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Original college essay? (1 Viewer)

W

wrelk

When I first hear Patrick Tottenham's warbly voice I feel like people must have felt hearing the first stirrings of rock n' roll after Sinatra crooned out crap all through the forties. On a rowdy middle school bus I push the muffs of my headphones flush against my head, scrambling to hear the sound of dissonant piano counter-melodies or scraps of lyrics about girls with perfect hands over the shrieking reality around me. It will be years before I even meet Patrick, before he will begin to have an affect on my life.




The car ride there I keep flipping the visor down and checking the mirror, scrutinizing every pore. I keep my right hand busy by operating the window up and down to regulate my heating excitement and chilling nervousness. I ask Max three times if Tottenham is pronounced ‘Tot-en-ham' or ‘Tote-en-ham'. After the third time, Max advises me to just use Patrick's first name.



Very little is rockstar-like about Patrick. He works and lives in the same used record store with his dinged and dented rust bucket parked in the back where the customers can't see it. His glasses are always dirty and remind me of the fingerprint-smudged magnifying glasses that rattle in lab drawers. His skin is pale and nicotine stained from chain smoking Mustang cigarettes that look like fresh sticks of chalk when they are pulled out of the pack and cost a penny less than any other brand at the convenience store. His body looks tired, but his arms and legs shake, radiating excess energy, making me think that there is something very exhausting and unsettling about being thirty-two.



And this amazing man wants to hear my recordings. My music. Max introduces me to Patrick and we both fumble over whether or not to shake hands. I hand over the CD sheepishly and, to my dismay, he broadcasts it over the record store speakers.





---
Thus began the most unique relationship of my life. Every couple of weeks I'd duck away from my parents, and Patrick, his bill collectors. We'd make a spot in some crab-grassed park by a whizzing main street and I'd play him the songs I wrote. He'd commend me, flatter me, then scold me for being humble. He'd list off bands I ought to listen to, and I'd scratch their names into the back of my hand with eyeliner. I, an eager student, and he, my writing guru.



The joy was short lived as rumors buzzed through our town's circuit, or at least it seemed that every raised eyebrow was influenced by our eccentric friendship. Not that Patrick was afraid of being pegged as eccentric, but pervert is only a step above eccentric, and it doesn't carry the same exotic sound.




I'd like to think I outgrew him, ate and digested each of his teachings, was nourished until I stretched too tall to see him rooting on the ground below, arriving in a world without him, prepared and informed. Instead I feel as though I've been weaned too early, torn away with only the half truths learned, fragments that make me question normalcy with exhaustive ferocity, grit my teeth to occasionally accept compliments, and innately fear the life unlived. Oh yes, and hate Phil Collins.


***
This is off of the common app prompt:
Indicate a person who has had a significant influence on you, and describe that influence.

Do me a favor and rip it to shreds?
 
A good read, stylish and funny. It might actually fare better under short stories, even if it isn't fiction it'd still fit in there.

When I first hear Patrick Tottenham's warbly voice I feel like people must have felt hearing the first stirrings of rock n' roll after Sinatra crooned out crap all through the forties. On a rowdy middle school bus I push the muffs of my headphones flush against my head, scrambling to hear the sound of dissonant piano counter-melodies or scraps of lyrics about girls with perfect hands over the shrieking reality around me.
I like the stlye here, has attitude.



His glasses are always dirty and remind me of the fingerprint-smudged magnifying glasses that rattle in lab drawers. His skin is pale and nicotine stained from chain smoking Mustang cigarettes that look like fresh sticks of chalk when they are pulled out of the pack and cost a penny less than any other brand at the convenience store. His body looks tired, but his arms and legs shake, radiating excess energy, making me think that there is something very exhausting and unsettling about being thirty-two.
You write very well, great description and analogies and visuals. Although I think it might read better if you varied the sentence structure. Short, long, short and punchy, very long etc. It has more impact on the reader. But you do this most of the way through to be fair.


Yep, you have style and wit. I think it could be made into a story - if you'd want to try it. Obviously we'd have to meet Patrick in the flesh and hear a bit of dialogue - but everything else is there. The thoughts of the character and some latout of the place.


]
 
W

wrelk

Thank you so much for you input! It means a lot to me when I'm scrambling to get my applications in on time!
 

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