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Dayton Youth Radio Presents Teens In Quarantine: Isaiah Jackson And Roderic Blake

Isaiah Jackson and Roderic Blake
courtesy of Isaiah Jackson and Roderic Blake
Isaiah Jackson and Roderic Blake

This week on Dayton Youth Radio, a story about teens in quarantine from Isaiah Jackson and Roderic Blake, two juniors at Fairmont High School who are also best friends.

Isaiah Jaskon

Hi, my name is Isaiah Jackson. I'm 16, almost 17 years old, and I'll be 17 in August. I live with my dad and my sister.

I would say I'm a pretty chill person, honestly, because you can't go on being mad at everything or being annoyed. But usually I'm annoyed, I just don't show it.

I think the pandemic will finally be over like midsummer, but I think the stay-at-home orders will end in May. I would say as soon as the stay-at-home order is finished, I'm getting a haircut. I look really bad. I need to fade and a lineup.

I really want to see my best friends, Kai and Rodric, mostly Roderic, honestly, because that dude is my brother for life. One time, this girl really wanted to hang out with and he was like, "No. She has a boyfriend." That helped me stay of drama, honestly. Another big thing with females and advice is Roderic always makes sure I don't simp out for a girl.

I know a lot of you don't know what means; it's kind of like when a girl controls you, but you do everything for her. It's hard to explain, but basically I just link up with him again because I want to be in business with Roderic. We have the same similar goals. He wants to be a music producer. I can help him with the finances of music. I want to be in real estate or finance business, and he wants to help me with advertising.

At first, I thought the coronavirus epidemic was way overrated, and I somehow still do.

I'm worried about my dad getting the coronavirus because he has diabetes. I don't know if he has type two or type one, but I don't really have to do anything to help, he manages himself and does everything himself. It shows that he's a higher risk person.

I'm trying to stay cautious when I'm at work and stuff, and honestly, we aren't taking any extra precaution because we're already a clean household. We clean everything. We drink water, we eat, we take vitamins. We don't do anything nasty, really. We shower, brush our teeth. We wash our hands constantly.

I would say 20 years from now, I would tell my kids about this and just tell them that it was way out of proportion. It's not like the flu in the 1920s; it's not like the cholera outbreak in the 1820s or the plague outbreak in the 1720s. It's not like that. And I know it's very serious, but it hasn't really hit home for me, for me to be nervous or scared about it or really serious about it. 

But then again, I look at the cases, the deaths in other countries and then realize t's serious. And it could be really worse without the amazing health care system we have here in America.

Roderic Blake

Hi, my name is Roderic, and I live in Kettering, Ohio. I've been going to Fairmont high school for about three years now. From the bottom of my heart, I really do not like school. I'm a junior, but feel more like a senior citizen. Each school year is a little different from the rest, from new teachers, students and even classes. I thought there was no way for 2020 to go wrong, but this year has been a catastrophic one for the ages.

It takes a lot to shut down Kettering City schools even for a day. Upon getting the news, we were mostly excited, thinking things were gonna be fine as usual until reality set in.

Most of us knew about COVID-19 but never expected this big of an impact on our community.

Life now is way harder. For the past couple days, I've been feeling empty, barren and even fruitless. I've never felt like this before. I just feel this urge of dark, not light, and I don't know what it is. Just lately, I've been down, like really down. Being locked up in my house isn't helping it at all. I just sit there.

Growing up, I was always told that we're all teenagers once: you, your grandparents, your parents, your aunts and uncles and even your cousins. I think it's changed from what it used to be. What about the teens forced to take care of younger siblings? What about the kids forced to stay home in unstable home environments with drugs, sexual abuse and physical and emotional abuse? It's like me struggling with mental health problems. My thoughts then shift to the teens forced to deal with these problems alone because their parents are essential workers.

This is a prison. I miss the thing I despise the most. I miss school

Isaiah Jackson and Roderic Blake are juniors at Kettering Fairmont High School. Special thanks to Laura Hutchens. Dayton Youth Radio is supported by the Virginia W. Kettering Foundation, the Vectren Foundation and the Ohio Arts Council.

This story was created at the Eichelberger Center for Community Voices at WYSO.