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Copyright Š 2014 by Alexis Wright-Whitley All rights reserved under International and Pan-American Copyright Conventions. No part of this book may be reproduced in any form or by an electronic mechanical means, including information storage and retreival systems, without permission in writing from the publisher. Artwork by Alexis Wright-Whitley Design by Alexis Wright-Whitley Text composition by Alexis Wright-Whitley Digital Transcription by Alexis Wright-Whitley Hosted on www.issuu.com Printed in Philadelphia, PA.

AWW


mom, dad, brittany... Thank you for helping me recognize that suicide is not an option.

EFH, THANks for giving me this idea.


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dies Foreword

2

Harrison brink

8

Randi Fair

12

MIchael “Sadie� Flesher

16

helen gassmann

20

evan hoskins

24

basem istanbouli

]28

Cosmo Orlando

32

Audrey Rose

36

Cynthia Whitley

40

Joie Wu

44


FOREWORD We all carry scars. Whether they be physical, emotional or psychological, we all bear them. For some of us, these scars are painful reminders of the past. We are able to recall hurt, anger and frustration when we look upon these markings on our bodies, and often times, we wish they weren’t there. For others, these adaptations to our bodies just exist. We don’t really think about them, nor do we really care. Some of our mistakes were pure accidents, but we can laugh when we take a look at them. Every scar holds some type of story. Stories that make us laugh, cry and stare at ourselves in confusion and bewilderment. They are the illustrations of our lives’ stories. They help to paint a picture that complements the words that flow from our mouths. This book takes a look at ten different scars from ten very different people. Each story is told through the exact words of the owners of theses scars. Their stories allow us to look at them in a very different light. We get to see the unseen and know the unknown. Not all of the individuals featured in this book truly embrace, accept or love their scars, but they all admit that these disfigurations have had a hand in shaping their lives, molding who they are today. What story does your scar tell? What has being marked made out of you? — AWW

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HARRISON BRINK PHOTOJournalism student, 19

I

n high school, I got a little bit depressed, I suppose, and so I gave into myself. It was mix of cutting my arms and burning them. It was my senior year of high school. Annoyingly enough, I think a lot of it was about a stupid girl at the time, but I don’t know. I’ve never had the greatest amount of self-confidence, and it all sort of piled up and got to the point where it was also I wasn’t aware of what I was doing after high school. I just felt sort of empty, and so I guess the cuts and burns were something tangible to feel almost as opposed to heartache and feeling empty. They’re still pretty there, but definitely less so. They were pretty nasty at first, but it’s not so bad anymore. I don’t really wear sleeveless shirts much. I don’t mind people seeing them. On the street, I don’t like being asked about it though, and

especially around family who don’t know. I’m very conscious of them, and I usually do my best to hide them. And I think that’s largely the reason why I put them where they are so that I could hide them. Back then, it was like this reminder of heartache and that girl. Now, it’s still a reminder, but more of a reminder of stupidity and I guess immaturity in a way. I still get depressed, but they’re a reminder to not go back there. I mean, that doesn’t really solve anything, not really. Whenever I’m dating someone, I usually tell them about them so that they know that part of my past. I think that’s fair. Aside from that, when I was in high school I was on the summer swim team and of course everybody there would see them. What I told people at first, because they were burns, was that I leaned on a grill, because they kind of had that shape like

they were layered like that, which was stupid. I doubt anyone believed me, but they just sort of left it at that. More recently, since I’ve been working in restaurants, I’ve just been saying that they’re burns from that. I’ve even said that it was from high school. Usually I don’t outright tell people that they’re selfinflicted. I’m sure there’s a lot of people who would be put off by that kind of thing. I think the type of person I typically surround myself around would be more understanding of that, so I’ve been lucky in that regard. I’m sure there are little things people do, but they don’t think about it beyond that, I don’t think. Do I wish they weren’t there? Yes. Am I proud of them? No. But I accept that it’s a thing I did and a thing I went through, so I sort of just own it. My parents have been on my case in the past about getting plastic surgery about

getting them taken away, and I don’t think that it’s worth that anyway. In short, I suppose, do I want them? No, but they’re not going anywhere.


“My parents have been on my case about getting plastic surgery...�


RANDI FAIR PHOTOJournalism student, 32

M

y scars are the typical kinds of scarring that women typically get when they get pregnant. They are stretch marks, but they are scar tissue, so it is scarring. I also have a C-section scar, which you can’t really see anymore. I had this perfect non-scarred pregnant belly, until like I was three weeks out from giving birth. I bragged to everyone that I didn’t have a single stretch mark and then bam. There they were. They came. So, at first, they were kind of pink and red, and I was really depressed about it. I was like, ‘This is terrible. What am I going to do?’ They faded over the years. If you stand like five feet away from it, you can’t really see them. I have a plan this summer to get them tattooed over, and I think I’m going to do my son’s and my niece and nephew’s birth flowers. We’ll think of something and we’ll get it

covered up. Then there will be no evidence that I was ever pregnant, except for Brooks. I used to really like wearing two-pieces. That was my normal swimwear, and when I got them, I was totally like, ‘I cannot bear my stomach.’ I was really self-conscious about them. I’ve been in one pieces or high-waist twopieces for seven years. No one is stopping me from wearing two-pieces now. I just don’t have the confidence to expose them. I just don’t. Sometimes if I have a shirt that just hits my waist and I reach for something, that used to not bother me, but now I don’t want my shirt to come up from my belly at all. Everyone tells me that they’re not a big deal and I should be proud of them because of why they’re there, but I don’t know. That’s just a bunch of malarkey. I don’t feel ruined by them or anything. I just don’t like them, and I wish they weren’t there. They could

definitely be worse. There are some women who have the blue and red stretch marks on their bellies forever, and I don’t have that, but it’s not something that I love. I don’t really expose them to people unless I like them a lot and trust them a lot. So, like my sister, my family and really really close friends. My best friend recently went through gastric bypass surgery and lost a lot of weight. I was so proud of him, but he broke down because he has a lot of excess skin. He was so upset, so I lifted my shirt, because when you look at me, I give the impression that I’m thin, and I showed him. I was like, ‘Look. I have this, and I don’t like the way I look either.’ These are something I can’t get rid of or change. I can get tattoos, but I can still feel them. They’ll always be there. I mention them most often when I meet another mom or someone else who’s giving birth. Pregnancy really

fucks up your body, not just stretch marks. Some people lose hair. Some people lose teeth. Sometimes a mom will look at me and say, ‘Wow. You would never guess you were pregnant. You’re so thin now. You’re so lucky.’ And I’d be like, ‘No, look. I have this.’ I’ve mainly shown them to people to make them feel better about themselves. My feelings about them are different only because they’ve lightened. When they first appeared, they were red. My stomach looked like a fucking roadmap. If it still looked like that, it would really upset me. The fact that they’re flesh colored doesn’t really upset me. When I got pregnant, I knew that this might happen. I guess one reason I don’t hate them, hate them is because I was pregnant. I built a human in there. Fuck you if you don’t like them. My stomach expanded so much. What do you expect is going to

happen? I don’t like them and I’m not going to expose them to everyone, but I also just feel like: what am I going to do about it? I produced a life. It’s a pretty cool tradeoff. I would do it again.


“I built a human in there. Fuck you if you don’t like them.”


MIKE “SADIE” FLESHER socialwork Student, 22

I

was just biking with my father and brother, like biking, not motorcycling. We were going down this big hill, and my dad was like, ‘This is a big hill. Don’t go too fast.’ And I was like, ‘Don’t go fast means don’t peddle.’ But it really meant hold onto the break. I didn’t break at all, and I got really close really quickly, and I didn’t want to crash into my brother, so I braked really hard and went flying. There was someone walking on the other side of the road and just ignored it. The scars are probably like a little smaller. They have changed. I’ve been biking a lot less, and I’m not sure whether or not the scars or the crash have anything to do with it. I don’t think so, but I could just be lazy I guess. I would hold he break when I’m going down a hill now. Also, the scar on my shoulder…I didn’t realize

it scarred. So, eventually I noticed it, and was like, ‘What is that?’ I remember going to the dermatologist and going, ‘What is this?’ And he was like, ‘Oh, it’s just a scar.’ I’m not even 100 percent sure it’s from the accident, but I don’t know what else it would be from, so I just say it’s from that accident. I took a picture of it on Facebook and got a bunch of likes. I don’t think anyone’s treated me differently because of it, but I’m self-conscious about the one on my shoulder. It kind of gross looking and it’s like a giant bump. I don’t think anyone has treated me differently because of it, but I’m always afraid someone will. I wear shorts a lot, so people always see my knees and go, ‘Yo, what’s that?’ And I take my shirt off a lot, and people ask, ‘Yo, what’s that. So, most people know about them and the story behind them. I’ve had these for like seven

years already, so the amount of times I tell people about it decreases with time. Like I probably talk about it like once a month. Last night, someone asked about them, and it was the first time in a while. The past was so long ago, that I don’t even know how the scars have impacted me. I remember going to Dorney Park, right after the accident. And I thought, ‘People probably think I get beat up all of the time, because I have these scars.’ They weren’t even scars at that point. They were just cuts and bruises. They’ve affected my past because I went to the dermatologist about it, and all of my friends were worried about it. They’re presently a good story to tell sometimes. There’s one scar that I like a lot because it looks like an ellipses, like that dot dot dot thing. So, I show it off sometimes. In the future, it might get

in the way of a model gig. Or maybe I’ll be self-conscious about new partners who see the one on my shoulder. I could go without the one on my shoulder. The knees, I’m indifferent, and the bike chain on my calf, I’d like it forever. It looks more like a birthmark than a scar even. I just hope it doesn’t go away.


“I took a picture of it on facebook and got a bunch of likes.�


HELEN GASSMAN Diamond Girl for Temple University, 21

W

hen I was eighteen I was diagnosed with bleb disease. Basically I was born with holes on my lungs, and they’re like little blisters. I was born that way, but it was never a problem before, but when I was 18, I had a collapsed lung, and we found out it was because one of the blisters popped open. So, what happens with bleb disease is you get all these little blisters, and they wear down really thin and they pop open and your lung collapses. So my scars are all from chest tubes. They put a tube in you, and what sucks is that you have to be awake while they do it, because you have to respond if they do it wrong. They could hit your heart instead of your lung, so you have to be aware of, ‘I feel this. I feel that,’ so they know what they’re doing. So it goes in your chest, through your ribcage, and they plant the tube between your ribs and it goes in your lung cavity, and

it sucks all of the air out that escaped in your chest cavity from your lungs, and your lungs eventually are supposed to heal by themselves, because lungs are like skin. Like if you get a scab, it heals. If you get a hole in your lung, it heals, but mine never heal. That’s why I have this thing under my arm, because I had to have lung surgery to like actually go in and staple my lung back together. It’s intense. I’ve had five lung collapses. That’s why I have so many holes. I’ve had three lung surgeries where they had to go in and staple it. My other ones were really cool. They were like robotic surgeries, so there were like little things on my back where they went in with cameras. The one under my arm was really bad, and the reason they do it under your arm is because it’s not really visible, but they faded a lot. They used to look like holes and you could see the indentation, but they’ve definitely faded a lot.

It’s been a year and a half since my last chest tube, so they’ve had a while. There have been a lot of disappointments, because I’m a baton twirler, and I’m the Diamond Girl here. Last fall, my lung collapsed three times during football season, which is when I’m doing things. It sucked. I was in denial for like a week and went to my band practices with a collapsed lung like, ‘No, I’m fine. I’m fine.’ I actually twirled at the Linc for Temple football two weeks after having lung surgery, which was crazy, and my doctor was like, ‘Don’t do that.’ And I was like, ‘I want to. This is my only time.’ I didn’t twirl very intensely, but I was in my costume doing my twirling. It kind of sucks sometimes because second hand smoke is really bad for me. If I’m at a concert or with friends, and someone is smoking, it’s like I either need to be obnoxious and be like, ‘Can you please not smoke?’ And everyone

hates that person. Or, I need to leave and go somewhere else, which sucks. One time I was at the beach, and I was in a bikini, just a couple months after one of my surgeries, and this little kid was like, ‘Mom, what’s wrong with that lady’s skin?’ It grosses some people out, not so much anymore since it faded a lot, but I would still like wear crop tops during the summer or a bathing suit, and people would kind of be like, ‘Oh…’ Or people would ask me, ‘What’s that?’ And after I would tell them, it would gross them out. No one’s really liked babied me or coddled me about them, which is good, because I wouldn’t want that. People definitely have reactions to them, which is funny. I tell everyone. If I’m at a party, I’ll tell people, because it’s a crazy story. It’s just like a crazy disease. If someone’s smoking, I’ll go up to them and say, ‘That’s really not good for you,’ and show them my

scars. I’m kind of like proud of them, because they’re like battle wounds, and I’m still and athletic person, and it’s hard to be that person. The first time I had a lung collapse, I wasn’t twirling here yet. I was at a high school, but it was really like a wake up call. It was kind of like: you’re not always healthy forever, and even if you are healthy forever, one day you’re not. One day, I didn’t know anything about this, and the next two years, it was constant. It was like I need to do what I want to do, and do it now. I like the scars. I show them off. If I see a dress with cutouts, I’m like, ‘Oh, that would show off my scars.’ And I actually wouldn’t give my disease up, even though it sucks and makes my life harder. It’s like really shaped me too, and I would be less motivated if I didn’t have it. So I wouldn’t give it up, the scars or the lung thing.


“I’m kind of proud of them, becasue they’re like battle wounds...”


EVAN HOSKINS RUssian/History Student, 21

I

got my scars on my thirteenth birthday, right before I got Bar Mitzvahed. I was sitting in my dining room with my sister, and we were playing a chess game, and the chess game turned into an obvious stalemate. We both only had a king and a rook left. I was like, ‘Stalemate. Let’s play again.’ And Sarah said, ‘No. This game’s not over yet. We have to see who wins.’ And I’m like, ‘Sarah, it’s a stalemate. There’s no possible way anyone can get the other in check.’ And then she said, ‘It’s a battle of wills, and whoever sits at the table the longest wins.’ We started fighting, and Sarah pushed me out the door. So, I was outside and wanted to get back in, but she wouldn’t let me back in. I was running to try to get in, so I jumped through the window to get back into the house, because the door was locked. I went arm first. Jumped through the window. My arm got cut up. I remember

thinking it wasn’t that bad, and I looked down and it was pretty bad. I had to put towels on it, and we had to rush me to the emergency room. I got 37 stiches in my right arm. I was in the hospital until four in the morning. There’s definitely an evolution. Like, when I first got my scars, obviously, there were still the stiches in, and my birthday was right before school. So I went to get my stiches out, and when I was in school, I had these huge, inflamed, red scars, and everyone would harasses me and ask me about it. I would do this thing where I would tell a different story to different people. It was very obvious that I had them, and they turned purple in the winter. Eventually, they just started to fade after a couple of years. I think some teachers thought they were like cries for help and tried to treat me better. Everyone was always just really curious about them.

They would always ask about them and point at them. It was a big scar, so everyone was curious to know how I got it. It’s weird, because it’s a little fainter now. Like, when I was younger, obviously, if I wore a short sleeved shirt, everyone saw my scars, but now they’re a little fainter. And I know I’m better friends with someone, because usually we’re hanging out for about a couple of months, and eventually they’re like, ‘Oh shit, Ev. You have huge scars on your arms.’ So, usually it takes people a little bit to know. Also, when I’m drunk, I still kind of make up a funny story and tell them that instead. Actually, I thought they were cool, and when I was younger I would wear short sleeved shirts more often to show them off. I don’t know if I would say I’m proud, but I definitely don’t regret it. It’s a fun story. It’s a part of me now. I

sometimes joke that I don’t need tattoos because I have scars. I like them. I think they’re original. They’re something only I have. Only I have these scars on my arms. And it gives me some mileage with my sister sometimes. If I want her to do something, I can show her my scars and say, ‘Look, you made me do this.’


“I Sometimes joke that I don’t need tattoos because I have scars.”


BASEM ISTANBOULI Philosophy student, 21

W

hen I was living in Memphis, Tennessee, my friend and I were biking, and he had this ramp. I’d never rode on a ramp before, and I always thought it would be cool. I was on a mountain bike, and I thought it would be the same as going on a BMX and landing fine. The first time I did it, I made it over, and it was very like smooth and I thought I could do this way better. So I was like, ‘I wanna go a lot higher and faster,’ and I did that. And it didn’t turn out to be so well. I landed… well I didn’t land. I mean, I did land, but I fell and slid over with my bike on my elbow. It was like sliding on the concrete. I got up and like there was like fat coming out of it. It was really gross. The reason it looks this weird is because I didn’t tell my parents about it. I just like put a band aid on it and that’s it. Even when

it happened, I wasn’t flipping out. It might have been a state of shock. I have no clue. It ended up just becoming really gross, because I should have sown it back together, because it was a deep cut. My father referred to it as a laceration. You could see the fat, which is not good apparently. I was like eleven or twelve. It was disgustingly huge. It scabbed up really bad. My dad tried to remove the scab, but it was just like not working, and that’s just why it’s gone like this. But it’s definitely gotten better. People would be like, ‘What is on your elbow?’ But I don’t know. It’s on a really random part of my elbow. I think it’s just almost blended in, but whenever my arm or my elbow is extended, it kind of looks wrinkly and weird. When people see it, I’m basically like, ‘I fell off my bike.’ That’s what I say. I guess it’s always a reminder to me that I

shouldn’t rush into things as I did with that. Even though it didn’t phase me when I fell. It didn’t phase me with that injury or what happened, but when I think about it now, I’m like, ‘Wow, Basem. Okay, chill down. Don’t just jump into it.’ That’s basically what it taught me, I guess.


“I guess it’s always a reminder to me that I shouldn’t rush into things...”


COSMO ORLANDO Delivery biker, 24

I

played rugby for four years in high school, and in my second year of playing rugby, I was a starter, because our team had so few people. I was definitely undersized. On one of the plays, you’re supposed to lie on your side when you get tackled. That’s the way it works. It’s complicated unless you play rugby. It’s just a way of keeping possession, because every time you’re tackled, you could lose possession. When I was laying on my side presenting the ball, somebody on the other team, who was just this huge dude, probably 200-300 pounds, trips over onto me and smashes my shoulders inward, and my clavicle breaks into my sternum. I’ve never broken a bone in my life, and I still haven’t. It didn’t break, but the ligament tore that keeps the clavicle attached to my sternum, and when the ligament tore, those things don’t grow

back. They had to suture it, to basically go in and cut me open. One of the things that was such an issue was apparently what happened to me only happened four times in recorded medical history, when the clavicle pops in rather than out. They usually just pop out, but mine was pressing in, onto my aorta. So, they were like, ‘Dude, we gotta get you to CHOP.’ So, I went from being in the hospital in Chester County. A friend’s parents drove me there, because neither of my parents would answer their phones. They weren’t even at the game. At the Chester County Hospital, they couldn’t tell what was wrong with me for a while, because I just looked normal. Then, when they did the certain scan, they said, ‘Wow. Your bone popped in. That doesn’t usually happen, and it’s pressing against your aorta. We gotta get you to the Children’s Hospital of

Philadelphia immediately. All of the helicopters were in use, because otherwise they would’ve sent me in a helicopter. Instead, I got a police escorted ambulance up 95. I was rushed to the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, and I stayed there for about a week. My surgery was almost immediate. I was recovering for a week. I was on so much morphine, just in a crazy state. I was pretty depressed at sixteen, and it was a beautiful break from reality. It was exactly what I needed from the time. I need just a week off from life, from everything and just sit there and think and also be on a lot of different drugs. So that it could heal, I had my left arm strapped to my chest for three months, and I’m left handed, so it was particularly annoying. I couldn’t move it at all, because any range would just pop it

right out. The scar used to be very noticeable, but now it’s not, because I have a very massive tattoo that obscures your view. The impact of the scar was that transformative experience of being in the hospital for a week. I cam back the next season from the injury and was the team MVP.


“The scar used to be very noticeable, but now it’s not, because I have a very massive Tattoo...”


AUDREY ROSE MELLI Political science student, 22

W

hen I was twelve, I was rollerblading downhill, and I didn’t realize there was grass stuck in my wheel, and I couldn’t break, so I just had to stop the speed and acceleration of going down the hill. I just sort of fell forward and started tumbling down the hill and tumbled all the way down, and I’m at the bottom of the hill all bloody with these two giant scars on my leg. It was pretty traumatic, because I couldn’t move for like a week and a half after. I was literally sedentary. My mom couldn’t afford bandaids and shit, so she got really cheap diapers and wrapped them around my leg. I don’t know if that was the best move. Ever since then, I’ve been afraid to rollerblade. I’ll do it probably now, but I was trying to get into. I wanted to be cool. I think I saw Brink and was like, ‘I want to be like them.’

I think over time, like the scars are healing, and they’re slightly fading, which is a good thing, but I’ll always have them. Today, I thought it was warmer, and I said, ‘I want to wear shorts today,’ but I was definitely insecure because of my scars. I have like bad skin too, and my legs haven’t gotten light in a while. I’m insecure about that too. But definitely my scars make me feel insecure, but then I’m like, ‘Who cares? They’re a story. Whatever.’ I feel like I have to pump myself up to wear shorts or bikinis. I have to tell myself that it doesn’t matter, because my knees look nasty. For a while, I was so insecure, I was putting like scar medicine on it, and I was thinking about surgery or something, and then I was just like, ‘No. Whatever. It’s a scar. It could be worse.’ It’s funny how those things could affect you. I also have psoriasis, so I

have to put a lot of medicine on all the time. Because I put a lot of creams on, it makes my skin rough. My pores get really big, and it’s not like clean and smooth and beautiful like women’s skin is supposed to be. It just sucks, but perspective in the long term, it doesn’t matter. It’s just vanity, society and the media that makes you think that it does. It’s humbling, my scars. I’ve had people be like, ‘What happened to your knees?’ They’d call me out, but no one’s treated me differently. If someone’s obnoxious and rude, they’ll point it out, and I’ll be like, ‘Yup, I’m a badass. I fell rollerblading.” It wasn’t even rollerblading. It was inline skating. I can’t rollerblade. I think because of the insecurity for a while, even today, like wearing shorts for the first time since last summer, I felt the need to explain it before anyone could

even ask. I would say, ‘Oh, my knees are horrible from when I was skating when I was young.’ And most of the time, the person probably didn’t even notice. Because I’m older and realize that they don’t matter as much, I think I care less about what other people think about my scars, and I’m more embracing of them. This is a part of my story, my imperfection. It’s like an instant memory. I see it, and I’m reliving that. I think that’s pretty cool. I’m not necessarily proud of them, but they’re a part of me. So, for that, I’m thankful, and it’s a part of my story. Do I wish I didn’t fall? Probably. Pain is bad, but it also makes you stronger. I wouldn’t change what happened. I’m happy with who I am. I’m not perfect, but no one’s perfect. Thanks, scars.


“It’s humbling, my scars.”


CYNTHIA WHITLEY Out-of-School time site director, 45

M

y scar on my right leg, I got when I tripped and fell into a kerosene heater. I obviously wasn’t paying attention to where I was going. I had on some slippers, and I slid on the carpet. To brace myself from putting my hands on the kerosene heater, I put my leg on it instead to pull myself up. And the other scar, there was a nail sticking out of a banister in the basement that got stuck in the side of my leg. I was thirteen or fourteen when I burned myself, and I was probably fourteen or fifteen when I got the nail stuck in my leg. The nail scar hasn’t healed so much. It’s just a black circle. The burn has faded somewhat, but not as bad as it was years ago. When I was twelve to thirteen, teenage years, I tried to keep them covered up. Now that I’m fourty-five, I don’t really care that much. At fourty-five, who cares?

No one really noticed the nail one. Tbe burn of course was big and black and disgusting looking, so yes, I got a whole lot of questions, a lot of stares. That’s why I kept it covered up, so that people wouldn’t ask me about it. When it first happened 30-40 people would ask about it. Now, it’s just blended in with my skin, so it’s not really noticeable. I’ve had some of the kids that I work with ask questions, the youngest ones, because they seem to notice everything, but that’s about it. I wish I didn’t have them. Who wants to be scarred up?


“I wish i didn’t have them. who wants to be scarred up?”


JO IE WU ECONOMICS Student, 18

I

got it when I was seven. I don’t exactly remember. I remember it was a hangnail, and I kept picking it on, so it kept getting bigger and bigger. When I was in middle school, I would literally take scissors and cut off a chunk of my skin and it would just go back. It would start hurting, so I stopped doing that. It would also bleed profusely. That’s the story of my thumb scar. I literally would pull of chunks of skin. I wouldn’t feel anything. It’s gotten worse, because I picked on it. It’s my left hand, so it hasn’t stopped me from doing anything. I mean, my hands are pretty good, except for this one blemish, which is kind of sad, but also, I don’t really care. It’s not that obvious. It’s just a thumb. Fucking old Asian ladies notice it. They’re like, ‘Oh, you have such nice hands,’ and then they see this and gasp. I

just tell them it’s a scar and I think it’s a hangnail I’ve had since I was seven. I kind of wish I didn’t have it now that I’m starting at, but I also don’t really care that much, as long as it doesn’t turn into a tumor or something that’s potentially life threatening. Sometimes, when I’m concentrating, I press down on it, and it hurts. But I just can’t stop pressing on it. It’s kind of crunchy. It’s really weird.


“I don’t really care, as long as it doesn’t turn into a tumor...”


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