The student news site of Los Altos High School in Los Altos, California

The Talon

The student news site of Los Altos High School in Los Altos, California

The Talon

The student news site of Los Altos High School in Los Altos, California

The Talon

Mark My Words: A Striptease

I don’t come to school naked. Or at least I never had. Usually, I come armed for success: pencils, binders and my oh-so-sweet hand-knit boxers, its fabric woven by the hands of God or at least six God-like Malaysian children. In order, these items give me voice, organization and the loose-fit required to be free.

Despite the importance of these items, I consider others more important: the perfect ratio of girls to guys (six to one) and the bittersweet McGrumble of Egg McMuffins in my stomach. And although I would trade all my pencils for six girls to feed me a breakfast sandwich and massage the pain away afterwards, I would never dare strip down and go to school without the bare necessities.

But because I would never do it, I had to do it anyway. I decided to go to school naked (figuratively.) I left my backpack at home, though I kept my underwear on. I just switched to briefs.

For a long week of nudity, I waddled into school, a cow with no udder, carrying nothing but the papers I had been given in class and the crushed dreams of my forefathers. At first, it was no problem; it even gave me credibility on the streets. Binders were for pansies. Backpacks were for weaklings. I was neither. I broke pens with my teeth and pencils with my toes. Binder paper wasn’t for writing. It was for starting small house fires.

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But besides making me cooler, my lack of school supplies also made me an idiot. Because there was nowhere to put it, homework would rarely make it home.

At school, all I could contribute was a distractingly beautiful face and wrong answers. Some classmates may have noticed my isolated self-grieving in the corner, but they were too busy sharpening their pencils to stubs. Thus, my lack of preparedness had landed me far behind the other students. I wanted nothing more than to catch up with everyone else. I wanted to strip myself of the restrictive briefs and progress, but I couldn’t go commando at school.

It wasn’t until a classmate reached out to lend me a piece of paper and pen that I jumped back to the front row. Once that pen was gripped in my hand, I learned so many things, but most importantly I learned that you don’t have to be a cow with no milk to find yourself helpless at school. And the problem doesn’t end with me. There are students all over the world who don’t have what they need to succeed.

I could tell you to donate school supplies to students who need them, but I shouldn’t force it ( Instead, I will give you a more conceivable goal: when you see a student with no backpack, a student with no pencil, a student who is struggling to learn, maybe stop to lend a hand, because everyone deserves a little knowledge. No one should have to go to school naked, as fun as that may be.

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