From Chicken Soup for the Teenage Soul II

What I Wish I’d Known Sooner

For the past year or two, I have devoted a section of my home page on the Internet to a list entitled “What I Wish I’d Known Sooner.” Since I am seventeen, there are a lot of stupid things I do that make me wish I had already known not to do them! Anyone can add to this list—I have received additions from all over the world, by people of all ages. I often add to it myself (after the fact)!

Some are lighthearted, some are serious, all are very true. Here are a few of the gems:

• Don’t drink grape juice while wearing a white shirt and driving to school.

• Don’t let your life wait for other people.

• Dropping a cellular phone into a bathtub of water kinda kills the phone.

• Your mother will find out if you dye your hair purple.

• You haven’t really lived until you’ve gotten a 48 on an Advanced Placement U.S. History test.

• Don’t ever fall in love with someone who is more than one thousand miles away from you. It usually doesn’t work.

•Milk crates make boring pets.

• If it hurts, DON’T DO IT AGAIN!

• That which does not kill you will ultimately make you stronger.

• Speaking in public gets easier with practice.

• Don’t sprint around a pool if you’re trying to impersonate Jim from Huck Finn.

• Ten years from now most of what we freak out about won’t make any difference.

• All that’s gold doesn’t glisten.

• Zits always pop up when you really can’t afford for them to pop up.

• Always stay after class because that’s where connections are made.

•When in doubt, duck. When certain, don’t bother, ’cause you’re already screwed.

•While driving a car through a gate, always, ALWAYS make sure the gate is open! The consequences might be fatal to your car.

• If you’re not living (I mean really living), you’re dead already.

• Never pierce your belly button in the dark.

• Just because someone flirts with you incessantly doesn’t necessarily mean he or she likes you.

• If your calculus teacher tells you to quit talking after a test or he’ll give you a zero for your test grade, he means it. Really.

• Sometimes smart people can do very, very stupid things.

• Being nice to people will get you far.

• The one person you can truly love is often right in front of you.

• Never, ever, EVER let a member of the opposite sex make you compromise your standards. Never.

• Nothing is ever too good to be true (said by Michael Faraday).

• If you start to like a girl, her roommate will immediately start liking you.

• Parents aren’t around forever, and you need to treasure them while they are.

• Don’t take the SAT twice if you already have a good score in the first place.

• Never do something if the risk is greater than the reward.

• Think carefully before you act.

• Dreaming and doing go hand in hand.

• Life moves fast, but not so fast that you can’t slow down to enjoy it.

• Instead of waiting for life to get better, do something about it.

• You REALLY should do what needs to be done NOW, and not later. Procrastination is the easiest way, but not the most profitable.

• If your intuition is telling you not to do something, then don’t. Your intuition is not stupid!

• Cereal is a vital staple food for all college students. Who cares how ridiculous you look eating it at 7:30 P.M.?

• If he doesn’t respect you, then he’s not worth any of your time.

• Learn to play an electric guitar: young women really dig it.

• Don’t juggle knives unless you’re really, really good at it.

• If at first you don’t succeed, try again. Then give up. No sense being ridiculous about it.

• Sticking things up your nose isn’t the smartest idea in the world.

• You can’t light fireworks in the basement and not get caught.

• Hair is flammable. Very flammable.

• Never ever trust your friend with a pair of scissors against your hair.

• Dyeing hair strawberry blond that is already strawberry blond makes it turn strawberry pink.

•White dogs and black pants don’t mix.

• God doesn’t make junk!

• Someday you will look back on this and it will all seem funny.

• You never know when you’re making a memory.

• The heart does heal and you will love like this again— except that when you do, you’ll deny that you ever loved like this before.

• Nothing matters if you don’t have loved ones to share it with. Your siblings are incredibly precious. If you don’t know this now, you will—trust me!

• If you can laugh at yourself, you are going to be fine.

• If you allow others to laugh with you, you’ll be great!

• Kissing is the most fun thing. Dancing is almost as fun.

Meredith Rowe

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