Okay, I was unpopular. But was I so amazingly unpopular that I needed a magical blue chimp for a best friend? Quite possibly. “Me? Are you sure you have the right kid?” “If you’re Willie Ryan, of Seven Lamplighter Lane, I have the right kid. And I have been waiting for you here for, like, a really long time….” “Why would you wait for me? Why would you want me for a best friend?” As I said this, I couldn’t help wondering, Isn’t there, like, a lonely blue surfer chimp somewhere that needs a buddy more than I do? “You’re the one, Willie. I know you are. Didn’t your best friend just leave you?” “Uh, well, my friend Tim moved to—” “Right, see? My best friend left me too. And aren’t you a really special guy who just needs a chance?” “Well—” “Me, too. And don’t you like bananas?” I had to think about that one for a minute. “Yes, actually. Now that you mention it, I do like bananas, Dodger.” “See, Willie? This is the beginning of a beautiful friendship.” Jordan Sonnenblick is the author of the acclaimed teen novels Drums, Girls and Dangerous Pie, Notes from the Midnight Driver, and Zen and the Art of Faking It. In addition to being a writer, he’s a middle-school English teacher, and would never penalize one of his students for bringing an imaginary friend to school. Jordan lives in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, with his wife and their two children. If he’s ever had an imaginary friend, he’s not telling!