INDIEchouette


COME TO THE LEWISBURG ARTS FESTIVAL, PLEASE

So.  I’m completely grounded.

This is exceptionally rare for me.  Even when I am semi-grounded, I normally have some freedom to roam about the neighbourhood, but this time, I am confined to home, which basically means that I need to take up Colonial girl hobbies.

One of my semi-Colonial hobbies is writing pieces for my senior project, that zine I mentioned a while ago.  It’s coming along.  Actually, that’s the reason I am grounded–my senior project is not finished yet.  But I’m about halfway there, if you exclude distribution and the final paper.  I’m trying to go out of my way to make it nice and different from your typical zine.  I’m veering away from words and photos that look clipped out of magazines, though I did find this HILARIOUS photograph of a bunch of baby hawks in a 1974 issue of National Geographic that I must use.  They’re Coopers hawks.

I guess the cover is giving me the most trouble.  I want to draw something, but I need a title first.  I don’t want to rely too heavily on music, either, because then people will get it right away.  That’s one problem with a lot of my artwork, actually–I make art inspired by the music I listen to, so when other people look at it, it lacks the sentimental value that it has for me.  I want a title that will test my potential readers and draw them in.  Then again, I guess if I dig deep enough in my music library, I can find some obscure line that will lure in the lovers and the uninformed.  I kind of want to go French on them.

Speaking of art, if you live anywhere near Lewisburg, even remotely, you ought to come to the Lewisburg Arts Festival.  I recommend coming on Friday or Saturday, I think, because that’s when the high school is selling artwork, I think, and I’ll be selling a bag or two that I am making in hyperspeed this week.  In keeping with my Colonial hobbies, I’ve also been making friendship bracelets for the festival; in fact, kids all over Lewisburg have been working hard at bracelet making.  The bracelets will be fifty cents each and profits will go to help people in Darfur.  It may seem like very little money, but even fifty cents can buy food for a few days.  Allegedly.  I mean, it’ll help, it’ll help.  Also, after finishing two bracelets, let me tell you, they’re no easy feat.  It takes hours of concentration–even a medium-sized (widthwise) bracelet takes about 500 knots, give or take a few.  Not that I counted, but there are ways to figure it out using a calculator.

Oh, but as for the bag sales, you’re probably wondering why I’m selling those.  After all, they’re one-of-a-kind, handmade, they take forever to design and create, and they hold tons of sentimental value.  Well, here’s the thing.  I only really need one bag for myself.  Selling these bags will help the situation in Darfur.  Currently, I am debating donating 10% or 100% of the profits, because I want to help, but seriously, girl needs to save for college.  That’s selfish, I know, but I hate asking my parents for money constantly, just like I hate asking them for rides so I walk where I can.  10% would be decent, but 100% would kick some ass.  I guess it depends on how much I sell the bags for.  Another part of my internal debate is that if I donate the full profits of these ones, it would be like…you know, some limited edition thing available to the public that you can pay for.  And that would be AWESOME.  But what if I start selling them more frequently if and when I buy a sewing machine of my own?

If you’re going to the festival (which I advise), I’m making one bag inspired by Jenny Lewis with the Watson Twins and one bag inspired by some other artist–I’m considering Stars, Andrew Bird, or Final Fantasy.  I don’t know yet, though.  I almost feel like people won’t buy if I make bags themed around the music, but at the same time, that’s sort of my “thing.”  Whatever.

In other reports, today, I was writing notes in English, hunched over my desk, and I realized that my hair was resting on my arm.  This is not a huge deal for most people, but I’ve gone for the past two years with chin-length hair.  And now, when I am sitting straight, it skims the clip part of my bra, on my back.  It serves several purposes.  One, I am more able to emulate Jenny Lewis than ever before, because I am certain that this is the longest my hair has ever been.  Two, it is heavy, dark, and appreciated.  Whenever I had my hair long before, I hated it.  I couldn’t do anything with it.  But I think having bangs helps.  Three, I’m well on my way to donating it to Locks of Love.

My paternal grandmother always brags about how she has two granddaughters (out of many) and one daughter (out of four) who have donated their hair.  She sneaks up behind teenage girls at church who have their hair hanging down to their waists and taunts them–“That would make a beautiful wig for some child who needs it.”  She’s hardcore, but her campaigning has made me strongly consider it.  I just need to wait and keep it healthy in the meantime.

In honour of spending this past weekend with people I have missed and having a comfortable time, I have some mp3s.  For the record, I have never been able to bring myself to sing comfortably in front of anyone else–too much pressure, too much criticism.  But I was so at ease.

This one was my favourite one to sing, and apparently the only song Phelan enjoyed from Across the Universe.  And it reminds me of that TV show, The Wonder Years.

With A Little Help From My Friends | Joe Anderson and Jim Sturgess
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“Silver Lining” summons memories of moving here, wanting to play Ragnarok all day, feeling sexy without the aid of makeup or a hair straightener for the first time in my life, getting along with Rachael again, missing Richmond perpetually, and spending all day outside but retaining my pale skin because of the religious application of sunscreen.  SPF 50 or so.  I felt so helpless sometimes, but I was free.  Gold.  New.

Silver Lining | Rilo Kiley
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LE CULTURE DE FRANCE ET LE CULTURE D’INDIE

Got sick yesterday, recovered by laying around after school and watching Paris, Je t’aime.  Incroyable.  Indescribable.  I went into French class this morning all ready to use my nasal “r” sound, and then I remembered that it is just high school French and even my teacher does not have it in him.  And we are American.  Pennsylvanian at that.  We are allowed to use these German accents to speak German, but we cannot risk the embarrassment of sounding really, truly French.  How patriotic would that be, in conservative central Pennsylvania, where the French are pansy fags?  Mais j’aime le culture de France.  Even if no one else does.  Just like I love Rilo Kiley in all of its indie rock, folk-tinged glory, even if no one else does because it is too “country.”

This segment reminded me a ton of Garden State.

The overall feeling of the film was nostalgia.  Little stories about love.  I laughed, I cried, I thought about my own love, my own life.  Each part was delicate.  Just five minutes long.  But each had something in it for me.  It was like peeking into all of these different lives and just seeing that they’re all somehow alike, despite socioeconomic status, despite gender or marital status or exact situation.  Precise location.  And it’s because of love.  It made me sad that I mostly had to read subtitles because my savvy for listening comprehension does not extend far beyond the tapes in French class or my teacher and peers, aided with textual references and G-rated vocabulary.  But it makes me that much more motivated to start listening to RFI every day and to download more good French artists.  Maybe not more squeaky clean Lorie.  I know that there must be French indie.  I just don’t know where to find something cent pour cent French.  Because a lot of it (like the Arcade Fire or Charlotte Gainsbourg) is interspersed with English.

Anyway, tomorrow, I am going to New York City for the first time to see Young Frankenstein.  Although I am excited, I am also extremely nervous and intimidated and I really can’t see myself going there.  It’s a cruel city, but I imagine it is also beautiful.  But how do you not look like a tourist when you are enchanted?  I guess it’s not such a bad thing being a tourist; loads of people are tourists in New York City.  But I see it as bad.  I mean, I get so acquainted with the bands I listen to so that I am not a n00b.  So wouldn’t it make sense to do the same with cities I want to visit?

I am less nervous for going to DC on Friday with art.  I have been to DC a million times.  We talk about DC every day in AP Gov.  It’s just going to be another trip there.  I am comfortable with DC.  I mean, it’s halfway home.

I went downtown with Brent to Cherry Alley Café today.  Got a hot chocolate.  And while we were sitting around talking, the oh-so-cute “Anyone Else But You” came on the stereo system.  By now, you should know it by heart.  By the Moldy Peaches.  I mentioned that it is a shame: Everyone is now calling dibbs on all these grand indie bands like they own them, “I heard them first,” hoarding them, sticking them in their Facebook profiles.  Because they have one popular song that the masses like.  And it’s so fucking cute.  And it’s about ugly people loving each other.  How cute is that?

But before their exposure from Juno, no one had heard of the Moldy Peaches.  Nothing wrong with Juno.  I, for one, loved the film.  I could relate to the protagonist.  A sarcastic high schooler who keeps getting caught in romantic waters way over her head, kind of quirky or “off,” in love with her best male friend and unwilling to admit it for a long time.  Very into music.  Quite the fan of hoodies.  Guys at school are not interested, for the most part.  Then you could go into superficial things.  Drives mom’s minivan.  Lives in a small town.  Then you could get more superficial.  Short compared to everyone else.  Brown hair.  Whatever.

But the masses fell in love with Juno because she is not your typical teen protagonist.  That’s just it–she is different.  She fits into the indie subculture.  That stereotype.  And so all of these uneducated, normal teenagers go to the movies and they see Juno, and they see a part of themselves in her.  Just like whenever I go to the movies and walk out thinking that maybe a small part of me looks just like Keira Knightley because she is gorgeous and spunky.  But I look nothing like Keira Knightley.  Many of these kids are nothing like Juno.

So they jump on the bandwagon late, try to become weird by trying to fit in with people like you and me.  The really, truly, incurably weird ones.  The ones who are in love with music and don’t give a shit about looking like a character.  And am I looking for street cred?  No.  No, because I have always been like this.  Introverted, introspective, and “off.”  And no movie is ever going to make me look like a character.  I will always, always be like this.  It is a natural progression from who I was as a sophomore/junior.  Music took over my life.  My priority is not to look as credible as I can.  I have other things to worry about.  I love French, I love several bands wholeheartedly, and I love to write.

But here’s where it gets weird.  Here’s where my story disappoints.  The kids who will change in light of Juno and other movies promoting the indie stereotype, they do not see my peers and I as any cooler for being this way naturally.  They will not try to befriend us and talk to us about how awesome our hobbies and plain clothes are.  How they always secretly wished they were like this, wasting life, and how free it feels to look natural.  Normal.  Because I am pretty average-looking.  They will just try to change their friends to be like them.  So that our little underground thing goes public and then we just look like everyone else again.  And the only way to tell us apart?  Talk to us.  Their personalities won’t change.  They probably still won’t have interesting things to say.  Oh, and they still won’t be able to spell.

I think that hanging out with Brent brings out the cynic in me.  He is, after all, the one who pointed this out, that Juno really stereotyped the indie subculture and that kids just find it intriguing.

Well, music.  I guess we can give them those popular songs.  Make them feel like they can get something genuine out of life because that’s the only genuine thing they’ll ever get out of life.  And for those of you who will continue to stick with the subculture when the hype’s all over?  Good for you.  Because Juno really is a great movie, and if you stuck it out after you fell in love with it, then more power to you.

For some time, I’ve been lovin’ on Sam Beam.  You know, Iron & Wine.  I downloaded this song as per my cousin’s request and shoved it aside for a while, but I recently unearthed it and fell in love.  It’s like a long evening of driving towards the sunset.  I love the handclaps.  While Sam Beam’s eyebrows may only get one star (he has some, does he not?!), the song gets all five.

Boy With A Coin | Iron & Wine
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P.S.  I love that my blog has the 26th most popular song on the Hype Machine today, but I also hate it because it was such a fuck-up.  Give me a spot for something I actually deserve, goddamnit.  Whatever, though.  Again, Charlatantric deserves your hits.  Go to his blog and discover truly underrated music.



YOU MAY THINK THAT I AM CRAZY FOR THIS
12 April, 2008, 531 pm
Filed under: Music, Nouvelle Musique, School | Tags: , ,

I don’t know how many of you readers are francophiles, but if you are, then I have something très super to show you.

A few months ago in French, my teacher announced that we would be doing a musical project in light of Valentine’s Day. He handed out a webquest and a packet of lyrics and assigned us each a song to translate.

I did the webquest on the day it was due. It was on this French singer named Laure Pester, and I thought it was funny that he was asking us to learn her life story. Allegedly a former figure skater. Née le 2 mai, 1982. Dating some pop singer. So when we got to class, some kids translated some of her songs aloud and we watched maybe two music videos. And I thought it was extremely lame that we were learning about a pop singer and then listening to her songs. Plus, she was squeaky clean. I would rather learn about Yelle or Julia Shammas Holter.

Well, that was all before I heard “Sur Un Air Latino.” It’s such a catchy song, holy shit. The lyrics rhyme and would probably be very cliché to any French person who is not a ten-year-old girl, but I am not française, so it makes me want to sing along. And I would want to dance, but I cannot dance like Lorie.

Another highlight of our Lorie learning experience was “Ensorcelée.” That was actually the song I had to translate. “Bewitched.” I thought the lyrics were so stupid, and then I looked at the video and it was so cheesy–I mean, you had native creeps with bulging eyes who all had to be notably less attractive than the blonde, graceful Lorie. But the song was just as catchy as “Sur Un Air Latino” was, if not a bit more serious. Instrumentation’s not even bad for pop music.

And then my teacher let us watch some of Lorie’s songs in concert. So he showed us this cute Medley and then he let us watch this song called “Parti Pour Zouker,” warning us that it was designed like “Sur Un Air Latino.” I hated her hair in the clip, but this song was arguably the most catchy. It stuck in my head all day every time I heard it (which was often).

So in honour of Lorie’s catchiness, here’s a rather low-quality version of “Parti Pour Zouker.” You’ll get the idea, though. It’s a good song. I would never put it on a mixtape, never give it to a boy, but I get a kick out of it for myself.

Parti Pour Zouker | Lorie
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Lorie, though, has changed her image a bit since the tracks on her Greatest Hits album. She’s a little more sexual, a little less American (in several of her early videos, you see subtle allusions to America, such as red, white, and blue outfits, flags on her tee shirts, and American English sayings on her clothes). She has tapped into her inner Frenchwoman, which should not have been hard, considering that she is French.

I enjoy “PLAY” because it sounds less pop than some of her other songs. I have not attempted to translate it, but it makes up for what “Je Vais Vite” lacks (uniform instrumentation–the lack thereof makes it feel very late-70s/early-80s). It’s sexy and modern, and you could certainly dance to it. The video demonstrates this quite well. Lorie is like a blonde Posh Spice now–she’s all grown up. She still manages to look young, though, which is something Posh Spice could never pull off–maybe because of her dark features.

PLAY | Lorie
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Anyway, why am I writing about Lorie? I am fairly anti-industry, pro-indie. But I enjoy her music regardless of the fact that it is pop because it is in French. Additionally, I think that people could do wonders remixing the better ones–such as the ones I’ve written about. But I can’t remix shit. There are some remixes on her MySpace, by the by, but I think other people could do better. You know, get more creative.



LA NOURRITURE!

The last time we went to the grocery store, my mother told me that I should lay off of pre-packaged and frozen special-made vegetarian and vegan foods because they are too expensive and I need to be more resourceful. After all, when I am in college, I will need to learn to cook. By the by, just typing about college makes me get butterflies in my stomach. I am so excited.

Anyway, I bitched and moaned about “OMGZ, Mom, I’m vegetarian! You can eat anything I can eat, but I can’t eat everything that you can eat! Make a Venn Diagram! UGHGHGhghghghhh!” I think that I was so irritated because of two reasons. One, my period was on its way. Two, I have wanted to cook for myself from scratch for a long time (because it would give me more of an opportunity to slip into going vegan), but I have always figured that my mother would be pissed about it. The fact that she was not even remotely pissed somehow set me off.

So I ate my boxed couscous and pondered on gathering recipes.

I am the sort of person who always needs a project. I rarely finish my projects, but what I get done is grand. So in order to aid my attempt at veganism/learning to cook, I decided that I must gather recipes. And in order to organize that, I should gather them in a cookbook of sorts. Since I love composition notebooks, I grabbed one from my drawer.

The question was then where I should gather them from. Well, a while back, I found this website featuring a Jenny Lewis interview–and at the bottom of the page, it had her recipe for vegan “chicken” and then Mike Mogis’ recipe for vegan gravy and this recipe for vegan Worcestershire sauce. Although I had bookmarked it, I lost all of my bookmarks once in a Firefox update sesh, but FORTUNATELY, I had preserved my bookmarks on my LiveJournal in anticipation for the move. And let me tell you, this modest site has changed so much.

The site is actually called Cooking With Rockstars, a…I want to say subsidiary…of Jenville. Cooking With Rockstars chronicles a bunch of interviews conducted by the lovely Jennifer Robbins with various stars in the musical mainstream. But I don’t want to say mainstream. I almost want to call it the indie mainstream. You know, the artists you know and love. Probably. I mean, considering you’re on this blog. Rufus Wainwright, Ben Gibbard, Sam Beam, Britt Daniel, Annie Clark. I mean, just to name a few. And the artists contribute recipes, and Ms. Robbins publishes them on her site. I actually think that she is Mrs. Robbins, because she has an official “Wedding Site.” And also, she is a charming interviewer.

Fortunately for vegans, there are many vegan recipes on there (mainly salads, but I should think that Jenny Lewis’ “chicken” should be grand), as well as several vegetarian recipes where you’d only need to alter one or two minor ingredients (like swap butter for vegan margarine). While there are a few non-vegetarian recipes on there, eh, I took eighteen edible ones away (and those were just some of the ones that were to my taste).

Anyway, I guess as I begin the transition and learn to cook, I shall chronicle my adventures. You know, what tastes good, where I got my recipes from. Yeah.

On a completely different note, I am the creepiest creepster with Facebook. Every time I see that someone has a new album, I’m all over it. Like, holy shit yes. I’d like to think that it is all about my obsession with aesthetically pleasing things. But maybe I am just a lurker.

Now. All weekend, I sat on my ass, collecting music to offer to you-all. My first noteworthy find is “Wake The Sun” by the Matches. It’s quite a catchy, cheerful tune, like 10/10, almost sure to start off a good day. It is necessary, kind of like coffee or OJ. In retrospect, I now realize that I heard it once in art class when someone plugged in his (probably his, maybe her) iPod to the art room speakers. Actually, that day, someone was playing spectacular music that I did not recognize. It was one of those rare days.

Wake The Sun | The Matches
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The next song is a Vampire Weekend, equally impeccable and equally catchy. Automatic love right here. Plus, the lyrics are familiar in a good way. Maybe I’ve never been in a situation like that before personally, but it sounds like something that happens all the time.

Campus | Vampire Weekend
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This last track is actually my mother’s finding. While she was at the Matt Nathanson concert with her friend, she texted me and told me that I would like the band that opened for him. Of course, the text was in like teeny bopper talk, with “u” for you and “r” for are. That’s not important. I looked up the opening act, since she omitted the name, and came up with the name Honeyhoney. There was also like Jason Reeves or something, but I figured she was talking about the band. I checked for them on the Hype Machine and failed. Then I iTunes’d them and came up with five tracks–apparently they have recently released an EP. I laughed at the clips I heard. They sucked. This is an example, though, of iTunes sucking at picking out 30-second clips. Gaddamn.

This morning, my mother slipped into my room and sat on my bed and started unwrapping this CD case. She gave me the CD and told me I would probably like them because they were an “off” band. I kind of cringed, but loaded it on my computer anyway. And then I gave them a second shot.

While I didn’t love the first two songs, the last three were slower and more my style, and they really allowed Suzanne Santo’s voice to shine. I basically loved the last three tracks. Thus, I am jealous of my mother.

My madre was sort of concerned about the parental advisory on the CD, and then she asked me if I ever buy CDs with that. I was thinking, “You should hear some of the music I listen to,” but instead, I just affirmed that I do, indeed. Well, I did not hear any explicit lyrics in the first three songs, so I was wondering why there was a warning (maybe because the first song is about a gun?). That is, until the third song came on. It’s raunchy and sexy, but mellow at the same time. Thus, I shall present you the reason for the parental advisory.

Thursday Night | Honeyhoney
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Also, while I’m at it, I might as well say that I love being a senior in Pennsylvania and getting to sleep in again tomorrow because underclassmen have to take the Terra Novas and PSSAs. LOVE IT.

*By the by, I have revised my host site so that mp3s show up on the Hype Machine.  You now have a variety of options for downloading them.  I really recommend MediaFire or the direct link because there is no waiting time, but if you’re more familiar with YouSendIt, just click on the title.  Or if you’re more familiar with zShare, click on that link.  Anyway, I am not sure how long I am going to keep this three-host thing up because it will get old fast.  I guess I am just transitioning.  Also, I am in debt to the Hype Machine help staff.  They’re so nice and easy to work with.  Plus, they responded to me right away.  No guarantee that they will always do that, but I was impressed.



COFFEEHOUSE
4 April, 2008, 1136 pm
Filed under: Barrels of Fun, Music, My Experience with Existence, School | Tags: ,

Going to the Coffeehouse has renewed my interest in metal.  Metal, metalcore, hardcore.  Hxc.  LOLZ.  I do not know if this just a temporary thing, but I want to dig up ye olde Fall of Troy, Chiodos, et cetera, et cetera.  Norma Jean.  My mother hated it when I listened to that.  She still dislikes my current music, but it is tolerable.  It seems like centuries ago that I listened to metal.  It must have been sophomore year.  Do not get me wrong.  I picked and chose a few bands, and I did not get too heavy into it.  I did not always care for the voices, but I did always admire the guitars and bass and drums and the pure skill of the players.  That is what I am going for now.  And maybe I will learn to love the voices.  Grow accustomed.  If you have any recommendations, throw them my way.  I am trying to expand my musical tastes.

I am also rather smitten with listening to Rilo Kiley.  I may be alone, the only person in the city who admires Jenny Lewis.  But I do not know why.  Feel her voice.  Listen to the lyrics.  Blake Sennett–while he is no metal guitarist, he is fly.  They made a mistake with Under the Blacklight.  Now forgive them and listen to their older albums.  You do not have to go as far back as The Initial Friend EP or even Rilo Kiley.  Just get the other three and actually listen.  I am so lonely in my little world.  The soundtrack to my life is provided by Rilo Kiley, but nobody else seems to hear it.  It seems that everyone has forgotten how to appreciate a female* singer.

*I must add that there is a male singer to Rilo Kiley for many songs–Blake Sennett.  He is the lead.  The founding force.  But I am advertising for Mademoiselle Lewis right now.



LES CHEVEUX, EL JAY, ET L’ANNEE DERNIERE

There’s this girl in a few of my classes.  She is brilliant, and she has this shiny, blonde, sleek, hope-filled hair.  It wants to be looked at.  I do not think that she realizes it, but she never has a bad hair day.  In fact, I doubt anyone ever realizes it, because quite frankly, I do not think that anyone really notices the way she looks.  That is sad in itself.  It’s a real shame.  I doubt she puts any product in it, either.  I think that she just lets it dry naturally, and voilà, there you have it!  Beautiful hair.  And I bet she uses a real simple shampoo.  She might not even need conditioner.  But nobody notices.  Don’t get me wrong–it’s okay if you use conditioner.  It’s okay if you need product.  I sure as hell do, and my hair is never, ever parfait.  But this girl’s hair is a real wonder.  The first time I saw her wear it down, I thought, “Wow, I should tell her that her hair looks amazing today.”  But I did not.  She probably would have thought I was being sarcastic or creepy, anyway.   I should have told her.  I would say that is her best feature.

Well, I was talking with people in a group.  The way I write about my life, you’d think that’s a rare occurrence.  In fact, it is not.  It happens nearly every day.  This particular conversation, I could not contribute much to, so I listened.  And I found out a little bit about this girl’s past.  She dated someone.  I did not know that she dated anyone and I did not gather that from classes, but the boy she dated immediately earned my respect, somehow.

You may think that I pity this girl.  I do not.  There is nothing to pity in her.  She is intelligent, beautiful in a simple manner, and modest.  I just find her intriguing because she is so guarded.  I would like to get the opportunity to get to know her, because I just know there’s something there.  Something different.  You know that’s not going to happen, though.  First of all, I am too shy to do anything like approach her and strike up a conversation.  I would not know what to talk about.  Second of all, I do not think she cares for me.  I attempt to smile at her sometimes, and she stares back.  I may just look away too soon.  But I believe that she thinks that I am an entirely superficial, conceited being, maybe for something as simple as the looks I inherited from my parents.  She may think that I attempt to cast myself as an intriguing, guarded, mysterious being, but that there may be nothing intriguing, or mysterious inside–nothing worth guarding.  That, though, ties back to my shyness.  She is not an intimidating girl, except by way of her brains.

Upon further listening, it was revealed that this girl had a crush on this one boy in our grade.  When I say “had a crush on,” I mean that is what I would assume.  The people talking, though, said that she was “in love with” this boy.  I wonder if he knew, but all I could tell from the conversation was that it was unreciprocated.  Unrequited.  This boy is also in several of my classes.  I can certainly see the attraction, but I find it unrealistic to even consider pursuing friendship, even for the most conventionally beautiful girls in our class.  He is intelligent himself, rather elusive, and…I don’t want to say pretentious.  He is not pretentious.  But he may rub some people the wrong way and come off as pretentious.  It is not actually pretentiousness, though.  Whatever it is, it intimidates me.

Somehow, gaining the news that that girl was in love with that particular boy made me incredibly sad.  Probably because of how unrealistic it was, or because it was the story of my life.  I do not tend to do it all too often anymore, but I used to fall in love with idealistic personalities.  I used to fall in love with people from a distance.  These were always people that I could never, in a million years, actually get to know.  And when they spoke to me, I would relish those conversations, though I would not have much to throw back.  Nothing to demonstrate my wit or whatever.  Nothing that they would remember.  All I could do is smile and be dumb.  And it was so stupid.

But I secretly knew how well we would get along, if only I was not so guarded.  How we would have fucking picnics.  That changed to home-made vegan picnics, eventually.  How I would make him a mix CD and he would make one back, and it would make me blush, perhaps.  Write letters to one another by hand, instead of communicating with technology.  Be close, always.  Be spontaneous.  Cook things together, and pick flowers and be outside all the time in the spring and summer and fall, in the sunshine.  Listen to music together in my car, me clinging to the hot steering wheel, and sing along with it at the top of our lungs, because it is our mutually favourite song.  And my only alone time would be when I was running, and that was all that I demanded.  Okay, that, and maybe trips to Bethlehem.

But then I moved, and all of that changed.  I no longer romanticized…romance…in my head.  I didn’t really care about the fucking picnics or mix CDs or any of that idealistic shit I cooked up in my head.  Look at me.  I am alone all the time and I communicate solely with technology.  And I am sad.  I would give all that fun shit up to live in Richmond again with monotony.  Fuck you if you live near your boyfriend/girlfriend and take it for granted.  But in my deep-down sadness, I am really happy.

Erika once wrote something about how our happiness is based off of our unhappiness, and I found that I identified with what she wrote.  It really stuck in my head, au moins the basic point.  But I find that when I am unhappy, that means that there is something to be fixed.  I enjoy being busy, and working at improvements.  So being unhappy is not so bad.  It just means that my life needs fluffing up.  If I am content, then I am not really content because I am not busy.  My project is done.  You know?  It’s strange, I know.

I am scared for college next year because one thing will be fixed.  I will be in Richmond again.  I know that is not fixing everything.  I know that I want to travel the globe, and that living in Richmond may be hindering my chances at that.  But I want to go to VCU.  By the way, I was accepted at VCU.  I will be closer to Derek again, and I certainly won’t take that for granted.  And I won’t take the city for granted, either, or my father, or my friends back in high school.  But all that fixing, what happens when it is fixed?  I have a theory that I am destructive, and that if nothing is broken, I will knock over that vase just to give myself something to do.  I am afraid of just what precious sculpture I will knock over.   Maybe I could join a gym, work out.  Maybe that would prevent me from breaking anything.

Maybe I should change my major from French to English.  Because what if I’m wrong?  What if my accent is not good enough, what if it never comes?

Well, after going back to read Erika’s old writings (which are savory and full of meaning and amazing grammar), it makes Saddle Creek so tempting.  And I miss being a sophomore.  Naivety–I was not in love yet.  And I just want to listen to Rilo Kiley and Bright Eyes and Azure Ray and soak there.  Because that is what I thought love must be like.  I love Rilo Kiley, but I feel that my appreciation wanes without anyone to share it with.  It just becomes these songs by this band.  No meaning, though, because there isn’t someone there where I can say, “I am going to pin this song to this life experience.  What do you think?”  We used to do that sort of thing.  And Paige didn’t like Rilo Kiley then, but she did like Bright Eyes, indeed.  And I loved them both because I could get to know the elusive “other Paige” from elementary school and all of her quirks, and I could also get to know the not-so-elusive “new girl” with Chucks.  It was just fun.  And now I lack that.   I never laughed so hard as when I was in their company.  Theirs, or Divya’s.  Theirs, Divya’s, or Derek’s after we watched Happy Feet.  I liked our extensive pop culture jokes.  Now, I just download as much fucking music as I can, learn about the artists, and write.  And think.

Here are some tracks that have aided me in writing this post.

Do You Realize? (Postal Service Remix) | The Flaming Lips

I love this song unconditionally.  “Do you realize that you have the most beautiful face?”  I think that should be said to everyone at some point in his or her life.

Blue Bird | The Rosebuds

It took a while for me to get in the right mood to enjoy this song, but tonight, I was mellow enough to do so.  It is almost from another decade.  Melancholy, like unrequited love.

I Never | Rilo Kiley

I went back to read Erika’s El Jay, and I caught a passage about listening to this song.  I wish she wrote more often, but I suppose that is the beauty of her writing.  She does not write often, but she writes beautifully.



LE JOUR DE SILENCE 2008!
27 March, 2008, 753 pm
Filed under: My Experience with Existence, School | Tags:

I have like five secrets.  Five secrets that would not be so bad if they got out, but five secrets nonetheless.   My main problem with them is that I doubt people would understand them, or they would misinterpret them.

This girl in my English class raised her hand to answer a question, and our teacher called on her to answer.  I listened to her and noticed that she said “like” about a million times.  This doesn’t bother me, since I probably do it too.  Plus, the girl is kind and fairly friendly, and despite her vocabulary, she often has rather direct points to make during that class.  Just, my awareness of that sort of thing turns on and off sometimes, and my brain just picks out the junk words and throws them away so I get the gist of what people are saying, or what they mean to say.  This is a bad thing.  I need to listen to what people are saying.

I actually do not think that I say “like” that much, because when I say something during class, it is normally fairly well premeditated.  As in, I have to plan out exactly what I will say and how I will say it.  I just wonder if I do it during everyday conversation.  I don’t know.

Here is something muy importante that I must bring to your attention.  The Day of Silence 2008 is on April 25th.  I participated last year and, for the most part, succeeded.  At the very least, I spread the message.  If you do not know what the Day of Silence is, then I shall inform your unfortunately uninformed mind.

All around the country, and even all around the world, people are ridiculed on a daily basis if they choose to express their sexual orientations or their true genders.  You have heard it at school–someone calls someone else “gay” or a “total faggot” for doing something stupid.  Ahh, “gay” is not synonymous with “stupid.”  Does that attitude, though, really give homosexuals and transgenders a safe haven to express themselves?

If you have read my blog before, you are probably aware that I am a staunch supporter of gay rights, et cetera, and that I am quite the pacifist.  If you are mighty conservative and you are ready to close this window or tab because you hate and strongly disagree with me, just wait one moment and read the next paragraph.

As much as I would like for this to be the case, the Day of Silence is not a day promoting gay rights.  It is simply a day to promote the end of bullying and discrimination.   Specifically, I suppose, or primarily, discrimination of those of the gay or lesbian orientation and transexuals and transvestites, as well.  What child deserves to be made fun of for self-expression?  In fact, what person–regardless of age–deserves discrimination?  And who wants it?

The kids at my new school are not only uber-conservative when it comes to gay rights, but they also discriminate against the comparatively poor kids (especially compared to West End/Short Pump kids), who are commonly referred to as “Dirties.”  This is fucking ridiculous.  I mean, the term “Dirty” mainly refers to poor kids, but they also use it to refer to girls who are shady and stereotyped as slutty, stereotypical rednecks, fat kids, and ugly people.  It’s messed up.  I mean, there were cliques at my old school, but you’ve never seen the social class barriers like this before.  Unless, of course, you are a Brontë and/or you grew up in England.

In Richmond, poorer kids did hang out with richer kids, and it was no big deal.  My family, for example, was the one on the brink of divorce.  I now know kids who don’t have a mom in their lives, or whose dads are in jail.  I had a smaller house than most of my middle school friends did–but it was a mansion compared to our new house.  I woke up to fighting every morning and fell asleep to it every night.  And money was stretched so goddamn thin.  I guess my mom accuses me of not knowing our financial situation, but it was bad enough that I felt guilty when I needed money for something like a new reed or a new backpack.  Nowadays, I imagine it’s even tighter, because I don’t ask for anything anymore.  Not clothes, I guess, because the temptation isn’t here.  I’ve been doing the French thing about collecting some versatile pieces, plus, I don’t shop anymore because I can make things.  And I use the Hype Machine and blogs for music.  I don’t wear much makeup anymore, and my social life is cheap and within walking distance.  Haircuts are unnecessary and I have not been to any sort of doctor in about a year.  For all I know, I could have gained ten pounds since I moved here (I’m lying–I would know).

Whatever, though.  My system of evalation is simply eyebrows.  I do not have the best eyebrows, as they are asymmetrical.  I am currently attempting to grow them in a bit in certain places so that they are slightly fuller, especially on the outside ends, so that I can perhaps tame them better.  I am just kidding about that being my system of evaluation, by the by.  If I rated myself on my eyebrows, I don’t think I would score all too high.  I can just appreciate a nice pair of brows.