A Letter to My 13-Year-Old Self

Dear Kyle,

Put the f****** note down.

I’m looking at you as I write this. The stupidity is dribbling out of your ears. One hand’s holding a pencil and the other’s holding a buckeye — an actual nut in your hand.

You‘re convinced it brings good luck.

To us grownups, it’s just a metaphor.

I wish I could greet you at her locker and lift you upside down, draining you of your sentimental sap. Maybe the humiliation of being manhandled would dissuade your tiny mitts from shoving that farcical sonnet between the metal slits.

Ever heard of cigarettes, nerd? No one reads in iambic pentameter.

You are such a naive wiener — all “heart” and “to be or not to be.” Well, there’s no question. You’re bound to be a virgin for life.


I should sock you in the jaw. Give you a real wake up call before someone else does. After all, you’re just bread crumbs, dude, falling apart every time you listen to Mayday Parade.

Why are you so fascinated by romance, you anemic trope? Stick with your frustration over singing parts. Channel that rage, instead.

I hate you so much. Dweeb.

You can’t see what’s coming for you. In one year, you’re going to have your first kiss. It will be the last for a little bit. Your fault for being so round.

I can already hear you complaining, waxing reductive poetics about “waiting for a good girl” and “being a good guy.” Uh, heads up, loser. Everyone else is having a balls-deep ball and you’re at the punch bowl.

One day, you’ll wake up and realize debt incurred over stuffed animals. You’ll realize men drink single malt scotch and speak in euphemisms.

You’ll realize that being a boy was just as worthwhile as becoming a man.

Go fill your journal with more vacuums. You disgust sad people, even.

I wish I was more like you.