I’d like to say:
As a former member of your clique
(and a current member of your representation)
I know it’s hard to be a young woman ages 18-to 24-years-old.

They put you in a time slot
that doesn’t reflect your views
with a ratings system
that doesn’t respect your truths.

From one cynical self-hater-by-default to another,
please put down the magazine article that has bored you
into hair extensions and reality television.
Stop with the 20th century redux:

Make your own era. You are not out of your own league.
Fake eyelashes will not get you Ryan Gosling.
Nor will sporting a Barack Obama keychain.

No need to break all the rules:
Just bend them into balloon animals,
give them to your little brothers and sisters.
Show them how silly and cute American culture is.
Time will naturally deflate all of it.

Start mosh-pits in the crowded thoughts of tycoons:
Stir something up with your tongue.
Sip someone else’s logic then spit it out
(preferably when they’re looking).

Taste test your own style. 

Get your mind into the gutter of others:

Search for the things they let go down the drain or threw away.

Everyone’s scared to tell you how they really feel.

Including Oprah.

Stop getting wasted and throwing up
your individuality outside of clubs.
There is no fast food to help you cope with that.

Leave your mark on the world
with something that can’t be chosen from
a tattoo book of Chinese symbols
for the lower back.

Pierce something other than your skin:
When I tell you to think for yourself,
don’t give a shit what I say.


(© 2010 Amber tamblyn)