Monday, December 8, 2014


Taking a hiatus from the blog. I don't know how long it will be. Have fun on the internet or something.
Oh, happy belated second anniversary, by the way. 

Friday, November 14, 2014

Why Derek Landy is my favorite author

Monday, November 3, 2014

I'm a chicken

I have been very, very busy lately. Between college apps, normal writing, learning how to use the drawing program I found that ACTUALLY WORKS (YAAAAAAY!) and keeping up with schoolwork and friendships, I've had an exhausting few weeks. I'm also trying to work up a writing portfolio for college scholarships, which is frickin' hard. I have about eight different stories I want to write before my last deadline and no time to write them in.

Which is why I'm once again not doing NaNoWriMo this year, even though I said I would.

But that doesn't mean I'm not writing. My goal is to write at least 2,000 words a day, but I'm not going to limit myself to one project. I'm going to work up and edit a whole lot of short stories and essays, as well as hopefully finishing a few longer projects I've started.

I AM starting a new story, a longer project I came up with a while ago. It's definitely new territory for me...and I have ideas for a couple short stories series, which will probably go up on my other blog, so look out for those.

Meanwhile, I am having lots of fun with FireAlpaca, the drawing program I mentioned. Look what I drew my dad for his birthday!

It's Freddy the Pig fan art! 

And here's a cartoon for the school newspaper that unfortunately did not make it in because the school email was being stupid and I couldn't make the deadline.

It was going to be an illustration for an article on typing notes versus writing them.

And THIS is a picture of my fictional character Igor dipping someone else's fictional character Max:

Off-panel: Max's boyfriend thinking "Please don't drop him."

Anyway, hopefully I'll have something for my other blog soon. See ya!

Monday, October 20, 2014

It's been a really good day

I am amazingly happy right now. The thing that I thought was impossible happened. IT HAPPENED. And I keep checking to make sure it's true, because WOW! I just...I've been alternating between bundle of nerves, trembling with shock, laughing, almost crying, and trying to express inexpressible joy in these feeble sounds and symbols we call words. It's not nearly enough, but it's all we've got. So make the most of your words! Shout to the sky! Write poetry or prose or whatever the hell you want! Try to express that inexpressible joy bursting through your heart, try futilely, beautifully, clumsily, just TRY IT! Because...what you think is impossible might not be. What you think can never happen might happen if you give it a chance. 

Sunday, October 5, 2014

A Really Bad Limerick and a Failed Triolet

There once was a mad scientist
Who, perusing his extensive client list,
Discovered to his dismay
His latest death ray
Was built for his nemesis's podiatrist.


This started off as a triolet
But something went wrong and I must admit
I'm not quite sure how I feel about it
But this started off as a triolet
Then it took its own reigns and it ran with it
And I'm not really sure where the path did split
But this started out as a triolet
And apparently I can't write poetry for s***
So I put down my pen and I say "Screw it
I might as well just learn how to knit
I'm bloody well done with this poetry s***

(But this started out as a triolet.)

Monday, September 29, 2014

New Blog!

Hey guys.

I've got kind of a lot going on right now. Just started my senior year of high school, and not only do I have a buttload of college stuff to deal with, but the schedule drastically changed and my favorite teacher left. The transition has been...less than smooth.

Nevertheless, I am working on a very important post that should be up sometime this week. So check back soon.

And I started another blog!

It's called Oddments and Wonders, and you can find it right here. (I kept part of my signature "rowanboookworm" url, complete with the extra o in book.)

Oddments and Wonders is strictly for my creative writing--poems, stories, essays, stuff like that. I'm going to put a lot of stuff up on there, partly to give colleges a chance to see it if they want to, but also because I want to share it with you guys. I really hope you like it! So far the only thing up there is a poem I wrote at Kenyon, but that will change soon. (It might even change later tonight if I feel like posting something else.)

I think that about wraps that up. Check back later this week for an internet social justice post. See ya!

UPDATE: Unfortunately I'm not going to be able to finish the post I promised you guys. Frankly, it was making me nauseous to write it. But it was about Sam Pepper and if you want to know more go here. That was my main info source anyway...sorry.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Goodbye, Sammy. I'll never forget you.

My mom had a 30% off gift card at Vroman's, so we went and got a lot of books on Saturday. And one of the books I picked up was Sammy Keyes and the Kiss Goodbye.

I read the whole thing that afternoon and it pretty much ripped my heart out.

It's hard to say goodbye.

In case you don't know, the Sammy Keyes series is a series of eighteen books intended for middle school readers, written by Wendelin van Draanen. (Anyone here see the movie Flipped? That was based off of something else she wrote.) Sammy Keyes follows this amazing heroine, who is unsurprisingly named Sammy Keyes, through seventh and eighth grade. They take place about a month apart, and they're all mysteries. Sammy never thinks of herself as a detective, but that's really what she is--she's a fierce, brilliant adventurer and detective. Personally, I think she'd make a great P.I. when she grows up.

WARNING: MINOR SPOILERS MAY BE AHEAD. I'll try not to spoil anything too major, though.

The basic premise is that Sammy is this seventh grade kid who keeps getting involved in mysteries. Part of it is that she's curious, and once she's involved she can't let something go. She's brave and fierce and she frequently makes bad decisions. She also has a hard time getting to places on time. There's a reason the other characters call her "Sidetrack Sammy."

Sammy lives with her grandmother in a government-subsidized building--in which minors are not allowed. So she has to sneak up and down the fire escape and spend a lot of time away from home and generally do a lot of sneaking. This also creates tension whenever Sammy runs into the police, because if they find out about her living situation, she and her grandma are stuck.

The reason Sammy lives in the government building? Her flakey mother is off in Hollywood, trying to become an actress. Lady Lana (Sammy's mother) is actually one of my favorite characters to read about, largely for her sheer insufferableness. (I'd hate Lana in real life.)

Because of her living situation, Sammy really tries to keep the police from getting involved in stuff. But that's a bit hard with Officer Borsch, a by-the-rules Javert type policeman, on her tail. Sammy just seems to rub Officer Borsch the wrong way, especially in the earlier books. The first time they met, he gave her a ticket for jaywalking. But he goes through some truly well-done character development as the series progresses

Here are some things I love about Sammy Keyes (both the character and the books):

--Sammy is not a perfect person. She slacks off on her homework, lies left and right, jaywalks ALL THE TIME, and frequently runs afoul of the police--well, one police officer in particular. Officer Borsch is also a great character with a lot of amazing development!

--But Sammy always stands up for what is right, and when she makes mistakes she (eventually) admits to them and pays for them. I mean, the third book has her doing twenty hours of detention for using and abusing the school's PA system. TWENTY HOURS. That's a lot.

--The books are really funny. Sammy's got a great sense of humor. She's very sarcastic and she gives things and people little mental nicknames, especially if she doesn't know their real names (the Splotter, the Crocodile, Camo Butt, etc.). Billy Pratt, one of Sammy's classmates, is introduced in one of the later books, and he provides great comedy relief as well. Seriously, I love Billy. He's such a goofball!

--But van Draanen isn't afraid to get serious. In the fifth book, Sammy Keyes and the Curse of Mustache Mary, Sammy tangles with drug dealers and busts a meth lab. She's in seventh grade at the time. In the seventh book, Sammy Keyes and the Search for Snake Eyes, she gets involved in gang business. Sammy also faces her own internal issues, such as her feelings about her mother's abandonment and the fact that she doesn't know who her father is.

--The books help teach the readers about serious issues, like drug abuse, abandonment, gang violence and bullying, without being boring or preachy. Instead of just saying "Don't do this," van Draanen really shows you why you shouldn't do this, and also why it might seem like a good idea at the time when it's not in the long run.

--Not everything is about Sammy. There are times when Sammy's friends rally and support her during emotional crisis, but there are also--probably more often--times when Sammy has to focus on and support them. This especially happens with her best friend Marissa, who has a destructive crush on a jerk called Danny. Marissa and Sammy's relationship is deep and complicated and it rings true to life. They're similar enough to get along and different enough to play off each other in really funny ways. Marissa's a lot more emotional than Sammy, and I'd say that Sammy's quite a bit tougher than Marissa.

--The relationship with Heather Acosta is always interesting. Heather Acosta is pretty much the Draco Malfoy of the series. She's Sammy's classmate and, for reasons of her own, she hates Sammy. Their relationship kicks off with a bang in the first book, when Heather pokes Sammy with a pin and Sammy punches Heather in the nose, and it goes more or less downhill from there.

--But in a lot of ways Heather is understandable. Yes, she's a massive jerk, but van Draanen examines Heather's emotions and motivations, especially in some of the later books. She has reasons for what she does, and her bitterness is deep and complex. (That said, she's still a wonderfully petty villain who you love to hate.)

--There's a touch of romance, especially in the later books, but it doesn't overtake the plot. And it is totally believable and adorable. Through the story, van Draanen manages to develop one of those insane situations where it makes perfect sense when you're reading the books, but if you try to explain to someone they'll probably get lost. I love those.

I found Sammy Keyes in seventh grade, and I got to it in kind of a roundabout way. I picked up a different book by Wendelin van Draanen, a book called Runaway. Runaway follows the story of Holly, a twelve-year-old girl escaping from an abusive foster home and making her own way across the world. The book had a huge impact on me, and it's still one of my favorites. It is absolutely beautiful and I highly recommend it.

At the back of the book van Draanen had written an afterword. I read it and got confused, because it referenced the Sammy Keyes series. (Sammy appears near the end of Runaway.) Then I realized that Holly had started out as a character in Sammy Keyes--she shows up in the third book, Sammy Keyes and the Sisters of Mercy. I really loved Holly and I wanted to read more about her, so I picked up a Sammy Keyes book, figured out which was the first one, and started from there.

And I think it was at about the third one when I fell in love. Holly is still one of my favorite characters, by the way. She shows up a lot and she's amazing.

So thank you, Holly, for being so strong and amazing and for guiding me to Sammy. And thank you, Sammy, for making me laugh and helping me figure out what's wrong and what's right and for being your brilliant self. I will never, ever, ever forget you.

And there's always rereading.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

The Ice Bucket Challenge and GISHWHES

Yesterday my good friend Chelsea Hagen, who I met at Kenyon, challenged me to the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge.

So I did it.

Sorry about the fuzzy quality. I filmed it on my iPad.

Due to the way my iPad case/stand works, I couldn't tell if the camera was pointed in exactly the right direction. So I just went for it and hoped for the best.

And accidentally made it so that I was off-camera when I dumped the water on my head.


A word to the wiser than me: don't do it if you live in California. There's a drought going on. But I did it with recycled water over a plant that needed to be watered, so hopefully I didn't do too much damage.

If you want to donate--which would be awesome--go here:

or here:

I thought I'd also take this time to write about GISHWHES, which is another crazy thing that Chelsea talked me into. Apparently she's good at getting me to do crazy things.

GISHWHES stands for the Greatest International Scavenger Hunt the World Has Ever Seen. It's this big world-wide scavenger hunt where you find or make the items on the list and submit videos or photos. It's put together by Misha Collins, who plays Castiel on Supernatural (I don't watch it, but I have a lot of friends who do). It lasts a week and it was really fun!

Participants are assembled into teams of fifteen. Not all team members are in the same area. The team I was on was spread out between California, Illinois, Texas, and Canada. We found a website to chat on so that we'd know who was doing what.

The first thing I called was an item asking for "Jump the shark." Now, jumping the shark refers to the moment when something has declined in quality to the point where it's just trying to get attention by doing something ridiculous. It first came from a TV show where, in an attempt to get viewers, one of the actors jumped over a shark while waterskiing. But the GISHWHES item specifically said "Be creative. Points will be taken off for missing limbs and shark bites," so no actual sharks were involved.

As soon as I saw the item, my mind flew to a classmate who had worn a shark costume during Spirit Week. I called her and she was kind enough to let me borrow it, so I picked up the costume that afternoon.

Two days later I was in my friend's backyard, jumping rope in a shark costume with my legs sticking out.

I can't post this one here, because it's on my friend's channel and it's an unlisted video so I can't access it. But I wrote a jumprope rhyme to go with the video. It went:

I had a baby shark and his name was Toothy Tim
I put him in the bathtub to see if he could swim
He swam around the water, he ate my rubber duck
He chewed it and he swallowed it and then it got stuck.

The next thing I did was modify my bike. The challenge: "We think your bike has been disappointing you with its current performance. Turn it into a warp-speed capable space ship. Film yourself riding it."

So I bought some silver spray paint and silver duct tape and went to work. 

Here's what it looked like: 

I was going for a Starship Enterprise effect, but let me tell you, that thing was hard to ride. The attachment on the back kept hitting me in the legs and the hood over the basket conveniently blocked my view of the gearshift. 

But I did it. Woo!

The next item tacked was the public service announcement about how to best serve our new jellyfish overlords, since the jellyfish will be big winners in global warming. This was so much fun to write. My friend and I wrote it, our other friend read it for the camera, and I edited it. I had a heck of a time with the editing, since it could only be fifteen seconds long. I wound up speeding up the clip slightly, so my friend's voice was a tad squeaky. The whole thing had a very Night Valelian aura. 

Then I went after the family of four enjoying a formal dinner where everything above the tablecloth is made of Legos. That one was a photo. I got some extra Legos and brought them to my friend Merula, who a) is an expert at Legos and b) has a family of four. Unfortunately I can't post this one, as Merula doesn't like having her photo on the internet. 

After that, Merula came back to my house and our other friend came over and we made pasta with jam sauce! We used this recipe, as was required: 
 The challenge was to make it and then have a certified, published food critic review it. Good thing my mom is friends with a certified, published food critic.

The stuff was actually surprisingly tasty. Merula in particular loved it and took most of it home with her. 

Then, on a whim, we did the challenge of "Have an elderly person teach you an obsolete skill." Many thanks to my dad for agreeing to impersonate an elderly person. 

The next challenge was quite scary...

The challenge: "Get everyone in a subway, bus or train car to sing "Over the River and Through the Woods." There must be at least eight passengers and it must not be staged."

So that's how my friend Sally and I wound up taking the Metro to Pasadena so that we could get a video on the way back. 

It was a really fun trip. But on the way there, we saw someone get arrested. The train was pretty much deserted when it pulled into the Memorial Park station, and this guy got on. And then these two police officers got on the train, pulled him off it, and as the train pulled away Sally and I saw them frisking him and leading him away. Which was like, holy crap. That was kind of scary!

It turned out that there was a farmer's market going on in South Pasadena, so Sally and I got off the train, walked around a bit, and shared a crepe. It was super fun. Then we got back onto the train and attempted the challenge. 

Before I show you this, I have a question: Do you know the lyrics to Over the River and Through the Woods?

Yeah, no one else does either. 

Thanks, Misha Collins.

When we got off the train on the way home, the police were there checking peoples' Tap cards to make sure that they had paid for their rides. Just in case we needed to be any more nervous than we were.

The last item planned was a gingerbread neighborhood full of vice. My friend and I had gotten the gingerbread and made the dough with mixed results on the day of the jellyfish PSA. See, what happened was we got some gingerbread mix and decorations at the store. The box had three sets of instructions on it: on the back were the directions for ginger cake and soft gingerbread cookies, and on the side were the directions for the kind of gingerbread cookies that you use a cookie cutter on.

We accidentally made the soft cookie mix. Which required about eight times as much water as the normal mix.


So we kept adding flour until it thickened up and then stuck it in the fridge to harden. I baked the pieces a few days later, and the day after the train ride Sally came over to help me frost and assemble.

It was a precarious undertaking. The walls were misshapen and lumpy, there were a LOT of people, and one of the two buildings only had half a roof (we made the other half out of graham crackers). It was the kind of thing where you didn't want to sneeze too near to it in case it fell over. But eventually we got it done.

Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you: A Shootout Outside of The Elopus Strip Club and Bobby's Tattoo Parlor.

In case you can't tell what's going on: the guys in green (a.k.a. the Peter Pan Evil Girl Scouts) are having a shootout with the guys in black (a.k.a. the Ninjas) outside of a strip club and a foreclosed tattoo parlor. One cop is down, while his buddy his chatting up the hooker in the ally. 

We got candy lips just for the hooker.

The Elopus, by the way, was this year's GISHWHES mascot.

This was enormous fun to make and I am proud of it. The gingerbread was horribly bland and the icing was plasticky, but it looked amazing! 

The Elopus Strip Club was finished on the last day of GISHWHES. We'd done all we had signed up for and I thought that was it until about nine o'clock that night...when suddenly, one of my California teammates realized that she wouldn't be able to complete the sci-fi movie poster starring Misha Collins and the Queen of England (no photoshop allowed). So I pulled out my pencils, pens, and a couple of markers and got to work!

 I am SO PROUD of this poster. I went for a 50's monster-movie look and I am SO. PROUD.

It was submitted half an hour before the deadline and then I was well and truly done. GISHWHES was over. And I am SO doing it again next year. :D

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Quick post let people know that I'm not dead. Close, but no. I've been doing GISHWHES this week, and thus I've been super busy.

I need to get some sleep so I can get up and do stuff with gingerbread tomorrow, but I promise I'll tell you all about it once it's over.

As an apology, have a couple of old funny pictures.

Yeah, they've been on the blog before. Deal with it. 

See ya.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Theories on Dragon Training (Puts On Tinfoil Historically Inaccurate Viking Hat)

I went to see How To Train Your Dragon 2 yesterday, and holy cow, it was great! I'd seen the first one a few months ago at a friend's house, but Dad wanted to see the second one with me so we checked the first one out of the library and watched it Saturday night. I also used to be a big fan of the books when I was younger, and I got to go to a Cressida Cowell book signing once. That was fun. I got a plushie of Toothless. It looks like Movie Toothless, but it's about the size of Book Toothless. (Book Toothless is a lot smaller, if you didn't know that already.)

Me with my Toothless plushie outside the library. It was a few years ago, hence the long hair.

And the soundtrack--wow! I mean, I'm already a sucker for anything that sounds Irish/Scottish (Scotch?)/fiddle-y, and it was just so good! I just bought the soundtrack to the second movie and I'm listening to it as I type.

Having seen both movies in quick succession, I came away with a few conspiracy theories to explain minor plotpoints/plotholes that they didn't address.


So in the first movie, it takes Hiccup quite a while to gain Toothless's trust, right? I mean, they can't even make eye contact the first time Toothless lets Hiccup touch him. But then nearish the end, when Hiccup and his classmates have to go help Stoic and the other adults beat the alpha, they train the other dragons pretty fast. It seems like a plotting gap, but I have an explanation!

See, the other dragons they train are already used to having humans around. I mean, yeah, the humans have mostly been fighting with them, but it didn't look like any serious injuries were done to the dragons. So the other dragons are already more trainable. Plus, Hiccup's already been covertly working with them for the past few weeks during his training.

On a similar note, I have a theory that when the alpha died in the first movie--the "Queen Bee" alpha--that made all the dragons under his/her/its control more susceptible to human friendship. Some kind of psychological bond obviously exists between the alpha and the other dragons, but when the alpha died with no new alpha to replace it, that bond would have snapped. Or maybe the Vikings were seen as a sort of alpha-substitute, since they were the ones who dispatched the old alpha. Either way, the satellite dragons are going to be much more open to human friendship, companionship, and training. Also I think Hiccup was probably out for at least a week or two between losing his leg and the end of the movie, so there was some time to adapt.

The one thing that I was wondering after I saw HTTYD2 was How did Drago control that alpha? I mean, Drago's alpha was HUGE. It could have just stepped on him or something. He was not that big a threat to it. But I figure that Drago probably put some serious effort into training the alpha--and by "serious effort" I mean that he refined some truly horrifying torture techniques for use on really big dragons. Making friends with it just isn't Drago's style. He must have found a way to make the alpha fear him, then figured out how to forge some kind of psychic link with it so that it knew and obeyed his commands. I'm not quite sure how he did this, but it can't have been fun for the dragon. I mean, did you see those chains around the alpha's tusks? Yikes.

So there you have it: my way-too-in-depth take on the HTTYD universe. What do you think about it? Any new theories?

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

More Writing Adventures...And Now I'm Home Again

Wow, I can't believe I've been home for three days. I miss Ohio already. I miss the thunderstorms and the fireflies and how it wasn't two hundred degrees out so you could actually walk around without frying. That was nice. And the rain. That was nice too.

My last couple days at Kenyon were really fun. On July 4th there was a parade. It was the shortest parade I've ever been in. It was also the only parade I've ever been in, but seriously, it really was short. The Young Writers' program marched in it, led by the decorated golf cart. Did I mention the golf cart before? Well, halfway into camp, one of the guys broke his leg playing Ultimate Frisbee and got a huge cast put on it. So for the rest of camp the golf cart, driven by an R.A., took him from the dorms to the dining hall to the writing building.

One of the R.A.s ran over a plastic fence post thing and broke it once. It was one of those things where there's a few plastic posts with a chain suspended between them cordoning something off and he hit one of the posts. The R.A. just picked up the post, stuck it back in the ground, and said, "No one saw that, right?" Onlookers: "Saw what?"

Anyway, back to the parade. So we had the guy with the broken leg leading the marching writers on the golf cart. He also led the cadences. I don't know if you've ever done cadences. They're this call-and-response parade thing. Ours went something like this:

We like writing, yes we do!
We like writing, yes we do!
And we want to write with you!
And we want to write with you!
Alliteration, metaphor!
Alliteration, metaphor!
We will write you out the door!
We will write you out the door!
Sound off!
One two!
Sound off!
Three four!
One two three four
One two (beat) three-four!

And my personal favorite:

John Green walked on Middle Path,
John Green walked on Middle Path,
But he wasn't good at math!
But he wasn't good at math!
Life is not a metaphor,
Life is not a metaphor,
Take your "okay" out the door!
Take your "okay" out the door!
Sound off etc.

So yeah, that was fun. It lasted all of about fifteen minutes, but it was fun. Perfect 4th of July weather, too, sunny with bright, cottony clouds.

Sadly, July 4th was also the last day of camp. There were some last day activities--last classes, emotional goodbyes, and, excitingly, a ghost tour of Kenyon College, led by the R.A.s with their own personal ghost stories. If you ever get a chance to take the Kenyon ghost tour, I'd definitely recommend it. There were some truly terrifying stories. 

It was really nice at night--there were so many fireflies! We also saw a deer and some baby raccoons. The R.A.s were like, "Yeah, the swimming pool ghost is serious business, and so are mother raccoons, so let's stay to this side of the path." My friend and I started joking about our tour group becoming next year's ghost story if anyone had messed with the raccoons. Yeah, so last year there was this idiot writer on the ghost tour who got bitten by a baby raccoon when they tried to pet it and died of rabies. Ever since then people keep coming across lines of poetry written on the walls in chalk. And occasionally someone walking at night will feel an invisible person petting them. (That last line was my friend's contribution. Yikes.) Fortunately, that never got a chance to happen, although we did get the crap scared out of us when this soccer ball randomly rolled onto the path. But then the guy kicking it around revealed himself and it was one of us writers so it was okay. 

Sadly, there was not time on that last night for another game of Mafia. I don't think I mentioned Young Writers' Mafia before. We played it a few times and it was a lot of fun. Although it was slightly different than the way I'd learned it. 

*Warning: Dirty jokes abound in the following story. You have been warned.*

If you already know how to play Mafia, you can skip the next two paragraphs.

So, Mafia. For those who don't know, here's how it works: You've got a deck of cards, or at least part of a deck. It has to include the king, queen, ace, and, if you're playing the way we did, jack. The moderator, or God or whatever you want to call it (we used God), passes the cards out to everybody. Everyone takes a card and looks at it without showing anyone else what it is. Ace is the Mafia. There can be either one or two Mafia, depending on how many people you have. King is Detective and queen is Doctor, unless I got that backwards and it's really the other way. Jack I'll get to in a minute. Anything other than those is just a random citizen. Once everyone knows their cards, they pass them back and the game begins. 

Everyone goes to sleep until God says "Mafia, wake up." Then the Mafia raise their head(s) and point to the person they want to kill. God makes a mental note of it and tells the Mafia to go back to sleep. The Doctor wakes up and chooses someone to save. If it's the victim, the victim doesn't die. If it's not, nothing happens. The Doctor has no way of knowing whether they're saving the victim. Also the Doctor can save themselves. Then the Doctor goes back to sleep and the Detective wakes up. The Detective points to someone and God indicates whether or not that person is the Mafia. Then, if you're playing like we did, the last person wakes up and does their job, and that person is the Prostitute. 

Yep, that's something you probably won't see playing Mafia with the Girl Scouts. The Jack is the Prostitute, and his or her job is to keep someone else busy for the night. Like everyone else, the Prostitute picks who they want to, uh, distract without knowing what anyone else is. If s/he picks the Mafia, no one gets killed. If it's the Victim, then the Victim doesn't die because they weren't home when the Mafia came calling. On the flip side, if the Prostitute distracts the Doctor and the Doctor had actually saved the Victim, then the Victim dies because the Doctor was otherwise occupied. (I think. There was some contention on that point.)

Anyway, once everyone wakes up and we find out who's dead, the townspeople have to accuse, convict, and execute someone who they think is the Mafia. Doesn't matter whether they are or not--if they get voted off, they still die. So two people die every round, the Victim and the Condemned (unless the Doctor manages to do his/her job. Or the Prostitute.) If the townspeople manage to kill both Mafia, then they win. If it gets down to two people, the Mafia wins. 

The addition of the Prostitute led to some very interesting conversations. For instance, that moment when I, as the Mafia, found out that I'd spent a very interesting night with the Prostitute and for some reason didn't remember any of it. She claimed that there were horse tranquilizers involved...which of course begs the important question: Was this before, after, or during? Her answer: "Uh...well, how would you react if I said 'all three?'" 

Okay, sorry, yeah, I'll stop now. But seriously, best moment of the game had to be at the end of one round when the quietest, most-upstanding guy in the group stood up and said, "This is embarrassing to to say out loud, but I was the Prostitute." 

And we had this one hilarious God who was doing really well until he accidentally revealed the Mafia imposed divine intervention and struck down the Mafia with a thunderbolt. I don't think I can go any further without worrying my parents, but it was pretty awesome. 

ANYWAY. Back from the Mafia game, dirty jokes aside, writing camp was awesome and I was really sad when it was time to go home. I had to leave at 9:00 on a shuttle that took me to the airport. It was my last chance to look at the beautiful rural Ohio countryside. I love things being green. I really miss that here. There was so little asphalt and so many plants! Some day I'm moving somewhere that looks like that. 

Once I got to the airport, I had to deal with the stressful business of checking baggage and making it to the gate on time. At least I didn't pack my computer at the bottom of my carry-on this time. Air travel tip: don't do that. You'll have to pull your computer out of your bag to go through security and it's really annoying having to upend everything else. I did that on my flight to Ohio and learned from it. 

So then I had an hour-long flight to Minneapolis, where I changed planes to go to L.A. Whoever decided to put the plane from Minneapolis about two miles away from the plane to L.A. and give the passengers less than 20 minutes to get lunch for the plane and make it across the airport deserves a five-hour layover in the middle of Alaska. (Nothing against Alaska, it just seems remote). But nevertheless I got a burrito from some Hawaiian stand run by a woman whom I have mentally christened The Golden Goddess of Airport Food, due to her being really nice even though I was sort of stressed and a little crabby and her also getting the food to me fast enough for me to run across the airport and make my plane. 

And when I got there...I was like, Oh, yes. Finally. Third plane journey and I FINALLY got a window seat! That was AWESOME! I love window seats, in case you hadn't guessed. 

I was glad for the window seat especially because the rest of the plane did not look good. There was pretty much no leg room. The plane didn't have TVs in the back of the seats, which was a plus, but it did have them spaced periodically down the ceiling. This allowed for a pre-flight safety video which was neither funny nor reassuring. They were trying really, really hard for both, but they failed miserably. Worse, the video kept glitching--you know, blurring and going staticky and black for a few seconds before continuing. I don't know about you, but I don't particularly like being on a plane that can't even get the equipment to show the safety video to work. I just kind of looked at the guy next to me and said, "This is not reassuring," and he was like, "No, it definitely is not," and then I was like, "Let's just hope we get to L.A. in one piece" and crossed my fingers and he nodded and said, "Good idea." 

But yeah, we made it in one piece. It was a really long plane flight. They showed Rio on the TV screens. Or maybe it was Rio 2. I don't know, I've never seen either and I don't really want to. I plugged my headphones in for a few minutes near the end and all the voices seemed really annoying and overdone. After a while I stopped being able to read and then I remembered that I have the Doctor Who 50th Anniversary Special on my computer, so I wound up watching that. 

And then I got off the plane and found my parents in the airport. They'd brought me frozen coffee, which was nice of them. I like frozen coffee. So I told them all about camp on my way home, and now I'm back and the suitcases from Kenyon are sitting in my room looking accusatory because I still haven't finished unpacking. I'm still a little jet-lagged, but I'm recovering. Although I should probably get some sleep now. It's 11:37 California time and 2:37am Ohio time and I don't even know which my body is on any more. I'll do a blog post for Kenyon photos once I download them. Hope everyone's having a great summer!

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

The Next Zonko's Candy

Something funny happened at the Athletics Center the other day...
(Warning: some crude humor involved)

Three friends and I were playing foursquare in a squash court. This in and of itself had presented some problems. We tried playing squash at first, but there were four of us and it was a small, indoor court. Someone's head was going to come off if we kept batting little rubber balls around. So we got a bigger ball and decided to play foursquare instead.

For some reason we couldn't agree on the rankings. Normally it's something like King, Queen, Jester and Royal Toilet, but ours varied from that to Queen, Queen's B****, Prime Minister and Courtesan to Star Trek style with Gold Shirt, Blue Shirt, Red Shirt and Space Hooker to Evil Overlord, Second-In-Command, Minion and Prostitute to a few other things. For some reason the lowest rank was always some sort of prostitute. I don't know; maybe there's something wrong with us. Of course, we are writers. XD

Anyway, there's this thing in foursquare where whoever has the ball calls "Candy shop!" then says the name of a candy and passes it. Each person has to catch the ball and say a candy. The first person to blank or repeat a type of candy becomes the Royal Toilet, or in our case the Prostitute.

(In the interest of privacy, I'm referring to my friends as Friend 1, Friend 2 and Friend 3.)

Friend 1: *Catches ball* Candy shop! M&Ms! *Throws to me*
Me: Uh, Bugbars! *throws to Friend 2*
Friend 2: Twizzlers! *throws to Friend 3*
Friend 3: Skittles! *throws to Friend 1*
Friend 1: Butterfingers! *throws to me*
Me: ...What the f*** are Bugbars?

Needless to say, I lost. But I was already the Prostitute at that point, so it's not like it mattered...

The point is that there will never be a time when the word "Bugbars" is not funny to me. It's like something out of the Monty Python "Crunchy Frog" skit. I don't even know where it came from. I think I modified the word "bugbear" for some reason and it just popped doesn't even make sense!

The funniest thing just happened to me.

I got back to my room a few minutes before my roommate, so I was sitting on my bed rereading one of the books I brought from home (This One Summer by Jillian and Mariko Tamaki, if anyone's wondering) when she walked in.

Roommate: Oh, hey, look, there's a person in my room.
Me: Haha, yeah, don't worry. It's just your roommate.
Roommate: Oh, darn. I was hoping there was an attractive person in my room.
Me: *about to call her on it*
Roommate: Oh my God, no! That's NOT what I meant!
Me: *laughing*
Roommate: I was going to say 'an attractive MAN' but then I decided not to at the last moment! You're definitely attractive! That came out SO wrong!!!
Me: *still laughing my ass off*
Roommate: Let's just say I was hoping the Doctor would be in my room and leave it there.
Me: *still laughing, because come on, that was HILARIOUS!*

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Tales from the Writer's Camp

We've been having a bit of a cafeteria battle with the swimmers.

See, Kenyon was hosting some kind of swim camp at the same time as the Young Writers' Workshop. So all week, we've had to try and beat the swimmers to the dining hall (which, by the way, looks like Hogwarts without the magic ceiling. It's awesome). Or we just wait for it to clear up a bit.

The swimmers were really aggressive about their tablespace, too. They had the tables at the back of the hall reserved and they'd look at us like "DON'T COME NEAR US, YOU WEIRDOS." Or maybe that was just me. But if anyone who wasn't a swimmer tried sitting down at those tables, they got kicked off.

Which is why I felt justified in being a bit passive-aggressive towards the two swimmers sitting at the end of the table at lunch. The table that was clearly labeled "Reserved For The Kenyon Young Writers' Workshop." I didn't do anything too bad, but I did keep nudging the sign towards them until they left.

I don't think they left because of the sign, though. I think they left because there were a lot of young writers at the table and said young writers got into a loud and interesting discussion about the sex lives of condiments.

(Warning: some dirty jokes ahead.)

So on one end of the table there was a lonely pepper shaker, and on the other were two salt shakers. Obviously, my friends agreed, the salt shakers were a gay couple. The pepper was the arse of a significant other whom one of the saltshakers had left for the other saltshaker. I drew a little doodle of two of the alchemical symbol for salt hooked together.

Then we got into the ketchup and mustard. They were a couple, but the mustard was cheating with the relish. *Shocked gasp*

Which led to the catcall from the mustard to the ketchup: "You look pretty good from beheinz."

The barbecue sauce was all on its lonesome, with a fetish for other types of foods like meat and ribs.

The salt (different salt) had an abusive relationship with soy sauce, since the soy sauce just dissolves it.

This led to pickup lines such as: "Hey, baby. Wanna supersaturate my solution?" and, if the pepper was trying to flirt with the salt, "Hey, baby. Wanna grind my peppercorns?" (I told you there were dirty jokes.)

Then someone suggested the slogan: "Practice Safe Snacks. Use A Condiment."

Oh my God, the looks we were getting from the other tables. They thought we were freaking INSANE. Which, being writers, we are.

Anyway, the good news is that today was the swimmers' last day. Now they can go home and avoid us crazy writers for the rest of their lives!

Monday, June 23, 2014

Guess Where I Am Right Now

I'm sitting in a loud lounge on a red bouncy couch. I'm kind of slipping behind the cushion into the back of the couch. Someone just banged a ping-pong paddle against the ping-pong table really loudly. The FIFA World Cup is on TV. 

Outside it's sunny, green and yellow and glowing and glistening. The air is warm and wet and clean from the rain that soaked my hair and shirt earlier before departing as suddenly as it came. 

Nope, I am not in California any more.

I'm in Ohio! At Kenyon College!! For the Kenyon Young Writers' Workshop!!! And having trouble typing because I got so used to handwriting earlier today. 

The kids playing ping-pong are two Asian girls on one side with long flowing black hair and a skinny blond guy with dark eyebrows and glasses on the other side. He's wearing a Yosemite T-shirt, the girls are shorts and flipflops. One has a pink and white tank top that shows cleavage, the other a midriff-baring blue and pink thing. 

Oh, and my computer thinks its 1:59 because I haven't hooked it up to the internet yet. It's really 4:59, which really is 1:59 California time. I've been feeling a bit off today, which I think is just my body adjusting to the three-hour time difference and eating at weird times (for California. I had to get up at 7, and that's like 4 west-coast time). 

Yesterday was a travel day. Four hours on a plane, then an hour's ride to Kenyon. I got there late, along with three other California people, so we actually missed dinner. We caught the tail end of an ice-breaking exercise, then went to another thing where they introduced all the teachers and RAs. By the end of that, we were starving, but we still had to go to our respective RA floor meetings. Then, after several frantic minutes of searching during which I delved into my left-over trail mix, we finally got the pizza we'd been promised. Yay pizza!

My dorm room is okay and my roommate is awesome. We're both big Neil Gaiman fans and we like a lot of the same stuff so I think we'll get along pretty well. 

I don't know if it was the time difference or what, but I just could not sleep last night. I just lay there staring at the wall for like an hour before finally pulling out my flashlight and finishing the 500+ page book I'd started on the plane (Now I'll Tell You Everything by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor). Then I stared at the wall more before finally dropping off, only to wake up an hour before I had to. 

The dining hall at Kenyon looks like the dining hall at Hogwarts minus the magic ceiling and the house colors. It is awesome. 

The workshops so far have been pretty great. Lots of free writing and reflection. I feel like today was sort of a nonfiction day and I kind of hope we get more into fiction and stuff later. I might post some of my writing here. 

Oh, and this will be posted a few hours after I write it because I haven't gotten the internet working and I'm writing on a digital sticky note. 

*A few hours later*

Feeling really hyper again and it's late. Had a pretty good evening. Played BS with a group of kids including a guy who cannot lie to save his life. It was fun! 

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Disneyland Reflections and Awesome Texts (Two Blog Posts in One)

So...the Disneyland post may or may not happen. I haven't put the pictures on my computer yet, but...oh, what the heck, I'll just tell you about it now.

I went to Disneyland with my school's music conservatory. I'm not actually part of the music conservatory, but I play they cello and they had a couple of extra spaces, so I was in.

We headed off to Disneyland in the early morning, riding in two vans. Then when we got there we had about four hours before we actually had to play, so we split into groups and wandered the park for a while. We were going on a Saturday, the day after the 24-hour opening, so it was pretty crowded. A little more crowded than I like it, really, but whatever.

My group and I went to Autopia first. I'd never ridden it before and it was AWESOME. Although I have to say, it didn't inspire much confidence in my driving skills...and I'm going to learn this summer, so...that should be fun...

(although my friend G told me that actually driving is easier than driving the Autopia cars, so maybe it'll be okay.)

Fantasyland, where we resolved to ride the rides that scared us! That meant Snow White for G, Peter Pan for K (don't ask), Mr. Toad's Wild Ride for me, and the Spinning Teacups for N.

First off, Snow White. It was TERRIFYING. I can't remember ever having ridden it before, and I don't really plan on doing it again. Basically, you go through a couple scenes of happy domestic bliss in the dwarves' house, and then the rest of the ride consists of jerking through a pitch-black forest with things jumping out at you.

There's this one particularly terrifying moment when you go past the evil queen and then she spins around and turns into the ugly witch. I was sitting next to G, and she screamed in my ear and punched me in the arm. Hard. So that was fun.

Peter Pan was awesome, though. I'd forgotten how much fun that ride is, especially the parts where you're flying over London, through the stars, and then over Neverland. (K hadn't been on it before and was nervous about the "drop," which turned out to be an almost nonexistent, very gentle incline.)

Next up was me and Mr. Toad. I actually have a story behind this one. Once upon a time, when I was a young, impressionable child, my mother took me on Mr. Toad's Wild Ride. Being the shorter person, I was on the inside of the car--the side with the steering wheel. Mom, all in good fun, said something like, "Oh, you should steer the car!"

Which meant, in my tiny, seven-year-old brain, that I had to steer the car. If we crashed, it was my fault.

And Mr. Toad has an awfully crashy ride. There's even a part where you get hit by a train. And then sent to a courtroom. And from there you go to Hell.

My friends thought I was kidding about that last part, but I wasn't. Just imagine seven-year-old me sitting there, in that car, going straight into Hell with demons and flames and pitchforks, totally convinced that her horrible driving skills had brought her there. It was traumatizing.

So that's why we went on it this year. And honestly, it wasn't that bad. (Except for the train part.) But seriously, I was laughing maniacally when we got off. I kept saying, "I TOLD you the ride went to Hell! I TOLD you! But did you believe me? Noooo, but I was RIGHT, wasn't I!" until my friends told me to shut up.

The Spinning Teacups stopped working while we were in line, so we wound up skipping that. We had lunch and then headed over to Toon Town to rendezvous with the group.

We were led backstage by a woman named Kate (I think. I might be misremembering). Backstage Disneyland is sort of cool, but a lot more functional than normal Disneyland. You know those fake green mountains that hover over Toon Town? Well, they don't even touch the ground. They just stop about fifteen feet above the ground, just low enough that you can't tell from inside the park. It was sort of depressing, really. That's probably why they had a strict no-pictures-backstage rule.

We changed in this big changing room, then got our instruments off the vans and followed Kate to the stage where we were playing. I think it was in Frontierland? It was somewhere close to Frontierland, anyway. On the way we kept seeing Disney characters going on and off their shifts, but in addition to the no pictures rule, there's also a don't-bother-the-characters rule. Kate said that she'd once seen the White Rabbit totally swarmed by a group of eight-year-old girls.

The performance went pretty well. It was fun, and the audience was really supportive. I was proud.

There were two marching bands practicing outside when we got back to the dressing rooms. Two. Marching. Bands. It was AWESOME. They had baton twirlers and big fuzzy hats and TUBAS! I love tubas! If I was in a marching band, I would totally play the tuba. (Actually, I'd probably play the trumpet since that's what I learned for band in 5th grade, but a girl can dream.)

I love marching bands, in case you hadn't worked that out. So that was fun.

We went back into the park, which by the way was extremely crowded. I dragged my friends on the Mark Twain riverboat. There was something up with the audio on our ride--it kept pointing out the landmarks five minutes after we'd passed them already. XD

After the riverboat ride my friends were pretty tired, so we just sat down for a while. I snuck into one of the Frontierland restaurants and people-watched for a bit and finished my ill-gotten frozen lemonade.

 Oh, did I not mention that? Here's something funny: Over the course of the day, I managed to consume an obscene amount of sugar without paying for any of it. First K bought cotton candy and decided she didn't want to finish it. So I took it and managed to make it last a good six hours, eating a little at a time. Then N didn't want the remainder of her strawberry frozen lemonade thing, so I finished that in the Frontierland restaurant. Then at dinner, which the whole group had at a chowder place in Frontierland, someone brought back an extra, unwanted beignet. It was delicious.

After dinner, I wound up going on Indiana Jones with a couple of other girls from the group. One of them had gotten an extra Fastpass earlier, so I managed to hitch a ride. It's amazing what you can get by being in the right place at the right time. :) The Fastpasses were actually for 11:00-11:30, but we were leaving at 10:00. So we just got in line, prepared our sob stories, and handed the guard our passes really fast. Turns out we didn't need the sob stories--he didn't even check.

Anyway, after going on Indiana Jones (which was super fun and I love it!) I got really hyperactive. I blame this at least partially on the inordinate amount of sugar I'd consumed, and partially on the slightly claustrophobic exit tunnel for the Indiana Jones ride, but I just needed to run around for a while. So after we made our way over to Tomorrowland,  the other two girls got caught up by this rock concert. It was a little loud for me, so I ditched them and went back over to Frontierland to watch the fireworks show. I actually got a pretty good spot in the crowd--right at the back, but I could still see.

The water show was okay. I found the whole thing a bit silly. Certain parts of it--mostly the Fantasia parts--seemed a little trippy. The best part was definitely the Peter Pan ship coming past. That was awesome! On that it kind of bad that I was rooting for Captain Hook to win? I don't think it's bad...I mean, I read the book and Peter Pan is an evil little devil. I actually sympathize much more with Hook than I do with Pan. The character of Peter Pan scares me. He's a remorseless murderer! Seriously, he kills like twelve pirates and then doesn't even remember their names later on, which is just plain disrespectful.

Anyway, tangent aside, I came away from the light show thinking two things:
1. Fireworks are awesome, and
2. Disney needs better values.

I know, I know. This gets said a lot. But the one moment in the show that really struck me (besides the pirate ship sailing past) was this one point where Mickey's fighting one of the villains, maybe the dragon, and he says something like "Beauty and love will always triumph over evil!"

Love, I get. Love is fine. But beauty? Really? It couldn't be "honor and love" or "courage and love" or "intelligence and love" or something?

I dunno, it just kind of irritated me.

Anyway, it was about 9:30 and I was on my way to the park entrance when I got trapped in the crowd watching the other fireworks show. (You know, the one where Tinkerbell flies over the park.) So I wound up seeing that one, too. And it was SPECTACULAR. I LOVE fireworks. :)

After that I headed down the main boulevard, out the park entrance, and back to the group. I ran a couple of laps around the courtyard just to burn off excess energy while we waited for everyone to arrive. Then when everyone was there we went back to the parking structure, got into the vans, and came home.

The next day I woke up with a patch of skin having been rubbed off the top of my foot by my shoes and a seriously sore throat. I'd started developing the sore throat at Disneyland, but I'd put it down to all the sugar I was eating. Turns out it wasn't the sugar (although the sugar probably didn't help). It was the beginnings of a really, horribly nasty cold that knocked me out of school for two days. It would have been three days if we hadn't had Monday off. So yeah, I missed two days of review for finals and the announcement of my own appointment as senior editor of the yearbook. Yay.


Oh, and kudos if you're still reading this. I'm impressed. Here's one last funny thing, which shall probably become a blog post all on its own in a little while, but it deserves some attention now.

My friend Sally and I were texting after my second day of missed school. Here's a transcript:

Me: Hi.
Sally: Hey, how ya feeling?
Me: Still sick :( did I miss anything?
Sally: Well, the yearbook looks absolutely fantastic. (She'd gotten it that day.)
Me: Good to know all of our hard work, tears, and ritual sacrifices paid off.
Sally: ................
Me: Kidding. We never cried over it.
Sally: Oh well then, that's okay. Nothing else about that sentence was concerning even in the slightest.
Me: Actually there might have been some tears from Ms. S (the yearbook/Creative Writing teacher)...some people just couldn't get things in on time. (Coughseniorscough)
Sally: So were the animal sacrifices to make Ms. S happy or to make the seniors surrender their free will and finish their pages?
Me: Who said anything about animals?
Sally: ..................... *runs away screaming
Me: What, you never noticed the decline in numbers of the freshmen? Dang, we must be better at this secrecy business than we thought.
Sally: hello, this is sally's answering machine. She is still runni--I mean not available. Leave a message after the tone.
Me: Hello. The spirits of the Great Divide have confiscated the mortal scum's phone in punishment for her lack of secrecy. We are coming to get you now.
Me: You can run but you cannot hide. We do not rest. We will catch up. You can only get so far.
Sally: Dear god, please let that mean that they're taking my phone.
Me: You can pray all you like but the Spirits will not be vanquished...
Sally: I'm guessing that's a no then. *Nervous laughter
Me: Your evasure shall be amusing, O Puny Mortal.
Sally: Just take ur time torturing the puny mortal u already have. Im in no hurry.
Me: We are remarkably good multi-tasters.
Me: *mukti-taskers
Me: **multi-taskers. Stupid mortal communication device.
Sally: ...right. Blame the mortal's device.
Me: Didst thou not know that the gateway to Hell is carpeted with mortal devices that have been damned there by their owners? (I read that on the internet somewhere)
Sally: Odd. I seem to remember a certain mortal friend who said that to me once. Hmmmmm, are u sure u are who u say u are.
Me: We find your lack of faith disturbing.
Sally: You're a "spirit from the great beyond" aren't u supposed to like disturbing things?
Me: Puny mortal, we have tolerated your distractions long enough! Soon we shall find you and you shall face our wrath!
Sally: *Gulp. i'll start running now, but be warned, i'm armed with a 50 pound math book
Me: have discovered our weakness!
Me: Damn. Did we just send that as a text?
Sally: I'll be waiting.

Why yes, I have been listening to Welcome to Night Vale lately. However did you guess?

Thursday, May 29, 2014


After a two-day hiatus from school, I am finally back.

Basically, I went to Disneyland on Saturday. Then I came back and got really sick for the next four days. I promise to write about both of these things in my next post, as soon as I get the Disneyland photos onto my computer, but right now I am back at school and very, very stuck.

Who knew that writing a personal statement for college applications would be so HARD?

I tried to start it when I was sick, but no luck. So far I've been doing a whole lot of typing and very little actual writing.

The problem is that I'm not really sure where to start. Then I pick a random spot, type for a while, get sidetracked, and wind up going down a whole other road that I'm pretty sure colleges don't want to hear about.

See, I'm trying to write about my background and how it's influenced my life. For me, that means writing about my old Waldorf school, but that opens up a whole new can of worms, since I've still got seriously mixed feelings about the place. So I pick a direction to go, then get off on a tangent and find that I've written two hundred words that in no way contribute to my essay.

Rrrrrggggghhh. huhj

...and now my head hurts because I just banged it on the computer keyboard, hence the "huhj" above. (But not the "Rrrrrggggghhh." I typed that on purpose.

Okay, back to the pointless typing on a Word document now. Have a picture before I go.

It's a cartoon I drew based on a discussion with my friend about how we'd respond to nerdy pickup lines. (She's in AP Bio, which should explain this rather well. I should add that the red-headed girl looks nothing remotely like either of us.) 

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Pranks, Prom and a Mariachi Band

Friday was surreal.

It was the seniors' last day in school before they go off and do their Senior Projects, so they were kind of cutting loose. They had free dress this week (my school has a uniform) and I noticed that a couple of them were sporting minor dress code violations because c'mon, who's going to give them detention on their last day? (I, by the way, am a junior, just to put this in context.)

It was also the big day for pranks. When I got to the locker room, I saw that the hall adjacent to it had been carpeted in bubble wrap. Moreover, some kind of Mexican blanket had been hung over the door to the locker room, forcing everyone to duck under it or lift it up to get in. Later in the day balloons appeared, floating down the halls and bouncing into classrooms.

That wasn't their best prank, though.

The first interesting things I noticed as I walked into the main building was a piece of paper taped to the wall.

It big, bold, printed letters, it said Teachers' Wifi Password: **********. (Actual password not reprinted for security reasons.)

And it wasn't the only one. The password papers were taped up all over the school.

We have three wifi networks at the school: one that everyone used last year before the other two got set up, one for the students, and one for the teachers. The teachers' network is a lot faster than the students', and it doesn't ban websites like the student network does. Only the teachers and the seniors know the password.

Or at least, only the teachers and the seniors knew the password before Friday.

The dean of students was not happy. She went down the halls snatching the papers down from the walls. Then the seniors rescued them from the trash and put them back up when she was gone. Then she took them down again, but by that time it was too late. Everyone already knew the password.

But even that wasn't the best thing they pulled off. You won't believe the best thing.

My friends and I walked out of Religion class and heard some kind of commotion in the courtyard below. We were on this outside walkway on the second story of the building, so we were looking down on the people below. And holy cow.

There was this crowd of seniors dancing around in the courtyard. And they were dancing to the music of a mariachi band.

A mariachi band. 

Don't believe me? I got proof.

Pictures and video taken on my cell phone from a high vantage point.

The seniors hired them to follow the dean of students around all morning. Then when she went home for the day at lunch, the mariachi band just kind of wandered around the school with a crowd of seniors following them and serenaded the teachers.

More cell phone footage!

They were right in front of the doorway to the main building at the end of lunch.

Friday was the first and probably only time I'll ever get to say, "Sorry I'm late to class. I was held up by the mariachi band."

So yeah, we're going to have a hard time topping that when we're seniors next year.

And then that night was prom.

It was fun. I went to a friend's house for a little party beforehand and we all rode there in a limo. There were about twenty of us total, as most of the girls had dates.

The prom itself was on the roof of a car museum, so we had a really nice aerial view of the city. Honestly, I had a blast. I went alone and hung out with several of my best friends, including two seniors who I will miss so much when they've graduated! We didn't dance much, mostly just ate dinner and talked. The music was really, truly, brain-cell-killingly awful. Everyone looked beautiful in their fancy dresses. I wore this black dress that has several advantages: it's very comfortable, it's nylon so it doesn't wrinkle, and it's a classic so I can wear it to pretty much any formal event for the next fifty years. Such as next year's prom, for instance. :)

It was awesome just being with my friends, talking, joking, dancing a little bit to the horrible music, riding in the limo with slightly better music. I hope everyone else's prom was awesome too.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Depressing poetry, yay!

I must have been in a weird mood this weekend, because all of my writing is a little darker than usual. Normally I tend to write funny stuff, but this weekend...nope. I wrote depressing poetry!

And because I'm nice I decided to share it with you guys.

Here is my depressing poetry!

I'm starting out with one that I actually didn't write this weekend--I wrote it a few months ago and somehow I still think it's okay.

If I could melt the sound of violins
And swirl in the cello's baritone
And add to it the heavenly choir's din
A thousand music notes would sing you home.

If I could take the words from all the books
And use them to express my love for you
That verse would leave no human mind unhooked
No heavy heart could ever be as blue.

I long for you in every passing day
I sing to you whenever I am home
I wish on stars that you would come to stay
And I'd no longer have to be alone.

If I could take the sparkle from the stars
And mix it with the beauty of a rose
And place it in a thousand crystal jars
You wouldn't have to suffer through my prose.

I wrote those words when I was just sixteen
I never knew they'd ever ring so true
Now I'm grown up and in the space between
I think I've fallen out of love with you.

I know this poem is going to sound cliché
But darling, I just want you to come home
I wait for you in every passing day
I'm so damn tired of always being alone.

If I could get the strength to leave this house
And find someone who sometimes would come home
You're often just a bad taste in my mouth
I'd leave and then you'd be the one alone.

This house we share will never be the same
The love we had is cracked and dusty, so
I cannot keep on playing this awful game
I need to be the one to tell you no.

So now I’m packing up my brand-new bags
My suitcase sits out in the hall at home
I’m going to leave this love that’s torn to rags
I’m going to find a place I’m not alone.

Geez. I have no idea where that came from. I remember thinking it was going to be a happy poem when I started it and then my brain was like, "NOPE. Depressingness is in!" and I wrote that.

Anyway, here's the first one I wrote this weekend. It's a rondel, a French type of poem with thirteen lines and two repeated refrain lines. 

That I were in your arms again, my dear
For there it was that I was truly free
No chains or contradictions binding me
The simple safety of your being near.

Across the grass, there steps a gentle deer
Come here to greet your earthen tomb with me
That I were in your arms again, my dear
For there it was that I was truly free.

The cold ground keeps your body safe in here
But where your spirit is I cannot see
You’ve gone, you’re dead, invisible to me
So came to pass what was my greatest fear—
That I were in your arms again, my dear.

I have these two characters that I mess with in my head sometimes. For some reason I never give them happy endings: one of them usually winds up dead and leaves the other one grieving. I think I wrote this about them. (Hopefully when I actually put them in a story they can finally be happy. I quite like them.) 

The next one's about them, too. It's a triolet, thirteen lines with the first, fourth, and seventh lines repeating and the second and eighth lines also repeating. Here you go.

You left me here with this, a broken heart
Your death was ere the death of my own soul
For when the kiss of Death ripped us apart
You left me here with this, a broken heart
From this, which was our home, I do depart
For never here can I again be whole
You left me here with this, a broken heart
Your death was ere the death of my own soul.

Apparently I have a thing for iambic pentameter, since all my depressing poetry is in it. I guess it's just easier for me to write for some reason.

So yeah, this weekend was a weird one for me. Not only do I not usually write poetry, let alone depressing poetry, but I also don't usually write horror stories. But guess what I started after the depressing poetry!

If you guessed a horror story, you get a prize. And if it's not too disturbing when I'm done with it, I might post said horror story here after its completion. You have been warned.