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Category Archives: high school

A very romantic love story, circa high school, for your Valentine’s Day pleasure

What? Oh, look, good, here, it’s Valentine’s Day, my favorite.

I have ONE cat, but still have apparently called it quits, thank you, skinny blonde lady with aggressively striped hair.

Here is my one and only Valentine’s Day story.

When I was fifteen, I was dating a very short boy who we will call David. We will call him that because it was his name and because I dislike him enough I don’t care if we use his real name.

Very Short David was my first boyfriend. So since it was the 90s, I of course listened to a lot of Debbie Gibson’s “Lost in Your Eyes” and thought about our future children. That second part wasn’t because it was the 90s, but because I used to be super-optimistic. And of COURSE you marry your first Very Short Boyfriend.

No, it wasn't this bad. But it had to be at least 5 inches difference. In high school, that's different enough, yo.

No, it wasn’t this bad. But it had to be at least 5 inches difference. In high school, that’s different enough, yo.

Very Short David also did not know how to kiss, and thought it just meant you put your mouth on the other person’s mouth and left it there without moving for very long stretches of time. VERY long stretches of time. Like, sometimes you peeked at your watch wondering what television shows you might be missing. Also, a thing that crossed your mind was, “people in movies and on TV shows seem to move their mouths more when they are kissing. I feel like we’re not doing this correctly.”

Very Short David and I started dating in October. So we totally got to date through my birthday, his birthday, and Christmas, which was VERY exciting and we got to give each other PRESENTS. If I remember correctly, I gave him thoughtful things like a baseball signed by some sort of important baseball person and he gave me a very pretty necklace so I was all “ZOMG VERY SHORT DAVID!” and he said, “Meh, my mom bought that and wrapped it and wrote your name on it, whatever” and I was all “VERY SHORT DAVID YOU ARE THE MOST ROMANTIC EVAH!”

As Valentine’s Day approached, I was very pleased. Because there was this foolish flower charity thingy that happened at school and I just KNEW that Very Short David would get me flowers and get them delivered to my homeroom and KA-CHOW I would finally be one of those girls. THE KIND THAT GOT FLOWERS ON VALENTINE’S DAY IN HOMEROOM. What kind of flowers? Poorly dyed carnations, of course, we were in high school, it’s not like we could afford hothouse blooms, sheesh.

I’m sure I bought Very Short David something but I don’t remember what it was. I’m very thoughtful, yo. Always was. Always will be.

So it was like two days before Valentine’s Day and I was SO EXCITED and also VERY ANTSY and all suffused with love and also the promise of ALL THE ROMANCE ALL OF IT.

And Very Short David ignored me all day at school, and I was all, “wha?” because that was not the way we rolled. We passed very romantic notes that said things like “TTYL” and “I like your jelly bracelets today.” (I made that last one up, I have no idea what our notes said. Also, I think I stopped wearing jelly bracelets in like 8th grade, don’t be foolish.)

SO STYLISH!!!

SO STYLISH!!!

So my friend who we will call Shari (that really isn’t her name, not because I care about her, but because last I knew she was super-mad at me for something that I don’t really understand and she seems sue-happy so I don’t think it’s in my best interest to use her real name, which is very distinctive) called him on the PAY PHONE in the LOBBY of the SCHOOL (because we were all about the technology back then, don’t even say we weren’t) and Very Short David said, “Oh, tell her I broke up with her, I’m in love with M. now.”

(M. gets the typical initial because she is still a friend of mine and I care about her a great deal.)

M. was my beautiful, outgoing, cheerleader friend. No, I don’t know why she was friends with young-Amy, either. (She’s still beautiful now. She also barely looks like she’s aged. She’s a miracle of genetics, that M. And I don’t even hate her. She’s lovely.)

“Um…what?” I said. Very Short David said goodbye to Shari and hung up. (In a surprising twist, Very Short David and Shari dated senior year. She was all, “will you hate me if I date him?” and I was like, “I honestly do not care what you do” and apparently this is not what you say to someone who thinks she is your best friend but who you didn’t really like all that much because you were kind of broken inside and didn’t really know how to have friendships.)

I cried and cried and went home and listened to a LOT of Debbie Gibson and cried and cried some MORE and then M. called and said, “I just want you to know that I’m totally not even INTERESTED in Very Short David, what is WRONG with him” so that helped a little (and she totally wasn’t, he asked her out the VERY NEXT DAY and she so laughed in his face and I will always love her for that.)

Needless to say, I never got those Valentine’s Day flowers. Also, Very Short David is on my shitlist. And remains there. (Also, Very Short David, after we broke up, told everyone who would listen that I “totally put out” and everyone knew I was a total dork who would not do that so he just got laughed at for attempting that charade. Therefore, he became Very Assholey David, and I still wish him ill. Yes. Still. Shut up, my insane loyalty has a flip side which is the inability to forgive if someone grievously wounds me.)

And yes, this is my one-and-only Valentine’s Day story, as never again was I dating anyone even ADJACENT to Valentine’s Day.

Do I hate a day that’s all dedicated to love and such? Aw. No. Of course not. Does it kind of make me equal parts sad and annoyed? Yes. Yes it does. Yet I am intelligent enough to realize that is stupid.

So happy Valentine’s Day, everyone. And if today is a sucktastic day for you, remember: tomorrow, the Valentine’s Day chocolate goes 50% off at the stores, yo.

50% off!!!!!

50% off!!!!!

Also, Very Short and Very Assholey David: I hope you are bitten by a bitey snake with sharp teeth. Or fall in a hole. Either way’s cool with me.

(Also, since this is the day of love: dear my loved ones, I love you so much it makes my whole heart ache with it. Thank you for…well, everything. I would be nowhere and nothing without you. You are better than all the poorly-dyed carnations delivered to me in homeroom in the whole world. I wouldn’t give you up for anything.)

Also, I found this on the interwebs; I think it is for me. Yay!

It's a little creepy, but we take what we can get, right? Right.

It’s a little creepy, but we take what we can get, right? Right.

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When truth is replaced by silence, the silence is a lie.

Dad yells at me all the time about this.

“THAT BLOG IS SUCKING UP YOUR LIFE!” he says. “YOU DON’T KNOW WHAT’S GOING ON IN THE WORLD AROUND YOU!”

Mostly he’s yelling because I don’t know what’s happening on Fox News, but he has a point. I don’t usually know what’s up in the world. I mean, if it’s something HUGE, I do. Because it gets posted on Facebook or something. Or someone is talking about it at work. Or Dad yells at me about not knowing about it when I call him. (Listen, though, a lot of what he yells about are things like “DON’T YOU KNOW THAT IF YOU HAVE A LIBRARY CARD THE GOVERNMENT TRACKS YOUR EVERY MOVE?” This explains, in Dad’s mind, why he doesn’t have a library card. I said, “Dad, you don’t read books, I think this explains why you don’t have a library card, not the government thing…” and he was all “NO NO GOVERNMENT TRACKERS!!!” so I dropped it.)

Oh, look at the old-fashioned card! I like this. I would like a hundred of these. I'd make them into wallpaper. Think of the history!

Oh, look at the old-fashioned card! I like this. I would like a hundred of these. I’d make them into wallpaper. Think of the history!

So we get to thank Mom for telling me about the news story I’m talking about today. Thank you, Mom, for understanding I don’t have time to watch the news. Well, I suppose I COULD watch the news. But it’s kind of depressing and if I do watch the news, I watch the local news. I like to know what’s happening around me, I guess. I used to keep up with the news on Twitter. I should probably get back into that someday. I miss you, Twitter, I’m sorry I’ve been ghosty. I’ll come back someday. I’ll put on a pretty dress and everything. Witty repartee. Sarcastic asides. It’ll be great.

Today, Mom said, “Did you hear someone got kicked out of school for poetry?” and NO, I had not heard that. (It was like a week ago. Probably you all know about this. I guess it was on the Today Show or something. Who watches the Today Show? People who work different shifts than I do. People who don’t work. I don’t know, I don’t watch the Today Show.)

So I looked it up on the internet. Which was kind of a difficult task because Mom was all, “It was a student from Vermont and it happened yesterday” and it was actually a student from California and it happened two days after Christmas…but it’s Mom, she has kind of a strange sense of reality at times. I don’t get it from the neighbors, you know.

So for those of you who aren’t in the world, like me, here’s the scoop.

A seventeen-year-old student in San Francisco wrote a poem about the school shooting in Connecticut. It wasn’t for an assignment. According to what I’ve read online, one of her teachers “found” it – I have no idea what that means, did she drop it? Leave it somewhere? Throw it away and the teacher pulled it out of the trash? I find this whole thing suspect – and was SO SHOCKED by the content she brought it to the administration. The student was promptly suspended, and it will be decided when school starts on Monday if she’s expelled or not.

What did she say, in this poem that wasn’t even turned in as part of an assignment?

“I understand the killings in Connecticut. I know why he pulled the trigger.”

The school said they have a “zero tolerance approach to violence, the threat of violence” and a “violation of any one of these rules can result in dismissal from school.”

They are also called the Life Learning Academy, so already I’m sure they’re some sort of crunchy granola hippie school, yo. They are also somewhere called “Treasure Island.” I feel like this is not a real school.

"We are often tossed, but we never sink." I feel like this is a euphemism for something.

“We are often tossed, but we never sink.” I feel like this is a euphemism for something.

OK, now, I’ve rambled a little bit. What thoughts have you got in your mind about this girl’s poem, hmm?

I don’t especially want to talk about the tragedy in Connecticut. I’ve avoided it up until now, for the most part.

Here’s the thing. Do you think everyone that writes not only believes everything they write, they act on everything they write? And do the school administrators believe that?

Even the seventeen-year-old girl was all, "It's like Stephen King. He doesn't act on everything HE writes." EVEN THE KID GETS THIS. COME ON, PEOPLE.

Even the seventeen-year-old girl was all, “It’s like Stephen King. He doesn’t act on everything HE writes.” EVEN THE KID GETS THIS. COME ON, PEOPLE.

The girl’s poem went on to talk about how we live in a society that causes such things to happen. It didn’t lionize a mentally-ill man who walked into a school and murdered people. It was a piece of creative writing. One, I think it is important to note (again), that she wrote for herself, not for a class assignment.

I write a lot of things I don’t publish. Things that aren’t for anyone’s eyes but mine. A lot of this stuff is so I can work out the twisty place that is my head. Some of it’s poetry, some of it’s diary-type stuff, some of it’s rambly shit, but it’s mine. And if anyone read it, I would ALSO probably be suspended. FROM ALL THE PLACES. And possibly LIFE.

Was she trying to work out in her mind how such a thing could have happened? Maybe.

Also, the girl was seventeen. The tortured poetry that came out of me when I was seventeen…well, I don’t know if anyone wants to talk about that. For the love of Pete, you all remember seventeen, right? EVERYTHING is doom and gloom and you push EVERYTHING to the edge and ALL THE THINGS SEEM SO SO SERIOUS AND DIRE. Seventeen! I wouldn’t go back there for all the money in the world. Or a date with Ewan McGregor, even.

"Not even for ME, Amy?" "No, not even you, my beloved Ewan. Not even you."

“Not even for ME, Amy?” “No, not even you, my beloved Ewan. Not even you.”

I don’t think she was saying she understood how someone could walk into a school and start shooting children. I think she was saying she understood how things could get to that point.

And I don’t think that’s any different from how hard it is for me, all these years later, to think or talk about what happened at Columbine, because as bad as I feel for everyone who died (and I do, oh, how I do, please don’t think I don’t) I feel bad for the two boys who were pushed far enough that one day they decided that the only way to make that stop was to take guns to school.

Because I’ve been pushed that far. I spend eight years of my life being pushed that far. I never brought a gun to school, but I’m not going to tell you I didn’t have some severely violent fantasies. You get pushed, you know? You just get pushed and pushed and pushed and you can’t do anything about it and you can’t get out of the situation and you start thinking thoughts that aren’t even your own. Crazy thoughts. Thoughts about self-harm and thoughts about harming others. And some people do that, and some don’t, and I’m not passing judgement on those of us who made it through that and those of us who didn’t. And the people that find it so easy to vilify bullied students who handle it in a violent way – well, I have to assume they’ve never been in that situation.

So could I have written a similar poem about Columbine? Yes. Absolutely.

Should this kid be kicked out of school for this? No. She should not. She didn’t walk around inciting violence. She had no history of violence. She wrote a poem. For (from what I can tell from these articles, although it’s strange and vague) herself. And now she’s facing expulsion.

Where do we draw the line? What are we teaching our kids with things like this? That censorship is ok? That they should keep things all bottled up inside? That certain things are ok and certain things are art and certain things aren’t? Not to create? Not to have feelings? That some feelings are valid and some are wrong?

Let's let her decide big questions like this for herself in college, ok? That's where big questions belong.

Let’s let her decide big questions like this for herself in college, ok? That’s where big questions belong.

I don’t know. I don’t know what to even say about this. She didn’t say people deserved to die; she didn’t celebrate death. She simply empathized. She said she understood how such things could happen in our society.

And in certain situations, I understand it as well. I think anyone who was bullied can’t help but put themselves in this situation.

She seems to be handling it well. She’s a self-possessed kiddo. Good for her. At seventeen, I would have been curled up in a little ball of weepery on the floor. (Or shouting at someone in charge. I randomly had rabble-rouser moments in my teens. Once I staged a huge sit-in because I thought something was unfair. Looking back, it was a ridiculous thing – they cancelled our class trip because of the misbehavior of the class before us, and I thought that was unfair to us, because WE weren’t the ones that misbehaved – but I was very good at leading people, apparently. Or people just wanted to not go to class. Or when I’m on a tear, I’m all kinds of charismatic. Because almost the entire class participated in that. And I was totally the one who got in trouble for organizing it. I’m still kind of proud of that.)

There was a lot of grown-up Amy hiding out in wee-Amy, waiting to get out and play. I like to think back on that and smile.

There was a lot of grown-up Amy hiding out in wee-Amy, waiting to get out and play. I like to think back on that and smile.

There are a lot of things wrong here in this country. We’re broken in a lot of ways. Let’s not compound that by stifling our artists, ok? Let’s not kill the dreamers and the thinkers and the creators. Let’s not do that. Because if we do that, if we take that step, we’re lost. If we  stifle all that is beautiful in the world, what’s left? A world I don’t want to live in. A world with nothing left to look forward to. A world with no hope left in it, like Pandora’s box if she didn’t close it quickly enough.

Let’s close the box before the hope gets out. We don’t have much left, we need to hang onto something.

(Title is a quote by Russian poet Yevgeny Yevtushenko. Thought we should have a poet for the title today.)


Poor decision-making: a retrospective

YAY YAY BIRTHDAY YAY!

As I’m writing this ahead of time, I have no idea how day-with-Mom-and-Dad went. Just talked to them and they’ll be here tomorrow at 11. So we can have lunch at 11:30 like proper old people. Then go shopping and then they have to hit the road because it takes my dad a billion years to get home. He drives very slowly, you see. If you go anywhere with Dad, bring snacks and a beverage and CDs and possibly some reading material because WHOO SO SLOW. But if you say anything like “hey! Dad! You know, I think you can get a ticket for driving too slow, too, you know” he gets ALL UP IN ARMS and he says things like “I AM JUST BEING CAUTIOUS” and “YOU ARE THE ONE WHO DRIVES TOO FAST” and then I say things under my breath like “the speed limit is not TOO FAST DAD.”

This would be Dad’s favorite speed limit sign. Slow like a turtle, he is!

So, on my birthday I do a lot of soul-searching and look back on my year and get all reflecty and sometimes that is happy and sometimes that is sad. This year it seems to be an equal amount of both. In an effort to not bring us all DOWN DOWN DOWN, I will not go into detail. Let’s suffice it to say that I’m reflecting, and doing a lot of thinking and mulling and such. And people that have come into my life in the past year, and have become very dear to me: thank you, and welcome, and where have you been? I should have known you before now. Look at all the time we wasted! And I love you. And, thank you. For everything you’ve done to make this year wonderful. (And to my old friends: thanks for sticking around. Love you, too. So much. More than I can ever, ever express.) There have been good things and bad things and super-highs and low low lows and it’s been kind of a weird year, but I think the good outweighed the bad, and what more can we ask for in a year, really?

Aw, no. I LOVE YOU GUYS. This just made me snort-laugh.

I have the day off to do all the things and relax and hang with Dumbcat and be all reflecty and that will be nice. I have some special happy birthday plans for myself. Because I am the best birthday celebrator! It will be a most excellent day of sleeping in and doing things I want to do and not going to work and such.

Anyway! In honor of my birthday, I am giving YOU a present. Well, maybe it’s a present for SOME of you. I promised this to Jim a while back, and then again to sj a few weeks ago, and then mentioned it to Ken just a few days ago and thought, what better day than the day you were BORN, all unexpected-like and weeks and weeks early, all tiny and incubatored for days, to look back on HORRIFIC AND EMBARRASSING MEMORIES? (And a couple that are kind of fine and even a little adorable, I’ll be honest.)

OK. So! You mostly all know what I look like now, right? You’ve seen my photo on Twitter or whatever. And whenever I comment. I look like a LADY with GLASSES. Oh, wait, here, I’ll show you, FINE.

TA DA! Me. Sort of unruly-haired, And I look smirky. But, here’s me now.

When I was home last time (July, I suppose?) I was looking for the mysterious missing photos my Europe trip. I do this EVERY TIME I GO HOME. I refuse to believe they’re gone. Someday I’m going to find them under the couch cushions or something.

But but BUT! This time I was home, I found a photo album I was not aware I even HAD. And in it? SO MANY THINGS.

So! In honor of birthday celebration, I bring you scenes from a very unfortunate childhood. (Some of these are terrible. My scanner’s not being so scanny at the moment.)

This is wee Amy. I’m thinking…first grade? Maybe? LOOK HOW EFFING ADORABLE! I approve highly of this photo. Well, not the wrinkle. The wrinkle in this photo is annoying. I should take better care of my things. Anyway, this little turtleneck-and-jumper combo is delightful, and my glasses are not yet eating my face, and I look so cheerful! I enjoy this photo a great deal. WIN.

I don’t know, a year later? Two? The glasses have started getting huger, though, which is worrisome. Also, I think this blouse is entertaining. It looks like I’m a server in a buffet-style restaurant. But I like that smile. THAT IS ONE HUGE SMILE YO. That cameraman told me smile and I DID WHAT I WAS TOLD. I still think this is pretty damn adorable. Also, you can see my fancy widow’s peak, which I think Ken said meant I was a killer. I do not think that’s the case. I think it means I am AWESOME.

Around the same time. What’s best about this photo is that necklace. It was a huge Strawberry Shortcake. Apparently I felt strongly enough about Strawberry Shortcake that I felt the need to memorialize that love in a class photo. Otherwise, this is blah. WEE AMY! This photo needed some FLAIR! I am disappointed in you, lady. (Also, I think this wee Amy looks sad. I don’t like this wee Amy as much.)

Now things start to get…um…strange.

I didn’t have any junior-high photos in this album. I have ’em somewhere. Let’s just say I had a bowl cut. And for a couple of very classy years, a rat-tail. Which I would BRAID. I know. I KNOW. Try to contain your passion for junior-high Amy, it is unseemly.

But then high school happened. I think maybe the bowl-cut and the rat-tail might have been better looks for me, honestly.

Oh, first, I’m in this photo somewhere (I have no idea where) but I just thought it was funny that I went to CAMP OVERLOOK. Come play with us, Danny! All camping and no play makes Jack a dull boy! Also, the camp director is looking out from right over the sign all creepy-uncle like, and it’s off-putting. (This was 4-H camp. You were forced to work. You had to clean the toilets and make your own food and shit. It was TERRIBLE. It was supposed to build character, I guess. Really what it built was a healthy dislike of camping and work and forced group activities.)

HIGH SCHOOL!

Um. I look stoned, and that is TERRIBLE hair, and I remember those glasses and they were so, so heavy and made of GLASS and always falling down. I look MISERABLE. And like a DEER frozen in HEADLIGHTS. That hair was a perm I was growing out. I don’t know what’s up with the bangs. I was ultra-proud of that shirt. It was like a men’s rugby shirt. I would wear it with black stirrup-pants and kicky hightop sneakers. I thought I was SO STYLISH.

This is my least-favorite photo of me in the history of ever. Of course, this means my mom had it displayed on the living room wall until about three years ago. I am not even kidding.  I look like I have some sort of weird neck-crick. And this was a failed hairspray incident. See how it’s all poky on one side? And that huge bangs-gap? That’s because my hair doesn’t accept hairspray and it all starts to go very, very wrong after about an hour and photo-day was at the end of the day. Oh, also, I wasn’t allowed to wear makeup until junior year of high school so I look all washed out. Why? Because it was the path to the devil, of course. Don’t be absurd.

This has to be at least junior year, but before I was allowed to wear makeup, but after I got my contacts. There were a lot of weird rules and regulations to growing up in the Lucy’s Football household. LOOK AT THAT SWEATER. It has a lot of heart. HA HA. Also, again, it was the early 90s, please don’t judge the hair. We were just weaning ourselves off the Aquanet.

NOW! The best Amy-photo ever. I’m thinking freshman or junior year. The look on my face here is really what makes this photo amazing. I obviously want to murder the cameraman. See, I was on the yearbook staff, and no one ever wanted their photos taken, so the staff would take photos of each other. I’m pretty sure the woman running the yearbook staff took this photo.

This was at a basketball game, which I used to go to because I had a crush on one or another basketball player at any given time. I don’t know, either. I outgrew it. No judging.

Ready? Ready for the best thing?

This is a very early “fuck off and die” Amy face, which is why I love it so. (PS: I still make that face. You see that face nowadays? RUN AWAY! RUN AWAY! It’s my “oh, what you’re saying/doing are SO INTERESTING, I’m really imagining murdering you in my brain, though” look.) Look at the PERM! And the GIGANTIC GLASSES! And there’s some guy behind me, I don’t know who that is. But I’m so into that face. That is such an awesome face, I can’t even. LEAVE ME ALONE I AM GOING THROUGH AN AWKWARD PHASE SOMEDAY I WILL HAVE A BLOG THAT LITERALLY TENS OF PEOPLE READ! TENS!!!

There we have it, jellybeans. Here’s the thing. You know how you never like yourself? (Well, girls, anyway. I suppose some guys, but most guys are pretty non-judgey of themselves, which I envy.) Like, whatever age you are, however you look, you bitch and moan and complain and whatnot? Like, when I was a kiddo, I thought I was so, so fat. LOOK HOW SKINNY LITTLE AMY WAS. MY STARS. And I used to spend HOURS in the mirror ON PURPOSE to make my hair look like that hairsprayed monstrosity. You’re always your own worst critic.

You know which Amy I like best? The top one. She’s got it going on, top-Amy. Happy birthday, top-Amy.

(But also, keep on keeping on, bottom eat-shit-and-die Amy, because I like your style, babe.)

Happy Mondays, all! I give you all pieces of virtual birthday cake. You and you and YES, today, even YOU, Ding Dong Joe! Today, even you get cake. Thanks, minions. Thanks for being the best part of my past year. Here’s to the next one: best of them all, right? Right. Most definitely.


I got my lunch packed up, my boots tied tight, I hope I don’t get in a fight…

I’ve been so busy I totally missed back-to-school time! What WILL the kids do without my back-to-school fashion roundup, I ask you? I mean, they’re probably going back to school this week wearing pajamas, all, “AMY DIDN’T TELL US WHAT TO WEAR” and that makes me SO SAD. I’m sorry, youth of America. I’ve been busy working and working and working and sometimes sleeping. I know I’ve let you down. Here, I’ll fix it. Better late than never. I hope some of these things are still on the shelves.

BACK TO SCHOOL 2012 FASHION STAPLES
(via random websites on the interwebs that all say they know what’s up)

Boyfriend jeans

I like that you have to peg the legs. We did this when I was in school. TWENTY YEARS AGO. What was old is now new! I AM COOL AGAIN! (Pee ess I was never cool.)

Apparently this is what they call jeans that are all slouchy and distressed and fit all loose. I don’t have an issue with these. They look comfortable. Although I don’t think you could actually wear your boyfriend’s jeans. They wouldn’t fit. How often do people date someone that’s exactly the same size as them? Also, high school boys smell weird and you shouldn’t be getting naked with them anyway, you’re only a kid. Stop that.

Skinny jeans

I guess you don’t sit down when wearing these. That would make taking classes a little difficult.

This website calls skinny jeans “Spanx you can wear on the outside!” and I think that’s misleading because the point of Spanx is that your clothes cover up the Spanx and also all of your random fat-rolls that are thrown asunder by the Spanx. If you’re wearing your Spanx on the outside, people will see all MANNER of ills. Also, I feel like skinny jeans are cutting off circulation to your hooha, and you’re going to want that for teen sex. Also, look, there’s like scientific proof that skinny jeans are bad for your health. SCIENCE KIDS! It’s not just a class you take after homeroom! Skinny jeans pinch one of the nerves in your outer thigh and make your legs tingly, not the good kind of tingly like when Jimmy McGee walks by in his letter sweater, either. (What? Kids don’t wear letter sweaters anymore? Shut up, I don’t know.) So I’m saying no no no nein on the skinny jeans, even though they’re supposedly what all the cool kids wear. Who wants to be a cool kid, anyway? If you watch any afterschool specials, the cool kids always die from driving while texting or whatever anyway.

Leggings/jeggings

These look so tight. Look at the pocket on the left, it’s all poking up out of protest.

STOP TRYING TO MAKE FETCH HAPPEN. IT’S NOT GOING TO HAPPEN. Oh, wait, shit, fetch happened? These stupid things are actually popular? Ugh, I feel like if you wore these you’re walking around with only tights on. They make me nervous. I didn’t understand them last hear and I don’t understand them now. Just don’t wear them. Ignore them and maybe they’ll go away.

Accessories

ZOMG THIS WEAR THIS. Because when the other kids see this, you’re totally elected queen of the prom. No question about it.

This site tells me that bangle bracelets, big brooches, and wicker handbags are all the rage. GRANDMA DID YOU WRITE THIS? Seriously, if these things are in style, my grandmother is CUTTING EDGE BABY. I don’t know too many teens but the ones I do know aren’t wearing grandma-chic. Ignore this tip. If you wear these things, people are going to laugh at you. THEY’RE ALL GOING TO LAUGH AT YOU, CARRIE! THEY’RE ALL GOING TO LAUGH AT YOU!

Boots

Here we read that thigh-high boots are in for 2012. You know who else wore thigh-high boots? Vivian Ward.

She says who..she says when…she says…who…

I don’t think you need to be wearing thigh-high stripper boots to high school. If you want to wear them on your time off, that’s your call, but you’ve got like 80 more years of your life to be skeezy, so why don’t you wait a few years? Wear practical shoes to school. I don’t even know that any of us wore heels when I was in school. We wore sneakers. Sometimes we wore flats, if we were dressed up. Is dressing like a teenage prostitute the thing? We here at Lucy’s Football do not approve of you looking like a teenage prostitute. We think you are much too classy for that.

Puffed shoulders

Adorable, if you’re built like a waif ballerina, I guess.

Apparently, puffed shoulders are the thing? I don’t approve. What do you think this is, the 30s, and we’re all in leg o’mutton sleeves?

Let me know when these come back into style, I’m going to hide in the closet.

No no no. This is foolish. Listen, I feel like a lot of these tips come from Gossip Girl. YES. The clothes on Gossip Girl are gorgeous. But they’re totally impractical and no one dresses like that. Everyone thinks they’re a Serena or a Blair but in all actuality everyone’s either a Vanessa or a Dorota. You know it’s true.

Superdistressed jeans

Oh, come on now. Really? Really, truly?

Um. These are a mess and if you want jeans that are a mess I’ll give you every pair of jeans I’ve thrown away after spilling something on them that I can’t get out of them. You look like you had an accident while bleaching evidence of a tub-murder out of the hotel where you work. When I was a wee Amy, I wanted jeans that were acid-washed and my mom said the same thing to me and I was all “PARENTS JUST DON’T UNDERSTAND” and now I understand. Sorry, Mom. These look ridiculous.

A natural, clear complexion

Because skin like this just HAPPENS. Or you can buy it over the counter, like NAILPOLISH.

OH THIS IS AN EASY ONE BECAUSE YOU CAN BUY IT ANYWHERE! Ugh, come on, what the hell? Listen. Some of us (I’m not pointing FINGERS, here, but ME ME ME) had something catastrophic happen when puberty set in, and the acne fairy visited. Now, I know you’re all saying “oh, yep, me too, Amy, me too.” No. I’m not saying once and a while I had a little zit like in the Judy Blume books. I’m saying, you know those terrible before-and-after photos they show on the Proactiv commercials that are probably photoshopped where the person looks like he or she was ground zero at a nuclear bomb test site? NEWS FLASH. There’s a slight change they’re not photoshopped. Because SOME PEOPLE (ahem me ahem) looked like that in their teen years. Well, some of the teen years. It got so bad that my parents shelled out major buckaroos and brought me to a fancy-schmancy dermatologist who prescribed me the medication that saved my remaining two marbles of teenage self-esteem. However, I’m pretty sure it will cause birth defects to any future children, so I’m not having any. Among other reasons. So for five years, I used this medication religiously, and it worked SO WELL that people were all “UGH AMY HAS THE BEST SKIN” which made me laugh and laugh because it was all a TRICK brought on my MEDICATION and I don’t use it anymore because the side effects were that I couldn’t go in the sun ever and it randomly made pieces of my face peel off and plus it was very expensive, and after the teen years my face stopped revolting (and BEING so revolting) for the most part, but now sometimes randomly I’ll break out, like my face will say, HA HA, just wanted to let you know I’M STILL HERE YOU JERK, and I’ll sigh and say YOU STUPID GENETICS. So, in case you were wondering, kids, I know people tell you that acne stops when you’re out of your teen years but it’s totally a lie. My mom’s in her sixties and still breaks out. Sorry. I hate to break it to you (HA GOOD ONE! Break!), but it’s true. Some of us are just more blessed than others in the ways of disgusting breakouts.

Anyway, it’s mean to put “glowy skin” on a list of things kids need for back-to-school. Because it’s not like all the kids can just get that. It’s genetics. And it’s who can afford the fancy dermatologist who’s willing to prescribe medication that’s not quite legal in the States yet. THANK YOU DOCTOR WHATEVER YOUR NAME WAS!

Yes, there’s a possibility I went to Dr. Nick.

So there you have it, kids. Apparently, you need to wear stripper boots and tight tight pants and shirts with poofy upper-arm areas and my grandma’s jewelry. You are going to look ridiculous, so I suggest as soon as you put all of this on, you take it all off again, put on some nice khakis and a t-shirt with something geeky on it and a pair of comfy Chucks, and you go back to school RELAXED. And if one of the chicks walks by with puffy sleeves and stripper boots you can laugh and laugh because you KNOW she’s going to eat it on the stairs. Those stairs are slippery, yo.

Comfy and classic. You can’t go wrong.

HAPPY BACK TO SCHOOL KIDDOS! Learn all the things! Have all the fun! Be nice to each other, please!


In Pittsburgh they called us closed minded, but we know that’s simply not true.

I’m not 100% sure what’s going on, but apparently strange things are afoot in Pennsylvania. JIM. What’s going on in your state? It’s only just across the border from me and I’m kind of nervous about this situation, here. As our Minister of Fly-nance I think it’s on your shoulders to explain your state to us. Or maybe not. I’m not really sure what being the Minister of Fly-nance entails. I guess that’s the beauty of the position. The leeway it provides. 

Today in the “weird news” section of the paper (what, your paper doesn’t have that section? It’s my FAVORITE SECTION. I love weird things. And I love news. Put them together and it’s the best, just the best) there were SIX ARTICLES PERTAINING TO PENNSYLVANIA. Six! What the hell? One was the most boring and not at all weird (who cares about a guy who faked a seizure to go to the hospital and also escape prison? Meh meh meh, that’s not weird, newspaper, way to misrepresent your weirdnesses) but the others were SUPER-weird. And also awesome. JIMMMMM! Seriously, your state is a depository of weird, which makes me predisposed to love it a little, you know that, right? 

Whoo, this is bossy. I bet Jim yells “Don’t you tell me what to do!” whenever he sees one of these. Jim HATES bossiness.

OK, so we have starfucker deadbeat dads, we have pilfered wooden alligators, we have Hansel-and-Gretel-style thievery, we have patriotism in poor taste, and we have creative use of the interwebs. WHOO! You go, Pennsylvania. Who knows the state motto of Pennsylvania? Anyone? Anyone? The answer is “virtue, liberty and independence.” That’s totally upstanding, I’d feel about 76% more patriotic just stating that, I think. Here’s a tougher one. What’s the state INSECT? Ladybug. Heh. Or also firefly, which seems like you’re just bogarting all the good bugs for yourself, Pennsylvania, you mooch. Also, they have a state DOG, which is the Great Dane. Pennsylvania does NOT dick around when it comes to the size of its canine mascots. (Oh, PS, because I’m curious like a cat, I looked up what New York’s state insect is, and it’s ALSO a ladybug. Shit, Jim and I are totally at war for our state bugs now, this is bad news, yo. I don’t want to be at war with Jim in a Confederate war-between-the-states sort of scenario because I LIKE Jim. He makes me laugh and also then laugh AGAIN. He’s full of tomfoolery AND risibility.) 

Look at Pennsylvania’s state flag. There’s a LOT going on here. Scary HORSES! An EAGLE! A SHIP! um…bumpy yellow things that might be…sheaves of wheat? I don’t know. I DON’T KNOW WHAT THOSE ARE BUT THERE THEY ARE!

First, let’s talk about Hansel and Gretel. Ooh, or, if you’re GERMAN, you could totally call them Hansel UND Gretel and no one would even look twice at you. I mean, I guess they might if you were a weirdo with, I don’t know, a huge Cat-in-the-Hat hat on, or maybe if you were running around naked screaming “HANSEL UND GRETEL!” at the Wildpark Poing which I am still longingly dreaming of visiting with many a wistful sigh. 

Look! Muffelwild! Ponyhof! You can’t even imagine the power of nth with which I want to go to Wildpark Poing. CAN’T EVEN.

OK, so if you all recall, Hansel and Gretel were cast out of their home by their evil stepmother (just once, a story about an immensely likeable stepmother would be a breath of fresh air, wouldn’t it?) and set to fend for themselves in the wilderness, but they put a path of breadcrumbs behind them to lead them home because they were CRAFTY. But not crafty enough! Because the naughty ravenous forest-birds ate their crumbs so they were lost lost lost and then they stumbled upon the gingerbread house and then they barbecued the witch the end. What, other shit happened? SIGH FINE also other shit happened. 

Look, a creepy puppety production of Hansel and Gretel! With…um…adults as the children! And a huge owl-thing! I’m not going to lie, this is worrisome.

Anyway, so this guy in Pennsylvania was totally jonesing for a delicious meatball sub but it was after hours so he broke into a Subway restaurant with his hands as battering rams. But when he realized he couldn’t make himself a delicious meatball sub (I might be making this part up using my ARTISTIC LICENSE) he decided to rob the cash register. Only, THAT failed as well, because he was NOT VERY SMART. So he stole “nine bags of chips” and then hot-footed it out of there. Only, the cops were able to catch him. How? HE LEFT A TRAIL OF CHIPS FOR THEM TO FOLLOW AS IF THEY WERE THE BIRDS IN HANSEL AND GRETEL. 

They found him all munchin’ on chips. Also, bleeding from the hand and foot because he cut himself all up smashing into the Subway with his extremities. 

Om nom nom. OM NOM NOM I SAID.

You couldn’t wait until you got to wherever you were going to eat from those teeny-tiny bags of Subway chips? I mean, they do have Munchos there, which are DELICIOUS, but I’m thinking you didn’t need to break into them IMMEDIATELY, and then apparently eat them like Cookie Monster while running, leaving crumbs and a mess behind you. I hope part of his punishment is cleaning that shit up. Chips are greasy. 

Next: the way to a man’s arrest is through his…um…swimsuit area. Also, his desire to be a stahhhhhh. 

So this deadbeat dad in Pennsylvania owed over $32,000 in back child support, so, as you do, he ran off to Hawaii. Someone (this article doesn’t say who. The court? His wife?) hired a bounty hunter. (I am, of course, imagining it was Dog the Bounty Hunter because he has a SWEET HEAD OF HAIR.)

Look, sometimes he even wears FEATHERS in it! I had feathers like this in the early 80s. I bought them at the carnival. They came on a roach clip. Come to think of it, maybe they weren’t hair ornaments after all. Give me a break, I was probably 7.

The bounty hunter, who was obviously very cunning, told the deadbeat dad to come back to Philadelphia, because if he did, there was a role in an Jennifer Aniston movie waiting there for him! 

Oh, you silly boy, why’d you go all the way to Hawaii? Come home to MEEEEE.

So of course, deadbeat dad was all, “COUNT ME IN SUCKAS I LOVES ME SOME RACHEL GREEN!” and got on a plane to the City of Brotherly Love. Where they were waiting for him as he disembarked and he was arrested and now he has to pay his money like a good dad, not a deadbeat jerky jerk. 

I have relatives who live in Philadelphia. JIM! I don’t even think I ever told you that. I totally have relatives that live there. My great-aunt and my cousin and his wife live there. And maybe they have a dog or something, I think they do. They’re very smart and I don’t think would be as easily fooled by this ruse, which seems like, ironically, (don’t’cha think?) a plot FROM Friends, starring one of the cast members OF Friends. 

“The One With the Deadbeat Daddy”

Also, deadbeat parents who refuse to pay their fair share can bite me. You had that kid. If you can afford to pay it, you need to pay it. That’s your kid, douche. Way to make your kid feel like a burden on  you. 

Next: honoring our dead with FIRE. 

No, not this kind of honoring and fire, but this is kind of awesome, seriously. Pennsylvania should do things like this, Jim.

This one’s right next to Jim. JIM DID YOU GO TO THIS? 

In a Pittsburgh suburb, because the school where they usually did it was under construction and unavailable, the people who do such things (town fathers? I don’t know. Here it would probably be the mayor. He’s very orange, our Mayor. Sometimes people call him Mayor McCheese? Because he’s all orange like a slice of processed cheese food? This makes my dad laugh and laugh. “What’s your mayor’s name?” he’ll say, and I have to say, “Oh, Mayor McCheese” and he’ll laugh and laugh and laugh and say “Mayor McCHEESE!” and then laugh some more. It never gets old, that joke, apparently) decided the only place that would be appropriate to shoot off their fourth of July fireworks would be from the local cemetery. 

Jerry “Mayor McCheese” Jennings, the president of RPI (a lot of people hated her because she fired a lot of people a while back) and Governor Cuomo. Comparatively, look how orange! (He’s actually not a terrible mayor.)

Some people were all “GO MERKA WHO CARES ABOUT THE DEAD!” and some were all, “Um…my mom’s under there? You’re walking on my mom” and one old lady was all “I wanted to visit my loved ones but the cemetery was closed so they could set up the display and I am SO DISTRAUGHT” but it seems most people were all, “meh, you gotta do what you gotta do WE LIKE FIREWORKS.” 

WHOO FIREWORKS AND MERKA! Also, don’t throw trash on grampa’s final resting place, Jimmy. That’s rude.

I don’t know that I’d want to go to a cemetery to watch a fireworks display. It seems a little disrespectful to me. Also, didn’t you people see Carrie? HANDS come out of GRAVES at night. Fireworks displays? Are at NIGHT. Nuh-uh, count me out of this one. 

I SAID YOU’D HAVE FIREWORKS HERE OVER MY DEAD BODY DAMMIT!

Next: kids who learned about BUSINESS! In SCHOOL! 

In a town outside of Philadelphia (lots of weirdness going on around there, right?) there is a school that is broke. So broke, they’re going to have to close unless they raise $600,000. So they decided to sell themselves on eBay. 

What do you get if you buy the school on eBay? “He or she will get a plethora of goodies, including a naming opportunity, a free large pizza, a personalized school coffee mug and the chance to deliver a speech at graduation.” 

Is it free if it costs you $600,000? Is it really?

Hmm. For $600,000? That…doesn’t seem like a very good deal at all, actually. For a large pizza and a mug, that runs you what, say $30? People are always bugging people to give speeches. They always want me to make speeches at my theater and I’m all NO NO NO I HATE THOSE. I could get a speech for free. And you aren’t even guaranteed the naming! It’s only a naming “opportunity!” That seems unlikely. 

Mostly the school is doing this because they need a benefactor and they think this is a good way to go about it. Well, listen, I think this won’t work. Rich people aren’t going to buy your school on eBay. Unless they want to set it on fire or put mini-cams in the girls’ bathroom toilets. This has “wrong on all the levels” written all over it. 

Finally: the CASE of the STOLEN ALLIGATOR. Subtitled: Got wood? 

This one happened about 100 miles from Jim so I’m not overly worried about Jim or his family right now. That’s pretty far and it’s really hot out. No one’s driving that far in this heat. 

Some dude walked into an unlocked mobile home and beat up the resident, then stole his wooden alligator. MORE shockingly, the wooden alligator was worth $175. A $175 wooden alligator?!?!? What’s it made out of, EBONY? Come on now. 

I am worth $175! I AM VERY EXPENSIVE! Don’t steal me! CHOMP!

Also, in “no no I’m totally serious IT’S NOT AN ALIAS” news, the robber’s name was Todd Pensyl. And the robbery happened in Pen(n)sylvania. I feel like SOMEONE (cough”ToddPensyl”cough) watched The Usual Suspects right before pulling this epic heist. “My name? It’s…um…well, it sure isn’t William Jenkins! Ha ha, I don’t know WHY that license was in my wallet! It’s…my name…um…oh, look, a rerun of Diff’rent Strokes…TODD. Todd…um…where…PENSYL. Yeah. Yeah, I’m Todd Pensyl, that’s me.” 

WHO IS TODD PENSYL?

Don’t worry. Keyser Söze OH WAIT I MEAN TODD PENSYL has been arrested, and I’m sure Woody the Alligator is back to his rightful owner, who is probably no worse for wear for having been kicked in the face repeatedly for not turning over his wooden $175 alligator. Is anyone except me wondering if there was heroin stashed in that alligator or something? This seems totally shady to me. 

So, as you can see, something’s going on in Pennsylvania. JIM. Please explain. I am worried about this. Were you aware that there was so much crazy? What are you doing to protect yourself? I suggest nunchucks. Or maybe throwing stars.

Something for everyone in your family, Jim. ALWAYS BE PREPARED.


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