I had a serious love affair with Ben Folds during my senior year of high school. And by "serious love affair," I mean I rocked out to the Folds in my candy-apple red Pontiac Grand Prix, used the songs in sports montages I was cutting for our school video production team and blasted it on my stereo on repeat while reading Perks of Being a Wallflower in my bedroom for the twenty-fourth time. The pages of that book, by the way, are so beautifully oiled and worn from page-turning and re-reading, they feel a little bit like leather.
I especially liked Zak and Sara, partially for the piano runs and partially for the crazy dark lyrics.
I wrote a short story about Zak and Sara for Mr. George's creative writing class. I remember being somewhat hesitant to turn it in because (if I recall correctly), Sara kills herself in the story. I wasn't a particularly dark teenager, it's just that I'm pretty sure she's headed in that direction in the song and I wanted to represent it correctly. Fortunately, Mr. George was a cool guy and apparently got what I was going for creatively, because I don't remember being asked to visit the guidance counselor or anything afterwards. And I'm pretty sure I got an A.
I really wish I still had a copy of that story.