Exams went alright. I’ve had a traumatic night. Well, at any rate, Andrew told me he loved me and was being too sweet to me. Journal, I told him I loved him too. IDK. I mean, I think I do. But that word LOVE seems so serious. It seems like it’s for boring adults who sit at home drinking whiskey and investing in the stalk [sic] market. Or for people who jump off cliffs and mountains, and shout it as they plunge to the cold, hard earth. Love isn’t for 13 year old kids in the suburbs. Love is more than sex, and phone conversations, and a little laughter. Love is deeper than that. Uh - but what is love, truly? How the fuck do I get myself into these things? Do you think I really love Andrew? Do you think he loves me?
I really do not know…
Poems from Teen Star
Tears, nothing matters.
My friends come, and help me through,
Things matter again.
If I Were
If I were a TV show I would be Gilmore Girls.
If I were a school subject I would be Drama.
If I were a book I would be Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone.
If I were a pet I would be a cocker spaniel.
If I were a clothes store I would be Abercrombie and Fitch.
If I were an animal I would be a monkey.
If I were a city I would be New York CIty.
If I were a board game I would be Risk.
Being a teenager is hard,
it seems you can never win,
your parents may never understand,
how hard it is to fit in.
But being a teenager’s also nice,
you can dance, be yourself, laugh and sing,
If you can get through these years,
you can definitely conquer anything!
*The irony of this title is not lost on me.
A graph from Teen Star which asked, “What’s your favorite Pop Group?”
I completely forgot O-Town existed until just now.
For some reason, in 7th grade, I decided to make my own teen magazine. There was only one issue—released in June 2001—but it is HILARIOUS. The mag was called “Teen Star,” and I clearly went to great pains to assure its professional, glossy look: it is comprised of Clip Art / Word Art, Curlz MT font and nail polish serves as border decoration. I even laminated it. Behold some of its glory in the next few posts.
Letter from the Editor
Welcome to a brand new and exciting year of one of the best teen magazines on the market…Teen Star. I’m your editor, Jess, and I’m really excited to be working on bringing the coolest issues of Teen Star right to the Teen Readers. I’m a 7th grade student at Springfield Middle School. I really enjoy acting, singing, and dancing. I love pop music and shopping, but I also love field hockey and softball. I love to hang out with my friends and go to the movies.
The reason I’m writing this magazine is because I love teen magazines, and I’ve always wanted to create one of my own. I love to do hair and make-up, and I love to share my ideas with my readers. You’ll find that all of my articles deal with teen issues, so I hope they help you out.
In this issue you can look forward to my informational piece, advice column, and survey. This month is really going to be great and I can’t wait for you to see all of the new things going on at Teen Star. Se you next issue!
(With the “i” in my name dotted with a star, obviously)
Ed. Note: There is something so strange about the diary entries from the end of high school and beginning of college. Clearly I haven’t quite etched out a definitive voice, but I’m really starting to get there, and some of the passages do reek of things I’d write later, things I’d even be proud of. There are these lines of clarity that make my chest constrict even now, but most of my 18-20 year old writing is just so painfully ham-fisted. See for yourself!
There was red wine in your hair, your mouth tasted like smoke. The subway ran under us every 11 minutes and from above me you said, “Everything you say makes me want to kiss you.” I was resurrected.
I refuse to look you in the eye because that would make this real and I’m still not convinced that it is.
I saw a man at the station on Spring Street with a voice rough like sea salt and heavy hands like my father’s. The chords resounded the way my hair used to along the streets in Paris, fanning out like reeds, music in that silent world.
On the way back from dinner I counted tiles in groups of six. Our shadows were thrown across the floor by fluorescent light and mine looked so small next to yours. I lit two cigarettes with one match and you kissed my forehead. The city wind stung my wrist when I stuck my hand out for a cab.
I have a real life now and you are in it. We listened to Springsteen on the turntable and I pulled you by your tie into the closet.
Our lips chapped from all that kissing, I put my hands above me, the apple core I had placed on the shelf broke into pieces on the ground and this is what it feels like to surrender; blow up the deck, the whole damn ship, I’m on my toes and you are running and we are headed towards something celestial, something that’s already gone.
On our second day together I told you I was okay with being second to words to phrases to punctuation and I am, I promise. This is what you do to me: I stay up writing angrily manuscripts in cluttered dim apartments where the bed smells like your skin and your shirt is still stuck under my rug and your CD is playing on the stereo somewhere between dishonesty and truth.
I sit in my underwear and think about all the things that I’m afraid of. I take 3 pills tonight instead of 1 and wait for my bed to become the ocean where I slip underwater and sleep through honking and telephones and the subway that still goes by every 11 minutes.
Things start to feel heavy, slow motion and I get so high I don’t recognize my friends’ faces. The wind is getting colder, the streets are getting filthier, my skin is getting thinner and you are gone.
i am so sad. tonight was the season finale of the oc. of course i cried my eyes out. i’m not even fucking kidding, what am i going to do until fall without it? and it was such a good episode but i feel like all the issues will be resolved next week, but they won’t! i have to wait until september! ahhh.
so theresa went back to chino and decided to have the baby, she asked ryan to go with her (ugh, bitch) and he did. she doesn’t even know if it’s his baby! it could be eddie’s. marissa is really upset but she is being understanding. summer just feels really bad for everybody. seth is like heartbroken and now is really sad because he has no friends again since ryan left. he sailed away and left his parents and summer notes, so i think he’s going to tahiti! oh cohen, my life. julie married caleb and he bought her a house and marissa moved in. but caleb hasn’t told julie that the newport group is going bankrupt yet. jimmy and hayley are happy together but cal and jimmy are still fighting. sandy made up with caleb because kiersten asked him to, and kiersten admitted to having an abortion earlier in her life. i was thinking maybe it was jimmy’s? hmm. anyway, drama.
i wish my life was as dramatic and interesting as marissa or summer’s (but not theresa, i don’t want to be pregnant!) oh well.
it’s not that I hate my family. it’s really not. i love them, at least as much as i can, after all the shit we put each other through. on the very surface, i think they’re great people: philanthropic, accepting, traditional. the trouble is, i just don’t know how to communicate with them anymore. it’s like all of the practiced dialogue i grew up on: the question and answer session at dinner, the post-dinner homework routine, the morning car rides to school: all of those had programmed conversations. and the programs keep running, only because i’m away, i’m not tuning in. it’s almost as if we all figured out exactly how we’re supposed to act around each other, but since i’ve been away for so long, i completely forgot.
i feel like an exchange student in my own home. i’m barely in the family photo album. my aunt doesn’t send me gifts anymore because she assumes i’ll be in new york. my sister sleeps in my bedroom now. and none of this bothers me. i accept it as a part of growing up and moving on. what bothers me is my literal inability to be around my family without getting frustrated and annoyed almost immediately. i don’t even think that i’ve changed that much, i just think the kind of people i’m used to interacting with has changed, and i’ve developed these social skills, this new york etiquette, that works only with people my age and accepting, foul-mouthed new yorkers. my breed of sarcasm is doomed in the suburbs, where everything’s all wrapped in cellophane and my stepmom decorates the house with wooden snowman figurines and my dad gets a sad look on his face when I prove that it’s impossible to be pleasant while i’m home and my sister and i fight over who gets to check Facebook next and my grandma won’t look me in the eye because she’s trying so hard not to say something negative, and she knows if she opens her mouth or makes eye contact it will just come out of her. and i feel awful because i don’t know how to deal with them anymore.
it’s almost as if i’ve developed this idea that I’m better than them somehow. i look at their sad little suburban lives and think, “Thank God that’s not me.” i just feel like i’m 19 years old and i’ve experienced more than they have in their whole lives, simply by virtue of living in new york. i just want to be able to be around them without feeling such distaste. my new years resolution is actually to be nicer around them. i need to be, for everyone’s sake.