This week, millions of Texans struggled to stay warm amidst rolling blackouts that cut off power across the state, limiting access to heat and safe drinking water. While Texas legislators seek to blame renewable energy sources, it is actually their inability to champion alternative clean energy on a large scale that will cause future problems should climate change lead to more winter storms in a state that is known for its semiarid climate.

Though Texas has experienced winter storms in the past, meteorologists acknowledge that this year’s storm has resulted from a breakdown in the polar vortex, an event that…

The other day, I fought with a friend. Well, it wasn’t so much of a fight as it was an argument, and even then one could interpret it as more of an “ethical discussion.” It, like most things, began with a girl.

A mutual friend of ours had been messaging a girl she met on Hinge and offhandedly mentioned grabbing a drink at an outdoor patio bar. I thought it was super cool; my other friend did not. In New York, the average of COVID-19 cases that have been reported this past week has increased by 7 percent compared to…

Former Vice President Joe Biden and Senator Kamala Harris standing next to each other. (
Former Vice President Joe Biden and Senator Kamala Harris standing next to each other. (

When Bernie Sanders, arguably the most desirable option for Progressives during the 2020 Democratic Party Primary election, ended his campaign, voters around the country were crushed. The support for Sanders was palpable, and for a while, it felt like he could actually win the nomination.

When it became apparent that former Vice President Joe Biden was the presumptive nominee, a vague weariness and overall distrust took over the election. Sanders’ supporters called out his lack of media coverage, despite being a consistent frontrunner during the primaries, and broadcasted their support by labeling themselves #BernieorBust. …

How wild I was to venture out on my own. A mother gone, a house alone. Most teenagers would kill for this situation, the freedom to do whatever they want.

I felt lonely by it all and couldn’t stand the quiet. As I cooked, the TV blared and the radio blasted. Sounds were all around me, vibrating on the air waves as if to tell me that I wasn’t alone.

But even these little tricks, distractions couldn’t stop me from feeling this way. I kept all the lights on and put one, two, three dogs on the bed with me. I smelled my mother’s pillows and relished the scent of them, the scent of her.

Still, the silence was too much. I ventured out on my own, walking the streets of our neighborhood, traipsing through town until I found somewhere I could be. Just be. A lake, glistening with the light of early dusk, just before the chill hits. The warmth comforted me and the breeze wrapped around my face. All around me was the quiet noise of life: cars driving by, fish playing in the water, people living their lives. This silence that I seemed so desperate to fill, I learned, wasn’t actually silence at all. And it all seemed to center around me, a lonely girl from down the street. It was then that I noticed how valuable it is to be alone and just be. How wild, exhilarating even, it could be to just sit and listen.

I think I’ll come back tomorrow.

What does it feel like to die? Think of it like a hole. A sullen, sinking hole, one that traps you and slowly drags you further down, like quicksand but inescapable and resolute. No hope.

That’s what it feels like to die in this world.

Your breath quickens, teasing the life right out of you, and then slows, shutting your organs and releasing endorphins. The body is quite interesting in how it copes with dying. It knows when death is near and, after a whole life of wishing to be in tune with your body, you suddenly are.

You know…

Jaxx Artz

Jaxx Artz is a writer, sales associate, cook, tutor, and, most recently, graduate. She can be found somewhere in the vast expanse between Texas and New York.

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