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Having Sex at Puberty
A lot of girls are getting contraceptive
implants and jabs without their parents’
consent. Some are as young as 13.
Predictably there’s been an uproar. But is this
information really something to be concerned about,
or is it a matter of acknowledging teens
and their sexual health needs?
Thirteen sounds young but teens being
curious about sex is not a new phenomenon.
Show me someone who says they hadn’t wondered
about sex at that age and I’ll show you a liar.
When I was 16 I took a picture of my
breasts in the privacy of my bedroom.
I was into the idea of sexy pics but I
didn’t have anyone to send them to.
So I just posed for myself. I turned on my computer,
parted my lips, and snapped some topless pics.
It felt a bit silly, yet also
kind of arousing and fun.
Even though I wasn’t conscious of it at the time,
I needed to get comfortable with the image of my
body before I shared it with anyone else.
A year later, sending those explicit images
to my boyfriend felt like an act of generous
vulnerability, like I was divulging a
few sentences from my diary.
Are you curious about taking and sharing nude pics?
Here’s how you can start: Get very familiar
with yourself. Pose in the mirror, caress your
silhouette, know your naked angles.
Take private photos and videos of your body as
an act of radical self-acceptance. They’re not
for anyone else’s eyes, opinions or desires.
The energy of them is purely self-adoration.
You should learn to love yourself first.
Nirvana’s Smells Like Teen Spirit was a single from Nevermind, the 1991 album that catapulted the group to fame. Supposedly, the name came from graffiti Kathleen Hanna of the band Bikini Kill once wrote on the wall of lead singer Kurt Cobain’s hotel room. She wrote “Kurt smells like Teen Spirit” in reference to a deodorant brand that Cobain’s girlfriend at the time wore. Cobain, who didn’t know what Teen Spirit was, was said to have interpreted it as a revolutionary catchphrase and named a song after it.
Rolling Stone would later vote it the 9th best song of all time. It remains extremely popular and well-known even by people who don’t know any other Nirvana songs.
The song Cobain and the rest of Nirvana created using the title was, according to Cobain himself, an attempt at “the ultimate pop song” and was influenced by The Pixies. Although it wasn’t expected to be particularly successful, the album Nevermind became triple platinum by February of 1992, with Smells Like Teen Spirit being a major contributor to its success. The popularity of the song, the album, and the band is sometimes considered the catalyst for bringing alternative rock, and especially the 1990s grunge genre, to the mainstream.
With its memorable, distorted guitar riff, Smells Like Teen Spirit became Nirvana’s most popular song. It served as an anthem for many of Generation X, who, like Cobain, found themselves confused and uncertain about the world around them. The song’s nihilistic vibe (“Here we are now, entertain us / I feel stupid and contagious”) appealed to many in a youth culture perceived as apathetic and cynical by outsiders.
With its cultural and musical impact, Smells like Teen Spirit is sometimes used as a benchmark for songs that express and shape the aesthetic attitude of a generation or musical style.