Random Thoughts of an Angsty Teenager

Many people mock the idea of young love.  They have this idea that we are too young to understand our feelings. But we have been trained to express and understand what we are feeling since a young age. We learn to cry if we are sad, and to be belligerent if we are mad.  No one puts an age on those feelings. No one says you are too young to know what anger is. But why are we too young to know what love is? But no one ever warns you. That it hits you hard and leaves you broken. You first love burns bright then suddenly not at all. And we as a group disregard their feelings and say that it is just stupidity. As if you aren’t capable of loving someone when you are 17. Highschool sweethearts is the biggest awww I have ever heard. Its this big romantic legend. But when did a fling become reality? When you are the appropriate age and check off all the steps. From dating to meeting the parents but all within an appropriate amount of months. It is this big long process that has to be analyzed by everyone around to make sure that it is acceptable. That its a building this relationship with the white fence and three kids. Because that’s the ideal? Isnt it? That is viewed as the perfect little relationship.

There is always that famous movie line. You know the scenario, it’s very Romeo and Juliet.

The forbidden love that ends with tears and a “But daddy I love him.” I may sound cynical but I do believe in young love. All the great stories are based on the idea of young love or forbidden love. There is always the spin that young love is forbidden. In some sense it is.  Young and rash most of the time ready to marry anyone who does a double take. We think that kids get confused between love and lust. But adults don’t?  How does age make you all more knowing? It doesn’t, experiences do. And there isn’t a difference in the experience if you are 16 or 19. Also don’t mock us. We can feel things too. We may not be college graduates but kids have been told about crushes since the age of 2.

We mimic little kids being in love, but once your fifteen-year old says it, its all “hell no” or “you don’t know what your talking about”. I get it that parents don’t like their kids growing up. I bet Romeo didn’t get a bunch of crap from the Montague’s, maybe for loving the scorned enemy (bad move bud) but he didn’t get it for being in love. But still a great love saga that no one mocks. We shouldn’t have to die to prove our point. Calling it “cute” also doesn’t fly. Some adults get married when they have known each other for 2 months but no one mocks that. It’s just the 17 year olds that have been dating for a year. There is a show called married at first sight but young love is still the mockery. I don’t get it. It’s hard enough to tell someone at any age you love them but especially when you are younger.  Some people may just say it because they think that’s what the other person wants to hear.  Either way don’t shove all of us in a group.

We might not love them. They might be an epic mistake of all proportion that when we are 25 we will gag at their name. Nonetheless don’t tell us how much you don’t like them or how dumb it is. Don’t underestimate love because we are too young to feel it.  Some people marry their high school sweetheart while others wish them impending doom. But they consume our thoughts and it is big and scary. We can’t identify love but we know what it is supposed to feel like. It is supposed to be fun and magical like all those movies. But people who don’t feel it don’t understand. They assume we are just stuck in a fairy-tale. Maybe we are but would you rather all us be cynical and always be like I probably wont marry them. Then you don’t date because you know you wont marry them and isn’t that the main focus of dating? Then you never date therefore you can never get married.

Girls think with their hearts and with the premise that their life should be like The Notebook or the Last Song. We can blame pornhub and john green for altering the realism of teenage “love”.  Realistic it will end badly.  Kids are so used to being alone so there is this hope that someone actually understands what’s going on inside their brain. Parents don’t understand why it’s so exciting to find your very own true love for the first time. It makes teenagers feel like they have someone else going through the hormones and the weirdness.

Is it a bit sexist to believe that some guys think with their bodily parts than their brain. Absolutely. Is it a theory based on mostly fact? Hell yes. The theory that boys and girls are even in the same species is mind-boggling. Both have very different views on how to run the world. Mostly teenagers. Once men actually mature they then can be inaugurated into actual society. Before that happens they are a questionable creature.  It’s the whole idea that girls mature before boys and are therefore an actual acceptable human being before them. I will admit tween girls are the enemy. More feared then the zombie apocalypse and Bin Laden put together.

I get many women are afraid of adolescent boys even to adulthood. We mature while you still want to play with your action figures. But once you mature to the stage where you can look us in the eye we may be able to talk.  It’s rough, especially in high school. This idea that we are all the same in these ordeals is based mostly on the teen movies. Not the sappy ones from early more like American pie.

– Olivia Burwell

 

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Dining Hall Politics

Everyone can relate to the obligation of dining hall duty. As members of our community, we have the responsibility to rotate taking on the burden of other’s irresponsibility. While I was parading the dining hall, during my last rotation, I observed how our relationship with our dishes can be translated to politics.

Throughout my meal,  I struggled with the lack of accountability present in our community. A few students held the belief that they should not assist a peer, who had to take two trips, even when they had an extra hand. Occasionally, I noticed a group of students who divided their dirty dishes among themselves. You may be able to relate to this one, the student who believes that because you are on duty you should clean up after them. Now, come time for their week, they will wish that we do not mimic their behavior. Next time that you are rising from your chair, think about your responsibility to the common good.

-Alice Prindeville-Porto

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Inner Happiness

I am a strong believer that your outlook and not your situation affects how happy you truly are. Some people may be happy after doing well on a test or may be sad because the Toronto Blue Jays inevitably lost, but happiness over the long term comes from something different. Long-term happiness is found within a person. It is found with how someone sees the world and how he or she perceives the world to be. If someone is truly convinced that everyone is out to get them, they will never be happy even if they are given a mansion, and unlimited teriyaki chicken. It is easy to find the happy people in our school, they brush off struggles and take on the world with their chin high, and it is equally easy to find the unhappy people who seem to complain endlessly of their “terrible” situation. I truly believe that your outlook can be changed to create a happier existence, no matter what is happening in your life.

Now, I will admit that I am not the happiest person at our school, to be honest, I don’t know where I fall. However, I can tell you how I stay happy even when it is December, and we haven’t gotten any snow. First, I like to appreciate the little things in our world. I think random acts of kindness are amazing, and I love to see people laugh. I appreciate people in the hallway who smile, and I love how committed our teachers are to our success. These things that most people would pass without thought, give me great joy as I can appreciate the beauty of our world. The second way I stay happy is by asking myself: Does this really matter? It is easy to get caught up in drama and what people say about each other, and I am the first one to acknowledge how I can sometimes worry about the smallest things. I like to stop myself at times when I am really worrying and ask does it really matter? Usually the answer is no. If the situation will not significantly affect your life a month from now, it is probably not worth destroying your present state of happiness.

In high school we get caught up in the importance of ourselves, but we really need to look deeper in order to gain perspective on our lives.

-Cameron Maltman

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Unaffordable Housing

In a recent Examiner column, writer and consultant Peter Goyette supported the premise that, ” [affordable] housing is fundamental”.  It’s hard to disagree with this statement but  part of the reason that Canada may not have embarked on heavy-handed government intervention in the housing market, isn’t due to a lack of compassion but the long history of failure and unintended consequences that such endeavors too often unleash.

Typically, Mr. Goyette glosses over the very people who build and maintain affordable housing and the market forces that encourage them to do so.  Most housing is constructed by businesses that, much like Mr. Goyette in his work as a communications consultant and writer, do so with the hopes of turning a profit.  In the market economy (i.e. the paradigm where most Canadians reside) the value of a home is based on what people are willing to pay for it.  Houses that sell at a profit encourage other builders to get into the market.  The law of supply and demand, creates an increase in the number of homes that, in turn drives the price of a home down.

Some might call that affordable housing.

However for most left-leaning governments and NGO’s, allowing the market to prevail is anathema.  Ironically large-scale government housing initiatives advocated by Mr. Goyette exacerbate the very problem that they seek to alleviate.

Mandating that certain houses or apartments be deemed affordable (and of course assigning an arbitrary value to what affordable means) by ordaining the rent that can be collected and throwing up bureaucratic obstacles, quickly destroys the incentive for businesses to build homes, affordable or otherwise; consequently driving up the price of housing.  Imposed affordable housing works well for the small minority who are able to get to the front of the line but for everyone else it’s an unmitigated financial disaster.

Economist Thomas Sowell observed that as the private sector pulls back invariably government seek to fill the void, constructing housing projects that are so synonymous with social decay, crime and despair that cities like St Louis and Philadelphia, have either chosen to stop further social experimentation or in the case of Chicago have chosen to blow up a 16-story building containing 4000 public units; literally making the problem go away.  Closer to home in a March 2015 Star article reported that, “Toronto’s social housing agency will be forced to shutter 7,500 units by 2023 because they’ll be uninhabitable, and fully 90 percent of the existing units will be in poor or critical condition”.  This clearly isn’t a sustainable path for Peterborough.

Unfortunately, repeated abject failure of these large-scale projects never seems to enlighten the social utopianism advanced by Mr. Goyette and company, much less be the cause of any sort of critical reflection. Predictably, the most ardent supporters of affordable housing rarely live with consequences of their broken schemes.

Affordable housing is contingent on a healthy economy and the free flow of capital.  Peterborough is in decline largely because the manufacturing base has left and most companies won’t be returning any time soon due to the disastrous energy policies of the provincial government.  No amount of social engineering by Mr. Goyette will change that.  Removing obstacles that hinder enterprise leads to both better paying jobs and affordable housing.

-Rory Gilfillan

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Banana Burrito Recipe

Serving Size- 1 Person

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  1. Lay tortilla on flat surface and spread evenly with peanut butter and jam.
  2. Sprinkle with coconut.
  3. Place banana on edge of tortilla and roll up to enclose.
  4. Wrap loosely in paper towel and microwave on high for 30-35 seconds.
  5. Unwrap from paper towel and enjoy!

 

~Recommended by Asha Trott

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Frozen Yogurt Dots

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Ingredients:

Ziploc bags (2)

You’re favourite yogurt – as much or as little as you intend to make

Small fruit pieces of your choice- e.g blueberries, cut strawberries, mango ect.

Instructions:

To make them, just open an individual-sized container of yogurt

Empty the contents into a zip-top plastic bag and close it, pressing out as much of the air as possible.

Snip off one of the bottom corners of the bag, and squeeze little dots of yogurt out onto a parchment paper-covered baking sheet. Or anything that you can put in your freezer and the dots wont stick to.

Add in fruit if wanted

Pop the tray in the freezer for about half an hour, then enjoy

~ Recommended by Asha Trott

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Should shoes be mandatory at LCS?

By: Jake Fell

At least once a day in the spring or early fall I am called-out by a teacher who urges me immediately to “Go put some shoes on.” I usually comply, or sometimes I don’t, but I can assure you that every time I ask myself, “Why?”  I have asked several teachers that same question and I have consistently received three different answers. The first is, “We wouldn’t want you hurting your feet, now would we?” The second is, “What if there is a fire drill and you have to go outside?” And the third is, “We don’t want to have dirty floors so the maintenance staff have to do more work?” On principal I usually try to see things from other people’s perspective, but this is something I simply cannot understand.

To start with, the cleanliness, or lack there of, of the floor has nothing to do with the soles of my feet happily padding along the light green tiles. I would argue that you are significantly more careful when walking barefoot outside than when you are wearing shoes. A barefoot student is significantly less likely to track mud or dirt into the school block than a student who comes clomping in with their dirty shoes that have been in all sorts of foul places.

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The next statement I would like to address is the one about the “Fire alarm”. This is the one I understand the least because it has no impact on the state of student’s feet. Who cares if the students have to go outside barefoot? When the fire alarm sounds, all of the students simply walk the 50-meter stroll to the bus turn around. Never in my six years at the Grove have I witnessed a fire drill where the student body was forced to walk any significant distance over any dangerous ground.

Lastly, there is the argument that “We wouldn’t want you to hurt your feet in the school block”. Each time I have heard this I have simply been confused. If the adults of our community do not trust the students to safely walk the tiled floors of Lakefield College School then I do not know how they expect us to make safe life choices about serious potential risks such as drinking and driving.

LCS has made specific investments to purchase hallway Zambonis to clean the floors and in all my time at Lakefield I have never come around a corner, looked down a hallway and thought “Wow I’m glad I have shoes on to protect me from this minefield of dangers that lie ahead”! It also must be said that if you are a high school student and find a way to cut your foot open in the school block, then I would encourage you to direct yourself to the grade 11 biology class and ask Mr. Bird for a lesson of Charles Darwin’s theory of survival of the fittest. Although I do think shoes are foolish, especially indoors, I am not arguing that shoes should be banned. I am merely stating that they should be optional. For millennia, primates and every other animal on this planet has been thriving just fine without shoes. When you take a step back and look at the big picture it seems ridiculous that an article of clothing as basic as shoes has been mandated for an entire species.

You often see signs saying “No shoes, no shirt, no service”, and each time I see one of these signs in a shop window I grow more and more depressed at the state of our culture. If food manufacturers are allowed to pump our food full of preservatives and chemicals it seems illogical that nipples and toes have become the new enemy of “safe eating”.

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Like your hands, or any other part of your body, the soles of your feet will naturally start to become more rugged the more you use them. Each spring I make a point of walking shoeless anywhere I can so that by the time summer rolls around the bottoms of my feet are tough and leathery and can walk on almost anything. I would encourage everyone to try this at least one spring and see for yourself how useful it is.

With an inch of synthetic rubber under our feet, it is no wonder that students are growing more and more disconnected from the core values of our school. I implore all faculty members, and students, to open their minds to the possibility of a shoeless campus and try to imagine how amazing of a place that would be.

~ Written by Jake Fell

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Grow Up

By: Olivia Burwell

I like fairy tales. They are impulsive and adventurous and mindlessness. They are stories we tell by campfires. They are swirly rainbow lollipops and cotton candy. They are childhood. I am a realist. But that’s just a nice way of saying cynically pessimistic. Fairy tales give us ideas. Ideas of what could happen or what could be, but aren’t thanks to reality. They are everything that reality isn’t. Grow up.

In reality, life isn’t like they portray on Disney. Everyone’s searching for endless satisfaction instead of accepting his or her misery. I guess you could say there is a riveting darkness that comes with knowing fairy tales aren’t real. We all learn it at one point. The tooth fairy stops visiting and Santa becomes a long lost friend. Childhood is just a dream that we wake-up from. We fill the void with adult things we were all programmed to do, but that yearning to believe again won’t go away. Grow up.

When did everything become so hard? When did 16 become the new 43? When did kids start to worry about weight at age 10? When did playgrounds get forgotten in favour of the ceaseless television? Reality gets in the way of the dream. All this pressure prevents kids from having time to be just kids.

“Don’t grow up too fast,” they tell you. “You’re just a kid.”

But when does being a kid expire? When you get responsibility. When life comes crashing down and wakes you the hell up. You’re not ten anymore. You can’t stick your head in the cloud and pretend for even five seconds. You have the universe balanced on your shoulders. Grow up.

Reality. Reality is pain and heartbreak. Reality is getting picked last. Reality is getting made fun of. Reality is getting over it and walking away, because you’re not a kid anymore.

That’s reality.

People look at the kids who live on another planet as sad. How is it sad that they don’t have to go through the day-to-day routine and can be five forever? That’s not sad. That’s bliss. The weird kid who has no idea what’s going on and lives in their own bubble. I envy you. You are on an endless drug, which keeps your head in a fog. Call it insane; call them crazy; I call them lucky. Grow-up.

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Anything Can

By: Asic Chen

It’s past ten at night,

And the house is coming alive,

The party is starting in the bathroom,

As I prepare to retire.

But suddenly, I realize

I have to hand in a poem tomorrow.

So I turn on the lamp,

And take up a pen.

The only problem?

I have no idea about what I’m supposed to write!

I rub my eyes,

Almost ready to dose,

The coldness seeps in from the window that I forgot to close.

Just then a little voice says to me:

Hey, wait, anything can be a poem!

A tiger in a jungle,

Little brown birds in the sky,

Soldiers in deep trenches writing hurried letters home.

Two roads in a forest,

The America I sing,

I am nobody,

What about you?

I can write about the first snow of twenty fourteen,

And the last red leaf falling down.

The uncertainty of what the future holds,

And the giddy excitement as graduation creeps ever so near.

I can write about anything –

How the symphony shakes me to my core;

How the atoms dance in the Chemistry lab;

Even how I don’t quite know about what I should write!

And that is the beauty of poetry:

Anything that teaches;

Anything that bites;

Anything that elates;

Anything that excites;

Anything that fills your heart with an emotion so strong – be it joy or sadness or empathy – that you live in the moment and actually feel;

Anything can be a poem.

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Abandoned!

by Sophie Milburn

~An excerpt from a free-write~

It was 300 years ago today. 300 years ago today was the end of humankind on Earth. The resources ran out. No more fresh water. No food. All the animals died out. They couldn’t survive in the polluted waste area everyone called home. It had become so bad, you couldn’t even see the sun. That’s how much pollution there was. It was so bad, that all of the important people were rushed out on a space shuttle to Saturn. There was a groundbreaking discovery that led scientists to believe life could be held on Saturn if needed, which then, it was. So they rushed them off Earth to Saturn. A new life had begun. Soon, a new generation of humans were living on Saturn. And that’s why we are all here. Today. The 300th anniversary. A project had started. It was called Earth 300. We are planning to go back to Earth, to collect data on how it is now, and if its safe. It leaves in minutes. I’m one of the astronauts going. I’ve been training all my life for this. I’m ready. I close my eyes as I hear the countdown to blast off. 10…9…8…7…6…5…4…3…2…1…Blast off! I brace myself for the lift off, but I’m suprised on how easy it feels. I relax as we start our journey to Earth.

……

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I awake to feel a slight bump. We have just landed. We get out of the shuttle, and I look over at the other astronauts. We look around in shock. It is horrible. Worse than I ever imagined. Black smog covers the sky. Just a small amount of light breaks through and I survey the scene in front of me. Abandoned buildings, forests growing wildly throughout, and to my disgust, the occasional skeleton of animals that didn’t survive it all. How could they? It’s hardly possible. I think to myself. My friends and I nod at each other and start our walk towards some buildings where it seems likely to get data. We walk into what looks like an abandoned library. I look around for a few minutes and open the bag I’m holding and pack a few of my favorite books in it.

“What are you going to do with that?” One of the other astronauts ask.

“Data.” I lie quickly.

There are no books on Saturn, and I miss them. We keep walking through the library and I’m astounded as to how big it is. We get to the center, and we all stop moving. I’m shocked. There is a huge hole in the floor, and out of it, a large tree is growing. I reaches all the way to the top of the library and touches the ceiling. We leave the library and keep walking.

 

…..

After a few hours of walking around, collecting data, we get back on the shuttle, and prepare to go back to Saturn. As we lift off and get into space, I can’t help feeling disappointed that we are leaving. A wrenching pain in my gut makes me realize how much I wish Earth was back to normal and we could live there again. But I cannot lose hope. Maybe one day…

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