maybe she just had to be a CW character.

She pressed play on Season 3, Episode 13, and threw a pom-pom into the air. The tassels grazed the ceiling, crinkling in anger before landing at her feet with a near-silent thwack.

Emily Krauser is an MFA candidate at the University of North Carolina Wilmington and non-fiction editor of Ecotone. Previously, she spent 15 years as an entertainment journalist, most recently staffed at ETonline. Her fiction can be seen in HeartWood. Originally from New Jersey, she lived in Los Angeles for 10 years and now resides in Delaware.

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