On the Cover
By Mariah, age 15, Minnesota
'Ello, world, my pseudonym is Mariah, and I breathed my first breath 15 years ago. I am currently in the ninth grade, and am looking forward to my high school career next year as a "freshmore". Okay, not really. I admit, I didn't even make it through my introduction, and I already lied to you once (possibly thrice).
You will probably find me entangled in a mob consisting of actors, artists, musicians, scenesters, beatniks, hippies, nerds, and hipsters. I am a firm believer in the religion of Merriam-Websterism, with Random House being my place of worship.
I am a truly random and metaphoric person. I shun normalcy and everything associated with it. I do not like the fact that we "weird/unique/different/not normal" folks receive a bad reputation for our decision not to conform.
I would never be able to survive without my friends. They are all amazing in their own ways, and to lose any of them would be a travesty.
I believe morals are important. I don't like hysteria; this swine flu "outbreak" is not helping matters.
I don't like labels; I find it amusing how so many people consider themselves to be individuals, yet worry about fitting in. I believe a clique is a group of people who feel that it is important to imitate each other in order to stand out.
I am also an extrovert. I despise redundant schedules, I don't like quiet places, I love to talk ... and write ... sometimes at the same time, and I always have the urge to meet new people.
My musical taste is rather eclectic. However, I cannot listen to country music, unless the likes of Johnny Cash and company are involved in the equation. On the other hand, I am a wholehearted fan of the Libertines, Dirty Pretty Things, the Killers, Franz Ferdinand, The Doors, Led Zeppelin, the Cribs, the Rolling Stones, Nirvana, Coldplay, Bob Marley, Tom Petty, Frank Sinatra, Billie Holiday, Norah Jones, and Macy Gray - mainly classic, alternative, and indie rock music - and lots of jazz.
My great passions include singing. This past March, after being chosen, I participated in the ACDA National Honor Choir Convention in Oklahoma City. The experience was amazing. I enjoyed meeting other singers from across the nation, and made lots of friends along the way. Last year I also participated in the ACDA North-Central Regional Honor Choir in Fargo, North Dakota.
I also got involved in my high school's fall musical production of Les Miserables. We were the first school in Minnesota to produce this musical. It was my first year being in a musical, and it was a blast! I couldn't make up my mind whether I wanted to play volleyball, basketball, and golf, as I usually did in years past, or audition for the musical. I don't regret making the spontaneous switch.
I LOVE musicals! My all-time favorites are The Producers, Singing in the Rain, Cabaret, Chicago, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, Hairspray, Phantom of the Opera, Guys & Dolls, Les Miserables, and Jekyll & Hyde.
I LOVE to write poetry, songs, and short stories - I play the piano and the tenor saxophone too.
One of my other passions is web designing. I have created about fifteen websites within the past 7 years, but my current website project, which is proving to be the most successful so far, is Velociteen (www.velociteen.com). I enjoy graphic designing as well. I have a plethora of ideas circulating in my mind, yet I wish I had the time and the means to execute each individual idea.
My favorite subjects in school are choir, physical education, and English. I love creativity. I would perish right this second if I were restrained to talk, think, or write about generic things.
This year I was on my high school's trivia, speech, and BPA team. I am also the Secretary of Communications in the Junior State of America at my school. In speech, I competed in the extemporaneous speaking category, and, needless to say, I will not be doing that again.
I currently have a 3.8 GPA, thanks in part to my horrid algebraic skills. How I made it into Algebra 2 I do not know. Someone must have epically failed at looking over my transcript.
After high school, I would love to attend an Ivy League school in New England, or Oxford, and if that doesn't work out, I would like to attend Boston College. I have always dreamed of living in either Massachusetts or near London, England. I am interested in becoming either a politician, foreign diplomat, graphic designer, website designer, psychologist, or journalist. I don't have a lot of time to pick and choose though, unfortunately.
I write for Sweet Designs Magazine because Teendom is the one of the scariest portions of a person's life, when you first start learning how to cope with various changes that affect your life. I think it's important to express yourself during these times to help others overcome the travesties of Teendom by knowing it's possible to make it through these tough times, and that there are survivors.