(Idea stolen directly from Jen-nay. Gracias.)

OK, the assignment is to give yourself practical advice from a time in your life you might have been lost. This was interesting to me, because there are a couple time periods I could think of to reference. Ha. But high school was probably one of the times that most shaped how I began to think of myself. Soherego:

1. Don’t become friends with Sarah Bradshaw. You had fun with her, sure, but she was not a healthy person, and was a really bad influence. You’re lucky you graduated, you skipped so often. If nothing else, your non-existent study habits kicked your ass in college, where the literal and figurative cost was so much higher. Plus she totally went over the edge in the dorm and stole all your Hormel chili before you moved out.

2. Turn in the guy who owned the Baskin Robbins to OSHA and CPS. He had no first-aid kit and had you working until 11:30 on school nights when you were 15. That’s illegal and he was an ass.

3. Don’t let Jaime Grace get to you. She’s mean and not worth it.

4. Make a commitment to choir. Don’t skip that concert as a Sophomore so you can go with your dad to a band practice and meet a cute boy. You could have been in Chambers if Solley could have trusted you. Don’t be stupid, you love choir.

5a. Try and get a scholarship. They have scholarships for everything, if you’ll just look, you idiot.

5b. Study and try harder on your ACTs and SATs. Don’t fall asleep in your SATs, because even in the reading section, it doesn’t bode well.

6. Do Not date Andy again. The first go-round should have given plenty of warning of character. You will lose years to this guy, and the fallout will set a pattern you fight forever.

7. Get involved with drama earlier than Senior year’s Jesus Christ Superstar, it would have given you confidence. You obviously have an inner actress you’d like to tap into (snort), since you asked the student director if you should act unsure when the crowd is calling for blood. You were follower number 12. Your job was to fill the stage. She barely contained her laughter.

8. Find a way to hang out with Faye Biggerstaff more. She was one of the few genuinely kind people in a sea of sharks, and I think she would have kept you grounded a bit.

9. Hang out with Nammere more while you have the chance. Don’t misplace the story you wrote about her life, there is nothing more fascinating than living history, and you will always regret it deeply.

10. Talk more to Kate.. whatever-her-name-was. She knew she was different than everyone, and suffered as an outcast of sorts. But it takes courage to be that way – specifically in high school – and she was very interesting. Decide to remember her last name. She deserves it.

11. Don’t go to Homecoming with Matt Ross. It will be a freaking nightmare. Dinner, the dress, his stomping on your two-hour-old broken toe, his crying over his ex. NIGHT. MARE.

12. Give yourself permission to acknowledge this is just a shitty time of your life for reasons beyond your control. You’ll get through it and will be more sure of yourself.. later.

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