Revision Street: Michelle Flores (II)
Michelle’s obviously tough. So what about boyfriends? I ask her. Any boys that you like?
No, no. . . . Well, I don’t know if it’s like or just think he’s cute. . . . A lot of my friends judge a guy on his looks before they get to know him. They’ll be like, Oh no he’s ugly and all that. But I actually get to know a guy before judging him. So I don’t care if they think he’s ugly or not, if he’s sweet. If he cares about a girl or something. Just his whole personality. If he doesn’t put up a front, if he doesn’t pretend to be something he’s not. I like the person who’s actually truthful about who he is. I don’t like people who lie.
Some guys tell me they’re heavy drinkers. Alcoholics piss me off, ‘cause a lot of my family members, the guys are alcoholics. The last guy I dated called me one day when he was drunk. I hung up on him, and he calls me the next day. He was like, Oh I totally blacked out, I have no clue what happened. I totally don’t remember anything, me and my friends were so gone. I told him, You saw how my dad looks like, right? And he’s like, Yeah. ‘Cause my dad’s short and muscular and he can put up a great fight. I told him, I’m not even scared of my dad when he’s drunk, and I could send him to the hospital if I wanted to, so what makes you think I won’t do the same to you?
Do you think a lot of kids your age are violent, or angry?
There’s a lot of funny things that people find stupid, and there’s a lot of stupid things I find funny. I get stupid and funny confused. In Mexico my cousins and I play with chispas—I don’t know how to describe them, but they throw out sparkles. Like sparklers, but they’re little balls. We use those, and we hold them in front of people and brand them with them. They don’t get burned by it. It’s kind of stupid but funny stuff, but for me to get pissed off is really hard. Once I get pissed off it’s hard to calm myself down.
In order for me to calm down, I just lock myself in my room and eat chocolate and talk to my cousin on the phone, ‘cause she’s the same way. When she gets pissed off, we can’t calm ourselves down for like nothing. So we just hang out with each other ‘cause we know how to calm each other down.
Chicago’s big. The South Side, the West Side, the North Side. When you turn on the news, the first thing you see is gun violence here, gun violence there. But the only time you see a teenager or young adult has done good is in school. If you look beyond school, like in the park districts or just randomly in the streets, there’s—we’re not all bad. We all do good. Yeah, there’s a lot of violence, but we also have to look on the good side.