Aline Santos, a senior at Boston Community Leadership Academy, finds that each shoe she wears does two things: It matches her outfit the way she wants and also shows a bit of herself through her appearance. “I definitely think that shoes can reveal part of your personality because the only person that chose to wear them or even buy them is yourself,” says Santos, who prefers stylish yet comfortable footwear, like boat shoes. “They are what interest you so that means they’re resembling you.” Some people are defined by their personalities; others by their hair or clothes. Then there are those whose souls are revealed by their soles. “I love pretty and comfortable shoes, like Oxfords,” says Sheelan Balata, a senior at BCLA. “They’re the best because they go with any type of clothes.” Naomi Rivera, a BCLA senior, has many different kinds of shoes: her flip-flops, for example, show her liberated side; other times, she’ll slip into wedges. Says Rivera: “I like to feel confident, that’s why.”
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Myette Squires, a 15-year-old who attends TechBoston Academy, acts differently around her mom than when she’s with friends. From her point of view, it’s not fake; it’s kind of for survival. “I’m very comfortable around my mom, don’t get me wrong,” she says, “but I feel as if sometimes she wouldn’t understand the things I talk about with my friends.” Some teens are more at ease confi ing in friends. Other teens find it better to tell all to family. With her friends, Arielle Barrows, 17, from Madison Park High School, talks about boy/ girl problems. With her parents, she will discuss boys but only to a certain point. “I can talk about certain things with my mom and still feel comfortable,” she says, “but with my friends, I can just let everything out and I feel better.” Claudia Camacho, 15, from Excel High School, acts the same around both her parents and friends. In her head, she thinks it’s best not to keep things from her parents. “I rather be the same around my parents and friends because I personally feel things will be better that way,” she says. She adds: "Honesty is the best policy."
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Adezna Ventura, a freshman at the Henderson School, says that living with two parents isn’t always as ideal as it seems– especially when they tend to argue a lot. In sociological circles, the perfect household is usually portrayed as mom and dad living together with the kids under one roof. But some teens say that’s not the best situation for them. Grace Villafane, 17, from Boston Community Leadership Academy, says she lives with both her parents but would prefer to be with just one. “I’m closer to my mom,” says Villafane. “We have a good relationship.” Tyler Andrade, 14, from Dorchester, also says it would be easier living with just a single parent. “My mom lets me bring people over and my dad doesn’t like me having people over,” says Andrade. Tanejah Williams, though, knows the advan- tages of the two-parent home. “If I don’t get my way with one,” says Williams, 16, from BCLA, “I’ll go to the other.”
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Habits can enter a person’s life without notice. “I have a habit of leaving my phone in places where it doesn’t belong,” says Michael Harris, 19, who goes to school in Jamaica Plain. “I vowed that one day I would stop this horrible manner but, sadly, my phone was stolen before I could even attempt to break the habit.” Breaking bad habits is not easy, especially if you’ve been doing them for a long time. “There is no breaking of bad habits, you just have to replace it with a good one,” says Andrew Moore, 15, from Dorchester. Many teens continue with their negative actions until something drastic happens. “I had a habit of biting my nails and I knew I had to stop,” says Marcus Sanchez, 18, who goes to school in South Boston, “because of the fact that I would bite my nails so far down that it would begin to bleed.”
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Fifteen-year-old Cameron Smith, from the South End, has a solution to the rising T fares. “I use skating to get around instead of using the MBTA, mostly,” says Smith. Even with unpaved roadways and annoying metal grates, Smith uses his skateboard as his wheels. Other skateboarders rely on the T to get them to their skate spots – but then they are free and clear of the rails. “Skating Boston has the closeness of a smaller town but the benefit of a big city,” says Jared Blake, 15, from Mattapan. Xavier Spinola, 18, from Dorchester, believes they should lower T fares but raise the number of legal skateboard locales.
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