A Press Democrat Blog

Teen Life

News and opinion from local teens

Haaris Khan, 17

Trapped I’m no carpenter, but I know when I’ve been screwed. And this royal screwing took place on a father-son bonding trip to a burger shop this summer. I have the habit of taking off my slippers while I’m outside. So while my dad parks the car and exits, I’m trying to put my flip flops on. After a ten second struggle, I gave my routine pep talk: “alright Haaris, push that chest out. Keep your head up. Walk in… Read More »

Maxwell Yu, 17

Don’t Cut the Back Is that short enough in the front? Yes, that’s short enough, now I can see without all that hair in my eyes. What about the back? Ehh, I don’t have eyes in the back of my head, so don’t cut the back. Don’t cut the back? Don’t cut the back. Wake up. School next morning. Guys I barely talk to pat me on the back. Nice haircut, Max! What a change! Girls I talk to give… Read More »

Katie Sachen, 17

No Ending In sixth grade I wrote a scary story about a girl who goes to stay at her creepy aunt’s house.  Freshman year I wrote a dystopian story about predetermined futures.  Sophomore year I wrote a short story about meeting my seventy-five year old self.  What do all these stories have in common?  None of them have endings.  Or at least, not satisfactory ones.  The girl in my scary story may or may not have died, the protagonist in… Read More »

Rebecca Cisneros, 17

Finally Home I am not American. Technically speaking, I am an American citizen, and I was born in San Francisco; however, I have never been able to fully identify myself as living among the American culture. While my father and his brothers were the first generation to be born in America, they were brought up through Argentinean, Spanish, and Italian ethics. After living in Argentina and going to school there, my father ultimately became an Argentinean.    Having a mother from… Read More »

Audrey Hall, 17

Bug Girl For the entirety of elementary school, I was the weird bug girl. whenever the errant beetle, earwig, or spider wandered into the room, it became my time to shine. I would delicately carry out each six- or eight-legged creature amid the horrified gasps and screams of me classmates. for years, I would wear a scummy purple t-shirt illustrated with pictures of giant insects, and lecture anyone who would listen on the anatomy of insects and arachnids. I felt… Read More »

Kate Hoover, 15

Graffiti Artist Walking through the streets of downtown Portland, Oregon, trying to find a place to eat dinner in the mecca of food trucks and creative doughnuts, I remember seeing graffiti everywhere: on the side of a building, framing a walk through an alley, on a bridge across the Willamette River. From intricate, colorful designs to a simple word or symbol, spray paint was a main source of expressing artistic creativity. These painted compositions were not only displayed throughout Portland,… Read More »

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 »