You know when you look back at your childhood and ask yourself "how sure am I that I wasn't retarded?  I'm pretty sure, right?  Holy shit, was I retarded?"   That happened to me today and I'm pretty sure that the answer is "yes."

I found one of my journals from elementary school.  Have you ever seen the movie "A Beautiful Mind," where Russel Crowe is supposed to be some sort of genius and he writes all sorts of crazy conspiracy plans all over his walls but actually he's just schizophrenic?  That's pretty much exactly what my journal looks like, except the signs don't point toward schizophrenia.

Excusing the fact that I obviously wasn't even trying to write on the lines, there are all of these confusing arrows and randomly capitalized words and places where I went back years later to edit in something monumentally important like "I don't need new pants anymore because I bought some cargo pants." Like I was going to be reading along and be suddenly stricken with confusion - "Did I ever buy pants?  I don't remember! Oh God!  How will I ever - oh good, it looks like I bought some cargo pants.  What a relief."

One of my very first journal entries reads "I wonder what my day is going to be like? I hope I have a good day.  I'll write more later."

Then later I just wrote "My hand got shut in the car door.  It hurt."

Another entry reads "I had so much fun at recess today!  We made a slide on a hill out of a cardboard box!   And then we played on it!"

The rest of the page is filled with giant, scrawly writing that says "BOXES ARE SO FUN!!!!!!!"

A week or so later I write "I went to the orthodontist today to get my braces tightened.  Mom had to run errands and she was late picking me up, so I took a nap behind a plant."

Oh good.  A nap behind a plant in a busy dental-complex waiting room.  How perfectly normal.  I'm sure my mom was overjoyed to explain that to everyone.  I can just imagine her shaking me awake and running out of the building, dragging me behind her, yelling "don't judge me!"

Apparently my favorite day ever (I know this because there is a little box above it that says "this is my favorite day") went like this:

"We had a sledding party up at Pine hill and I bashed up my knee.  Then we got pizza!  Me, Alison, Sophie and Shane sat at the same table and we made really long straws by sticking normal straws inside of each other! Then we saw Patch Adams!"

This is followed by three entire pages of Blink 182 lyrics.

Then this:

It starts out with really tiny handwriting that just says "I saw some really awesome green spots today."  (Then the handwriting gets HUGE) "I HAD THE MOST BORING WEEKEND EVER!!  MONET STAYED OVER AND JUST SAT THERE LOOKING STUPID.  SHE WAS AT OUR HOUSE ALL WEEKEND EATING OUR FOOD AND WATCHING OUR MOVIES.  SHE BROUGHT HER STUPID DOG, TRAVIS, AND WHEN I WAS LYING ON THE COUCH, HE JUMPED UP THERE AND STARTED HUMPING MY LEGS AND I COULDN'T MAKE HIM STOP BECAUSE I WAS TRAPPED UNDER A BLANKET!!!!  Sunday was okay though.  I went to Joey's house and we jumped off of furniture onto pillows."  


modelcitizen66 said...

Oh good, you wrote something.. :)

Your not alone, friend.. I may not have had as such a severe case.. However, the problem is, I'm still in that current state.. Maybe I should have had a more serious case, because maybe then I'd be at least partially normal by now.. But no.. I'm not.. I'm still writing crazy shit.. Only difference is.. It's online for the world to scrutinize..

Ok.. In all seriousness. I've worked with successful writers.. I had internships where I got to see the full spectrum of a writers proffession.. And in all honesty.. I don't think I've ever met someone as witty & creatively savvy as yourself. Typically people with an unordinary ability to make words come to life in the way you do, lack severly some other quality.. Or is missing some necessary pieces needed in order to progress... But as I sit here.. I'm honestly impressed & refreshed to actually see someone with genuine, raw talent.. And still passionate.

I have all faith in you, that if you want it, you can have an extremely successful career in any proffesion you want that involves writing in the least bit. Good Luck & Congrats.. I'll stay tuned..

Now write some more..


..Now. =)

Allie said...

Brandon - That is honestly one of the nicest things anyone has ever said to me... thank you. I have days (more than I'd like to admit) where I start doubting myself and my writing and I feel all weird inside and today was one of those days. I really needed to hear what you just said. Thank you. Really, truly thank you. I'm going to print it out and put it on my refrigerator so that next time I feel all doubt-y I have a good chance of coming face to face with your words and realizing that my doubt is unwarranted.

You said that you needed something to read, so I'm going to make you a categorized list of awesome links before I go to bed.

Funny blogs:

Thought-provoking (also some really good humorous posts):

Okay, I think that should tide you over :)

Storm. Kat Storm. said...

But, but... boxes ARE fun.

I really want to find my journals from elementary school, because I went through a phase for about a year where everything had to rhyme.

You heard me.

We all face self doubt, even me, and I'm awesome... It's just part of trying to make something out of what we love. You will be glorious, believe me, You are witty, insightful, and a master of MS paint. I see grand things in your future.

BlackLOG said...

Kids are like cats, they invariably get more out of a box than the expensive contents. Sadly however if you give them just an empty box for their birthday, with out the expensive content, it's like you raped them or something...


Rayne said...

Boxes are more than just cardboard folded into rectangular shapes! I remember in around 2nd grade, we bought a new refridgerator and do you know what it came in!? A BOX! I claimed said box as my own and I took care of it and I cleaned it and I loved it! Somehow I managed to drag it up the stairs in our tiny apartment then and navigate it into the bedroom I had to share with my older brother. And there my box stayed. I slept in it and I ate in it. I played in it and I cried in it. That box was my BEST friend.

Until I jumped on top of it from the bunk bed.

Then it was just squished cardboard.

Anonymous said...

When we got our tv my nieces spent HOURS playing in the box it came in. The entire time I was jealous that I had lost that magical part of me that could make a box anything other than just a box.

Your journals sound just like mine did at the same age. Funny how quickly they went from "Boxes are FUN!" to "I think he likes me he said hi to me in the hall".

And the reason you went back to write comments is that you thought one day someone important would read your journals because you were going to be famous!
No? Just me?... oh...

- Martina

Blissseeker said...

Thank you for bringing back happy memories for me. I don't get many of those! If it makes you feel better, my journal was much, much more disturbing:) I started it when I was about 15. Just about the time that my illness started to become an issue in my life. I think I'm going to burn it. I don't want to take the chance of my wonderful and "straight edge" boyfriend reading it's contents. That would truly be disastrous. You have come up with a great idea though...would you mind if I steal it just a little and post some of my journal entries from the past?

I love your writing:) You're fab!

Chl said...

My sister and I always loved it when our parents bought something that came in a huge box. My grandmother got a new dishwasher once and we had a fort for a week.

And yeah... there's probably one journal floating around my mom's house somewhere and I promise you it's entries are nowhere near the literary quality or your samples. If I ever see that journal again I'm going to burn it.

Amy said...

Holy crap, I KNOW!!! I'm embarrassed for myself when I come across journals from my childhood. I'm so embarrassed for my younger me when I read them that I almost feel like I should stop to protect her privacy, because clearly no one knew back then how ridiculous I was.

How I grew up to be semi-normal is a mystery to me because I'd have put my money on the kid who wrote that journal living life facing a corner chanting about how life is unfair and no boys like her and how she didn't get the Barbie she wanted.

Anonymous said...

I read this in my reader and thought it was someone else but when I clicked to comment I realized it was you and all of a sudden it wasn't so random and weird it was just you. That's totally a compliment!

Just A Girl said...

I remember when I was 6 I wrote something about my parents taking me to The Phantom of the Opera once I stopped sucking my fingers (yeah I was already a fucking nerd at 6 because I ASKED for that reward) and I made the P look like an R and I was SERIOUSLY bothered by it. I went over the p part over and over because someone was totally gonna judge me for that mistake.

From 5th-8th grade my diary was all "ZOMG EVAN I LOVE HIM NO SERIOUSLY I STILL DO WHY DOESN'T HE LOVE ME MAYBE IT'S THIS MICKEY MOUSE TSHIRT!" Except the first entry which said "I got this diary in the secret santa and Jeff either REALLY knows girls or his mom picked it out because I love it!" Jeff was like, 8. And a total doucheketeer and the diary had dinosaurs on it. Which was sweet but again proves that I'm a nerd.

Sarah said...

Allie, Having lots of fun with some of these blogs I haven't read before. Thanks!
Also, I love that you raided elementary school stuff. I raided high school stuff the other day, and I've been debating posting some of it. I was a real asshole.

Ed said...


You were a good little writer back then, as well.

Patch Adams, HA!

Now I really feel old.

That Kind of Girl said...

I ... I could have written these journal entries last week. I mean, swap out Blink-182 for Dashboard Confessional and dang. Should I be reeling in my love for boxes now that I am legally an adult?

(Not that I ever would real my love in. Just wondering whether I ought to stop talking about it in mixed company.)

Mary said...

I'm pretty sure every child's journal is full of absolute nonsense. You're a braver soul than I to look back at them, I think the embarrassment would physically hurt.

JustLinda said...

I kept journals from 6th grade through the end of high school.

I last saw them about 7 or 8 years ago.

They are in my house, but not where I thought they were and I have no idea where they are.

I imagine my kids laughing at me behind my back. I imagine a Twitter account called where the most pathetic bits from my journals are sent out into the world.

And when I imagine this, my thought are not what you might expect. I think "No fair that THEY are getting all the guffaws off my dorkiness! Those are MY guffaws. Thievin' brats. GIVE ME MY JOURNALS BACK!!!!! I want the negative attention!"

Tony said...

I remember I always wanted a journal. Just like Doug. I wish I kept one. I would have called it a diary.

And nothing cures a bashed up knee better than pizza. That sounded like an amazing day.

sarah said...

okay, one: i just laughed so loudly that the woman in the next office came over to see what was wrong, and what could possibly be so funny about the article i'm supposed to be writing on semi-permanent swimming pool enclosures. two: dude, who doesn't love boxes? and three: i think we have the same diary. except mine was covered in pictures of lisa frank kittens in sunflowers in addition to teen beat stickers of travis barker with hand-drawn hearts around them.

Amanda @ It's Blogworthy said...

Personally, I hate reading old journals, especially from middle and high school, because I was incredibly awkward and lame and unpopular and it brings back too many memories. Now what I would like to read is a journal from college because those were good times -- however, I didn't write one because I was too busy out being awesome. Much like your old journals are awesome. :)

Jeney Peney said...

I am POSITIVE that my old journals were the same way... except for that time in 4th grade where Cory E. became my sole reason for existing.

Unfortunately from all the moving I've done they've all disappeared.

Sad face.

CherBearBlue said...

I found an old journal of mine that described in detail how my friend Christine called me a jerk and how I was SO UPSET about it. I them immediately transitioned into how kicking a ball against the wall was the BEST THING EVER.

How I long for those days of childhood when a box or a ball or a wall provided endless joy and entertainment. Now I need a bottle of gin, some juice, no work, money, friends and sometimes that doesn't even work!!

Christine said...

HOLY MOSES! I think that I may have been retarded ALL the time, like my parents will tell me stories of my childhood and I'm like, why didn't y'all get me tested? Like what normal child continues to just swing all day making the same noise over and over, or keeps eating wax fruit because it LOOKS JUST LIKE REAL FRUIT but obviously is not, because it's fucking wax, and wouldn't you know that after, oh say, ONE BITE???

Anyway, this post made me laugh uncontrollably, and I'm at work and my coworker asked what was so funny and I had to play it off like I had just suddenly remembered something that was really funny and then they asked what it was and I said I forgot and...holy shit...I might STILL be retarded.

Blaise said...

Oh man, I KNEW I should have been keeping a's comedic gold later in life! I just kept sketch journals, full of painstakingly bad drawings of crap. Though, I'll admit, there are some pages of song lyrics...
And how have I never heard the term "doucheketeer" before? What!

Rebecca said...

I have no idea where my old journals are or what they say, but I know I kept a notebook of lyrics I'd written... songs about animal crackers, ants, aliens, etc. And I wore glittered helmets to sleep.

Kids are weird.

randomgiggles said...

Oh my gosh, this post was so funny I have tears from laughing so hard..

Salt said...

Wow your old journals are way better than mine.

Mine are all emo poetry about riding on trains to nowhere which I guess was supposed to be a metaphor for my tweenage angst. I thought I was so deep, but really it was just ridiculous.

Boxes ARE fun, BTW. My cats would agree.

Oh and I love your blog.

Hippo Brigade said...

Boxes ARE fun. And you know what else is fun? Patch Adams, and getting your braces tightened. Thanks for the post full of fun.

Philippe de St-Denis said...

Hovito is absolutely right about your mad writing skillz, but what's with the double periods?

Anyway, speaking as a card carrying lesbian, I can honestly say that boxes ARE fun.

Zaedah said...

I believe we were writing in our journals with one brain... Not sure which one of us jumped through the time/space continuum to manage this and we likely fought over the fuzzy-top pen but judging by the samples, it appears we wrote identical entries!

ShineForLife said...

Last night I stayed up until 1 doing my homework, and this morning, I just randomly thought, "hey, maybe Allie posted!"
And then I found it, printed it off (since I was running a little late).

This post totally made my day. My week. And it made my friend collapse into hysterics when I showed it to her.

Anyways, thank you for posting and I'm going to stop now while I still think I'm making sense.

Ellie said...

And I thought it was only my pug who found random joy and hilarity in boxes.

Unknown said...

You rock! Pretty sure you're not that retarded. A bit special maybe.

Sent here by ED.

Miss Yvonne said...

Hey, jumping off of furniture onto pillows is AWESOME! I would have totally capitalized that sentence.

Hipstercrite said...

I seriously asked my Mom once if I was retarded and everyone was just too nice to tell me. She promised me I wasn't.

mepsipax said...

I wished I was adopted that is the same thing right? Also, once I made up this elaborate story about how my baby sister was kidnapped by a purple gorilla that came out of a mouse hole and left that little boy (apparently I hated my baby brother). Also, I stabbed my brother between the eyes. But you are crazy...

Coopie said...

I'm so glad miss yvonne recognized the awesomeness that is jumping off furniture! I would get in so much trouble for that!!! I'd be in my room, put every blanket and pillow in a big pile on the floor and jump off the TOP BUNK! Mom would be in the living room reading the paper or something and would hear absolute silence followed by *THUMP!* followed by more silence. LOL I can't believe she survived the trauma of those days! LOL!

Jay Ferris said...

You were living the dream back then. Jumping off of furniture onto pillows? Yes please!

dogimo said...

I think Calvin & Hobbes have proved conclusively that a good box can be more fun than anything that comes in it!

dogimo said...

Um...unless we're talking innuendo-wise, in which case, it's not really possible to separate the two.

katieleigh said...

retarded AND cute :p you should be happy with that combo haha

I'm Katie. said...

You're not alone (unless you haven't noticed after reading 40 comments). My journals have detailed lists of each house fly I captured accompanied by hand-drawn depictions of the unique pattern I drew on its wings with permanent marker.

The trick is to put them in the freezer for a few minutes. They get reeeaaal slow so you can draw on them.

I'm going to go wash my hands.

Anonymous said...

I used to slide down the basement stairs in cardboard boxes.

When I was a kid. I don't have basement stairs now so I usually just sit in the box and quietly look around.

Still fun though.

Nikole said...

I still wonder if I'm retarded on a pretty regular basis

Rachel said...

Once, I found a spiral filled with notes from my best friend during our science classes. We nicknamed ourselves Romy & Michelle ... and spent most of the note rattling off what I assume to be hilarious quotes from the movie instead of writing anything of substance. Awesome. It's good to know that no one is really THAT cool in middle school.

Simone said...

um, can we talk about the really awesome green spots?

Delicia said...

For my two youngest kids' birthday party when they were 5 and 7 (only 2 weeks apart, so I threw one big party), I hit up all the appliance stores in the entire city and came up with about 8 HUGE refrigerator boxes. I mean, you could house a small country in these things.

I bought a bunch of crayons and markers, and basically put them all in the backyard and let all the kids have a free-for-all. They could color, draw, parents could cut windows or doors, kids could make houses, forts, roll across the yard in them etc. To date this is still the best birthday party I have ever thrown. And the cheapest.


Carrie said...

Firstly, let me apologize for commenting on a post that's a week old. I just found your blog from TJ's and that is my excuse, flimsy though it may be.

I just had to comment because my husband found my diary from when I was like 14 and it sounds almost EXACTLY the same. He is constantly making fun of me for it, but you just made me feel a little less alone in the "dorky old diary" department. So thank you. :)

Kelsey said...

ok, so i was reading your older blogs...they sound like emails between myself and my canadian friend....and i came across the little sign that says ' 82 comments' (or whatever number of comments there happens to be) on this post. My computer is having a spaz (at least i think it is) and so it says that this one only has two comments.
So I said, wow, that post looks really lonely, I should be nice and make friends with it so it can be happy and feel normal in that unusual way that it is.
And then I had to get all dissapointed when I found out that actually there was more than two comments... oh well. Here you are little post, to make you feel better for not being as popular, but really being super popular.

Mary@Holy Mackerel said...

Diaries are the best.

My favourite entry from my little girl diary is: "Something really awful happened today." But I never say what it is that happened, and to this day, I do not know. *Heavy sigh*

Anonymous said...

I just looked through my old science revision book and found:
A page full of cats diving and swimming,
An entire page full of pictures of vegetables,
Two pages with the repeated sentences: "[my nieces name which i wont post here],
arm bled eyesight blurred,
Irple bumps: silly string (crossed out),
Stick it to the man, man
[Illegible scribblings]",
And at the very and of my book,it says "cheesy cow", you have made me feel less insane, thank you.

becky said...

Oh. Dear. God.

Saw you last week on Reddit and have been reading your archives during lunch every day since. You need to add a disclaimer to your header warning people that this is NOT a workday website - I seriously think I just busted some capillaries trying to hold in my laughter. I am actually crying right now.

Absolutely in love with you, Allie!!!

Anonymous said...

Dude, this doesn't make you retarded.

This makes you awesome.
And, it confirms my platonic online girl-crush for you. From now, until forever.