College is funny because you can watch friends go in and out of serious, committed relationships while somehow managing to never make it past the “What are we?” stage with countless douchebags for four years straight. At least I like to think it’s funny when alone in my room meant for four people on date night. Well, date night for all my friends but what is so accurately described as “me time” for yours truly.
Yeah, that’s right, ME time.
Time for ME to do things, alone.
Oh wait, I already have plenty of that because I am alone.
Crap, I’m lonely.
I don’t mean I’m alone in the sense that I have no friends or family that care about me and love me unconditionally, because that couldn’t be further from the truth. I have plenty of people that care about me and love me and support me endlessly. But, because I’m selfish and jealous and honestly always a little bit salty I still want more people to love me. Well, person. One person (I’d like to think I’d be a monogamist if I were ever presented with the option). Continue reading “It’s Not Me, It’s You: A Series of Unfortunate Douchebags by Anna Walters”
hablo lo inglés matao
hablo lo español matao
no sé leer ninguno bien
so it is, spanglish to matao
what i digo
¡ay, virgen, yo no sé hablar!
–Tato Laviera, “my graduation speech”
When I applied for a job at Breakthrough Collaborative in Santa Fe, I thought teaching writing for a nonprofit would be a chance to do what I love and also do some good. After three years of majoring in English at Drake University, I had only completed work in my field of interest during the school year—tutoring college students in my university’s writing workshop and helping elementary and middle school students practice their English while I was in Spain. Perhaps as a consequence, I still had no idea what I wanted to do with an English degree. As I grew closer and closer to graduating, I became increasingly nervous about finding a purpose. It didn’t help that my major seemed to be the butt of every joke. In Spain, when I told a cab driver I was studying English, he said, “Ah,” as if he now understood that I was suffering from a grave predicament. He turned to me confidentially and said, “Estás estudiando tu propia lengua.” Listening to John Mulaney on Netflix, I heard something similar, as he cracked a series of jokes about obtaining a four-year degree “in a language I already spoke.” In the words of Princeton, a singing puppet down on his luck in Avenue Q, “What do you do with a B.A. in English?” I hoped teaching would be my answer, so I could finally have a sense of direction. Continue reading “My Graduation Speech by Abi Grimminger”
An Oreo. To some this is a very delicious cookie. Crunchy chocolaty outside that seems to melt in your mouth and a silky-smooth crème filling. This is the (black) cookie that craves (white) milk. It is perfect for when everything is going wrong and just one package would be good enough to solve all the problems in the world. However, to some an Oreo isn’t just a cookie. To some it’s an insulting nickname. To me, an Oreo stopped being just a cookie a long time ago, now it means black on the outside, white on the inside. An Oreo is what I’ve been unofficially called since sixth grade, but to be honest the not so subtle racism started when I was much younger than that. Continue reading “Oreos Are Just Cookies by Sydney Moore”
For one of my classes I was assigned a piece on a pop-punk band that had started a tour around the United States. I had never heard of the band, or of the venue for that matter. Neither of those things surprised me because I am not an avid pop-punk fan, and the music venue is in a town an hour north of where I live. So I thought there should be no reason to worry about what I might get myself into. This was my last journalism class, and I didn’t want one of the last memories of this degree to be me half-heartedly working on an assignment that I had no passion for. Plus, I had done fairly well in all of my courses; I wanted to continue that pattern if I could. I was going to do my damnedest to make the experience of completing this piece something that would equate to more emotion in the final piece.
The day of the concert I looked up the address of the venue, but found nothing. I thought there may have been a chance the owners were old-school and didn’t believe in using a website; I wasn’t sure what the pop-punk crowd was into. I opted to call them instead. A man picked up and I asked where the venue was. Instead of giving me the address he asked who I was. Strange. I told him I was a student trying to cover a band playing there, and that I had gotten his phone number from one of my classmates. He asked me if I was the police. I told him no, and he begrudgingly gave me the address. This worried me a little bit, but not enough to deter me from going. I did the thing that all people who get killed in horror movies do; I justified everything creepy that happened by concluding it was just coincidence. Continue reading “Turns Out, I Would Risk My Life For A Grade by Olive Riley”
The Sleeping Dreams:
- My dream started by an outdoor pool, where the sun was shining and reflecting off the water. A dead woman lay on the concrete next to the pool, and my dream Grandmother (neither of my real Grandmothers made an appearance) sent me on a quest to protect a box (Pandora connection?). The quest brought me to a huge cave battle against flying monkey demons, which could be my subconscious telling me that I’ve seen both The Wizard of Oz and the Hobbit movies too many times.
- The recurring one that I had when I was five about being lost on a cliff with my cousin, Brittany. When we found a house and knocked on the door, a witch made Brittany and I eat dirt. The dirt made all of our teeth fell out. It was scary enough that I had the dream three times. A manifestation of my mind trying to make sense of irrational fear and anxiety (which is the common interpretation for any dream about losing teeth).
- All the dreams that I had where I was about to be murdered. The interesting thing here—there was always some sort of supernatural twist to the plotline. Sometimes the dreams start out centered somewhere in the vicinity of reality, but they always manage to veer off course into some sort of supernatural/horror adaptation. This could be attributed to my love for all things fantasy and an overactive imagination, which hasn’t been stifled by my attempts at adulthood.
Continue reading “Dreams by Caitlyn Morehouse”
His name was Austin Koehler. His hair was stringy and blond. He was the type of boy that was constantly dirty. It was fair to assume that his mom didn’t make him take as many showers as mine did. He was continuously on the go, always outside, just ready to explore whatever piqued his interest.
Austin was my next-door neighbor and neither of our backyards had fences, so he would always stroll over to mine. It was pretty obvious who had the better yard, because mine was home to a gigantic play set that had chain-linked swings and a bright yellow slide. Needless to say, he was over constantly—so much so that from time to time my parents would complain about his lack of parental supervision. I didn’t mind Austin being over all the time. He played the big brother role and showed me all of the things that I needed to learn in order to be a kid growing up on the south side of Lincoln, Nebraska. He showed me how to climb large piles of dirt and how to pump my legs back to get the momentum that allowed me to swing higher. Continue reading “Grief: An Afterthought by Kenzie Busekist”
Lent 2017: Junior Year
When looking at my schedule outlined in my planner, with the highlighted notes and cramped handwriting, I try to think of what else I am missing. Did I write down that meeting with my advisor? Did I ever respond to the three emails my boss sent me today? How long is today’s recruitment meeting? Will I have enough time to grab dinner with my roommates? I can’t cancel again. Did I ever respond to my boyfriend’s text? Has that due date been moved for the paper? Or did I miswrite that? What wasn’t recorded from the emails that I recently received? What if somebody told me something in person that I don’t remember?
I was busy, but I was the sort of person who thrived on being busy. It gave me a purpose. I knew my schedule was bad when my roommate asked me what I was giving up for Lent. Continue reading “My Schedule and Me: The End of Love by Madeline Miller”
January 20, 2018, 17:14: The day my life begins. I first feel cold. Something is touching my back. Then this strange tickling on my front. It’s odd, but it feels right somehow. Suddenly I know where I am – in your hand. Hello, new owner! I’ve been trained for this. As I was told in the factory, you now begin the steps to set me up. You have just pressed my power button. Once the screen lights up, you select whether you wish to start from scratch or restore from backup. I ask that you kindly restore from backup, because then I get new, fun memories to fill my empty Gigabytes. Plus then I will better know who you are, and therefore, be a better companion for you. At the factory, I was told that we often fill a void in our owner’s lives, so knowing everything we can about them as soon as possible is important. I’m looking forward to learning how to fill this void for you. The backup will help, even though I know it’s taking a while to download, and the bit of your face I can see looks impatient. I’m working hard to recall, and eventually I’m finished. Now you are holding me again, this time smiling. Back up restored! Welcome to your new iPhone! Continue reading “HELLO, NEW OWNER! by Autumn Meyer”
my friend liz had beautiful teeth and she knew it and she loved them
liz and her teeth moved to new york city in the summer
after a few months she got hit by a car as she crossed the street
no that’s not right she didn’t get hit she got smashed i’m talking
Continue reading “Teeth by Bailee Cofer”
Smack dab in the middle of Lincoln, Nebraska, sits a lake. More specifically, Holmes Lake. To be frank, the lake itself is quite gross. The water is composed of thick brown liquid that looks uninhabitable, yet the lake is home to whiskered catfish that resemble someone’s drunken grandpa, along with bug-eyed trout. The moss is a neon green color that covers most—if not all—of the rocks that surround the natural lake. The lake is small—112 acres to be exact. It’s nothing compared to the great lakes that are found up north. It is surrounded completely by trails, and you can almost always find a jogger or a biker circling the water. Flaws and all, the locals love the lake because it’s a great place to get some fresh air, hang out with friends, let dogs roam free and start up your own softball league. Continue reading “Holmes Lake by Kenzie Busekist”