All for the Best

All for the Best

From the moment she began to stand out, the more you looked at her. You noticed her. Of course, she had always watched you.

I saw.

Whenever I was with you, I would see her pass and glance at you. The way she hung her head made her entire body say to the world,

“I will never be with him.”

I watched her through the years. I knew that she wanted you very badly. Whenever you passed her, I could hear her sharp intake of breath as you breezed by. She was different, but she blended in with the rest of us. She never dressed entirely in black. She was more of a hippie type of person. A peace lover.

I think that in the summer going into her junior year, she had some sort of life changing experience. You didn’t notice the change.

I did.

She seemed to have forgotten you. Her personality was more light and airy. She was still that same person as we all knew her to be, but she seemed happier.

That was when you opened you eyes to a different kind of person. Her.


That was her name. She became known amongst the school, but she wasn’t popular. She wasn’t a freak either. Nobody spoke badly against her. She was herself. She no longer looked at you.

You looked at her.

This made me happy. I think that secretly, she liked the feeling of someone watching her in a good way. She knew that you noticed her. How do I know this? She seemed to glow when you put your eyes on her. When I watched her, she didn’t know anything about it. That pleased me. I didn’t want another girl crushing on me. Other girls like you, of course. But I knew that the way Adelaide liked you was different. It refreshed me.

I gave you hints to go and talk to her, but you had always been the shy one. Unlike me. You were frightened of what was going to happen. She was so full of laughter and life, and you were afraid that you would take it away from her. Or not give her enough. You never mentioned her around me.

But one day, you saw her walking towards her locker, facing your direction. Her long, white blond hair danced behind her with sky blue streaks glistening in the neon lights above. Her silver eyes glittered and sparkled as she looked at the people around her. After she passed, you whispered to me,

“My God she’s beautiful.”

I smiled at you. You had finally said something.

“I know, right?” was the answer I gave you chuckling.

“Bill, I don’t get. She doesn’t even look real to me. It’s like she came from a fairy tale. She looks just like a mermaid,” you sighed.

“Ask her out on a date.”

“I can’t.”

“Why not? What’s stopping you? Fear?” I taunted.

“Yes,” you mumbled.

“Of what?”

You looked me in the eye. I knew that you were afraid that you couldn’t provide her with happiness, but I learned something new that day.

“I’m afraid that one day, she’ll just slip away from me. She seems too mystical and mysterious to be the kind of person who would stay loyal to someone. I’m afraid that she’ll disappear and go back into her story before I can even tell her how I feel.”

“What do you feel?” I asked.

You paused for a moment, wondering what to say to my question.

“Not a crush. Definitely not a crush. But it’s not love either. I think it’s somewhere right in between,” you replied.

“Why don’t you tell her before she does slip away?”

“I don’t think I’ll get there in time.”

“Mike, you don’t know that. You don’t even know if she will disappear,” I stated.

You looked at her. She closed her locker and caught your eye. She gave a small smile, and walked away towards her class. You got your books, and said with a loud voice,

“I’ll do it.”


I was proud of you for doing that, Mike Pritchard. You were happy.

You asked her out on a date, and she said yes. You admired her, and she did the same. You fit together like a snowball in an eight-year-old’s hand. I loved watching you grow close. How you would hold her hand and walk her to class. How she would kiss you on the cheek before she got out of the car.

You were a whole other person. She seemed to complete you.

But, nothing could be perfect.

The first time you made love was a year after you had been going out. You became part of her group. I was included, of course. Her group wasn’t big. Just Adelaide, Jason, and Frank.

Adelaide Kyles.

Jason Andrew Relva.

Frank Edwin Wright the Third.

It was just the three of them before you came into the picture. They were all polar opposites. Adelaide believed in peace, Frank in insanity, and Jason in living on the edge. But music seemed to tie us all together, no matter what differences we had.

I was starting to get friendly with Frank, and you became Jason’s best friend. I was getting pushed away. You’d talk to him in the hallway with your girlfriend by your side. I stuck with Frank, and this other kid name John. I didn’t really like John, but he liked and respected me, so I treated him well.

But, Michael Ryan Pritchard, you shoved me aside for your new friends. I didn’t get along with Jason. Sure, I loved Adelaide like a sister, but Jason got on my nerves. But I knew he was like a brother to you, so I didn’t get testy.

What happened to you? What happened to me? Why’d you push me away?

I guess I’ll never really know.

That’s fine. I can handle that.

After awhile, I started to get depressed. I dropped out of high school and watched you graduate with Adelaide by your side. I watched you kiss her when you threw your caps into the air with the other students.

I watched you hug Jason, and slap him on the back. I remember you coming over to hug me, too. I smiled a fake smile and didn’t feel a thing.

You didn’t hang out with me as much as you used to. I held in all my frustration, cause I knew it would just make you upset. I kept my distance. I watched you and Adelaide become even closer during the summer.

I liked to walk along the beach. But you just had to ruin that for me, too, didn’t you?

You had sex with her on the sand, at midnight, when everyone was gone. I was jealous. I was furious. This was the one thing I didn’t want to see.

When you came to see me the next day, to tell me about it, I slapped you across the face and slammed the door.

Remember that? I regret it. God, I was such a girl.

I didn’t see you after that. I lived alone with my mother, waiting for something to happen. The band we had formed was broken up. I hoped it would get back together. I wanted to have a dream. I wanted you to have a dream. I wanted that dream to come true. No one else played bass as good as you did. But you dream of being with Adelaide had already come true, and I assumed that you didn’t need another one. I assumed that you were completely contempt with what you had, and didn’t need anything else.

God, I was stupid. We were both stupid. I knew you assumed things about me, too. But I forgot that when you assume, you make an ass out of you and me.

But eventually, we forgave each other. Remember?

You remember that story?


I picked up the phone one day, and heard nothing on the other line. I almost hung up until I heard your voice.

“Bill… can I talk to you?”

I glared into the phone.

“What about?” I asked harshly.

“Adelaide and Jason.”

“I’m not giving you advice for sex.”

“It’s not about that, Bill.”

“Well then, why the hell did you call me? You have no reason to talk to me. What could possibly make you want to talk to me?”

“Something’s happened. I can’t talk to anyone else about it.”

“That’s real mushy and cute, Mike, but I’m not buying it. I’ve been out of your life for the past couple of months; you’ve been ignoring me. What the hell do you want?”

“I need someone to help me cope.”

“Go check yourself into a depression clinic. Or go to a shrink, they’ll listen. I’m no psychiatrist.”

“I need to talk to a friend right now. I don’t wanna go to some freaking shrink.”

“I no friend of yours. If you have something to say, you better spit out the Goddamn thing, or I’ll hang up this phone. You’re running the bill up.”

“Jason and Adelaide are…”

“Yes?” I pressed.

“Are…” He choked on his words.

“Would you say it already?” I yelled.

“Don’t push me, Bill! Do you know how hard it is for me to admit that they died? How I was so stupid to let her go driving with him? Don’t you think that hurts? Do you have any sympathy? I’m gunna break down any minute, and you’re yelling at me!”

I was silent.

“I think you already have.”


You came over to my house. I let you cry. I put my arm around your shoulder and let it all come out. We sat there for at least an hour. You talked in between sobs, and I just listened. I wasn’t sure if I was your friend, but I sure as hell wasn’t going to get mad during what you were going through.

After you were done, I got you some paper, and a pen. I had listened to everything you had to say, and I wanted to leave you alone.

“I haven’t said everything I needed to,” you said.

“That’s why I’m giving you this,” I replied.

“What, cause you don’t want to listen to me anymore?”

“Don’t even think that. This is for you, to write down a song that you think could express everything you want to say.”


“Listen, Mike. When I write songs, it’s not just because I’ve got a rhyme, or a tune going through my head. It’s because talking about it isn’t enough. That’s why people write music because it reaches everyone, and they actually listen to what you have to say. Four verses in a song can say a lot more than a thousand words in a speech. So write it. Share it. Play it. And most importantly, make sure that you feel it.”

You looked at me, and then back at the paper.

“Okay. I’ll try.”

“You won’t just try. You will.”


Two hours later, you came up to my room, and shoved the paper at me. You sat down on the floor, put your head it your hands, and listened to me read it aloud.

My friend drove off the other day,
Now he's gone and all they say,
Is you got to live 'cause life goes on...

But now I see I'm mortal, too,
I can't live my life like you,
Got to live it up, while life goes on.

And I think that it's all right,
That I do what I like,
'Cause that's the way I want to live.
It’s how I give, and I'm still givin'...

And now I wonder 'bout my friend,
If he gave all he could give,
'Cause he lived his life like I live mine.

If you could see inside my head,
Then you'd start to understand,
The things I value in my heart.

And I think that it's all right,
That I do what I like,
'Cause that's the way I want to live.
It’s how I give, and I'm still givin'...

You know that...
I know that...
You're watchin' me!

And I think that it's all right,
That I do what I like,
'Cause that's the way I wanna live.
It's how I give, and I'm still givin'...

Got to make a plan,
Got to do what's right,
Can't run around in circles,
If you wanna build a life,
But I don't want to make a plan,
For a day far away,
While I'm young and while I'm able,
All I want to do is...

I looked at you.



So now, you’ll want to know why I wrote this for you.

It’s because I don’t want you or to go through that situation again. I want to be your friend again. I want you to be my friend again.

This is to remind you to go on with life and accept what is thrown at you on a daily basis.

Don’t make us go through this again. We won’t be able to handle it.

You’ll love again, Mike. If not with Adelaide, Anastasia, or Brittany, than with someone completely different. You’ll find her. So please, join the rest of the world, and sing with us in harmony.

All for the best,
Billie Joe