BLACK & WHITE
Black & White is a heart-warming story of how a kind mentor, Jimmy Meriweather, brings two dissimilar boys together with a common goal and purpose.
This book was written for the Young Adult reader. It’s about bullying and how the art of photography changed two young lives.
The following will be turned into a written story soon.
Black and White
JASON MILLER and STEVE RYBECK are both twelve years old and in the eighth grade at Ralph Waldo Emerson Middle School, in Westwood, California. They have been next door neighbors since kindergarten and best friends until Christmas of the 4th grade. That was the year Jason got his first Xbox.
Jason’s father, STANLEY MILLER is a sales manager for a medical supply company. His wife Susan is a housewife, Jason is an only child.
Steve’s father, WARREN RYBECK is a professor of English at UCLA. HIs wife CONNIE is a career counselor at Brentwood School. Steve has a fourteen year old sister, JILL.
From 4th to 8th grade Jason’s life was filled with video games, the internet, iPhone apps and Facebook. During that same time Steve turned bookish and fat, but more like big for his age. He was either at school or at his home.
Jason is good looking and apparently popular, always texting and sending photos and tweets to his many friends. Steve is on the fringe. He doesn’t have a cell phone, since his parents see no value in an eighth grader taking a phone to school, or having a personal phone at all. He has nobody to call anyway.
Steve studies a lot and quietly get “A’s” and always seems somewhat out-of-place and lonely. He acts introverted and disinterested in the normal social activities. It doesn’t appear as if he has any friends. Jason uses Steve as a verbal punching bag; calling him fat, ugly or a social retard. Steve never retaliates, he just puts his head down and moves on. Jason spends hours on the computer at night and has pretty much mastered the Photoshop art of manipulating photos.
In Steve’s home, he’s an active participant in intellectual conversations with his parents and sister. They are a literate family and discuss the current classic novels Steve and Jill are reading. It’s a quiet atmosphere–they don’t watch TV and only use the computer as a reference tool for homework. Steve wants to be a university professor like his father when he grows up.
In Jason’s home he is left to his own interests. His father buys him the best computer toys/apps–because he doesn’t know how else to relate to his son. Jason doesn’t feel close to his father, or his mother. He is actually very lonely but refuses to admit it–so his world is filled with distractions. Jason’s room is always loud with electronics blaring.
One day at school Jason is at the blackboard trying to solve a basic algebra equation, and is stumped. The teacher asks Steve to come up and help, and he whips right though it. Jason whispers something in Steve’s ear, which get’s an uncharacteristic response, “If you’d do your homework instead of being a social jerk, maybe you’d see how simple this is.” Jason answers, “What I do with my life is none of your business, fat boy.” Steve comes back, “I’d rather be fat than stupid.” Jason pushes Steve and the teacher breaks it up. But Jason is clearly embarrassed. In the hall there’s a another confrontation where Jason continues calling him insulting names. Steve tells Jason that Jason really doesn’t have any friends because he’s mean and everyone knows it. This really pisses Jason off.
That night Jason gets busy. He has a recent photo of Steve he’s been wanting to use. In Photoshop he puts Steve in a dress and woman’s hairdo. When he is satisfied he writes around the photo – Steve Rybeck – Gay Student of the Month and Prom Queen. Oink Oink. He sends it out on Facebook and Twitter and emails to everyone he knows, including emailing it to Steve.
Steve is upset and shows the email photo to his parents. Steve’s father calls Jason’s father, who plays the whole thing down – no big deal – kids just being kids. Steve’s father is talking about Bullying, and about reporting Jason to the school principal.
That evening the four parents and two boys are out in the front yard arguing. Steve is much bigger that Jason, and though Jason hadn’t considered it, much stronger. Steve walks into Jason’s house with Jason behind yelling “What in the hell are you doing?” Steve goes to Jason’s room, grabs Jason’s Apple computer and his ipad and storms out of the room. When Jason tries to stop him Steve mows him down, and heads down to the backyard swimming pool and throws the electronics in. When Jason threatens to phone the police, Steve throws him in too, with his iPhone.
The police are called. Each parent wants the other’s son arrested. One for bullying and the other for illegal entry and destruction of property.