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November 19, 2011

Teenhood today: Who needs a healthy lifestyle?

Daily Star

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Pick up any magazine, listen to any lecture, or talk to any squirrel, and you will learn about America's favorite new obsession: a healthy lifestyle. We are encouraged to eat healthier, exercise more, and give up all of the wonderful things we hold dear. We are told to not eat the bag of potato chips or chug the bottle of soda. Instead, we're supposed to grab an apple and head outside to enjoy the beautiful outdoors.

Question: How can we possibly enjoy the blistering cold and frostbite while eating an apple? An apple would totally ruin the I-wonder-if-crawling-inside-an-animal's-rotting-carcass-really-does-keep-you-alive-and-are-there-any-squirrels-willing-to-sacrifice-their-life-for-me experience.

And how are we going to go for a run when the blood in our legs refuses to flow until summer comes? I admit that I do wear shorts and a T-shirt for our annual family football and soccer tournament on Christmas. However, that's only one day of the year. That is one short three-hour period of time for my legs to turn to icicles and my hair to experience winter's natural hair spray. Then they can thaw out in front of a fire with a big bowl of ice cream.

I don't care what anyone says, junk food will always beat out the healthy stuff. I know that an apple a day keeps the doctor away, but a lot of my family members are doctors. I'd rather eat ice cream and laugh with my family than sit alone in the corner with an apple.

I love sports, but too much is painful. Literally. I have bad legs (knees, ankles, shins, arches … the whole nine yards!), so whenever I start to run, I feel it. Life would be so much easier and less painful if our bodies didn't need to exercise. Then we could devote our time to more important things _ like eating!

Another pointless habit like exercising is sleeping. I think sleep is so overrated. I know that it is scientifically proven that teenagers need more sleep, but I think that it would be so much more productive if we didn't need to sleep. With no need to devote 12 whole hours to sleep, we would have more time to eat, do school work, and eat ice cream with the doctors in our families.

We should just throw sleep out the window! Who needs it?

The only good thing about sleep is the reward when you wake up: breakfast! We are supposed to eat a "well-balanced diet," but I tend to just eat the "diet" out of that suggestion.

I'm late for the bus as it is, I don't have time to make waffles, squeeze orange juice, milk the cow, and fight the chicken for her eggs.

I usually grab some dry cereal and eat it on the way. Not my first choice, but my only one if I want to make it to school in time for lunch.

I am all for adding a few years to my life, but if that means losing my lazy, piggish lifestyle, no way, man!

I will be the first to encourage you to eat a well-balanced diet and to run daily, but only if I can cheer you on from my couch at home and eat my dry cereal on the way out the door.

Miriam A. Thurber is a freshman at Unatego Central School. 'Teen Talk' columns can be found at