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Junior is really missing Rowdy, so he goes to the computer lab, takes a digital photo of his face, and emails it to his former friend. Rowdy responds by emailing back a photo of his own bare behind. Rowdy's stunt makes Junior laugh, but it makes it depressed as well. Compared to Rowdy, the kids at Reardan, who are always so worried about "grades and sports and THEIR FUTURES", seem to be so repressed.
Gordy comes by and sees Rowdy's email. He asks Junior why Rowdy hates him, and Junior tells Gordy that "some Indians think you become white if you try to make your life better, if you become successful". Junior wonders what would happen if Gordy could come home with him and meet Rowdy. Maybe Rowdy would beat him up, or maybe the three of them could become "a superhero trio".
Junior tells Gordy that at home, a lot of people call him an "apple...red on the outside and white on the inside". With typical insight beyond his years, Gordy comments that "life is a constant struggle between being an individual and being a member of the community". He explains the importance of the community throughout history, and notes that "weird people threatened the strength of the tribe", and so have always been banished. Things are still that way today, with Junior and Gordy, "a tribe of two", existing in isolation because of their differences (Chapter 18).
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