Monthly Archives: July 2011

Memory


I have never been very rebellious.

I think I’m living on the edge when I choose to buy a different entree at a restaurant or decide to buy a new pair of shoes. There was one Kindergarten day, however, that I tasted rebellion. I saw the edge, and I ran to it. I danced on it. I made it mine.

It was free-time, and the teacher had turned her back. My boyfriend-of-that-week and I had finished up our very romantic activity of disecting ant brains in the corner and decided it was time to join in a little more socially acceptable fun. We went over to our friend who was playing with the memory cards, and he was nice enough to instruct us in an innovative and quite cool way to use the memory cards in another game. This was ingeniously titled “Flick the Memory Cards Across the Room.”

It was obvious that this game was an ageless classic before we even began playing. Thus with euphoria we began to flick all the cards, one by one, in large arcs across the classroom to the awe of our peers. We were heroes! We were awesome! I began to understand why people crossed socially acceptable norms! I began to see the possibilities of a life truly on the edge, the edge where games were played with the pieces of other games.

It took about 5 cards flying at break-neck speed through the kinder-air-space for the teacher to approach our table with a face that could only mean the worst punishment known to 5 year olds world-wide. Time Out. And for the first time in my life I was sentenced  to engage in the shameful, silent solitude.

We were forced to sit at a table, facing away from the other kids, only able to look at the wall of times tables in shame – a public, mathematical doom. I felt I had no choice but to begin planning my funeral in my tiny, plastic chair. I knew that once the adults of my young life found out of my unforgivable sin that I would certainly pay. What would my friends think? What would my mother think? What on earth would my punishment be?

That afternoon my friend’s mom picked me up, and I swore she knew. I walked begrudgingly to my decided fate of hours hung upside-down, perhaps a brief session of water boarding, and then the worst possible option I could think of – incurable diarrhea. She must have known that I would be forever marred by my time out experience. Yet she didn’t say anything.

I wasn’t fooled, though. I knew she was taunting me in her head. Reading into every silence and jumping at every sound I began to deflate. I soon became the blubbering mess of paranoia and guilt that my mother picked up when she got off work.

I sloshed around in the car feeling sorry for myself waiting for the news of my social blunder to come forth. What kind of mother was she? She should have unleashed indescribable wrath by this point! The teacher must have contacted her of my transgressions! I then decided that if she wasn’t going to be the adult she should be that I needed to take over. I needed to tell the world what I had done!

She then began to laugh! Laugh I tell you! Here I was dying of guilt and shame, and she found it humorous.

I was dumbfounded.

My mother later took pity and explained that she was entirely pleased with herself for having trained me to punish myself like a very simple dog. (It still works. I haven’t lived with her for years and still call to randomly confess wrong-doings.)

And as for the time out? She didn’t care at all.

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Death By Curtain


Here I am entrenched in THE moment of my young life.

At that moment I was reading the 5th Harry Potter book, and I was glued. Let’s recap my young life up until this point.

Yep. I waited in line for every book from Book 3 on.

During this insane (yet such a staple of global culture) process I fell in love. Not with Harry. Not with Ron. No. I fell in love with Sirius Black. The pinnacle of the brooding, sulking, mysterious man with somehow a semblance of a heart even after being tormented by dementors! He was like a dream! A sweaty, greasy dream!

My parents got to listen to me jabber on and on about how Sirius was such a godsend for Harry. I also decided they needed to know everything (EVERYTHING) about his current situation.

I’m sure my parents were torn between total annoyance and significant glee about the interest I had taken when it came to these ridiculously gigantic books. They decided to deal with (most likely impressively ignore) my sporadic melt downs over how awesome Sirius was in pursuit of my better person. (Thanks Mom and Dad)

Then…. the dreaded day.

I was reading the 5th Harry Potter book and totally into this fight scene! They were trying to save the prophesy when…

Everything stopped in my mind, my heart, my world.

My mother then came running into the room while holding the phone asking me if I was dying or something equally as important. She was not impressed with my reasoning that my entirely fictional love-interest had perished.

After the initial clawing at the walls for sanity wore off… I spent the next few years wondering, along with Harry, if Sirius would ever come back through the veil as a ghost. Just a glimpse was all I wanted. But no.

The remainder of my childhood was significantly different, and I felt that even the rising of other characters like Lupin and the fellow Weaseleys could not really help the hole in my heart from pulsing with pain and discontent. I had lost my love. My hero. My friend.

I mean really. How can someone die the wrong way to not come back as a ghost? What kind of sick fantasy genre joke is that? You don’t make the most awesome character to ever have walked the pages of books that no one doubts are timeless classics to be passed down from generation to generation and then kill him in such a pansy, not-even-ghost worthy kind of death! Who dies by freakin’ curtain????

Sirius deserved so much more of a valiant death!

One involving a mass fight scene where he had killed all but one, and Buckbeak flies in to save the day but instead – tragically distracts poor Sirius taking him to his bloody, yet respectable death.

There should have been significant amounts of blood as he went up defending his friends, taking the dementors’ kiss for them.

He needed to die in a way I could accept!

Even after all these years, that moment with the 5th Book still defines my literary experience. I fell in love with a character before… to the point that I broke down and wept when he was gone.

What other story can do that to millions and millions of children and adults alike?

(I hope you all enjoyed the final movie!)

UPDATE: For those of you unfortunate souls who have deemed it unnecessary to read these books (shame on you. go out right now and buy them.) Sirius dies by falling through “the veil” to the other side. He simply falls through a curtain and is dead. There. Now you can understand. (The Man – who is also an uncultured swine like yourself – asked for such an amendment to this post.)

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The Phase


Middle school really is a built-in hell period for all people. Kids are trying desperately to figure out who they are, so they tend to react by morphing into miniature people-capsules of hate and ire. In the end I don’t blame them. Their bodies start randomly sprouting new body parts, the dreaded hormonees reek havoc, and they start to go a bit crazy.

And on top of all of that if you are not being your own worst enemy, Sally Jo decides that your pink pen is no longer “in.” And if you don’t pick up the purple like Jenny Sue just did, you will certainly lose all prospects of social elevation in the grand land of high school.

Middle School really is that horrible.

BUT middle school is also entirely hilarious after (IF) you survive. My three years of scheduled torture were no different. For in middle school I went through what adults would call a “phase.”

I decided that I only wanted to make friends with male-people and thought all female-people were evil and horrible and nasty. Though not entirely off the mark about middle school female-people, I took this “phase” to the nth. (I really don’t half-way do anything.)

I decided that wearing anything from the girls’ section of any store that decided to sell me clothing was giving in; and I found that male-people clothing have something amazing.

I could fit so much in these pockets! I began to put anything and everything within the pockets, to the point that my pants were sagging at the weight. I also decided that brushing my hair was not necessary.

It wasn’t “cool” to brush my hair. Why was it so long anyway?? I actually remember one day when I walked into my parental units’ room and declared that I was going to shave my head because hair was so stupid. The only reason why I kept my hair was because my mother so lovingly pointed out that I have a large dent in my head and would look beyond stupid without hair. (She’s pretty awesome like that.)

Along with voluntarily setting myself aside as a semi-hippy-freak-child in an already tumultuous land of middle school slander, I began to surface as what people would call a “nerd.” I again took this to the nth by joining Geography Bowl, the Chess Team, and Math Counts. I was socially doomed, and I was unknowingly plowing right into the pain.

So here I was… a naturally-occuring-white-person-dreds poster child, no female-clothing in sight, and the nerd of nerds.

I was never so excited to see 3 years go by. Really… why do we still put all those hormone-ridden, mean-spirited, middle school children in the same building? It makes them go crazy!

If you were wondering… the “phase” ended the summer before high school. I bought a pair of girl jeans, cut my hair, and discovered the land of make up. (High school had its own phases, but that’s another story.)

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The LaundroMonster


(FACT: This post was as hard to write as the laundry was to do, and I have yet to figure out why.)

Adulthood is filled with many things called “responsibility,” kids. These include stepping up to be the person who calls the pizza place, looking like you’re super brave in front of kids even though you’d rather weep next to them, and… the laundry. Beware – for it quickly morphs into a creature of undeniable horror – The LaundroMonster.

Laundro, as his familiars know him, sneaks right up on you. He starts out as a cute pile of clothing that was once the object of fashionista affection. You actually once wore these pieces of clothing before they became the bane of your existence. After a few days, though, this small pile – a baby Laundro – grows into a teenage… rebellious creature. At this point it is still possible to tame the beast by introducing what is known as a “hamper,” but many parents shy away from true parental responsibility at this point and completely lose control.

Behold… the full, adult, 4-load Laundro. Your worst enemy.

The Man and I met this evil being this past weekend, and it was a terrible sight. It had been too long. We had become lax in our laundry-taming, and we were in over our heads.

To put it into perspective, we had hit what I’d like to call “Stage 6” of laundry denial. Laundro had moved in, become a roommate, and we were starting to figure out how to live with him. We were almost beyond help.

~O~o~O~o~O~o~O~o~O~

STAGE 1:  (TOTALLY NORMAL)
The moment when you realize you have worn all your “cool, awesome” clothes and you are about to be reduced to your final spurts of outfit innovations.

STAGE 2: (GETTING SERIOUS)
Hmmm I’m running out of socks.

Stage 3: (WHOA NELLY)
Innovation is not even working. Seriously. I only have a few pairs of underpants left.


Stage 4:  (EVERYONE BECOMES A TEENAGE BOY)
Eyeing the pile of laundry and deciding what is “ACTUALLY” dirty.
Common Test: Does it stand up on its own?

Stage 5: (ARE YOU SERIOUS?)
Buying more clothes instead of doing laundry.


Stage 6:  (YOU SHOULD NEVER HIT THIS STAGE. I WILL NOT EVEN GIVE IT A NAME)
Resorting to hermitdom and refusing to wear clothes simply because of the lack of options.

~O~o~O~o~O~o~O~o~O~

We eventually heard the words of our concerned family and friends, and I knew I had to do something.

I came home ready to tackle the beast, and I made it my prisoner in the mesh bags of doom. I then attempted to introduce the foreign concept of “motivation” so that The Man and I could no longer ignore the problem. I took all of our towels and the rest of our clothes, and I packed everything away in the car. We had no choice now but to face our cleaner, folded destiny!

And yet… responsibility was still incredibly hard to face, and we somehow found ways to ignore Laundro more than ever before. We manufactured ignorance and fabricated methods of avoidance comparable only to a college student facing a mountain of Linguistic Anthropology reading! (What? That’s just me??)

Finally…unable to remain pantsless hermits forever – we gave in. Introducing the beast’s kryptonite (known to some as detergent), we finally slayed the freakin’ thing. It was a terrifying experience. We had to use swords and everything.

IT WAS A VICIOUS EXPERIENCE I PROMISE YOU!

Anyway, the point is the world (aka this apartment) is safe from Laundro once again. Maybe we’ll learn from our wicked ways… Maybe we won’t. Perhaps this is just a cycle to live through, for where would we be without Laundro?

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