Hamburgers Without Buns

Madison - Wichita, Kansas
Entered on March 12, 2008
Age Group: Under 18

I believe in hamburgers without buns.

My brother has Tourettes Syndrome. When he and I were young the doctors gave him unnecessary drugs that didn’t help and made him drowsy and put him on a special unnecessary low carb diet. To help him out, the entire family went on the diet for a while. But it was at this time that I was young and influential and developing my likes and dislikes.

I have never eaten a hamburger with the bun. I have never eaten a sandwich. I eat mashed potatoes without gravy, spaghetti without sauce and cereal without milk. Because I grew up on simple, uncomplicated foods, my life is a whole lot more difficult. The hardest thing in the world is speaking to waiters at restaurants. I must tell them that I would like the hamburger, plain, without the bun. Every time I get a funny look. It made me self-conscious and embarrassed. So I tried asking for the hamburger with the bun. But I would always have the incriminating evidence of the bun on my plate when I was finished.

Growing up, I could tell I was different but I wanted to be cool and I wanted to fit in. So I bought the Brittney Spears CD in elementary school and I got blonde highlights in middle school. I became depressed and I fell into my mind. My imagination set me free and altered reality. I spent so many years, living in my mind because I was embarrassed and withdrawn.

But getting embarrassed is hard and inhibitions are crippling. I will not be embarrassed and I will not be crippled. Now I proudly ask, “Can I have a plain hamburger, without the bun?” I die my hair red, and I listen to show tunes. I can’t even remember where my inhibitions went.

And so I am outgoing and an extrovert. I know now that the world is just as shy as me. I believe in living and telling the world I am having a good day, and singing to the crowd, and dancing for the onlookers. I will die my hair red to be noticed and I will shout, “I am here!” to the earth and it will listen and welcome me. I will excel in life, absolutely, because I will show the world who I am, because who I am is something to notice, something special, and something different. I will never be normal. I will always ask for the hamburger without the bun.