3:42 PM

When I was ten, the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles were the greatest thing in the world.
I remember someone mentioning New Kids on the Block in my 5th grade class, and I remember thinking "Who would be into NKOTB when there are Ninja Turtles?!" as if they were mutually exclusive. I loved the Turtles. I dressed up as them. I watched them. I was one of them.

I called myself Annatello, the top secret fifth Ninja Turtle member. I chose the name "Annatello" because Donatello was my favorite, and because Annanardo and Annael and Annangelo sounded silly. I chose a bo staff as my weapon, again because Donatello was my favorite, and also because I hurt myself when I tried to play-fight with the other weapons - nunchucks in particular...I always ended up hitting my face. I would tie two drumsticks together with yarn, which I'm pretty sure causes more pain than actual nunchucks. It was not pretty. Oh, and my chosen color was pink...intimidating, huh?

When I was in high school, they came out with a girl Ninja Turtle named Venus. I was so annoyed with that. I was like 16 when I first heard about her and I was filled with extreme jealousy that she got to be the fifth Ninja Turtle instead of me. I felt that I deserved it more, because I'd wanted it longer. I was the original fifth Ninja Turtle. So anyway, this drawing is an ode to my childhood, the color pink, and the most beloved heroes in a half-shell, to whom I owe all of my ninja training.

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