The Funky Fresh Boy’z
I feel like this title could use a bit of explaining, “Funky Fresh Boy’z” was the name of a hip-hop group from a movie called Kickin It Old School, I never saw the movie but I heard “Funky Fresh Boy’z” in a commercial and laughed at how lame/awesome it was so I adopted it as the name for me and my group of friends (Jesse, Brendon and Justin). I don’t think any of them liked it but I thought it was a perfectly fitting name for us and would always say “We gota get the Funky Fresh Boy’z together” when I wanted us to hang out, which wasn’t nearly often enough.
In middle school we were inseparable; we hung out and did all those things you did in middle school, but stopped doing once you get into to high school. I think I remember them more than my other friends not because of how much we hung out and had fun, but really because we never got the chance to all hang out together. We only all went to Illini Bluffs at the same time for one year, so after that either Brendon or Justin would move away and come back for a while so The Funky Fresh Boy’z have never really felt complete since middle school. We always talk a lot about meeting up and as of now it’s been over a year since I have seen Justin. From what I’ve heard he’s changed a lot, even more than since the last time I hadn’t seen him in a long time. We still talk about having us all meet again and hang out like we used to, but somehow it never happens, usually only one or two of us can meet up or we don’t want to see each other because of something that happened between us. I miss The Funky Fresh Boy’z and I want us to meet up again before it’s too late, because I know that once we all go off to college or whatever, we won’t get a chance to meet up or we will have changed so much that we won’t even recognize each other.
Thats totally me up there

Little Captain and the Happiest Dog (AKA Skipper and Joy)
Pictured: Not my dogs but it's close enough
When I was younger, younger than I can even remember clearly, I had a dog named Jenny. She a white lab and was my favorite thing in the whole wide world. I would spend as much time as I possibly could with her, until I lost her when I was about seven years old. I had no idea how much I would miss her until she was gone forever and nothing could really fill the void her death had made. We had tried to get a new dog, but he was a terrible pet and ruined the house, so we had to give him away and didn’t try to get a new dog. It would take seven years to find a suitable replacement, or rather two.
It was almost Christmas and the one thing everyone in our family wanted was a new dog. We we’re all so ready to find a dog, we searched the paper, looked online, asked friends and read up on dogs in a dog book. My parents first learned about the dogs called Schipperkes in the paper, and after looking them up in the dog book, decided they would be perfect. It took about two hours driving out in the country to find the small dog farm where they were born. When I first walked out of the car, I noticed was dozens of adorable tiny little dogs barking and growling at us with fiery eyes; I prayed that our dogs wouldn’t act like this. An old couple came out of their house, clearly they were alerted by the dogs, to greet us and show us the new puppies. A few of them had already been taken but there were still three boys and a girl, who was also the runt of the litter. At that moment I wanted to take them all, but my parents had said only one. I hardly even listened to them since I was busy picking up every one of the tiny fluffy puppies to see if they were the one. My parents and the old couple talked for a few minutes while my sister, Julie, and I played with the dogs and grew attached to the little runt. At that point we only had to decide if we wanted a bigger, healthier pup or the sweet little one we had fallen in love with, but then the old couple offered to sell us one of the boys and the runt for the price of one. We couldn’t pick up the dogs and run back to the car fast enough and the car ride home seemed to last all day, which I didn’t mind since I got to hold the dogs while they slept the entire way home. Once they got home they were the center of attention for about the next month, they settled in quickly and made themselves at home in my sister’s old doll house. They would always sleep in the garage and the living room of the doll house, after clearing out the chairs and tables first. Eventually they started to get bigger and louder and meaner and acted like those other dogs on the farm, but to me they will always seem like those sweet little puppies we got just before Christmas four years ago.

An open letter to my MP3 Player

Dear ZEN MP3,

From the moment I saw you on Google I knew it was love at first sight. 16 gigabytes for only 80 dollars, I knew I had something great going for me. I may have been unfaithful early on, looking at other MP3’s or wishing that you were on sale so I could save a few bucks. I was young then and couldn’t learn to appreciate what I had in you.
I’ve been meaning to listen to my music more often since I lost my phone and all the music on it, but never got the chance because of the whole losing my phone thing. Thanks to you I won’t have to listen to those kids on the bus, my family on long road trips or even any of the teachers at IBHS who I don’t ever listen to anyway. Don’t think that’s it’s just the music I love you for though, I still have audio books I haven’t gotten the chance to listen to until now and I love your tiny, sleek design.
You have grown so much since we first met; you already have 957 songs, but you still won’t tell me how to get videos yet; I don’t mind though since the internet will give me all the answers I need in due time. In the mean time there are always more songs to download, whether they are old ones I forgot to get or new ones I just have to have I know you will be willing to carry them for me for my listening pleasure.
We haven’t known each other long, so it might be early to say that we will be together forever, but I know we will be together until I need more room for songs or until you break or if I just have money for something slightly better than you. Either way, I know that this will be the beginning a beautiful relationship and I hope to see you again soon; which should be easy considering that you are in my pocket at all times.
Yours truly,

Ellis Hearth

An open letter to Skipper (the dog)

Dear Skipper,

I assume by this point you are barking at whoever gave you this letter, so I would like to begin with “SHUT UP YOU’RE LESS THAN 20 POUNDS! WHAT DO YOU THINK YOU CAN DO TO HURT ANYONE?!”
Now that that’s taken care of I would just like to say I’ve been disappointed in your behavior since the moment you could make ever make the conscious decision to be the way you are. I liked you best when you were a puppy; you were my small cuddly fuzz ball. Since then, however, you have grown into something resembling a broken alarm clock with legs that I can’t throw at the wall without people gasping at me for how horrible I am to you (we both know who I’m talking about). I just need to ask you something, do you really need to bark at everyone, literally everyone, who walks near our house? Even me and all the other people you see every day? Do you just forget about us as soon as we leave the house? And don’t give me all that bull about “oh I just missed you so much” or “oh I’m so glad to see you again” I see how you look at me, if it weren’t for that gate in the front hall you would maul me every time I come home from school or more likely just ruin all of my good jeans, since that’s the worst you could do.
Another thing I need to address is your sleeping habits; one of your major flaws is that you seem to think you are in charge of the house, but you’re not because you lack superior human intellect. I know you think that you deserve the couch because you have been sleeping there since the afternoon but you just don’t; it’s complicated but what it really boils down to is I’m the one who decides if you get to eat or not. So from now on I would like you to quietly and respectfully back down or at least move to the side when I want the couch, I will no longer accept you growling and will continue to throw you off the couch if you insist on this behavior.
Lastly, we need to talk about how you act outside. Nobody like to have to take you outside because you flip out every time we walk near the door and insist that nothing is more important than barking and the neighbors dog. Why do you think Joy always gets to go outside without a leash? Do you think it’s because she doesn’t chase cars, or is it the way she ignores the neighbor’s dog, or could it be because she comes back in when we call for her? It’s no secret that Joy is the favorite, but that’s because she understands her place; she stops barking when we tell her too, she lets us pet her whenever we want, and she even does that adorable little dance you can never do right.
I’m not saying I don’t think your cute, it’s just that people, which includes myself, loath walking into our house solely because of you.
All the best,

Ellis Hearth

What do I hear right now?
Right now I can hear an annoying ringing sound. EEEEEEEEEEEEEE, annoying am I right? I can also hear people talking; I’m not sure what it’s about though since so many people are talking at once. And I only now realize I could be listening to music.

You’re on death row and you get to choose your last meal. Describe your choice.
I would have an all you can eat Chinese buffet, but I would just never leave. Even if the manager comes over and tells me I’ve been here for an hour I will just say I’m a paying customer. Then I’ll only leave a 10% tip for the waitress even though she was really good about refilling my drinks. This is my plan to get revenge against the man for putting me on death row.

Do you believe that everyone deserves a second chance?
Yes, I would be a hypocrite if I didn’t because I have been given a second chance so many times. I think that all people need to be more understanding of each other; even if we don’t know them or care about them we can at least admit that they are human. Everyone has problems and can make mistakes; you can’t expect everyone to never make a mistake because we are only human.

If abandoned in the wilderness, would you survive?
Yes, because I would want to get out of their so fast nothing would stop me. I would scream so loud for help they could hear me in the next state over. I would get back to my warm safe home before anyone even noticed I was gone, and then I would act like it never happened and move on.

When the phone rings who do you want it to be?
It’s not who I want it to be as much as who I don’t want it to be; my sister. When she calls it’s because I have to go do something or because she’s acting like an idiot. I do like it, however, when I get a call for something unexpected, so I usually get all excited when it’s a number I don’t recognize.

Is your room clean?
That depends on what you mean by “clean”. I would say my room is a mess, but in a way that I like it to be; I can find everything I need and nothing’s really dirty. I just don’t like to go the extra mile to make things orderly; what’s the point of putting my shirts in the closet when there’s all this empty space on the floor going to waste.

What kind of vehicle do you drive?
I mostly drive a giganormous truck. It’s not mine; it’s just that no one really uses it so I get to drive it. It usually makes me very nervous because I’m so high up in the air and can’t always tell exactly what I’m doing but the weird thing is now that I’m use to that I can’t drive smaller cars like I thought I wanted to do.

What do I see around me?
I see a clock mocking me; only 20 minutes left. I can also see another clock on the computer also mocking me. There are rows of identical computers each doing similar tasks, but each one has a totally different person sitting at them. I can also see seven questions down and two left after this period.

I can’t live without…
Friends, I need a few people I can count on and talk with. I think the worst thing that could possibly happen to me is not have anyone I can enjoy spending time with, laughing with, or just to lean on when I need them. It’s actually one of my greatest fears that my friends will be gone and I won’t have someone to replace them.

What am I thinking right now?
Right now I’m thinking I forgot my one of my sensory poems, so I should go work on that. I’m also thinking I have a history paper and a psychology paper to work on this week. It’s ok though since its Friday and I’m going to get to visit old friends this weekend.

Endless Wonder
I am surrounded by infinity
Endless lights of every color
Winking at me as if they have something to say
Rocks dash above my head a thousand miles away
I seem like a speck when I stare at the massive planets
But they are only specks floating in a void
I could stare for the rest of my life
And not see all that it has to offer
But I would see more than anyone could ever dream

Listen to it all
Trees sway gently, rivers flow
Oh why must it snow?

I turn to meet you
Hoping you will meet my gaze
You turn and we stare

He rides on horseback
Ted Roosevelt fights for good
Our bravest leader

Bells ring and then stop
As one we rise and move on
Only one more bell left

Soft and piled in heaps
Mashed potatoes await
Yummy and all mine

I look on the can
“Do the Dew” it insisted
I say “Right away!”

Thor stands a hero
With a hammer like thunder
He strikes the wicked

I toss it aside
But the warmth has left our home
So my coat I need

Pink coat hanger lies
Abandoned just like us all
It’s on the road, NOT SAFE!

I’m locked in battle
My enemy will not win
I cheer at my screen

Making Amends
I hit you
With a car
And with a truck
And with my foot
You’ve been burned
You’ve been crushed
You’ve had your feelings hurt
I didn’t mean it any of it
Except that one time
But still I’m deeply sorry

A.E.H. 2.0
My brain is removed
It’s being resituated
Into a body that’s less realistic
Which will soon be reactivated
I see some zeros and a one
Then rise from the table to say
“This could be fun!”
I lift up my arm to fire a ray
Then dash through the hole
Down to the stairs
But only to slip down the long, long flight
I lie in a heap
But I do not fret
Because now I’m a cyborg
With powerful jets
The ceiling crumbles with ease
And I glide through at least ten stories
From up in the air I see the same old world
But now with a new point of view
I am ordered to stop and cease the destruction
And pay for the damages I’ve caused them
However, unbeknownst to him
I was built from an ATM

Big Red (not the gum)
A new species of jellyfish
Nearly a mile below the sea
Three feet in diameter
And fleshy arms
Big Red
A mere curiosity?
It’s not just a new species
It’s a different sub family!
There are so many unanswered questions
What does it eat?
How does it reproduce?

From Popular Mechanic: Giant Jellyfish Haunt the Deep

Distracted From Life
Listen and look
Out into the universe
So much to see
So much to do
This world is yours
To see and explore
To live and love
If you look to the stars
And let them dazzle you
You will eat cake
Boy I’m sure hungry
Maybe there’s pie too!

Name: Kevin George Barnes
Bio: Kevin was said to be a child prodigy when he was a child and graduated from high school two years early. He spent the next two years traveling the United States deciding what he should do with his life. Once eighteen began traveling to different colleges, but found that none of them had anything to offer him so he decided to let the world be his teacher, of course most people think he’s just a slacker. He still has no idea what he should use his “amazing brain powers” for, but tends to use them for his own personal gain.
Age: 25
Height: 6’ 3”
Weight: 160
Body type: Normally thin, but gaining weight
Face type: Thin and boney
Complexion: Pale from being indoors
Eyes: Light brown
Hair: Short spiky, darkish blonde
Clothing: Anything that doesn’t stand out to much and is comfortable
Speaking style: Quick and to the point with most people, unless he knows them better and like them
General Demeanor: A slacker and a failure or a modern scholar, depending on who you ask
Career: None; does whatever he can to make money
Prejudices: Doesn’t think much of most people until they prove to him personally that they are worthy
Best quality: Clever, observant, and honest
Worst quality: Lazy, doesn’t follow directions, irritable to most people, sometimes too honest
Weakness: Vain, tends to get on people’s nerves, especially people who are important like a professor
Hobbies: Traveling, drawing, playing drums, meditation
Talents: Photographic memory, text-book knowledge of almost every subject he has encountered