Posts tagged “childhood”

  1. In some ways, camp was an exercise in playing pretend. If we rode horses, went swimming, shot some arrows, and never talked about our disabilities, then maybe we’d be almost normal, almost abled. There wasn’t a chance to wonder if we were just as whole as abled kids and our experiences just as valid. We accepted without hesitation that normal was the goal.

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  2. While there was plenty I could learn from Anne Shirley or Harriet the Spy, I always longed to read about an actual tomboy like me – no long braids, no puffed sleeves, no growing up into a swan after an ugly duckling childhood. As a young reader, I always wanted a role model who didn’t grow out of her awkward phrase, who didn’t eventually find that it all just fell into place – because I…

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  3. Nintendo was to be my central fasciniche, and more than that: it would be my lantern in the dark, offering me the means to comprehend my existence and the will to try. I had been a boy without a role, trapped in a world I couldn’t understand. But a game gives you a role. A game gives you a world you’re meant to understand. In a game, it’s impossible not to belong.

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  4. 201 hours. Just over eight days. Working 9:00 to 5:00, it would take you five straight weeks to get to 201 hours. It's a lot of time -- the most precious commodity in this world, the one thing that can't be bought or sold or regained once lost. I am about to spend 201 hours watching a television show, one that I have already seen. Why? The X-Files, an iconic pop-culture phenomenon in the '90s, is returning…

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  5. Felix Kent's previous work for The Toast can be found here. When I was applying to colleges a lifetime ago, my atheist father suggested I write my application essays about Sai Baba. He said there were lots of smart kids more or less like me applying to college -- this part of my life set me apart. It was good advice, perhaps. I didn’t follow it. Sathya Sai Baba, who died in 2011, was…

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  6. This week was the full feelings buffet. Remember, you can always come back for more:

    Celeste Ng called How to Make Yogurt in Manila by Grace Talusan ‘beautiful and moving’ (on the Twitter machine) so you don’t have to take our word for its awesomeness.

    “Things That Are Meant To Make You Feel Safe And Comfortable In A Psych Ward That Just Make You Feel Crazier.” Episode by Naadeyah Haseeb will tear

  7. Previously by Molly Knefel: Growing Up Gender Nonconforming Every girl at sports camp, it seemed to me, was there for cheerleading. As a second-grader (well, summer-before-third-grader), I harbored a Daria-like disdain for the cheerleaders, fueled by their much greater hatred of me. We stayed in college dorms, two rooms with two girls each, adjoined by a bathroom. I got placed with three girls who were already best friends. In my memory, they all look alike…

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  8. I owned a white doll when I was two years old. Like any self-respecting tiny caretaker, I had a miniature stroller to tote the doll around in. I made crop circles on the rug of my living room as I wheeled back and forth busily. My parents later bought the doll a companion, but this one looked like me. They propped the new black doll up in the stroller beside her white equivalent.

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  9. “Keep your hands to yourself,” I say to Alma, one of the pre-K students at my school. Alma narrows her eyes and gives me a look that says Go to hell. She is holding a sharpened pencil, readying it to poke another student. “I'm watching you. Put it away.” I see my former student, Claudia, running from the sidewalk into the street. Why aren't the teachers stopping her? I look around for the music teacher who usually monitors…

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  10. Previously by Abbey Fenbert: The Pitch Meeting for Wishbone On my honor: The horse was too high. I was no coward. It’s just there was an assessment, and logic deemed the horse was way too high up. I will never be good at selling things. Dad will never take the cookie sales sheet “to his work” and sell boxes by the dozen, yet I will covet the catalogue of prizes and imagine that thermos with…

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  11. Previously by Jacqueline Steiger: 16 Gemstones Renamed Correctly I have always considered myself a reader: always stuck in a book, always escaping into another world. As a child, I would read during dinner, at night under the covers, in the car. We had a rule that if I picked out a book at the bookstore, I could not start reading it until we exited, because my mother said she was tired of me "finishing…

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  12. Your father comes outside only to tell you that the orchard has closed. He finds you in the backyard, drifting through the pool on a half-deflated float and finally finishing Franny and Zooey. There is little else to do when you come home to visit your parents; it’s also probably time for you to return the waterlogged paperback to your friend, as she sent it to you in the mail two years ago. You have…

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  13. “Strike one.” I looked up from under the rim of my Washington Nationals baseball cap, a cheaply made one with a flimsy brim and mesh skull. The ball fell to the dirt behind me. I’d hit a foul. I hit another. Strike two. Okay, deep breath. This was it. There were two runners on base, but this next hit mattered mostly because we were nearly halfway through the season and my own foot had yet…

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  14. This is the story you’ve been told: you walked at nine months, ran at ten, and by eleven were doing somersaults upon somersaults until you collapsed red-faced from the motion, but most of all from the giggling.

    By thirteen months, you had stopped all of this.

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  15. It was a big deal to central Florida Mormons when the Orlando Temple opened its doors in 1994--not just because prior to its construction, the closest Latter-Day Saint temple was a whopping seven hours away in Atlanta; my mom would drive up with her single friends and they would get Steak N Shake on the way and it seemed to be the greatest joy of her life, after her precious daughters of course--but

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