Last week, I was standing in the hallway of a middle school. I was part of a tour group, deciding where to send my daughter to 6th grade next year.
The bell rang and the empty halls filled with adolescent kids — slamming lockers, giggling, glowering, self-consciously fixing their hair. As they passed by me, I could see in a flash where each one fit into the social hierarchy. The girl with the long flowing ponytail, subtle makeup, and knee-high leather boots glowed with a golden aura as she led her followers down the corridor. The short chubby boy hurrying to class alone, wearing his pants pulled up too high — well, I said a little prayer for him.