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A Press Democrat Blog

Teen Life

News and opinion from local teens

Yvonne Lieu, 16

For a Straightened Spine I am a worrier. I spend hours filling my mind with endless possibilities of what could go wrong. Maybe the outfit I planned for tomorrow won’t be worn because of a sudden weather change, maybe I’ll forget my homework at home and get a zero, and maybe I’ll take a wrong turn at an intersection and find myself lost for a while. One thing’s for sure though, plans change and things don’t always go a planned.… Read More »

Michaela Western, 15

The Hands I Grew Up With The hands I grew up holding were not soft, manicured hands that spent their days at rest. The hands I grew up with were rough, calloused: working hands. Walking through the park one afternoon–when I was three or so–my tiny hand encased in the strong grip of my father’s, my little toddler feet running and stumbling to keep up with his grown-man stride, I asked what should have been a simple question: “Daddy, why… Read More »

Ryan Santos, 17

My Sacrifice I gazed down at the bottom of the pool and focused on my stroke. As I came up for air, I could see my coach waving her arms in a frantic manner, gesturing for me to speed up my pace. It was my meet last of the season, and I could feel the eyes of coaches and spectators on the pool. Swimming the 500m is a long, and daunting 20-lap race—a test of mental fortitude and physical endurance—especially… Read More »

Caleb Lundquist, 17

Without Tears Thirteen years; seems like quite a long time, doesn’t it? Well over a decade, and if counted from birth, takes up most of your childhood life; yes thirteen years can be seen as a substantial amount of time– a lengthy period of life. Well, at least until it’s understood that thirteen years actually stands for the age a young boy was killed at, and suddenly thirteen, that substantial amount of our lives, seems unfair; thirteen becomes too low… Read More »

Alex Figueiredo, 15

I Am No Olympian     This was it, finally. The sun was glaring down at me, beating me with its endless, Apollo-worthy electromagnetic hammer of brightness. Sweat flowed down my face like jubilant magma flowing from a cryptodomic volcano. The dust from the track rose around me like an army of killer bees, swarming around my adolescent head and stabbing into my open mouth like a drill-wielding dentist experiencing a severe sneeze mid-operation. My legs were screaming; my lungs were… Read More »

Evelyn Arroyo, 17

Rise Above Fashion It was an early Friday morning, a day planned to be one of the most rewarding for Joshua Woods because he would finally get his hands on those Nike Air Jordan XI ‘Bred’ sneakers. It began as a simple trip to Willowbrook Mall with his friend; they had woken up early in order to be first in line in what is known to be one of the craziest, most consumer-hungry retail lines in history. Woods and his… Read More »

Feben Messele, 17

My Home I used to be furious at the advertisement that represented Ethiopia as a grimy boy begging for food; on the summer of 2011, when my mother, my younger sister and I flew to Ethiopia to visit family, I understood its accuracy. Although that unparalleled interdependence between the citizens was there, the times, the streets, and the country had changed. Most of what I saw contradicted what I had remembered. I do not think it was my unaccustomed eyes… Read More »

Audrey Hall, 16

Headstrong and Passionate One of the traits that I value highly in myself is my ability to make my decisions, no matter how much pressure I face. I have never been able to let others choose what is best for me. Throughout my entire childhood, I have found this aspect of my personality extremely beneficial in the long run. I have learned for myself when it is worth it to say no, or cease activities that I am no longer… Read More »

Paco Villegas, 17

My Origins I can remember everything as far back as preschool—when life was as simple as the colored building blocks I used to play with, and when stress and sleep deprivation weren’t even factors that came into play. The world I come from is a planet like everyone else’s but the life I live is that of my own; factors such as community and family have influenced my life, and therefore are important parts of my world. I grew up… Read More »

Lauren Gonzales, 15

Back to Basics Many of my friends ask me why I take film photos. They state: “Lauren, it’s so much easier to just take a photo on your iPhone,” and “Why would you wait so long just to see a picture?!” Film photography is a time honored tradition, one that has gotten lost in the sea of new technology. I believe the modern age has taken away the manual style of life for the world. The satisfying feeling of taking… Read More »