Little Black Bugs This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

February 18, 2013
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It looks like little black bugs smashed into place on starchy paper – the small ticks of the serif type I always choose because it makes my simple words seem a little more Dickens-esque. I need to get back to writing.

I've never liked writing on paper; the drag makes me tired. It's too slow. Too few words in too much time. Though my sister tells me it is therapeutic to write by hand, I find it stressful. I keep missing thoughts, fudging the important details. I need the computer, as first-world as it is. What would you do, someone should ask me, if you get stuck on a desert island? Fail. I need the keyboard, the sharp clacking that will bust out 97 words a minute. Not only is the sound addicting, the power is too – to put that many words to paper in so little time. You can capture everything.

Just this morning I nudged my mom awake and told her I was bored. Seriously bored, since my sister left for Northwestern. Bored since our dog got so old she couldn't get up to take a pee. Bored since Harry Potter and “Gossip Girl” had to end.

The thing is, there have been periods when I wasn't bored, but it was all because of another person, because my sister came home for Christmas, because I was talking to someone on the phone until 3 a.m. on a Monday. It's just that it's hard to compete with the interest a whole other person holds. The way they soak up the 5 p.m. sun that gives you a migraine, the way they suck at “Asphalt 7” while you rock. How they are somehow blind to Katy Perry's brilliance and you want them to see the light.

And then once they're gone, it's back to you. Oh, how you wish you could get away from yourself! Every time you turn around, it's just you and your stupid headaches driving home in the sun, you and your bomb drifting skills on the iPad (that you wish you could replicate in real life, with a Toyota Prius), you and Katy Perry Google images again. You and your nasty withdrawal from other people.

So I need to get back to writing.

It's the one thing I could always do alone, the one thing that could hold my interest, even at a young age. I have to ask myself how I really feel, and then I am saving little bits of my life, talking to an invisible audience without all my usual “like”s. It's a break from acquaintances, gestures, motions, and rituals. Just pure meaning.

If you don't have your grades, your work, someone far away, your hobbies save you. Nobody ever told me that.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.

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