A blog by Lori Lyons

Monday, November 22, 2010

Dear Lori at 16

There have been a lot of changes in my life recently -- some good, some not so good.

I'm getting old and getting crickety. Bones ache and crack. My roots are fighting back but I can't see well enough to do battle.

And my beloved Grannie left me her feet.

But after 24 years, I'm finally able to get some much-needed rest. I'm no longer running around the River Parishes like a madwoman, searching for stories and cajoling coaches into interviews. I no longer crank out copy at a frenetic pace like I used to, back when I covered sports for the newspaper. And I do mean covered.

Alas, my years of chasing teenaged boys have finally come to an end.

I have become what I like to call an "Internet Specialist." My new (seated) position affords me many hours to peruse the news of the day and other time-killers on the Internet. Facebook, Google and Twitter are my very good friends. I don't know what I'd do without them, frankly.

And I am beginning a love affair with Twitter and its 140 character updates. Quick and easy. Yes indeedy.

And a few weeks ago, I stumbled upon an intriguing hashtag:


Now, some Internet junkies took that to mean tweet as if you were yourself at 16 -- which seemed rather pointless if you ask me. I mean, the only thing I was thinking about at 16 was boys, boys, boys and more boys.

But to tweet back to myself at 16, well that I certainly would do. Certainly should do! And I did..

Imagine love story between mortal teenage girl and vampire. Now write it.

I had a pretty good imagination back then, good command of the English language, a bleeding heart. Could happen.

I also told myself:

Buy Apple stock! Lots and lots of Apple stock!

Don't I wish?

Then there was the practical:

Slow down and enjoy Europe.

Because you're likely to never get there again. Those 28 days in Europe with cousin Ted and cousins Lance and Gloria will have to last you a lifetime. And even though the love of your (then) life, Doug, is waiting for you, you should slow down. Look around. And don't miss a thing.

Not wanting to be a Twitter-hog I didn't tweet all the advice I would give my 16-year-old self, but since then, I haven't stopped thinking about all the things I would say to my younger self, if I could.

Things like:

Study harder. Especially in college. And don't drop all those classes.

Finish your education degree. You'll wish you had.

When you see all those nice people passing out credit card applications in the Quad, keep walking. Very fast.

Learn to live without carbs. They're very, very bad.

Leave your hair alone, even when Mom suggests that you add some more red. It will turn purple. The week of Janine's wedding.

When you're 25 and think you're too old to have long hair? Get over it. You're not.

Listen up! You cannot handle your liquor. Drink ONE beer, then stop! Trust me on this.

Don't wait so long to start a family. It will be too late.

But don't worry. God has the perfect child all picked out for you. You have to wait, but you'll get her someday.

Don't fight with your brother. Hug him. Love him. And nag the hell out of him about wearing his seatbelt.

Don't leave the hospital when Dad is there.

Ditto for Grannie and Gran and Grandpa. They'll all be gone the next day.

Pensacola Beach is a cool place for a couple of young, single girls to spend a weekend. You should go!

Take a year to work at DisneyWorld. Be the balloon holder.

When the 18-wheeler is in the turning lane, with his blinker on, he's going to go straight.

That house you want to buy? Comes with a parade.

And, whatever you do...

Take the buyout!!

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