Archive | August, 2013

bowling

28 Aug

After being shown some wonderful “Don’t judge too quickly” commercials by my fabulous cousin Kay, I was inspired to write about people meeting for the first time for this week’s trifecta challenge. We had to use the word turkey in the bowling sense. Word count: 333
•••
Finally, some me-time. It’s been too long. But… What to DO?
The TV boasts a couple going bowling. I realize I haven’t been since that disastrous double date with Jerky Jim. I wonder if I really hate bowling, or if the game was tainted by my company.

Within the hour, I find myself donning rental shoes (thick socks: a must). I don’t let the mid-fifties man leering at me from two lanes down skeeve me out. Tonight is about me, me alone. No crappy ex-boyfriends, no work, and definitely no creepy lurkers. Me.

Clueless which ball to choose, I pick the prettiest one. I lug it back to my lane and throw it, ungracefully, with two hands. It hops into the gutter, then bounces out and touches one of the mocking white pins, which quivers for a moment (I’m holding my breath) before it, shocker, stays upright.

Sheepishly, I check if anyone saw. A dark-haired man, early twenties, looks my way; I blush. His eyes, an annoyingly penetrating green, remind me of Jim. He smiles. I grimace and turn away. Another lousy attempt (hey, I got a pin!) and I glance at Greeneyes… spotted. Crap.

“I could help you with your form if you want.” Why do I only meet guys with sexy voices on my didn’t-even-bother-to-shower, no-men-allowed-me-day? “I’m Matt, by the way.”

“Sandra. And I think I’ll be fine.” I see his smile fade and add a hasty thank-you (just too late to sound natural). I wince back to my ball, and endure endless crashes of (his) pins clattering to the ground. I’m fed-up with his strikes. He gets another. Three in a row… not that I’m counting.

“Fun fact,” he leans over a counter at me, a stupid grin across his face, “three strikes is called a turkey. Just thought you should know.”

“Why’d ya think that?”

“If I bowl a turkey again, we go to dinner. If I don’t, you bowl in peace. Deal?”

“Done.”

Turns out, bowling’s pretty fun.

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a bedtime story

25 Aug

Written for this weekend’s Trifecta: write a bed-time story in 33 words.

Superprettyprincess has to marry to save the kingdom. She does everything Queen tells her will win a prince: cooks, cleans, draws… YUCK! She secretly loves dancing. Superhandsomeprince sees; they now dance together forever.

the brand

19 Aug

The following piece was written for this week’s trifecta challenge. Originally I planned to write a fictional story based off my experiences in Ghana, but I ended up with this truthful reflection instead. The views expressed are my own, and are not intended to offend.

BRAND (noun)
3a (1) : a mark made by burning with a hot iron to attest manufacture or quality or to designate ownership
(2) : a printed mark made for similar purposes : trademark
b (1) : a mark put on criminals with a hot iron
(2) : a mark of disgrace : stigma

Word count: 270

Everywhere I went, people called me by the color of my skin. Children would yell out to me, “Obruni!” and I would respond, “Obibini!” White, and black.

We were different. We were separate species, almost. You’d think so by the way the children would stare and, when they got braver, run up and touch or hug my skin. I suppose they wanted to see if it felt the same, this alien skin.

Even adults called me Obruni, or at church, Sister Obruni. It was my name, truer than Chloe and truer than the name I adopted for ease of pronunciation: Gloria.

I tripped, once, and the response was “Watch it, white girl!” followed by a silent conversation.
A man held up his plastic bag containing drinking water, bought for the equivalent of five cents. I nodded, sheepish, and he poured it over my skin, darkened by mud. I watched as the man restored that awful brand of my relative wealth.

I was branded to forever be a part of cyclical imperialism, a naive but well-meaning volunteer. Questions and accusations flooded my mind. How dare I try to step in with my WHITE, and lead children and adults both to believe that they need WHITE to fix their problems? How dare I spend more on the flight out there than on the Ghanian people themselves? How dare I give money to the beggar children on the beach, setting them up to starve when the next WHITE can’t or won’t give likewise?

And yet, many want my cursed brand.

••••••••
To read more about my experiences in Ghana, you can read my travel blog I used to communicate with my family while I was there: Chloe’s Ghana

sakura trees

18 Aug

This haiku-ish poem was written for this week’s trifecta challenge, inspired by this photo:

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So much depends on
The Sakura tree; whose death
Can’t diminish life.

The petals, like snow,
Expire when they reach the ground,
Indomitable.

Time
Takes
Away
The
Vessels
Of
Beauty,
Not
Beauty
Itself.

still sick, but not so sad

18 Aug

I feel so ill. I’ve been coughing every few minutes all morning and all last night. And I’m not even talking those wimpy clear-your-throat coughs: I mean real, deep, guttural noises that burn your throat and leave greeny-yellow mucus in your mouth. Disgusting. Plus when I lie down, all the congestion goes to one side of my head, and the difference in pressure gives me a headache (and one stuffy nose). At least I get to sleep in. My dad wouldn’t hear of me going to church today, even though it’s definitely one of the last times I’d see my friends before I or they go to college.
Last night as I was trying to sleep, physically miserable, I had plenty of time to think over the emotional miserable I’d been feeling. Yesterday wasn’t great. I went to girl-neighbor’s house for a grad/going away party. While there, I gathered that Shortredhair was soon having an event that I wasn’t invited to. I think it was some classy dinner or something. I guess I wasn’t invited because I don’t have a boyfriend to take as my date. I’m tempted to say that because 1) I’m plenty classy as classy as anyone else in our group and 2) Shortredhair pretty consistently invites me to her bonfires. So I didn’t mind that too much.
But it did bother me that my friend Greece had a bonfire after Girl-neighbor’s party. I was definitely NOT invited to that, not by Greece. This is the second time I’ve heard about her hosting a bonfire without me on the invite list. Rational Me figures she doesn’t have enough room for all of her friends. I don’t know, I guess it still hurt because I thought we were better friends than that.
I know. I’m overly sensitive to this kind of stuff, but it got me down nonetheless. I spiraled into that I-have-no-friends-and-no-guys mentality, which is never a good place. So when I woke up this morning to read a drunk text from Bambi (who left for college earlier this week) saying how pretty I am and how I just need to believe it… it made me happy. I know that he was wasted out of his mind. So what? The text was sweet and it brightened what might have been a really crappy day.

I don’t need someone to tell me I’m pretty all the time for me to be happy. (It doesn’t hurt.) I know that’s how it sounds from reading this blog. It’s the same story over and over: girl gets sad and lonely, girl gets complimented or invited someplace and then gets happy. I think it’s a bit more complex than that, though.
Maybe it’s just me, but I get the feeling that we all have triggers that can change our mood in an instant. For me, hearing my friends discuss an event I’m not invited to triggers my loneliness and my self-loathing. By the same token, someone I trust or someone with no reason to lie giving me a compliment can bring me back, snap me out of it, trigger my sense of optimism. It doesn’t mean I can’t get there myself. It just speeds up the process, like a catalyst or an enzyme. The reaction will happen over time, compliment or no.
Further, I think the reason you hear all about my bad days is that writing is therapeutic. It’s like stirring the concoction to make the reactants collide sooner. You don’t necessarily need a catalyst when you have a stirrer, and I don’t have to rely solely on compliments or invites when I have a pen.
Or, you know. Keyboard.

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Image taken from some random website.

something new

13 Aug

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Well, I went to a party and did something I don’t normally do. Don’t worry, no drugs or alcohol or anything else that might compromise my standards. Just something I don’t normally do…

I twerked a bit. Apparently, I’m pretty good for a sober white chick. It may just have been their drunkenness talking, but I’ll take it anyway. I’ve also sufficiently convinced my friends that if I weren’t Mormon I would be a fricken crazy drunk. I mean, I go wild and let loose SOBER, so who knows what a substance might do to me.

Alright, alright. I did something else I don’t normally do: I kissed someone who wasn’t completely sober. He tried kissing me a few times while he was really far gone, and I just couldn’t. I told him that I’d kiss him once he sobered up, but after he waited forty minutes or so we discovered that his parents were making people leave before that would happen. He just looked so sad… so I caved.
Anyways, I’ve discovered that the bad breath can be tolerated so long as you have at least four pieces of gum, and though a drunk kiss is sloppier than a sober one, said drunk person is bound to repeatedly mention how insanely pretty you are, and how they really like kissing you. So, while you won’t get the best technique in the world, a sober-drunk kiss turns out to be a worthwhile confidence-booster.

one night stands (diary post)

11 Aug

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They hurt. Even if they’re with random strangers, even if they’re not even one night stands in the traditional sense (Okay, okay, so you only made out.) they still are painful.
You spend hours in eager anticipation, allowing yourself to believe that they’ll text you or call you. You carefully consider the possible reasons for his late response: it didn’t go through; he’s busy; he got captured by ravenous mutant monkeys that shot him into deep space; finally, the idea that’s omnipresent in the back of your worrying mind… he really doesn’t want to talk to you.
Why WOULDN’T people want to talk to their random hookups? Why NOT make it a more-than-once type thing, if it was good? Was it good? Were you the only one who enjoyed it? Was he really saying goodbye when he said text me whenever you want?
So much confusion over someone you hardly know. I’m going back to my ‘expect the worst, hope for the best’ attitude towards guys and life (the same thing, really). He’s not gonna call me.

But I can still wish he would.