Blog Archives

When Our Thoughts And Prayers Are Not Enough: School Shootings In America + How we all Miss the Point


Kovi Biokolo brings a really good question to the front of the new page: “Why do we continue to do violent things when there are so many positive philosophies with in religion, culture, and politics? why do we continue to self destruct? Why do we keep giving sorrow to each other over and over again?”  Its a conundrum people have been trying to answer since the beginning of time.

Culturally, and by human nature, all of us tend to shove thoughts away that are hard to understand to save them for a better time, a more suitable mindset, because its hard to think about difficult things. Our brains and souls are made uncomfortable by big questions such as “who is god?”, “What is love?”, and “Why do bad things happen?”. Some people take the route of letting religion explain everything for them, and by religion I mean interpretations of holy manuscripts in ways that reassure us that we are doing the right thing. Not questioning information helps us feel more comfortable, acceptance is peaceful, settling. Coming face to face with blatant fiery red violence and  a clash of morals and the questions come up again, “Who is god?” “Why do bad things happen?”…. Maybe you think you know.

Mark Manson’s post on school shootings in America was very edifying:

“Then there are those who are simply ignored. Dylan Klebold was suicidally depressed for over two years. He fantasized and wrote about killing himself liberally. Despite getting into trouble with the law, turning in school assignments that glorified murder and suicide and failing most of his classes senior year, his parents and friends claimed that they had no idea something was amiss. George Sodini, a middle-aged Pennsylvania man who shot up an aerobics class full of women, wrote in his journal that since he spent the past 20 years of his life alone and miserable, there was no reason to think that the next 20 wouldn’t be lonely and miserable as well. His mother had been emotionally abusive. His father hadn’t had a meaningful conversation with him in over 30 years. Simply put: he had nothing to live for. So why not take some revenge on your way out?

Gun control gets the headlines. Mental health care gets the headlines. Violence and video games and misogyny and internet forums and atheism — the list is endless at this point.

Here’s what doesn’t get the headlines: Empathy. Listening to those around you. Even if you don’t like them very much. We have come to live in a culture where it’s taboo or unacceptable to simply check in with people emotionally and offer some empathy and understanding. I’m not saying this would magically fix all gun violence. I’m just saying that all of these things — the lack of gun laws, the lack of health care, the inability to have basic conversations with friends and neighbors about what’s going on with them, these are all extensions of a callous and self-absorbed culture that lacks any real empathy.”

(http://markmanson.net/school-shootings and http://markmanson.net/terrorism)

Some food for thought today.

A Stream of Consciousness List


Inspired by Barbara Ann Kiper’s book “14,000 Things To Be Happy About”.

1. That thought niggling in the back of your head for weeks about that one thing you wish you could avoid

2. Unavoidable situations

3. The inevitability of confrontation and circumstance

4. Both the calm and the rage

5. Emotions that are tangled together like the ball of yarn in the back of your grandma’s closet from 1958.

6. The moldy bread that disappoints to the point of anger

7. Hatred for hatred

8. The inevitability of them finding out

9. Resolving to repent

10. Relentless self doubt

11. Self hatred

12. Self harm

13. Verbal inner abuse

14. The torture of guilt

15. The relief of a pent up word.

16. Anxiety

17. The realization that every human being is living a life just as complicated as your own

18. Sonder

19. Understanding humans are almost unjudgeable. Morals, ethics, and human rights are all a concepts of our cultural consensus and collective attitude in an individualistic universe striving against itself in its hypocritical ways.

20. Chaos and Order aren’t quite as dissimilar as they seem.

21. Love and Hate are not opposites, but simply one is the softer version of the other and the harsher version of itself

22. The feeling of flying after breathing slowly

23. Doubting if anything ever said is truly unique

24. Doubting if “unique” actually exists.

25. Jazz recordings from 1938

26. Discrepancies.

27. “Ubiquitous” is still one of my favorite words, unfortunately, it is not ubiquitous. (hehe)

28. Pressing the repeat button to listen to my soul song of the night.

29. Him. Who is always on my mind.

30. Him. Who is often on my mind.

31. Him. Who is sometimes on my mind

32. Him. Who I would like to pleasantly vacate.

33. Him. Who should really blow this taco stand.

34. Him. Who needs to kindly fuck off.

35. Her.

36. Telekinesis

37. Telepathy.

38. Best friends

39. Know-it-alls

40. Synonyms.

41. Ecce. ego sum mortem.

42. How uncool people are

43. The idea of “cool” being such a vague term I wish I could forgo ever using it in a colloquial sentence ever again in my existence.

44. Extensive vocabulary.

45. Mother fucking scholars

46. Anticipation

47. Mother Fucking Stupid Ass Bitches

48. Uncultured tongues with a plethora of explicit content.

49. Not having to explain what that sentence means to someone

50. Carpal tunnel

51. Bad conditions for creativity.

52. Comfortability

53. Affordability.

54. The reason I am writing this

55. “Goal setting”

56. Careers are for losers who don’t play instruments

57. “I’m a writer, I need my fucking space.”

58. Hidden genius’.

59. Fucking diseases of the soul

60. Humans are an infection upon the earth

61. Mother nature

62. I WISH I DIDN’T LOOK LIKE THIS

63. I write poems because I’m sad.

64. I’m sad because I write poems

65. I write songs because I can hear them in my head

66. And they wont shut up until I sing them

67. I write lists because they write themselves on the insides of my skull

68. And they only way to wash them off is to get them out through my fingers.

69. This is why I have carpal tunnel.

70. This is why I stay up all night

71. This is why I think too much

72. This is why I hate myself.

73 This is why I can’t believe you.

74. I thought I was good at this

75. A list longer than 612 pages.

76. Numbers can’t write themselves

77. But I wish math could solve its own problems.

78. Girls who are too innocent to understand they are innocent.

79. Sexaul repression.

80. Parental sheltering

81. Misunderstandings.

82. Compound words ^^

83. Antecedents

84. Vague pronoun use

85. Nathaniel Hawthorne

86. Song lyrics quoted on social media no one understands

87. Likes.

88. Dislike button

89. Disaster

90. Fucking it all up.

91. Cheating the system

92. Realizing the system was made up

93. Making up your own rules

94. Pointless laughter

95. References too advanced for your knowledge of history, philosophy, and literature.

96. Books written in 430 B.C.

97. Hieroglyphics

98. Happiness

99. Nerds

100. A list that will hopefully last forever.

A Personal Post


atelphobia

This is my problem. It leads to me never believing that others can love me, because I’m simply not worthy of it.

It isn’t women that I don’t believe though, I mostly trust girls. But I can’t trust guys, (sorry if this sounds sexist but… it has been my overarching experience through my life).

I’ve never been good enough for my dad, never strong enough to chop wood or athletic enough to draw the attention of my Dad’s dad, (my grandad). I was never good enough for a lot of guys I liked or dated in the past. There was always something about me that needed to change for them to be pleased. Mostly my body. I was never enough for a lot of other people because they wanted me to be there constantly, and well, I have a life I need to live too.

I’ve never felt good enough to love someone else because of this. As if I wasn’t worth enough to give someone else adoration. But then at the same time I’m too worthless not too, because everyone else must be more deserving than I to receive love. I’ve felt so unworthy in the past that I just summed it up to being incapable of loving others. Incapable of commitment and loyalty because I’m not good enough anyways.

“A Bed Full of Safety”

bedfullofsafety

Even though I have no reason to really think I’m not enough right now. I know I’m talented, intelligent, strong, and mature, I can’t shake the feeling of never being good enough. I can’t help but remember that I couldn’t love, and I couldn’t truly be loved by others, I can’t stop feeling helpless in the fact that I’m just starting to live, just learning how to be.

But being isn’t easy.

edgarallenpoe

I know I shouldn’t believe that I am not enough, but it’s hard to not believe it when I’ve disappointed so many people.

I’m exhausted.

Being Apart and Retrouvailles


Retrouvailles [French]

The Happiness of meeting again after a long time

There are lots of ways that people can be separated. Whether “separate” meaning ending of a relationship, friendship, or bond; or meaning separated by distance and time rather than breaking off that relationship, being apart is painful.

I’ve had friends all over the world, some which I’ve been able to see yearly or more and others that I have never seen.

I have friends I’ve grown up with that became the closest and most important people in my life graduate high school and go far away for college. It hurt to be apart from them. It hurt to lose the physical connection we had and to lose the fulfilling meetings we used to have regularly. But we had retrouvailles when we were finally able to get together during summer, winter, and spring breaks.

Separation changes relationships and changes people. Communication and visiting become more special, but also more difficult. Talking to one another can become a chore, or become monotonous because the same questions are always being asked. “How was your day?” “What did you do?” “How is everyone back home?” “How is school?” “What are your classes like?”‘How was work?”. After a while it feels like there is nothing more to say over the phone or via text.

It feels like the distance between the two of you is prying a wedge between you even more than you thought it would.

happinessisexpensive

It’s costly on everyone in many ways. Seeing friends means gas money, spending money for activities, and food. Seeing friends means a plane ticket home or to them, expenses of travel and the like.

Being apart from friends means you might make new friends and lose those friends, or the flux of new friends is whittled down to the ones that you actually like talking to you, rather than the ones which are just convenient to converse with. The difference between a study buddy and a real pal. It costs time and effort to be happy, to stay happy, and to preserve the happiness that you have with those you love most in the world.

The hardest part about these expenses, is making sure they are worth it, and remain worth it.

convenient

Something being worth your time is far from something which is just convenient. Although, convenience does assist in keeping things that are worth your time.

Convenience is having a neighbor that you can barrow things from politely and they have the same relationship with you, but you wouldn’t invite them over for a heart-to-heart about your dying uncle and the struggles of cancer in your family.

The kind of person you invite over for that serious conversation who thinks you are worth their time is the friend that maybe it isn’t all that convenient for them to see you. That’s why it is special when you see each other, because when you do, both of you have planned that chat, that cup of tea or coffee, that special meeting spot, or the favorite seats in your living room. The date’s been on your calendar and it has been something the two of you texted about for weeks. Making sure both could be there around the same time, prepared and with lots to say.

But also with this best friend, you don’t always need something to talk about. Silence can convey what you need it to as well. Because sometimes all you can say is “I’m so glad you are here,” with me because I need you and you are worth it and I love being with you because I love you. 

And you know they are thinking the same thing and don’t need to say it.

coolshit

Harmony in the those moments of retrouvailles.

How To Get A Good ACT Score (writing portion only)


My first time taking the ACT I was a sophomore in highschool, and its been three years since then and I believe whole heartedly I was a smarter person at that time because of four classes:

1. Latin 2 (Honors)

2. Classical and Medieval History (Gordon College Professor who is super awesome)

3. Classical Literature and Writing (Honors, taught by an ordained bishop, who also consequently is the smartest person I have ever met)

4. Geometry (With my mother who is an Engineer and it rocked)

These foundations are classical Greek and Roman foundations of education (plus add some philosophy and cultural anthropology for unbiased analysis reasons) and this is what I call the perfect lessons to prepare you to write a three page essay in under thirty minutes with organized ideas AND quotes from the literature/historical manuscripts that should be burned into your brain forever.

According to the the syllabus of my Classical Lit and History courses, I now can have a conversation with a student who has a masters in Classics or Literature very well.

I used a quote from Giovanni Pico Della Mirandola (Renaissance, Italian scholar and philosopher) for my essay on the ACT that I tied in to the importance of learning and intellectuality. (…this post is so entirely opposite from my last blog  post my goodness.) This quote talked about the different parts of humanity and what they make a person appear like.

“When man came into life, the father endowed him with all kinds of seeds and with the germs of every way of life. Whatever seeds each man cultivates will grow and bear fruits in him. If these are vegetative, he will be like a plant; if they are sensual, he will become like the beasts; of they are rational he will become like a heavenly creature; if intellectual, he will be an angel and a song of God…. ” (The Oration on the Dignity of Man 1486)

So, to the ACT essay graders, I think I looked pretty damn hot 😉

Along with using quotes and being able to accurately tie them into the random subject you were given, you need to have a good idea of how you like to start your essays, or how to get yourself into a good writing mindset.

I usually try to use the page they give you to plan out your essay to write the first paragraph in. It gives you some idea of how you want to format the lay out, but not the entire thing, more the sound and rhythm of your essay. Colloquial or very formal, your essay should reflect how well you can store knowledge and apply it correctly and nicely to anything they throw at you. And they will throw you some strange questions that seem pretty stupid at first glance.

I’ve taken standardized tests for 3 years with essays tacked on them and it gets old really fast. Also, if you are taking a CLEP exam, remember to CITE the information they give you properly, it’s not just there for you to stare at contemplatively.

Another thing, use AWESOME vocabulary and use it in a tasteful way,

not like:

“Swivel chairs are too ridiculous for rambunctious kids who let their glee overwhelm them, tenaciousness can often upset pedantic teachers.” (This sentence is gross but do you understand how silly it sounds to have this many unusual vocabulary words in one sentence?)

You should use them like THIS:

“Good adjectives and adverbs should be used ubiquitously.” (This is a fair example because colloquial and gray words like “good” are not very useful descriptors(adjectives); they are subjective to someone’s biased point of view of “good”, but words such as “unseemly” (with other descriptions of WHY it is unseemly) is an approved adjective.)

Punctuation:

If by any chance you are able to use a semicolon properly in a paragraph you will probably get good points. The quote I just used above is a good example of semicolons.

Colons (:) are used in sentences to introduce that something follows like a quotation, example or a list. Semicolons (;) are used to join two independent clauses, to separate main clauses joined by a conjunctive adverb or to separate items in a list that already uses commas. “(Your Dictionary.com)

And some examples:

“With educated people, I suppose, punctuation is a matter of rule; with me it is a matter of feeling. But I must say I have a great respect for the semi-colon; it’s a useful little chap.”
(Abraham Lincoln)

and

“Training is everything. The peach was once a bitter almond; cauliflower is nothing but cabbage with a college education.”
(Mark Twain)

I also HIGHLY recommend keeping a journal entry maybe not once a day, but at least twice a week to keep your mind flowing easily in writing; even if it is total nonsensical babble about school and drama it will help.

Finals Week Check List


1. Some how reacquaint myself with Alejandro

2. Get more people to accidentally flirt with

3. Cuddle with everyone

4. Fail an audition

5. Environmental Science class is still not accomplishing anything

6.English Composition II is still not accomplishing anything

7. Be annoyed by my ENG II teacher

8. Talk to Dr. Teacher

9. Send love notes

10. Get rejected

11. Cry pitifully to oneself during class

12. Throw papers manically.

13. Throw oneself onto couch in desparity

14. Devise evil plans

15. Watch stupid videos

16. Facebook too much

17. Listen to depressing music

18. Argue with That Pirate Kid

19. Get Married

20. Disappoint my father

21. Dont drive

22. Drink a lot of tea

23. Microwave a lot of tea and meals

24. Eat alone

25. SHIT TON OF MOISTURIZER

26. LIP BALM

27. Have cold hands

28. Play guitar till my fingers almost bleed and my hand falls asleep.

29. Count

30. Try to forget

31. Get depressed by the holidays

32. Cancel New Year’s Eve Party because I hate everyone

33. Unfriend a lot of people on facebook like a pro

34. Go shopping.

35. Video game therapy.

36. Block people on Xbox

37. Make new friends

38. Scrap four blog posts.

39. Pretend to do work .

40. Write long lists.

41. Go to Church

42. Send this link to people

My College Applications


My dreaded, and also exciting, search for colleges and now applying for them has been so exhausting in so many ways. The horrors of touring giant colleges with my crazy parents who never get along has been very real. My first campus tour last spring at UMass Amherst wasn’t totally a disaster but it was rough, and at the end of the day all I wanted to do was call my boyfriend and cry all night. So I did, while sitting in the empty tub of the hotel while my brother played video games on the bed. I didn’t particularly like the college. My mother had attended there for 8 years, and she hadn’t even visited the college before throwing herself into the application process, she had just wanted to get out. But the cement covered valley with its high risers that stuck out harshly against the barren landscape didn’t sit well with me. I didn’t want this ginormous campus to be my home, it felt too much like a evil institution like in all those dystopian movies I watch. I felt incredibly alone in the crowd and lost in all the commotion of schedules and 100 kid lecture halls. Even though the tour guides said the only 100 person classes they had  ever taken were their first semester ones, it didn’t assure me that I would find my place at UMass. No, this place wasn’t for me.

I toured one other college that I got infatuated with, Hampshire College, or as my parents called it while going to UMass: “Hamster College” since all the weirdos went there. I felt like the curriculum was really me. Yet again though, I found that the barren fields, and awkward buildings that I was getting lost in were making me feel unwelcome. But mostly it was my tour guide telling me to “Get off my high horse and realize you aren’t special.” That was a very big blow to all my philosophical beliefs.  He recommended I read a bunch of books about the insignificance of my existence and people’s lack of ability to be different from one another. I looked down onto my pin that I got from the college. It had a picture of a sheep and an red x across it. Don’t be a sheep. Don’t follow. Be a leader. Be a world Changer. Be different. Be special. That was the college’s motto, and I wondered how a person could go to a college with that motto but come out saying “No one is special.” It made me doubt some credibility. I still like Hampshire, but I have some philosophical wars going on.

Next stop was Salem State University. It was smaller and sweeter and newer than UMass. The library was way cooler and the facilities rocked. Even the dorms were better than UMass Amherst’s. I was impressed with the peppiness of the guides and welcomer’s and the enthusiasm and honestly of the admissions adviser who spoke to us. Then we went to another lecture for the “undecided”. This was a disaster. Absolute cacophony of horridness. The man speaking to us must have been having a mid life crisis of some kind since he just ranted about politics and when he was actually on topic I asked a question about something and announced I was home schooled. He said. “Well, college will be a culture shock.” and a few other comments of similar views. I was so insulted I almost left the room. I simply do not understand how a college professor could be that ignorant. Educate thyself and read some Socrates.

I’ve toured BC, Suffolk, Merrimack, and Bowdoin since then. Bowdoin was another catastrophe, but the college was pretty. I won’t tell this story since it was such a strange day. I also hate the person I liked at the time. (I wrote another post about him, but it got deleted accidentally) Now I am applying to an arts and communication school, Emerson. I’m applying for Writing, Literature, and Publishing, crossing my fingers they accept me!!!

Here are my college essays: 

Q: Discuss an accomplishment or event, formal or informal, that marked your transition from childhood to adulthood within your culture, community, or family Settling down on a name was hard for my parents before I was born. My mom wanted something interesting, different, not the Sarah, Emily, and Elizabeth’s of the world kind of name, she wanted it to be a creative and interpretive thing. My dad wanted exactly what my mother didn’t. He wanted tradition continuing to honor ancestors. I was going to be Alice Marie, May Eddie, or Willamina. Don’t get me wrong, Alice Marie, May Eddie, and Willamina are beautiful names, but I am not an Alice, nor May, and even more so, I am not a Willamina. Samantha suited me for a while, but it felt uncomfortable. I felt like it was a whiny, nasally noise people were yelling at me across the baseball field, up at bat, and then when I got hit with the ball a thousand times it was cooed out by my couch and that silly Tyler boy who still is lovesick for me today. “Samantha, are you OK? You get to walk.” That’s all I was doing, walking through the pitches, taking the hits, never swinging into a ball and hitting a home run then racing across the field for a winning game. I was standing in the outfield, waiting around, picking boogers, and staring into the sun, asking it, “Why do they call me Samantha? Who gave them the right to call me something I never signed up to be called?” As I grew up I liked to play make believe, and I would take on my make believe names for years. I was Mike (4-5 years old), Isabelle (6-7), Amber (7-8), Crystal (9-10), Landia (10-11), and then I found something I fell in love with. Zanthia. I wanted that to be me. Zanthia was beautiful, Zanthia was complex, Zanthia didn’t whine, Zanthia didn’t sit in the outfield, Zanthia hit home runs, Zanthia was a good friend and team player, and Zanthia was a Queen. But also, Zanthia wasn’t a stuck up girl, she was a transforming butterfly, she was becoming something she didn’t even know could be. Zanthia was ready to take on the world, or what she’d like to call her fairy kingdom. I decided to be Zanthia. Just like in the Bible when Saul realizes he was wrong about life and turns to God and is renamed Paul, Sarai and Abram realize they are called for something more and are changed to Sarah and Abraham, I was changed from Samantha the listener to Zanthia the fair haired. I claimed myself as my own, more than just claiming my body and personality, I made my identity. My parents may have needed to have a starting basis on what to call me, but I knew Samantha wasn’t a tattoo that was going to last forever on me. Samantha was little leagues. Samantha was playground talk. I was now the Queen of the Fairy Kingdom and Queen of Me. Zanthia.

If you could title your life anything what would it be? : I consider my life a building work of art. The hardest part of being an artist is naming your art. Sometimes stories are easily explained in a banner (headline) phrase: “Don’t Do Me Wrong”, “Love Me Do,” and “Good Girls, Bad Boys”, but some stories need more of a lead-like or thesis title, which a lot of punk rock songs use: “This isn’t a fashion statement it’s a deathwish”, “This mirror isn’t big enough for the two of us”, “Here’s that song you wanted”, or “Where can I stab myself in the ears”. The only reason I do not name my songs like the untitled versions of Shakespearean sonnets is because I am simply not allowed to. As a singer songwriter I’ve been forced to take my beautifully self titled songs like “I Really Shouldn’t Be Doing This”, or “My Soul’s Seasons of Drought”, and “Build Yourself A Home Inside My Heart” to be cut down to “Home” which does it no justice to what the song is actually about and is easily confused with the famous country song. At certain points in my life, namely ages 11-14, I would’ve liked to title my life: “Sometimes I Scream Aloud”, “Failure to Assimilate”, and “Would It Be Weird If”. Now I am almost 18 and many things have changed since my preadolescence and I can say that “The Uselessness of Trying To Be Human” is among my top three titles. The other two are: “My Reputation: An Apology” and “I Tried The Best I Could To Write You Songs.”

Totally doesn’t apply to this post, but I like this gif ALOT: I love you Roozbeh <3;)

Crazily Motivational


So maybe I’m not motivated at all to do things like:

1. finished the last 11 chapters of my Algebra 2 book.

2. Study for the ACT.
3. Be polite to certain individuals. 

4. Learn how to control my emotions. 

 

And all these things, I really need to do. 

I need to finish my Algebra in order to graduate high school. I need study for the ACT in order to get good grades so I can apply to schools that are worth my time. 

And another thing. 

I’m feeling really useless. I’m feeling like nothing matters. I’m feeling like no matter how much I study, how much I learn, how much money my parents spend on my education, I will never be good enough. Doesn’t matter exactly what I’m “not good enough” for, but that I’ll never get there anyways. 

Or maybe, I’m just hitting the cusp of my teen angst and there is no looking back now. Maybe these are my defining moments and I need to make the best of my algebra 2 and ACT while I still have time, or maybe this is just the end for you my friend. (New Found Glory). Sometimes I have a better hold of what I’m trying to say while I’m typing then when it actually is read… Context is all there is in my brain. 

Then I heard this song, Selfless by New Found Glory, and they say “I’ll catch up on my sleep when I’m dead.” I really appreciate this. I dont get very much sleep anyways, since I think very well between 9pm and 2 am, but also that I like to get up at 9 and still enjoy a morning cup of tea and feel the morning breeze, and listen to the birds. I dont want to miss any second of the day, which means I dont want to be sleeping through the wee hours of the morning/night. 

 

Yesterday’s check list: 
1. Not know how to feel about who you had lunch with. 

2. On one hand, they were acting fine, being fine, treating others kindly. 

3. But on the other, they are also all those people you can’t seem to form a proper opinion of. 

4. Question the definition of “proper”. 

5. Environmental Issues was canceled so I made friends with my classmates in our empty time. 

6. Reveal more about oneself’s life and hear about others more than you thought you should. 

7. Here about That Pirate Kid’s strange summer sex.

8. Try not to look at The Fucking fuck face. 

9. Be instructed by Dr. Teacher to contact Teemo. 

10. Regret ever telling Dr. Teacher I still had his number. 

11. Have bloodshot eyes, all day, errrday.

12. Be concerned about my own two faced actions, 

13. I hate bisexual girls. 

14. Why can’t they make up their minds. 

15. I need better friends. 

16. Crush on someone

17. Become irrevocably disappointed in myself.

18. Forget to reschedule counselling.

19. Don’t tell therapist about You’re In Fucking California X’s return……

20. Try to forget about it. 

21. Cry because he doesn’t want to talk about it

22. Wonder why we have to “talk” about these things. 

23. Forget exactly why I keep feeling this way. 

24. Psychoanalyze self. 

25. Remember that I like philosophy better. 

26. Philosophize about why I’m like this. 

27. Metaphysics sucks. 

28. Is it Cause to Effect? Or Effect = Cause? ugh. 

29. Listen to really bad indie music. 

30. Have band practice. 

31. Remember why I love music and laugh hysterically with my mates 🙂 

 

 

Sample of My Novel


Summary:

A young man, about 16 living in the suburbs of Union, New Jersey in the spring of 1969. His father’s a veteran from the great war, his mom appearing to be nothing but a pious Catholic house wife, and his friends an entirely uncharted world of pirates and seafaring adventures. In reality, he’s just another sophomore in highschool who is crushing on his next door neighbor, Annette, and journaling about his foibles.

Chapter 3.

I jumped out of my window onto what I thought was the soft grass, my knees cracked as I bent them, landing with a thud. I shook it off and walked around the line of bushes between her house and mine. She didn’t attack me in school today.

“Pssssst.”

I looked around the bushes to her yard.

“J-Mad!”

“Shh you’ll wake my ma!” I said and I started walking around the bush crouched down so my head couldn’t be seen.

“Oh shush,” Roozbeh said while he and Luke popped their heads from out of the trash barrels.

“You stink,” I said.

Luke wore a bandana over his nose and mouth. “Affirmative,” he saluted lazily.

“Cap’m, I spy ye a fair maiden, yonder window, twelve o’clock!” Roozbeh whispered.

We stood at attention, I huddled near the bushes behind the barrels.

“It’s Annette!” I said without whispering.

“Get down dammit!” Roozbeh pushed on my head.

She looked both ways out her window, then she look down. A rope ladder swung out from the bottom of the window and her head disappeared.

“She coming down!” Luke said.

“Cap’m! Retreat!” Roozbeh gestured with official battle hand warning to get out of the barrels.

Her legs popped out the window and timidly took the rungs. Then her full body. She was wearing overalls.

Roozbeh and Luke gave up on me and ran to my yard but I stood very still. This was it.

“Annette!” I said.

She jolted, the rungs of the rope ladder thudding against the house loudly.

“Agh, no.” I pulled on my hair and scratched.

She set eyes on me and run off the ladder, slapping me across the face. “Damnit James Madison, do you have any idea what a light sleeper my Pa is? Do you? And what the hell are you doing in my yard?”

“I’m sorry, I’m sorry, I just – I just- I was out ya know – and then I saw you- so I waited. Why are you wearing-”

She put her warm hand over my mouth. “Shush, come this way.”

Annette lead me by the hand to her back yard which lay at the edge of the woods in the corner adjacent to my yard. A small gap where her fence of bushes thinned and the boards in my wooden fence were rotted off highlighted a little door between our yards I had never known about before.

“In here,” she said and slid into the shack.

She pulled me with her and we stood in the dark cramped space. I bumped my  calf against her dad’s ride on tractor and it scraped the skin under my trousers.

She turned a camping light on and closed the shutters.

“Hi,” Annette said, she leaned up against the workbench and crossed her arms.

“Hi,” I said, and dug my hands into my pockets.

“Why were you looking at my window?” she said.

“Why were you climbing out of your window?”

“Because I like going out at night  to—to be out,” she huffed.

“Why?”

“Because!” I got a scowl from her. “Now answer my question.”

“I was with Roozbeh and Luke, and they were hiding in your trash barrels waiting for me.” Oh sweet Jesus, that sounded horrible.

“Roozbeh Badie and Luke Winger were hiding in my trash barrels? What the hell were they doing?”

“Well we play this sort of game where Luke’s the captain and—“

“You were playing a game in my trash barrels? You have got to be….” She let out a sigh. “Whatever, keep going.” She pushed some loose hair away from her face. “Uh, you’re staring,” she said eyebrows raised.

“Oh, yeah, sorry, um spaced out. So Luke’s the captain, Roozbeh is Chief mate and I’m Third mate. And we were on a mission, I think, can’t remember why.”

“What’s Third mate?” Annette asked and looked at her dads tractor between us.

“It’s the guy that does the navigation stuff on a boat,” I said. “He’s the one that gets to drive the ship and command people where to pull the rigging when he has to do a maneuver in the water.”

“Oh right, cool.”

“Actually, I’m pretty sure we have to complete our mission, you wanna come?” Jesus Christ she is gonna think I’m like a fifth grader. I can’t believe-

“Sure,” she said and started around the tractor towards me.

“Oh. Okay,” I turned and we bumped into each other trying to get out of the shack.

“Sorry!” I said as I accidently pushed her into the other door, rattling it.

“Ouch, you jerk.” She pushed my shoulder and I hit the other door and tumbled outside. I got up and brushed myself off.

“I really am-”

“Shut up, now where’s your ship?”

I straightened and soluted without thinking. “Aye aye, this way.”

She looked at me sideways and shook her head, but followed me.

We walked across the street and through the neighbor’s yard over to the other street parallel to ours, entering into Luke’s back yard. His tree house had a small light coming out of it.

“Up there,” I said and pointed to the ladder.

She started climbing. After she went about 4 rungs up, I started to climb behind her.

“A hoy!” Luke said out one of the windows. He gasped. “You brought her!”

“It’s bad luck to have a woman on board!” Roozbeh popped out of the opposite window.

“Too bad,” she said “I’m already up.” She brushed off her overalls and went through the door into the small house. I went in behind her.

She sat on the bench in the corner and I took my chair around the stool we used as a table.

“Now gentlemen… and lady, this is a trust test.” Luke had a paper napkin sticking out of his left nostril. “I’m going to light this, and the first one to blow it out before the fire catches my nose will be the new captain!”

Roozbeh and I sat on the edges of our seats but Annette burst into laughter on her bench. “You have got to be kidding me. You are gonna burn your face off!” she said.

“Not if Roozbeh and Jmad do their part!”

“What if they don’t?” she said.

“They will, one of them will,” he adjusted the paper napkin in his nose.

“What if I do it?”

“You’re a girl! You can’t be captain,” Luke said. “Only men can be captain.”

“We’ll see.” She sat back, and waited. “You gonna light it or am I gonna have to?”

“I got it, I got it.” Luke flicked the lighter, but his hand shook. He flicked the lighter on the napkin, it caught fast and started burning. “I’m not finking out, promise.”

I sat still, waiting to grab it. Did I want to be captain? Third mate isn’t exactly a powerful position on a boat, but a third mate who has mutinied is a dangerous person on a ship.

“Grab it! Someone!” Luke was sweating, and clenching his fists.

Roozbeh lunged, but I took my chance too and both of us butted heads and toppled over the stool between us.

Luke shrieked and Annette pulled out the flamey napkin and stomped on it. “There, I’m captain, now go get some ice and vaseline Luke. You’re all show and no go,” she said  and went for the door.

“You can’t be captain!!” Luke wailed and cradled his burnt nose.

“Beat feet sucker!” Roozbeh yelled. He looked back at Luke and saw through his fingers at the burn. “Damn that napkin really laid  a patch on you man.”

“Stop your lip flapping and go ape on that girl!” Luke yelled.

“Sorry man, but I ain’t wasting my time on that paper shaker,” Roozbeh said.

I looked at the ashes on the floor. “I’ll find her.”

I climbed down the ladder and saw her run through the woods. I ran after her and easily caught up.“Hey, stop!” I said. She didn’t.

“I’m not on the hook for this one, Jmad, now go home.”

“I am going, we both have to go this way.”

She slowed down then, breathing heavily. I steadied myself to her speed and we walked in silence till we were in front of our houses.

“I’ll see you at school,” I said.

She looked at me in a way my sister would when she thought I did something stupid. “Goodnight James Madison.”

“Goodnight Annette Parker.”

 

In Journalism Class


It’s an easy class, but I am realizing more and more journalism, in its triumph in being timely, informative, constant, and to the point, loses the word crafting and beautiful syntax that other writing has.

Lately, I’ve been staying out late with friends, going to a lot of movies, events, and concerts. I went to Rocky Horror PIcture Show Friday. 

WEIRDEST MUSICAL EVER (not weirdest movie ever that would be Rubber, which everyone should go see). 

Staying out late is one of my favorite things, but not for what you might think. It’s not all about the parental defiance, peer shock, funny stories, or weird experiences, its simply because I like to be free, and getting out late and staying out is extremely freeing. I don’t worry much, so I find consequences only scare me when they are extreme,  but contrary to popular belief, and maybe how I make it sound, I am rather tame. 

Drugs are horrid, Alcohol isn’t fun for me, and smoking just smells. But give me a pound of chocolate and liquid “happiness” I will be just fine. (liquid happiness, is a McCafe frappe, but its both the mocha frappe and carmel frappe with extra whipped cream.)

So this is a thing my friends say: 

  (Skins, UK )