I vascillate between periods of extreme laissez-faire and remorse for the hilarious idiocy I put myself through. So much so, that in the last couple years of high school I kept uttering some insipid hardcore lyric about no regrets thinking it would make an excellent life mantra (and now, conveniently, cannot remember how it goes). It got me thinking about all the stupid and memorable things I did or purchased or partook in. That, and everyone seems curious about what I was like before I met them in university, so I’ve decided to sate your curiosity, dear readers, by digging up some artifacts from my embarassing ugly duckling days. This reads more like an annotated version of my adolescence, but rest assured these are the worst parts of 16-year-old Canice. So I present to you a pictorial list of (mostly high school era) Things I Regret:
My student cards. They progress clockwise from the bottom right. Note my closed eyes and hideous yellow/red combination at the tender age of 14, followed by the SPIKED COLLAR the next year. Grade 11 features contact lenses for the first time, blue pixie-cut hair, and attention from the opposite sex. In grade 12, I sweet talked the photographer into letting me rep the East Side, claiming authority as a yearbook staffer.
A sampling of my musical tastes, circa age 16. I know you envy my sizeable collection of Nine Inch Nails albums.
Accessories of choice included leather wrist bands. The beaded thing is my first gift from a boy, given to me after he returned from a family trip to Hawaii. It would mean more to me, except I didn’t like him back. Sorry, Jason Smith.
Ruining this perfectly good hard case. Inside this hideous hand-painted monstrosity is a sparkle-red Strat that sounds like shit. I received this as a peace offering on my sixteenth birthday after my mom banned me from seeing any of my friends, whom she claimed were “bad influences”.
My graduating year profile. I can’t make this shit up. Full text:
Nicknames: Candice, Cannister, Emokid, Straightedge
Future ambition: The owner of Buddyhead, Lambgoat, Pitchfork Media and/or CMJ
Probable fate: Washed-up photographer to the stars with severe problems [Note: it was supposed to say ‘alcoholism’, but our supervising teacher found my profile offensive. I’m not sure if i meant the celebrities had problems, or if I did.]
Favourite teachers: Chan, Del Bianco, Dancyger, Lipton, Pearce, Serjeantson, Strongbad
Pet peeves: Excessive flesh, slow drivers, high school parties
Catchphrases: “Oh, snap!”; “On a scale of one to awesome, I am super great”; “Bummer”; “BAAAMM!”; “Dude, that’s hardcore.” [I have no explanation for this. I’m sorry.]
Embarassing moments: Lee Denaeyer, grades 9 through 11
Claim to fame: Keeping the edge, the Rice Rocket, rock snobbery, intense bitterness that can level egos in a glance [Note: It seemed to be a huge deal whenever people met me and realized I was legitimately straight edge. Richmond Hill is a cesspool of overly-indulgent, drug-addled, alcoholic suburban brats.]
Tragic flaw: Emotional masochism, being jailbait
Advice to niners: If you haven’t reached puberty yet, you’re too young to be dressing like that.
No gods to slave to, and no heroes to kill for.
That last quote was a Between the Buried and Me line. I still like this band, and I still like that quote. I almost think I was smarter at 17 than I am now.
My yearbook credit. I didn’t do anything at all (sorry Richard), but they still put me in there. Notice the awesome OG Bane hoodie (which I sold this year and made a killing off of) and my meticulously chosen, rotating collection of 1″ band pins. This particular configuration is: Hopesfall, Newfound Interest in Connecticut, Reach the Sky, and Small Brown Bike.
A more recent item. Here is the majority of my sneaker collection. I want to burn them. I would sell them on Ebay, but realistically speaking, I would only get back 25% of what I paid for them. Also pictured is my collection of hardcore band t-shirts, neatly folded and waiting to be worn to the gym or to sleep. And lots of ugly jeans.
Unfortunately there are a lot of things missing from this list, seeing as in the Great Hard Drive Freakout of 2004, I lost all my high res photos from an old point and shoot. Here are some honourable mentions:
- My first boyfriend Lee. I get really bummed when I realize I now have no photos of him, because he was really hot and I don’t think anyone believes me.
- Dyeing my hair the following colours: red, blue, green, orange, and yellow
- Buying 30 Weezer t-shirts and every piece of Smashing Pumpkins memorabilia known to mankind
- Buying all these said band t-shirts in either youth extra-small or adult size large
This is a total gold mine of blackmail material. But truth be told, I’m having trouble finding more things I don’t regret rather than do regret, thus confirming my suspicions I am in a period of laissez-faire bliss once more! (I could have told you this anyhow. I have gotten myself into a hilarious romantic predicament, as well as annihilated this school term without breaking a real sweat. C’est un miracle!) Just to end things on a positive, bike-nerdy note, here is a short list of More Recent Things I do not Regret Doing:
Buying Dura-Ace lockrings for a winter beater? Officially the most valuable component on this POS Trek.