USAmerica Taboo

The Zoe Diaries: What to Write in a Teenage Journal

What to write in a teenage journal? I wrote many things. I have some fifty volumes of journals from my teen years.

What to write in a teenage journal? Write about your friends, crushes, boyfriends, and girlfriends. And movies.

What to write in a teenage journal? Here is what I wrote about a dear friend of mine, Jeremiah. He was a savant, quickly becoming one of the best math students in the country and gaining fame for it.

When Jeremiah was in his mid-thirties he had a psychotic break which transformed him as a person. He came back with a diagnosis of schizoaffective disorder and paranoia. He’s escaped treatment and healing.

The joy and glee has been sapped from his life forever. Breaks my heart to read these entries from when he was mentally healthy.

What to write in a teenage journal? Write about the people you love. You never know when those journals may be the only record of them.

Jeremiah – Part 1

Friday Sept. 21st 1990

I had fun during choir because Mr. Loomis (the impeccable dresser) let us out early and I went w/ Rori, who was drooling over Jeremiah, and had fun w/ William who thinks I’m a pyro and was being quite nice to me.

Sun Oct 14th 1990

Vivian, Melissa, Jeremiah, Neil + I went to see Flatliners

Sun. Nov 18th 1990

I went to YEAH (Youth Educators Against Homophobia) and then to Icicle thief alone.  Vivian was going to come, but when we finally got there she had brought Jeremiah and I said okay (I was paying for her and she was paying for him, I could swear she had enough dough for both) as long as I get the middle.

She said “no, you don’t” I said “Yes I do” she said “No Zoe, you don’t” I said “fine, then I’m not paying for you” then I bought my ticket, went in and sat down. Later I called her and apologized. I love her so much, I wish she didn’t treat me like shit. Now I’m sick. She’s sleeping over Tues.

Wed. Nov. 28th 1990

Today Jeremiah asked me if I have a crush on Vivian. I told him that I used to, then I asked him and he said “crush isn’t really the right word, she frightens me, she amazes me.” I really like him also. He’s intelligent yet fun. 

Sun Dec 2nd

Today I went on the YEAH field trip to the quilt. It was a bit morbid. There was all of this stuff about people who’ve died from AIDS. After walking through and seeing the quilt Vivian and I went outside and talked. We had a lot of fun. I talked to Jeremiah also. We basically talked about Vivian. 

Sat Dec 8th

Then I went to Jeremiah’s party. It was a lot of fun. The main part was okay, but when everyone except for William, Melissa, Jeff,  Vivian, Ducky, Jeremiah and I left it was great.

William and Melissa went into their corner and Ducky and  Vivian went into a corner and Jeremiah and I talked for a while. We were on a fold out couch thing. I was in between Jeff and Jeremiah but then Jeff moved off with Jeremiah’s pillow and Jeremiah and I shared mine. He put his legs over mine and his hand was on the pillow so I moved my head closer my so the back of his hand was on my forehead. We had so much fun.

I think that Jeremiah is a great guy. I don’t have a crush on him, but if he instigated it I would go for it. He kept saying how him and Jeff have a crush on Jessica. I tapped into their wavelength.

Wed Dec 12th 1990

I like Jeremiah a lot. I hope that we get to be very good pals.

Mon Dec 17th

The rehearsal was kind of fun. I talked to Jeremiah for a bit. “Lack of Ducky, implies, lack of Vivian, implies, lack of windows”

Wed Dec 19th 1990

Today was the winter concert. I talked to Jeremiah for a while. He’s great. I asked him “What was I looking for” and he said “I don’t know Zoe, what are you looking for, hot Romance? Steamy sex? . . . Damn you Zoe!” We had a great time.

Sat Dec 22nd 1990

Today I went downtown to do lunch w/ Jessica + Jeremiah. When I got down there I met Mary + Abby, then I saw David. This was way fun. Jeremiah really is a great guy. 

Fri. Dec 28th 1990

I wish that Jeremiah would call me. I don’t want to seem like I like him more than he likes me.

Tues Jan 22nd 1991

I got “Flood” by “They Might Be Giants” I love it. It reminds me of Jeremiah + William + Jeff. William was supposed to call me, but he didn’t. DORK.

Mon Jan 28th

During choir we had these people from Up With People come in and Jeremiah and I sat behind the risers and ignored them. After school I had detention. It was fun, Jeremiah and I sat there and wrote notes. 

Sun Feb 3rd 1991

Today I went to YEAH and then hung around w/ Jeremiah + Jeff, who didn’t go to YEAH, because they couldn’t find it.

Friday Feb 8th 1991

After “school” (I was sick) I picked up Jeremiah, Patti, Mary, and Daniela. We went home. Jessica was supposed to come at 5:00, but came around 6:30. Ducky came at 7:30. He can be an insensitive bastard. Everyone pretty much fell asleep at around 2:00. Jeremiah and I went into the guest room and used that bed with only 1 pillow I might add. He has the hots for Jessica.

Sun Feb 12th 1991

LAST WILL AND TESTAMENT I wish to leave all of my organs that can be used to an organ donor program. I wish to have an open coffin funeral. Let’s Dance, Wild is the Wind, Rock ‘n’ Roll Suicide, and My Death by David Bowie should be played in that order. The only people I wish to be there are my parents, sisters, Godfather, Vivian, Jeremiah, William, Simon + wife, Owen, Carlos, Jessica, Melissa, Daniela, Jeff and Maureen.

Fri March 29th 1991

I should call Jeremiah and invite him to this party. 

Thursday May 9th 1991

Jeremiah is one of the top 24 math (geometry, je pense) math kids in the U.S. In fact, he is the 9th. I can’t believe it. NINTH. He’s going to West PA to train, and if he makes the top 6, he’ll go to Sweden. I like him, he’s intelligent. 

Tues. June 4th 1991

After school I walked halfway downtown with Jeremiah, and then back to see Ducky.

Thursday June 6th 1991

I went to the awards thing tonight. Jeremiah got like 10 awards. Ducky got one. 

Friday June 7th 1991

Jeremiah made the front page of the newspaper.

Thurs. August 29th 1991

Today was a pretty horrid day. First I went to the luncheon and was pretty happy until Jeremiah left and hugged me goodbye. It sort of sunk in that I was leaving. 

Friday August 30th 1991

I miss Jeremiah.

Tuesday September 24th 1991

I spent all of the 20$ that Art gave me this morning. I lent one to Jeremiah though. The movie is starting. 

Tuesday October 1st 1991

I wish that Melissa, Jeremiah and Ducky went to my high school, Vivian and Michael went to the general school of Siberia, and I was happier.

Friday October 4th 1991

Today I walked downtown with Jessica, Jeremiah, Rudy (Melissa’s crush, nice guy) and Melissa.

Tuesday October 15th 1991

Ducky, Jeremiah, Vivian, Wolf, Melissa, David, Nika, Garrett, I think that’s my formula right now. 

Saturday October 26th 1991

I talked to Jeremiah a lot (after everyone was sleep). He’s great.

Monday October 28th 1991

My best friend’s names are Melissa, Garrett, Jeremiah (B as in bubonic, E as in euphonic, and M as in mnemonic), Vivian (who I have had an affair with), Mary, Wolf, and Jessica (who I usually don’t like). 

Now I’m in lunch watching Ducky eat too much salt. Ah, well. Nobody. Oh. I wonder what shall I do for the next few periods. I’m lunch hopping. First Ducky, Missy, Jessica C., and Evie’s, then Melissa + Amity’s, and now Justin F. + Rudy’s lunch. Rudy is playing the harmonica, it fits the mood. I can see him. Jeremiah came.

Tuesday October 29th 1991

Sitting talking to Jeremiah was strange. I felt as if I should be guilty. I talked to him for two hours.  Then I guess we slept. When he went downstairs we held each other’s hands for a few seconds. Then in the morning he came up and shared my bed. I really love him. He is the most platonic male friend I have. I miss him. On Thursday Melissa, Jeremiah, me and others trick or treating :). Jeremiah and Melissa are my best friends.

Wednesday October 30th 1991


Jeremiah and I discussed how time changes just make one realize that time is only measured by the clock. It means nothing. Yet it governs our lives (well, maybe not Ducky’s…:). 

I went to the movies with my father because neither Ducky nor Jeremiah could go.

What to write in a teenage journal? To be continued…

Other Childhood Memories

Other mortifying old writing:

Unrequited Overshare 1

Unrequited Overshare 2

Unrequited Overshare 3


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