Dear Drink Koozie,

Oh, my sweet, simple Drink Koozie.

On these hot and humid days, you prove yourself tenfold.

No longer do important papers stick to a condensation ring on my desk.  Never again do I have to stand uncomfortably as an iced coffee drips water down my arm.  Forever I am saved from melting ice water making a mess of my life because I have you, you little promotional gem.

And that’s your other beauty: you remind me of my favorite things.  Whether it’s a radio station, a food product, or a TV show, I got you because I loved something enough to get it.  Or you were handed to me at a fair.  Or I randomly found you.  Either way, you directly or indirectly my three favorite things: free, random, productive products.

So, it’s safe to say this is love.  You’re a year round necessity that makes me appear more put together.

You, dear Koozie, are sacred in my books.

Love,

Olivia

Dear Keytar Bear,

Wherever you go, whatever you play, your music brings joy to the citizens and tourists of Boston.

And you always seem to know when I need a smile.  As your paws work that Keytar, I can’t help but feel my day brighten.  Even without my morning coffee, when I hear your groovy beats, it’s like I had a double cappuccino.  There will be times that I’m on my way home from work and I’m burdened with the day’s stress and, right then, I look up and there you are! Just like that, my stress goes away.

In short, you’re all that’s right with the world!

I hope to run into you soon.

Your fan,

Olivia

Dear Woman Sitting Next to Me on the Train,

You, yes, You, are a good person.

For starters you buy printed newspapers still.  And not like the Boston Globe in print but your local town paper.  In print. Do you know how cool that is? Supporting local companies is a clutch move.  And beyond just buying these newspapers, you interact with them.  I’ve seen you tear out coupons, finished a sudoku, and diligently read the paper from start to finish.  This seems to be a ritual of yours. 

And I totally approve.

Then you did something that floored me.  You got up, found your purse, and then you took one step towards the dining car before turning back and saying:

Do you want a coffee?

You’ve never met me.  We’ve exchanged small pleasantries but otherwise we’ve sat in our respective silences.  Yet, regardless, you offered to buy me a coffee.  

Before today, I didn’t know that good people like you existed.  You are the stuff of legends.  A mystical mermaid, if you will.

So thank you for the coffee.  I hope you enjoy your paper.

With warm regards,

Olivia

Dear 13 Year Old Olivia,

By the time you write this, you’ll be too old for it to be effective.

I’m trying to remember who you are crushing on currently.  Is it Skyler or Josh or Max or that guy who plays piano on Main Street in the summer? What was that guy’s name? Dave? Yeah, it was Piano Dave.  Not that it really matters now, you never really kept in touch with any of them.  Especially Piano Dave because, well, he doesn’t know you.

I wish I could be there with you right now.  To tell you that you’re okay.  To warn you that some men really do wear sheep’s clothing.  To remind you that you are loved no matter how different you look from your family.  To hug you late at night when you feel lonliest.

Some of the things that will happen over the next few years will really define you.  The music you listen to and the books you read are still with me today.  The bad days that will inevitable come will seem so dark but know that the next day becomes brighter.  Time keeps us moving on even when it feels like it should stop out of respect for our pain.  It’s important to know that this pain will teach you how resiliant and caring you truly can be.

In a nutshell, here’s what you need to know:

Talk to someone.  Anyone.  The person you trust the most.  Don’t wait until it gets really bad.  Don’t fall inside of yourself for days.  Let someone know how sad you feel and maybe you’ll learn how to manage it earlier.  It’s okay that you get sad, you just need to learn what makes you tick so you can avoid such long sprawls.  It will be a problem in college otherwise.

Look up from the books once in a while.  Talk to people in your class.  Try to be more social and don’t rely on the popularity of Molly and Katie to get you through these next few years.  You are friends with them because you share traits.  The traits you love about them are in you and you will be as well received as them if you only put down the book and interact.

Don’t be afraid to love.  You are, I know, and that’s not completely your fault.  There have been deceptions and you fear what’s lurking around every corner.  Part of you believes that you don’t deserve love.  Part of you doesn’t know what love means.  The biggest part of you is still waiting to be swept off your feet regardless.  It will happen one day.  It’s as cool as we thought it would be, FYI.

That’s it.  Pretty painless right? Years 13 through 19 were pretty rough, not going to lie.  And even after those years, the road is bumpy.  I forecast that it won’t be less bumpy for me going forward either.  But you truly are a resilient and strong woman.  You can do anything when you look forward.

Love yourself,

Olivia

P.S.  In a couple of months, you will want to try and cut your hair yourself like Mandy Moore in “How to Deal” — I know she is perfect and angsty like you want to be but don’t do it.  You’ll totally regret it.

Dear Heatwave,

Listen Bro, we’ve got some problems.

To start, your incessant temperature spikes drive me insane.  Who enjoys weather that is well into the 90’s? I didn’t like the 90’s even when I was growing up in the 90’s, okay? There is nothing fun you can do in this weather.  The beach is unbearable.  Sitting in the shade is a bit better but still far from enjoyable.  Work is bearable because that’s where I can find air conditioning.  And Sleep? Forget it.  You’ve ruined my relationship with Sleep for the foreseeable future.

Then there are the people who are excited for your arrival.  You know who your supporters are — those people who “run cold” and need to lay out in the sun on a rock in order to generate body heat.  These amphibious individuals confound me.  How does the harsh sun you brought to the party not causes these people have sweat slowly dribbling down their lower back? It’s not normal.

There are so many things about you that I can’t stand.  And, quite frankly, I think I may hate you.

I know that nothing I say to you will make you leave faster but I do think I saw a back to school commercial the other day which means Fall isn’t far away and that means cold air is just a few more weeks.  Until then, I’ll battle you with my trusty Fan.

Waiting for you to leave,

Olivia