27 June 2010
list twenty: things I'd like to tell my 17 year-old self
1. you are not fat.
2. he is not The One. it will seem like he is, but he is not.
3. you do not have to smile for every single picture.
4. you are not going to believe this but you do not know everything. also, your parents are right. about soooo many things.
5. your studio art class will spend a whole quarter on photography. pay better attention.
6. that little 110 camera you love so much is a total piece of crap. people call it a toy camera now but really, it's crap. beg your parents to buy you an old used 35mm SLR. then shoot roll after roll after roll of film. and throw out the flash.
7. remember how good it feels to do a back handspring. in a few years, that skill will be long gone.
8. diet coke is not the answer.
9. do not listen to the people who tell you you cannot be a dancer because you don't have enough training, didn't start early enough and don't have the right body. more specifically, do not listen to that teacher who tells you to eat only saltine crackers for a week in order to drop a few pounds. in a few years, you'll discover modern dance and your world will crack wide open. suddenly, ballet will seem like a stupid idea and everything else will make sense. you will go on to do things you were told you could not do. and it will feel spectacular.
10. you know that awesome color photobooth at the kmart two minutes from your house? visit it regularly.
11. you're going to get a letter from that girl you stood up for in P.E. class. you thought what you did didn't really mean anything to her but it did, it really did. her letter will make you cry and you will be glad you took on the mean girls.
12. wear anything you want. because you can.
13. enjoy the widespread availability of polaroid film.
14. keep writing. keep writing. keep writing.
15. do not wear those vintage spectator pumps to that choir competition. your left heel will get caught in the crack of the risers and you will inadvertently flip it several feet into the air. it will land with a dull thud right in front of the table of judges and you will be forced to walk (one shoe on, one shoe off) in front of hundreds of people to the center of the gymnasium to retrieve it. you will not die from the embarrassment. but you will want to.
16. for pete's sake, take that typing class.
17. and when your mom offers to teach you how to sew, do not blow her off.
18. do not stop writing letters to your french penpal.
19. your hunch about vintage clothing was right on. stock up now before thrift stores everywhere are sucked dry by the masses.
20. make grandma corrona teach you how to make her bread. she will tell you it's nothing, that it's just ordinary bread but you will eventually come to realize that it is, in fact, the best bread in the world.
21. take bigger risks. because I promise, you really will regret it if you don't.
22. the boys, they are not worth it.
23. you really don't need all that black eyeliner. really.
24. and while we're on the subject, beware of all cosmetic counter makeovers.
25. you are never going to find that party on graduation night. you and your friend michelle will drive around for hours and hours and find yourselves in the middle of nowhere at three in the morning. you will feel a little scared but even worse, you will feel stupid. this is so not the way to spend graduation night. and so not the memory you will want to have.
26. do not slather yourself with baby oil and lay out on foil mats. furthermore, wear sunscreen. ALL. THE. TIME.
27. your dad is totally right about that whole time thing. twenty years, gone. just like that.
28. seriously, you are not fat.
(twenty down, thirty-two to go)