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Words of wisdom from a 17-year-old boyfriendless dork in 1996

Words of wisdom from a 17-year-old boyfriendless dork in 1996

I've been working on a novel for...oh...the past five years or so. Really more than that, when you take into account that it started as a short story almost five years before I decided to lengthen it. The book is a contemporary young adult novel, so I've spent a LOT of time scouring old photo albums and yearbooks to help jog my memory about what it was like to be a dorky high school girl.

In a recent draft, I added something where the main character talks about her bedroom door, which led me to look at a picture I took of my own bedroom door from way back in 1996-1997, before I left for college and my dad immediately scraped all that shit off and revarnished the wood. I'm fairly certain he did that, like, the day I moved to Indianapolis.

The door was covered with song lyrics and poetry and a sadly ironic men's room sign. All of the quotes were there because they meant something to me, because they spoke to my teenage heart (though, reading them as a 35-year-old women, I'm kind of baffled as to why). But, hey, if you're looking for a little inspiration, here are all of the quotes from my high school bedroom door (at least all the ones I was able to make out from the picture).

"I wanted to see you walking backwards to get the sensation of you coming home. I wanted to see you walking away from me without the sensation of you leaving me alone." -- "Time and Time Again," The Counting Crows

"So what is love then? Is it dictated or chosen? Does it sing like the hymns of a thousand years, or is it just pop emotion? And if it ever was there and it left, does that mean it was never true, and to exist it must elude? Is that why I think these things of you?" -- "Mystery," The Indigo Girls

"So we're okay, we're fine. Baby, I'm here to stop your crying, chase all the ghosts from your head. I'm stronger than the monster beneath your bed, smarter than the tricks played on your heart. We'll look at them together, then we'll take them apart. Adding up the total of a love that's true, multiply life by the power of two." -- "Power of Two," The Indigo Girls (I really liked the Indigo Girls.)

"Some things I hold too tightly; some things I'll never touch." -- "Keeper of My Heart," The Indigo Girls (I really, really liked the Indigo Girls)

"I laughed as I said it, this is my situation. It's not pictures or privilege, it's just self preservation. I don't want you to feel any obligation. It feels so funny to be free. All you pretty pretenders, negligent venders, aren't you precious inside? I have no need for anger with intimate strangers and I've got nothing to hide." -- "Reunion," The Indigo Girls (Really.)

"I am the way into the city of woe. I am the way to a forsaken people. I am the way into eternal sorrow...Abandon all hope, ye who enter here." -- The Inferno, Dante (I mean, what self-respecting high schooler didn't have this on s/his door?)

I wish I could tell what was on the rainbow and mountain papers, but let's just assume those are more Indigo Girls quotes. Do you like my PrintShop skills? I bet my parents wanted to kill me for using that much colored ink.

Did you have anything on your bedroom door in high school? Which quotes meant the most to you, and can you remember why?
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