CORNY POST ALERT

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I’ve literally tried more than three times to write a really intelligent, witty, smart, perceptive kind of post during the yawning mass of winterbreak spent largely sitting on the couch and thinking about doing stuff.  But alas.  Pretentious, boring, pointless rambling that I was too lazy to edit n’ finish n’ post.

So I’m gonna do a real sentimental, cornee post on holiday traditions.  Brace yourselves.  But c’mon–this may be good.

Okay, so every year (except for one when I was really little, like four or something) we’ve gone to my grandparents house in a quiet, cozy but not-creepy-and-fake suburb.  For those earlier years, we flew, because attempting to drive with a five year old boy and a nine year old girl for twelve hours…..we could’ve done it, but nah.

Then, when I was ten, we drove for the first time.  The LONGDRIVE is a definite part of the experience, at least now.  Listening to music and forcing myself to listen to the entire, random library of songs instead of just skipping to the ones I really like so that it feels like more of an accomplishment, and to buy time.  Having to pee the minute we leave a rest stop, getting a strawberries and cream frappuccino at Starbucks (and feeling really proud when I say frappuccino, because frappuccino sounds kind of like cappuccino, which is completely grown up), stopping at Denny’s for lunch, (a corny, slightly weird Denny’s Diner with flickery lights and Christmas music), watching movies on my dad’s laptop (this years were Aquamarine, Miracle on Ice, and Dodgeball), discovering the headphones don’t work, making our lists of what we want to do in the week-and-two-days we spend at my grandparents, which are always the same but there’s some comfort to that.

So we drive, and stop at somewhat seedy gas stations for bathroom-pit-stops, and relish the sameness of this drive even though we’ve only been doing it for a few years now.  And finally we arrive at my grandparents.  I feel really sentimental once we turn into their street, usually around eight, but this year we arrived at seven.  Whatever.  We pull into the driveway and hear the crackle of tires against gravel and then the car stops and we scoop up a random mess of headphones, empty Starbucks cups we never bothered to throw away, napkins, bags full of half-eaten snacks, brochures on the magic of Ohio that we took at a rest stop because we didn’t want to seem rude.  We run groggily up the lawn and then knock on the door, although usually my grandparents are already there to meet us.

Oh, and then we have our traditions once we’ve gotten there.  We go to this place called Pizza Paradiso, which has the most amazing pizza I’ve ever tasted.  Then there’s the nearby mall, for last-minute Christmas shopping and then the annual post-Christmas trip to return and exchange and get sucked into the compelling, windowless world of consumerism :DD.  My grandpa’s a photograph collector, so we head to his gallery and get sandwiches from the nearby Greek place and sit around his table and sip Ginger Ale and stuff ourselves.  And we…go to a chili place, and watch lots of movies, and go ice skating at this huge indoor rink, and get cupcakes from a tiny place for dessert, have a Bastilla (which is a dish that’s basically delicately layered chicken and spices and puff pastry goodness) and chocolate roll-up cake on Christmas Eve, anddddddddddd………..

What’s been kind of…well, I don’t want to say hard, but I’m gonna say different is CHANGE.

Like when I was little–well, not even that long ago–up until I was ten, my cousins and I would put on a play every year.  And my older cousin used to play flute, and I used to play violin, so we’d do little concerts where my grandma would accompany us on the harpsichord.  Maybe we’d sing along, too–I can’t remember.  And when I was younger–maybe up until I was eight or nine–we’d go out into the foresty area in my grandparents backyard and play the five step game, where we’d have to get across the mush of trees and vines and sticks without touching the floor more than five times; if we did, we were out.  And we named the trees, and we each were assigned one to start on.  And when I was even younger–5, 6, 7 maybe–when my cousins arrived, we played a game called Calm Yourself, My Child, invented by us, where one of us was some kind of psycho zombie person that chased the other three around the house hissing Calm yourself my child in a really creepy voice.

Aren’t these traditions….aren’t they so much more interesting?  I mean, I love our current traditions, too, but there’s definitely some specialness lost in goin’ over to the mall rather than playing an off-key rendition of Silent Night with everyone clustered around in chairs smiling (fake or real?).  When my uncle arrived this year, he asked us, “So…are you guys planning any performances?  Any plays, concerts….anything?”  And we answered, “Um…no.”  I felt a kind of corny but real sadness at that.  My older cousin will be going to college the year after next.  I’ll be in high school, I thought, realizing I’d always thought of my cousin as towering and beautiful and….thirteen years old.  My age.  Now she’s sixteen, learning to drive.  This is too weird, I thought.  Year before last I was going to bed wondering what Santa was gonna bring and this year I’m walking past as the parents set up the presents under the tree with my eyes halfheartedly covered?  

Then I thought: IT’S NOT THE SSSSSSSSAAAAAAAAAAMMMMMMMMMMMMEEEEEEEEEE.  AND IT NEVER WILL BEEE.  

Then I thought: Um, is that really so bad? 

And, oh god, this is corny, but I had this realization.  I mean, traditions change, and people change, but what about the new traditions we have now?  What about staying up late and baking scones (last year I posted about baking blueberry muffins), and watching the movie Bridesmaids?  What about being independent, and doing stuff on my own, too?  And meeting up with Zoe!!!  Getting to meet a fellow blogger–and a really, insanely cool person–has been awesome.  Not to say I still don’t feel huge, overwhelming amounts of nostaligia for past Christmases, where all the kids woke up at five in the morning and debated whether or not to sort the presents into piles for each person, instead of starting the present-opening at nine, because we’re all older and, um, bigger and it’s gotten uncomfortable to be all in one house, so some people are staying at a hotel.

Don’t think this means I won’t be getting up at five tomorrow morning.  It’s kind of….it’s kind of a personal tradition.

Merry xmas, merry traditions, merry newness?

-talesfromtheflatlands

P.S. I’ll upload some pix when I decide to stop being a Christmasy blob of laziness.  Ya know the feeling.

photo-post

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Um, hi.  This is kind of a weird post: a photo set with random, obnoxious explanations that I felt a strange need to include.  I went out to the park a week or so ago with two friends, and we took a bunch of pix.  There are lots more, but here are some nice, fall-ish ones with semi-distinct moods.  Enjoy!

 

Staticky nature tv.

Cover of a murder mystery.

This one (above) reminds me of that scene in…I think it was the first episode of Twin Peaks, where the police are looking at kind of kitchy videos of Laura Palmer and her friend Donna at a picnic, outside.  It’s really eerie, though, because Laura was just found dead, and she looks so HAPPY and innocent in these videos.

There’s something about this one that’s resolutely not-creepy.   Maybe it’s the blurry-ness vs. the grainy-ness.  Or maybe it’s the lighting.  But this one seems to be more kids-playing-at-the-park-esque.  And I like that.

(starting to get darker, everything’s pleasantly blurry and tilted….)


The three of us, in SHADOW.  (evil laugh).

I’ve never really done this kind of photography before, and it was super fun.  We felt so, I dunno, exciting, I guess, telling each other to run around in circles or jump off a bench and then snap a bunch of frenzied pics.  By the way, not all of these photos are taken by me!  Some are taken by my fantastic friends, E and Z: both really awesome photographers.  All photos taken with my trusty iPhone camera.

Later, my friends and I turned the photos (there are lots more) into a slideshow, with the song Sophia by Laura Marling playing.

It just seemed to fit these photos really well.  My mom and I tried out lots of different songs later, but Sophia seemed to be the best.

Some more calming, kind of bittersweet songs:

 

 

 

 

I discovered the site happy 2 b sad while reading a collection of book/zine reviews on Tavi Gevinson’s site for teenage girls, Rookie.  The happy 2 b sad drawings are really interesting and a lot of times ring true.  So yeah.

-talesfromtheflatlands

 

happy birthday….

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…dad.  That is, happy birthday dad!

Birthdays are nice.  For some reason people seem to consider the word nice some kind of insult.

But no!!!  This is the kind of nice that I mean.  Just….nice.  That zesty blend of cake when you’re already full from dinner (my mom has this completely true theory that cake tastes better the day after), tea, a bit of candle wax from licking frosting off  the bottoms of the candles, wrapping paper, a pile of mismatched presents, and that aura of birthday-excitement tinting everything.  Today, it’s my dad’s birthday, not mine, but I’m really lazy from eating beef fondue and bread and, um, bread, and more beef fondue goodness, and this amazing sour-cream-n’-dill sauce that my grandma makes (it’s kind of like tsatsiki, which i most certainly spelled wrong, but whatever), so I’m not gonna walk over to the living room and take pix of more recently crumpled wrapping paper and present-stax.  Sincere apologies on behalf of my inner laziness.  Or, um, my inner need to sit and stare at the computer screen for extended periods of time.  I remember once, when I was in maybe third grade, I was obsessed with this virtual-world-type-site (I just googled it and apparently it shut down recently).  It was pretty standard and boringsville: as far as i remember, you create yer own character, make them really pretty n’ stuff, then give them a house and play lots and lots and LOTS of pointless games to try and earn money for them so that they can buy virtual food n’ big houses n’ virtual skinny jeans.  I played it for HOURS.  I don’t know what captivated me about it: maybe it was just the addictive-ness of a virtual world, or maybe it was that I felt really cool going online and doing my own thing.  But after I’d played for two hours or so, a little message popped up on my screen.  It was this character from the site, a football coach guy, and he was doing a thumbs up sign all positive-like, saying “Why don’t ya get off the computer now and play outside?”  Translated to reality-speak, it was saying “Whoa, kid, you’re really really lazy.”

But today, we had family friends over, and one of them was saying how every personality trait has an upside.  Like, being perky can mean you’re sort of annoying sometimes, but it also means that you can get through a lot of stuff.  So I guess being lazy would mean, um….that I get a lot of sleep?  No, I don’t: I just sit and stare at the computer screen and think about getting a lot of sleep.  Hm.  I’ll have to think about this one.

Anyway, my family has this tradition called the Birthday Table (it’s so ceremonious i felt a need to put it in caps).  I think it came from when my dad was a kid.  By the way, I bet other people do the birthday table–oops, the Birthday Table–too.  But it’s one of those things that feels cheesily special in that family-tradition kind of way.  I feel vaguely like I’ve posted about this.  Moving on.

What happens is, the person whose birthday it is goes into their room and just hangs around, I guess, while the rest of us set up all the presents on a table, light the candles on the cake, run to the computer, get onto google images, print out a photo of a t-shirt and later tell the birthday guy/gal that it hasn’t arrived in the mail yet.  Kidding.  Not really.

So once google images has been closed and the table looks really nice and the cake is ready and the presents on the table are stacked such that you get the illusion that there are more than there really are, we call in the person who’s been in their room.  One of us, usually my mom because she’s the organized one, clicks on the video camera and takes a sentimental video of us singing a sufficiently out of key happy birthday song.  Another one of us is holding the cake, smilin’ as the birthday-ee walks down the hallway like the slow-mo reunion in a family-friendly movie.

Eventually we get to the table, and we open presents, and at some point we have cake.

Last night, my dad’s parents came over for dinner (this is another tradition: the birthday-ee gets to choose what we have for dinner), which, as I said before, was beef fondue with sauces and veggies and all that good stuff.  It was actually really delicious, and there’s also something so FUN about fondue.  Y’know, you put your fondue fork with a piece of meat on it into the fondue pot (which has oil in it to cook the meat) and you assemble a bunch of sauces and stuff to have with the meat, and then it’s really satisfying when it’s a little undercooked and you dip it into your favorite sauce and…and….and gradually you develop your signature way of eating that tiny piece of beef: like, my brother did it as a hamburger where he added ketchup and onions and had it on a piece of bread.  Sorry to any vegetarians, by the way.  I’m actually usually not this creepily affectionate towards, well, meat.  I used to be a vegetarian: in fifth grade.  But I started to be like, welll, why don’t I just eat one lil’ piece of steak, and it won’t REALLY matter, but then I started to say welll, why don’t I just eat AS MUCH STEAK AS I WANT but I’ll still be a vegetarian IN MY SOUL, so things didn’t really work out.

But yeah, the birthday.  It was really…nice.  And I mean that as a sincere, completely non-sarcastic compliment to whoever invented birthdays.  Happy birthday, dad!

P.S.

So, my grandma made this amazing birthday cake for my dad’s birthday.  It was really dense and chocolatey and soooo gooood with a dollop of whipped cream.  She was super-nice and gave me the recipe.  I haven’t posted a recipe in a really, really long time (it was maybe the second post on this blog, whoa).  But this one definitely seems worth posting, in the spirit of food and birthdays and whatnot.

Chocolate Cake

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Melt a pound (16 oz) of bitter-sweet chocolate, (like Bakers or whatever), with a stick of unsalted butter.  Stir together until they’re that melty, delicious, addictive (he he) blend of buttery chocolatey goodness.  You don’t have to, but you could add a tablespoon of coffee.  Which I love.  You know, to give it that mocha taste.

Turn off the heat and add four egg yolks, one at a time.  Like, add one egg yolk, stir it in, add another, stir it in….yeah.

Then, take the four egg WHITES, put them in a bowl, and whip them until stiff.  Fold this into the mixture.  The stiff egg whites, that is.  Jeez, I never realized how truly bad I am at writing recipes until right here, right now.

Butter n’ flour a springform pan.  Then, pour the batter into the pan and bake for 15 minutes.

This is what the cake should look like when it’s done.  Kidding.  More photos to come in my next post!

-talesfromtheflatlands

say cheese

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I’ll be walking around the day after, or maybe even a few hours after it rains really hard, and I’ll see the way the trees or the sky reflects onto the puddles.  I, like, NEVER have my camera with me when I have this kind of thought, though.  But I randomly took a walk a few weeks ago, RIGHT AFTER IT RAINED!!!  and–lo and behold!–my trusty iPhone camera, at my side, ready to snap some trying-to-be-all-artsy-but-looking-a-bit-random-and-weird-pix.

I don’t know about this one: I guess I liked the contrast between the dirt n’ grass and the sidewalk, or something?  I was in a relentless-picture-taking mindset when I took this pic, which means that I thought about the photo while I took it, but forgot about any, y’know thinking I’d done after I snapped out of this weird, thinking-mode (get it?  SNAPPED a picture…SNAPPED out of it…?) and went home and made hot chocolate or something.

I think over the past few days I’ve discovered that I really like the song that’s like I’M A LOSER BABY, SO WHY DON’T YOU KILL ME by Beck: I think it’s called “Loser” but I’m not sure.  I also worked some more on a zine, and danced to Block after Block by Matt and Kim in my PJs.

I’m going to see them perform in a week or so, which is exciting.  I’ve never been to a live concert before (unless an opera where i feel asleep for like half of it counts…oh c’mon, it TOTALLY counts…. have a HEART), so I’m not sure what to expect.  I’ll make sure to take some pics and post on my experience there.

-talesfromtheflatlands

insert something really witty and smart right HERE

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Hey y’all.  Wow.  I really haven’t posted in awhile, and it’s kinda sad because I’ve started all these posts, and I’ve gotten reallyreally far, but then…but then…..

a) they’ve been randomly deleted.  which puts me in a mood, because i’m really mad at the computer, which is frusturating because i have nothing to take out my quivering, intense rage on.

b) i’ve gotten lazy.  a common excuse, but a good one.

c) i’ve decided that my writing’s just not going in the direction i want it to and why post what’s the point I’M NEVER GOING TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE why don’t i just go and eat something and read a book.  Don’t know where that came from, but it happens.

So yeah.  Apologies for lack of posting.  I have pictures!  Pictures from my now-seems-so-far-off trip, which by the way involved lots of hiking, both of the urban and buggy, natural varieties, markets, eating, food, eating, drinking hot chocolate, reading little bits of Jane Eyre painfully slowly and never actually finishing it, eating, food, frantic clicking of the iPhone camera, SuferDudeCulture, HipPeopleCulture, HipSurferDudeCulture, and meeting people randomly who turned out to be supercool, and remembering them, like, SO distinctly even though I’ll probably never see them again.  Is that, like, mental-stalking?  I wonder if they remember us at all.

Like there was this one time

when we were at this beach…. and sorry about the sudden, random rush of photos, by the way: they actually have basically nothing to do with the story I’m telling right now, except for the fact that they were taken on the same trip or something?  Yeah, I dunno, just enjoy the pix and imagine the story.  This sounds really corny, sorry: I think I’m in an in-between writing phase, and I hate it when that happens.  I’ll be thinking I’m going to affect this talky, effortless, don’t-care tone, and then I’ll suddenly give up and be a delicate-trying so hard to be articulate-random-amateur blogger.  But anyway.  We were at this beach, and there was a whole shore of driftwood.  It was really cool, and I seriously wish I’d risked, y’know, destroying my phone and taken it along secretly and taken some pictures.  But really, it was like something from one of those beautiful Hayao Mizaki anime movies.  Mystical and detailed and really there.  So some people had probably spent like a day building this beautiful little house out of driftwood, or maybe they started and got tired and just left this sad unfinished hut there on the shore, and then some bored couple might’ve been so depressed just at the sight of it that they finished it.  There was a gross, dirty pillow inside the house, which some scrawny kid too big to lift up any driftwood might’ve left as “their contribution” or something, and people had done a mini fireplace with tiny stones, and path, and a bed, and table….

So my brother and I, inspired by the idyllic aura of the place, or maybe looking for something to do, or maybe trying to go along with the movie-feel of the whole thing and be the cute, excited siblings, expanded on the mini-fireplace that was already there and built a real fireplace.  Not that I know anything about how to build a fireplace, but it looked kinda right, and anyway, it wasn’t like anyone was gonna use it, right?  *coughs symbolically, attempts a really discreet wink and ends up with a really annoying, obvious giggle and a slow-motion eye-open-eye-close instead of a brief payattentionthisisimportantbutdon’tpayTOOmuchattentionbecauseIwantittobeasurprise. *

In other words, of course this nice, handsome couple discovered our “magical fireplace” and decided it’d be the perfect spot for their fire.  So they, being the awesomely rugged type, (unlike us, the stay-in-a-hotel-and-think-about-reading-a-book-about-the-awesomely-rugged-type-type) actually fixed the fireplace and arranged some wood and started to light it up.  My brother was all like we’re keeping it a secret, which I’ll admit was kind of cliche and fun.  The couple was so nice and innocent and sweet, and the woman was like, “It’s as if some magical being just made this little fireplace just for us!” and my parents and my brother and I chatted with them for awhile until it was time to go, because our parking permit was about to run out of time.  My dad, just as we were leaving, told them that, “Hey, guys, it wasn’t a magical being who lit this fire!  It was our kids!”

And everyone got their fair share of tra-la! and ha-ha!  and wouldn’t-ya-know!  and thanks, guys!  it sure is a small world, and we all lived happily ever after.

Hope you enjoy the pictures.  I’m super-tired from like a week of staying up really late, so I’m going to wrap this post up with a list of stuff I’ll talk about in greater detail in the future (maybepossibly probably not which is why i’m including the list) that I should’ve talked about in this post.

-I’m reading The Perks of Being a Wallflower right now and it’s really REALLY evocative and strange and amazing.

-I made my first batch of hot chocolate the other day, and it came out really creamily and well.

-School!  Is fine.  I’m doing the fall play with some friends, everything feels strangely normal, I’m liking being back in the flow, etc.

-I’m trying to create a zine.

-Rookie, which is Tavi Gevinsons site for teenage girls, is officially my bible.

Bye!!!  Um, I’ll try to post again soon, and sorry if this comes out with an awkward ten-at-night kind of confusedness.

-talesfromtheflatlands

friends, theater, tangents, a waltz

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(I’m continuing this post after having started it a few weeks ago, so sorry if it starts sounding awkward around halfway through.)

At this point, my posts seem to have three defined parts.  First, there’s the recentness-of-the-post beginning, where I a) triumphantly exclaim about how I’m posting again (!!!) or b) make a sad attempt at giving this odd, awkward apology for lack of recent postage (posting?).  Then, there’s part two–where I’ll start going over my day but quickly get sidetracked and start to go off on some tangent (recent examples include how the beginning of the school day typically goes, diaries, the tone a blogger needs to affect, the definition of artsy…).  Part Three is when I get myself together and dutifully go through my day, attempting charmingly sardonic side-comments which usually end up sounding like one of those movie-commentaries that nobody ever listens to.

Now that I’ve realized this three-part situation, I don’t really know how to go about things.  I could try to embrace it and further define the three parts with labels (PART ONE: RECENT POSTING UPDATE.  PART TWO: TANGENT, etc.) or I could try to ignore this recognition entirely and just, well, go about my posting as I normally do.  Option one would be cliche.  Plus, how are you supposed to go off on a worthwhile tangent when there’s a heading saying PART TWO: TANGENT staring down at you?  Going off on tangents…it’s an art.  Seriously.  But then again, option two might be more awkward-sounding than option one.  See, if I just “go about my posting”, then I’ll still be subconciously aware of how weird and ridiculous this whole thing is, which will seriously limit my going-off-on-a-tangent possibilities.

Both of them are equally odd.   So I guess I’ll do neither.  I’ll just, well, start talking about whatever comes to mind and see what happens.  Then I’ll throw in a few obnoxious “I’m pretty sure that this is the tangent” comments and, well, try to accept–not just accept, embrace–that this is by nature an odd post.  It happens, I guess.

My cousin and aunt are in town, which means, among other things, skipping camp on Friday.  Camp is Lookinglass theater camp, which is four weeks.  We’re really getting into it now–the name games are long over.  Everything’s starting to come together, I guess, although that’s the cheesiest possible way of saying so.  I’ve worked passionately on two-d mini horses with big butts, sang a duet with my brother at a talent show (which sounds so much like something from a disney movie.  it was actually really fun, because i’m not usually a talent-show kind of person, but once we really got into it we just had a crazy, fun time), written a song about being dumped (which was really satisfying and liberating, too) and made a loose, exciting group of friends.

Exciting….I don’t really know what that means when it comes to friends.  All I know is that it definitely applies here.  It’s like…like one of those circles of friends on TV, sort of, but only because everyone has this distinct personality, which gets churned up into the craziness of the general group–not forgotten or anything, just added to the mix and tossed about.  Geez, it sounds like I’m making a salad here–just added to the mix and tossed around. But yeah.  I guess one of the things I’ve learned at this camp (perhaps a bit too late) is that nobody has one personality.  Everyone has one sliver of their personality that somehow defines them, or maybe that’s just how it is in middle school.  For instance, there’s E, with this fantastic sense of humor-very dry, sardonic, that kinda thing-but also really smart, and has this funny, articulate way of describing everything.  There’s S, who’s super talented and modest, fun to talk to because you can have both a girl-talk and a substantial kind of conversation with her.  With some people, it’s only girltalk, which can be really, really fun…for awhile, until you start running out of gossip and you kind of want to talk about something real, but you’re not really sure, so the conversation trails to this awkward stopping point.  But only substantial conversations, while better…well, sometimes you just need some girl-talk.  That’s just me, though.  Some people are vehemently one way or the other, I guess, and some probably don’t really care.

Anyway, yeah.  There’s more–a guy who tells the greatest, funniest, most quirky (and longest, but somehow he manages not to make them trail on in the least) stories you’ll ever hear, a striking girl who just stands out in general, a quirky guy who has an interesting point of view, an older girl who everyone, (excuse the cheesiness), respects, I guess.  And I don’t mean that everyone is perfect by any means.  We’ve gone through waves of awkwardness, waves where we spend all our time together, then waves where we’ll branch off.  I have some really nice pictures, but I want to ask the people in the pictures before I post them (is that necessary? or is it one of those, of course not.  an amateur mistake, my clueless friend kinds of thingsnot that they’re actually very many an amateur mistake, my clueless friend kinds of things–but I sort of had to say so to complete the thought.Oh–can’t give up this opportunity.  Here I go, speaking these words with a passion–well, typing, that is, even though that sort of ruins the general effect…who types words with a passion?–relishing every syllable…

Yup.  Here goes.

I’m pretty sure this is the tangent.

Ha!  Yes!  Anyway.

In camp, we did a play called Bontsha the Silent, which is this story of a guy who goes through life completely meek–silent.  We, being a crazy camp of 7-15 year olds, interpreted that in the most literal way–that he never uttered a word.  We could’ve interpreted it as sure, he says stuff, but never anything significant, and never at the parts when it really matters.  But anyway, yeah, he goes through life silent, and all these terrible things happen to him.  Y’know, the usual.  Gets ridiculed, then thrown out of the house by his drunk dad (my mom said after the show that she’s never seen a kids production where there isn’t a goofy drunk guy. is that true?  maybe it’s one of those awkward, sort of funny things that are designated to make both the parents and the kids laugh?), then, starving, is falsely accused and thrown into jail, then gets a horrible job from a sleezy employer, who never pays him, and a horrible, gold-digging wife (forced to marry him…it’s a long story) who leaves him alone with an (adopted) baby boy, brokeOh, and he ends up getting run over by a carriage.  Nice life, right?

But all this is revealed during a trial, in heaven.  There’s an evil prosecuter angel, who questions his entrance into heaven, and a sweet defense, who praises him and uses his horrible life as a sympathetic picture, and also talks about some of the “good deeds” he’s done (most of which happen by accident.  hm..).  So it’s told in the courtroom and in flashbacks.  Throw in five songs (written by us–with, of course, much help from our fantastic music teacher) and a quirky, comedy-ified script, and you’ve got our production.

Our song–that is, my age groups–was a waltz.  You don’t have to be interested at all, but just in case someone stumbles by this blog and is just fascinated, here are the lyrics…

(The bold was sung by the gold-digging wife, everything else was sung by the background singers or the whole group.  This explains the random transitions from third to first person.)

Get out of my life, you speechless wretch.

Why should I stay if you’ve nothing to say?

Her loving you was really a stretch

I have something to say-

I’m leaving today.

She’s packing her bags, she’s going out the door.

She’s pleading with Bontsha to say something more.

And just as she started to go on her way…

Bontsha the Silent knelt down to pray.

This is when there’s this musical waltzy interlude, and the background singers start laughing, like, “Oh.  My.  God.  He’s PRAYING!”

His praying in agony left her unphased.

She said now to Bonstsha

Get out of my way

I’m here for the money and at this point

Since there’s no more

I’m leaving this joint.

I’m a gold-digger

Proud of it, too

I need some cash for my nails and my ‘do.

With little emotion she walked out the door

Then to Bontsha the Silent

She said nothing morrrrrre!!!

On that lovely note, well, see ya.  And sorry for the awkwardness of this post.  AND sorry for the lack of recent postage.  So much for the whole, gungho three times a week!  thing.

Hope August is going okay for you, and you’re not (like me) totally depressed about the rapidly approaching schoolyear.

-talesfromtheflatlands

my cat, juno, enjoying a sunny afternoon.

so dramatic!!

 

featuring diaries and the fact that burgers ought not to be ordered at a chili place

Standard

I’m posting again.

Lemme repeat that, to add to the general effect.  And to really take things up a notch, I’m using italics and the melodramatic young adult lit period-after-every-word-trick (did you know the British call them full-stops?  I like full-stop so much better than boring stodgy period). Take a look…

I’m.  PostingAgain.

When I started talesfromtheflatlands, I still had that wow-I-have-a-BLOG-now!  spark, the kind of spark that prompts you to post whenever you have the time, to marvel over the THREE VIEWS that your blog has gotten not counting your own eighteen–who looked at my blog, my amateur, lowly blog? was it a kid, a grown-up, a friend, an enemy, a random dude who has nothing better to do?  Even when you find out it was your mom, maybe taking pity on you or something, it still all seems so thrilling.

I’ve never really been one for stuff like writing in a diary or journal.  It’s kinda funny, actually.  Maybe once, twice, okay, three times a year I’ll spend two hours or so being nostalgic.  Like, going through boxes of my folders and notebooks from fourth grade, reading my paper that I wrote two years ago on modern communication, then digging these weird boxes out of my closet and finding seaglass or Halloween candy or an origami frog I made during an artsy rush.  Then, I’ll read through these diaries I’d resolved to write in once a day in maybe fourth or fifth grade.  I probably spent more time on the “please email me if you find this diary” note at the front of the book than I did on actual, y’know, writing, but it’s pretty fun to read through my histrionic (I think we should all just take a moment and thank the computer dictionary/thesaurus for all it does it this world) I-sincerely-promise-to-dedicate-my-life-to-you, diary entries, each affecting a different sort of voice.  There’s the good-little-naive-schoolgirl entry (I feel as if I’m on an emotional rollercoaster where I’m tall enough to ride but don’t meet the age limit.  Diary, my emotions are all jumbled up.  And for the record, Mary* won’t play with me during recess.  Again), the lovesick-ten-year-old-entry, (I feel so happy around him!  Everything he does makes me smile, and I think he likes me, too.  Oh, diary, I KNOW he does!), and–the worst of the bunch–the fifth graderly attempt at being a rebel.  (God, school’s driving me CRAZY.  And I need a lock for my door.  And I’m sick n’ tired of people treating me like a little kid just because I’m ten.)  Ha-ha.  One entry per diary.  Then, maybe three months later, I’ll have crossed out a diary, oh diary, you’ve missed so much! entry.  Maybe I was lazy, but maybe I just lost hope around diary #5 or 6.

Anyway, I’ve never up until now really taken much pleasure in this sort of thing.  I mean, blogs don’t have to be of the diary type.  I could’ve done, I dunno, a cooking blog, or a book review blog, or something.  But I didn’t want to confine what I could write about, I guess.   Blogs, in a certain, way, are really different from a journal or diary. There’s this kind of thrilling sensation that comes with clicking the publish button, and then seeing your post up on your own blog, looking really clean and satisfying.  Also, other people have no problem with this, but I’ve always had trouble understanding how much effort I should put into a diary entry that’s supposed to be private–as in, no one’s gonna ever read this but me, so why should I write something good?  (Once, I tore out a diary entry and left it for my mom to read.  And once you reach that level of utter desperation, things tend to go downward.)  People, even if it’s just your parents and a few friends, will read your blog. This was enough for me, I guess.

Moving on.  Yeah, I’m posting again, and no, in a lot of ways a blog isn’t like a journal.  But I still haven’t been posting very much at all.  This summer, I really have no excuses for taking a month off before posting, so I’m setting this hopefully-reachable goal of posting at least three times a week.  Don’t all congratulate me at once.  Form a line.  (I’ve always hated these jokes, but I couldn’t stop myself.  Sorry to inflict them upon you.)

Other than the whole I’m-posting-again deal, today has basically been another pleasing summer day.  I went out with my dad, grandpa, and brother to Ben’s Chili Bowl, which is this crazy, sort of old-fashioned place on the outskirts of a hip neighborhood that serves -chili -chili dogs -chili fries -veggie chili -all of the above with veggie chili -burgers that seem to just be there in case someone entirely clueless comes around, missing the point of the restaurant and ordering the equivalent of a salad at McDonalds (sorry, Ben’s Chili Bowl.  I bet your burgers are perfectly fine.  But really….the thought that anyone would actually order one….when they’re these places that specialize in burgers just around the corner….).  My mom and grandma stayed at home and read their books.  Meanwhile, us crazy people ordered numerous chili dogs&fries, sodas, and then went over to my grandpa’s photo gallery to pick up mail and look around.  Of course, any venture to Ben’s Chili Bowl deserves to be washed down with gelato–in my case, peanut butter and dulce de leche.  For whatever reason, everyone seemed appalled–APPALLED–at the fact that I was ordering peanut butter!  I mean, seriously, is that so weird?  Maybe it is.  Actually, it does sound  kind of weird.  Peanut butter gelato.  Still, though, if the name wasn’t so odd-sounding, I bet people would order it and love it.  It has this cozy, solid, mildly sweet flavour that I adore.  Maybe instead of calling it peanut-butter-gelato, people should call it PBG.  Y’know, like a play on peanut butter and jelly?  PBJ, PBG?  No? Hm…

So we got home, the odd melange of chili dogs and peanut butter gelato weighing us down and telling us–urging us!!!– (me) to eat a cookie, drink some iced tea, and watch an episode of Glee.  Which I happily did.

I took some pics of my grandparents house, by the way.  Little corners that seem pleasantly quirky.

summery, colorful deck, perfect for a few hours of buggy reading or sipping iced tea.

we move on to the kitchen table, set for a summery dinner.

speaking of summery....

slightly to the right, the colorful, too busy, corner of the kitchen counter.

freshly-baked nectarine tart, situated in front of the microwave.

pots and pans, cooking corn and potatoes for dinner.

I know these aren’t, erm, the best pictures, but I’m just starting up with this whole visuals thing.

Well, have a nice day, and don’t go ’round ordering any burgers at a chili place.

-talesfromtheflatlands

by the way, *=fake name.  that was from way before, when i used a random name in my diary entry.