It’s me, Warren, or should I say, you. It’s been twenty years and life has changed so much. You have so much life to live and along with that, there will be ups, and of course, downs.
I have some simple things I want to say to you.
Don’t be so hard on yourself. You can’t be perfect all the time and trying to be is a fruitless exercise. Accept what you’re capable of and be at peace with what you’re not.
Who you are now is not who you will be in just a few years. You will gain confidence, girls will like you, and people will listen to you.
High school is not the real world. Yeah, the popular people still act like a-holes until they hit thirty, then they try and forget how horrible they were. But the world is full of people who weren’t popular in high school, and they are the people who have character and integrity. They are the people who you will laugh with, cry with and depend upon in your rough times.
But I’m not letting the popular kids off the hook. Even though my therapist insists that this is just an exercise in self growth, I am hopeful that this will find you on October 25, 1991. Not only is that the date of the homecoming dance but also the day my pants were pulled down in front of the entire high school student body of Franklin, Tennessee, resulting in the nickname “TWiBS”(Tightie Whitey Brown Stripe). As you may have deduced, the purpose of this letter is to defy fate and change our future.
First things first, we must remove some key players from the playing field using my future knowledge and maturity.
Jeremy Kramer: Captain of the football team. Very confident and physically imposing. You must not challenge him directly. His dad is an alcoholic redneck, so leaving a fifth of Jim Beam and Jeremy’s underwhelming report card in their mailbox should result in a sufficiently large domestic dispute to keep Jeremy occupied for the night.
Karrie Parker: She’s the lookout for the pantsing party. Without her, they won’t be able to sneak behind you. As luck would have it, her parents are in the Witness Relocation Program for snitching on the Gambino family and their numbers game. Call Tony Giamatti in Jersey City, NJ and leave an anonymous tip.
How far are you willing to go? If you don’t have the stomach for it, maybe I should contact my sixteen year old self. Did that get you mad? Good.
For the final phase, I’m giving you the greatest gift of all: super strength.
I’ve been experimenting with a mixture of protein shakes, green tea, and cough syrup, and while the results have been promising( I can lift a loveseat all by myself, thank you), I feel like maybe I started a little late in life in order to reach my full potential. Also, I’m curious to see if adding a little bear DNA to the mix would help.
To achieve this, I have drafted a letter to my six year old self instructing him to steal money from our parent’s savings account and strategically invest in the rapidly advancing technology of the early 80’s. I will then send a formula of my own invention to the bright people at Wake Forest University to be developed on the condition that they inject it into my twelve year old self.
With your increased stamina and strength, it shall be you that climbs the social ladder and and becomes a local sports hero. However, you should be careful who you step on on your way to the top, since we don’t want to create a cycle of others sending letters to themselves resulting in us being toppled by the less fortunate.
If for some reason this is a complete failure and high school remains our own personal Vietnam, then you must draft a letter to YOUR fifteen year old self when you reach my age. Keep doing this until we get it right.
I realize that by changing my past, I will cease to exist. In fact, I think my hand is starting to vanish from history as I write this. No, just something in my eye blurring my vision. Sorry, allergy season. I guess it’s more likely that I’ll probably disappear once I finish this or drop it in the mail. I kind of hope not, though, since How To Train Your Dragon is on HBO tonight.
Maybe I’ll just mail it tomorrow to be safe.
Good luck to you,
PS Don’t start watching LOST. It ends horribly.