Wednesday, February 6th 2019
“We’ve got thirty minutes to decide on a project,” Jasmine said, cracking her knuckles. “Y’all got any ideas?”
Mike tapped his fingers against the table. He already knew what his idea would be. But he wasn’t sure how he would spin it to the group.
“I say we do it on Lebron,” said Kenny. “We can call it: “From King to GOAT.””
Jasmine sighed. “What does that have to do with Psych 101?”
“Besides,” said Harry, plopping his feet up on the table. “It’s gotta be based on facts.”
Mary whistled. “Burn.”
“I say we do it on the effects of systemic racism on children of color,” Jasmine offered.
Harry rolled his eyes. “Please no. Not everything has to be a social justice campaign. Anything but that.”
“Can you not be racist for just one second?” Jasmine fired back.
“How was that racist? Every lecture you have to make some point about police brutality this and inequality that.”
“Ah frick!!!” Kenny cried, rubbing his face. “Something got in my eye!”
“Let me see,” Jasmine said, rolling her chair over to him.
He tried to open his eye for her to see as Mary rolled over to him as well. The entire ordeal lasted about fifteen seconds, during which Mike and Harry exchanged brief glances. Kenny finally breathed a sigh of relief as he stared up at the ceiling.
“That’s the price of having eyelashes, I guess,” he said.
“I say we do it on the Mandela Effect,” Harry offered. “How people think they remember things that never happened.”
“That’s actually not a bad idea,” Jasmine admitted and typed away. “Anyone else?”
“I have one,” Mike offered, leaning forward. “Deja vu.”
“Interesting,” Jasmine said, typing again.
“There’s a lot of theories about it,” Mary thought out loud. “But psychologists still can’t fully explain why it happens.”
“Exactly,” Mike pointed at her. “But I have a theory and if we can prove it with this project, it will guarantee us an A.”
“Those are some bold words, Mike,” Harry said. “Let’s see you back it up.”
“What’s the theory?” Jasmine asked.
Mike took a deep breath. “I think deja vu is God’s way of warning us about the future.”
The girls and Kenny nodded slowly and looked intrigued. But Harry scoffed.
“I retract my position,” he said. “Anything but social justice and that.”
“Yeah,” Mary agreed. “That does sound a little out there. I mean, nothing against God or anything, but that’s a little…random.”
“Hear me out,” Mike went on. “All the theories we’ve heard about deja vu–that it’s a malfunction in the amygdala, that it’s a connection with your past self, that it’s your eyes recording information twice–all focus on individual experiences. But what if deja vu is actually a collective phenomenon?”
“But it is,” Mary added. “Everyone has it, right?”
“No, I mean…” Mike cleared his throat. “What if everyone’s deja vu’s are connected? What if it’s all part of a bigger narrative that’s meant to tell us what’s gonna happen in the future?”
“That’s pretty dope,” Kenny said.
“I’m not gonna lie,” said Harry. “That’s the dumbest thing I’ve heard all day.”
“I figured you’d say that,” Mike said. “So I have a test. When you guys were looking at Kenny’s eye, I had a deja vu.”
“Of course you did,” Harry sighed. “What a coincidence.”
“So…” Mike continued. “If my theory is correct, some time in the near future, something bad should happen to Kenny’s eye.”
“Bro!” Kenny cried, covering his face. “Why would you do that to me?! I ain’t ever do nothin’ to you!”
“That’s really dark,” Mary said. “Intriguing. But dark.”
“Not to mention stupid,” Harry added. “Not gonna happen. I say we keep it simple and do it on the Mandela Effect.”
“This theory would be so easy to disprove,” Mike went on. “But if we somehow prove it, imagine what it would mean? Our project could get published. We’d get interviews. And we’d definitely get an A.”
Jasmine and Mary looked at each other. Kenny rubbed his eyes gingerly, already dreading the anticipated prophetic injury.
Harry pulled his feet off the table. “It’s stupid and so are all of you if you think this is gonna work. If you wanna fail, go fail yourselves. But I’m not gonna be a part of this.”
“But we were assigned to each other,” Jasmine reminded him. “If you leave then all our grades suffer.”
“Then pick another topic,” Harry pressed. “Cuz if I come back next class and we’re still talking about this, I’m out.” And with that he got up and marched out the room.
But when they met again the following week, Kenny had a black eye.