Wednesday, April 24, 2002

My computer is having serious issues. For some reason the cable connection randomly seems to stop working every few minutes, and you have to do all this stuff (well, click on a few boxes) to fix it. Hence the lack of posts and the fact that I keep coming on and off of AIM, probably annoying the hell out of anyone who has their sound on.

I'm extremely tired. Big surprise. During 6th period and after school, I realized how little of my environment I'm absorbing, and also how little I think about what I do affects those around me. It's just a symptom of stress and sleepiness, but I moved through entire conversations in a fog. I didn't really care where I was or what I was saying. It's a little scary, actually. I could potentially do or say something that shouldn't be said (or done), and when I come to my senses, it might get me in trouble.

Oh well. Stupid concert last night, stupider one tonight. I feel like everywhere I turn I have commitments and people making demands on me. Every hour of my life seems filled to capacity, and yet I still have the time to come online, and then get off and nap (my big plan for this afternoon). I don't think the priorities part of my brain is working.

Sunday, April 21, 2002

Have been exhuasted for days. Weeks, actually. And I'm not expecting it to stop anytime soon. I just sleep as much as I can and try not to wreck myself by staying up until ungodly hours. Hence the lack of posts recently, and as is quite likely, for the next few weeks. It's AP season, folks, and though I'm not studying every waking moment, I still feel pressure building up. Pressure and work. It's very much junior year.

I find if I have at least one good conversation or other type of social interaction, the day doesn't feel wasted. That happened on Friday- I saw someone after school and we sat in the sun talking about random things for an hour. After that I didn't care what I did; in fact, decided it wasn't worth it to call anyone and spent the night with my sister. She needed me, anyways. More than I needed anyone else.

Last night was a lot of fun. I danced wildly around the living room, and most people missed the show. But it felt good to do something like that, and I only laughed harder when Pierre said he felt like everyone was drunk, including himself. Where did you get that impression, silly boy? But there's something about music that you know, and a best friend, and no inhibitions that can combine to make a night quite pleasant.

And today is work, with a surprisingly short clarinet recital in the middle of it. Less than an hour- I've never done anything for music that was less than an hour. Very exciting. Wish me luck- I have a timed writing. I bid you adieu.

Thursday, April 18, 2002

I hate it when people make me feel like I'm in seventh grade. When I'm around them, and every word I say is wrong; every time I move it's somehow offensive. I turn into the girl who was ostracized by her soccer team and wore big shirts tucked into big shorts. Back then, I was afraid to be myself around all but a few people. I've grown past that; very far past that most of the time. It's just that some people have a way of making me aware of everything I do and everything I say. I feel like I'm under a microscope; one that throws a horrible, ugly light over everything that's been magnified so it comes out even worse than it is.

Other than that, today was a good day.

We had a meet where I hung out with a lot of great people while doing very little actual work. I also didn't go to AM so I got almost 9 hours of sleep. And most of my classes were mildly interesting.

Wednesday, April 17, 2002

I just organized all of my CDs. I had exactly 90 (enough to fill a 50 CD tower and two 20 CD racks), and I probably listen to 15 or 20 of them on a regular basis. It did make me mildly nostalgic- some of those cds and songs I never had much attachment to, and I'm wondering to myself why I even bought them, but a few have good memories attached to them. More a sense of me in 8th grade, or freshman year, or whatever, than memories, though. All of the connotations that come with most songs are usually totally random, but I get a very clear memory of the kind of person I was when I listened to that cd incessantly.

I suppose I should get rid of some of them, but that's probably going to be a while. I plan to buy a lot of cds soon, though, so I'll have to figure that out, as every single slot except for one that's mean to hold double cds is filled.

In other news, school is fine. Friends are good. Life, overall, is averaging a pretty good rating.

A final thought: "The road to hell is paved with unbought stuffed dogs." - courtesy one of our great American writers, Ernest Hemingway

Monday, April 15, 2002

Late night up doing math homework and listening to Weezer B-Sides.

Not a lot more to say - interesting to note that I've been having a lot of good conversations lately. It seems almost every day at lunch I have someone to really talk to; it's not the same, of course, as a lunch group, but often a very nice thing to happen in the middle of my day. It's the one thing that isn't part of the same old routine.

Sunday, April 14, 2002

This day turned out exactly like I thought it would. I spent it listening to music, writing letters and emails and reminiscing about various things. None of it was tinged with sadness; I just smiled to myself as I looked through old notes and blog entries. When I graduate, I'm going to gather together all of the journals and scribbled notes and files on my computer whereI've recorded random thoughts to create some sort of log of my progression to the person I will be next June.

I finally found a song. Even with all of this music I've been downloading, there hasn't been something that's really moved me. I downloaded Bridge over Troubled Water today (Simon & Garfunkel) and it reached deeper than things have in a while. I've heard it before, of course, but it was good finding it again and being touched like it was the first time.
Yesterday was truly enjoyable. We went to UCI for Quiz Bowl, where we lost horribly but had a lot of fun doing it. I drove down with a full car to the sounds of whatever music Garrett decided was best (as the person sitting shotgun, he was the self-proclaimed DJ) and random laughter and stories from the back seat. I talked to people on my team, people on other teams, and the moderators (who are always cool nerdy people. we get along well). I played DDR, jaywalked to get to In & Out before the rush of people, and wandered around a Farmer's Market sampling free food and juices.

After we got home, Tom, Michelle and I decided to go to a movie, or at least get something to eat. We ended up at Gaucho Grill with a prime seat by both the floor-to-ceiling front window and the bar. From there, we observed (and made snide comments about) people passing by, and hypothesized about the love lives of various people at the bar. I listened to Tom and Michelle talk about their friends and the various dynamics that occur in their group (which they called "the group," a fact by which I was infintely amused). It was interesting watching a conversation like that, because I could sense the feeling of comradery that was behind the words. It was one of those conversations where everything connects, and though I was only a spectator, I enjoyed it because it brought back fond memories of conversations I've had in the same spirit, both recently and years ago.

For our next adventure, we went to the Miramar Sheraton on Wilshire and walked around like we were guests. We checked out the bathrooms (hotel bathrooms are always so nice!), ran up and down the stairs and tried to get to the roof. Then we walked around the back garden, where there are bungalows and pool houses that people stay in. It was totally ordinary, but going around each turn felt like we were discovering a whole new world. When we got to the back of the garden, we looked over the wall and saw California Blvd. The proximity of the real world to this dusky area of tiki lights and waterfalls made it feel even more secluded and unreal. I want to stay there, and explore each and every inch of it. Hotels are so cool because they have an air of anonymity combined with a sense of security and self-sufficiency; you could survive in their forever.

Ahead of me, I have a day that feels like it will unroll slowly and sedately. The impression I get is one like a slow Southern summer day, though it's April, California, and foggy outside. It will just be a day where nothing exciting happens, but when night falls, it will feel infinitely satisfying.

Friday, April 12, 2002

I lied. Instead of sleeping, I closed my eyes until they stopped aching. Then I came back online, and discovered new music thanks to people's websites and message boards. It's the modern, virtual equivalent to hanging out in record stores and going to shows. Sad, I know. But a good start, and a good way to find bands I've never heard of. I am eternally grateful for Napster and programs like it; I'm too much of a coward/spendthrift to go to a record store and buy something from a band I've never heard. (Though now I'm kicking myself for not buying that Yo La Tengo CD back in Providence). So I'll do my online "research" and download as many songs as I can, go to record stores and listen to KXLU, I believe it is, and maybe I'll discover a tiny, tiny fraction of all the beauty that is out there.
It's been a long time since I've updated (long by blogging standards) but I have truly not turned on my computer since... Tuesday, it must be. This week was overwhelming. I feel like the hours of my life have never been spent doing so much stuff. I probably only had 20% more homework than usual, but the vast majority of my waking hours were filled with activity. And in my opinion, there were too many of those waking hours. Since I last filled this space with my exciting insights, I have played clarinet, ran, memorized the facts about 43 presidents, taken a chem test, NOT taken a math quiz, tried to absorb new information, listened to music, watched the simpsons, and slept for not enough time. Yeah. So that's my update. (my brain isn't working)

Oh, but tomorrow is Quiz Bowl! That's very exciting. I'm really looking forward to it, even though I suspect my wealth of knowledge is lacking in too many key areas for us to really do well. But I have a good team (Brent, Tom and Matt), and lots of cool people are going, and I'm driving, and if I'm at a loss, I can always talk to Gaida.

I think I'm going to go sleep now. I'll be more coherent later, I promise.

Tuesday, April 09, 2002

One of the more memorable things about today was the amount of stuff I was able to get done (a nap included). I probably talk about this too much when I do it, but I'm always so amazed when I'm able to sit down and work. Amazed at my usually stagnant self-motivation, and impressed with how many things you can do in a limited amount of time if you don't let anything else get in your way.

(Note: I get an epiphany like this every few months. It lasts for a week, if I'm lucky, and then I go back to my old habits. So don't be disappointed if I don't follow through, and also don't be surprised if you see an entry similar to this one in several months. It's a lovely cycle.)

Today I was also more bored than I've been for a very long time in my english class. Ms. Garcia, the administrative lady who was apparently a "lifelong english teacher" before she got pulled into the administration, gave us part 2 of a thankfully only 2 part lecture on Hemingway. I say thankfully because I was beginning to hate the book, the man, and his characters, and we hadn't even started it yet. Ms. Garcia has, I suppose, a very old-fashioned way of teaching. All in lecture form, cliches abounding, stories and analogies we've heard a million times before. Everything she said just seemed old and tired, and also aimed at people who just weren't that bright. Smart, maybe, but not truly intelligent. She was one of those people who stated obvious facts (at least, obvious to me and those around me) as if they were revelations. It annoys me unfathomably when people do that.

So I started The Sun Also Rises today over my after-school snack, and it was reasonably interesting, though I only read the first two chapters. I'm just bitter because of Ms. Garcia's open-mouthed view of Hemingway ("a man's man- you guys know what that means, right"), and his characters ("code heroes") and the fact that all of his writing was based on his life (I know, write about what you know, but it seems kind of cheap and easy to me when you are essentially the main character in each of your books) and the impression I got of Hemingway as really a very simple man, a classic case study of a guy who lost his father and ended up trying to deal with it his whole life.

I'm completely prepared to be wrong. Prove me wrong, if you feel strongly about the issue, or give me a few weeks to actually read the book and prove myself wrong. I don't want to hate what so many people consider a truly great book. Ms. Garcia just didn't help much.

Monday, April 08, 2002

I lay on my back on the kitchen table reciting dates and names, and when I finally got them all in order I ran upstairs and recited them to my mom AND my sister. My sister didn't know what I was talking about, but I explained I had a test on Friday, so she shrugged and stopped listening. I'm enormously satisfied with myself, though. It's not such a big feat to memorize all the presidents, I know, but I'm very bad at sitting down and making myself DO things. So I'm happy.

Today was the first day back after spring break, and as usual, it already feels like the break never happened. Oh well. I wonder if that will ever change. I guess not, if time keeps on going the way it has been for... a while, to say the least.

Pointless entry. I'm sorry, guys. All my focusing was for presidents and clarinet today. Better tomorrow (or at least back to my usual random prolificness, which I like better. who knows what you think)

Sunday, April 07, 2002

Today I cleaned out my mom's car because it will be my car (in the possessive that you use for temporary ownership) for the next two weeks. My mom was surprised at my so-called "facetiousness"- and along with anyone judging from the state of my room, I don't blame her for not expecting me to enjoy order. But I value it very much; my room is past help, but when I organize anything else in my life I get a small glow of pleasure. For some reason, looking at a neat notebook or a trash-free car makes me feel like I'm in control of things. It's a temporary illusion, but a very nice one when the floor of your room is covered in books, clothes, and college letters, and there's barely a place to step. I think that's why I'm enjoying my empty wall so much; it gives me a visual and mental break from the chaos that is my room. When I have my own apartment, I think it's going to vary between being anally neat and "comfortable" (ie books and clothes all over the overstuffed furniture). As long as I have one little zen-space, though, I think I can be happy.

Saturday, April 06, 2002

Took down my bulletin board today- the one productive thing I did all day. Now it's lying on my bed, stained dark where the various items had covered it and protected it from the sun. The different shades of cork seem like they could be strangely symbolic; the entire process, in fact, feels like some sort of rite. But strangely, I don't feel like I'm losing myself, or revisiting my younger self, or any of the emotions you would expect to be attached to something like this. Instead, I'm looking at who I used to want to be (which does, I suppose, say something about who I used to be). Random postcards from the bathroom at Jake & Annie's, pictures, "clever" sayings, ticket stubs. All put on my wall in effort to "express myself." And I suppose it does say something about me. But it felt strange back then, and so I feel no attachment to all of these scraps of paper as I put them in my trash can. Just an acknowledgment of the girl I was who wanted to have "cool" walls, and perhaps an appreciation for the person I am now who doesn't feel that desire quite so strongly. I'm not getting rid of all the decoration all together- my Rent poster is going up there, to be joined by something else perfect when I find it. And I don't think I'm beyond all of that, not by any means. But it's something that I identify with a person who I used to be, and who still exists somewhere, but somewhere so far away from me that I can't imagine the thoughts that were going through her head as anything more than an observer.

As Kai said, I've grown up.
There's only us.
There's only this.
Forget regret
or life is yours to miss.
No other road.
No other way.
No day but today.

I can't control
my destiny.
I trust my soul.
my only goal
is just to be.

There's only now.
There's only here.
Give in to love
or live in fear.
No other path.
No other way.
No day but today.

Thursday, April 04, 2002

Vacation doldrums are setting in- for the past hour, I've been walking around my room, sitting down at the computer for a minute or two, sporadically trying to do homework, all with a very random soundtrack. I hate wasting time, but I seem to be unable to get anything done. And who knows if I'll end up doing anything later. Times like this are so pointless.

But on a slightly brighter note, we didn't have chem today. And we don't have it tomorrow. Of course I'm sad that wexler is sick (Jocelyn and I will, I'm sure, comfort each other over that fact later). Oh well. AND my dad went out of town today, and I get my mom's car for the next few weeks. That's what I'm looking forward to most right now.

Tuesday, April 02, 2002

I'm back!!!! I have such a ruch of energy right now- almost as high as I was after carnegie. Except that now I'm not dancing around a hotel room as I change out of my concert dress into my "cruise clothes."

So the trip was really good. Colleges were exciting- all of the talk of housing and academics makes me want to be there NOW instead of applying and waiting and choosing. Sadly, there wasn't really the type of lightning bolt epiphany I had hoped for, where I walked on to a campus and knew that was where I wanted to go to college. Nothing of the sort. All that it did was give me a little more of an idea of what they wanted from a student, and a better mental picture of where I might be applying.

And New York was fun, actually a lot more fun than I expected it to be. I went to some great shows (Rent and a concert at the Knitting Factory where I managed to start the long downhill road to deafness), had some good conversations, and played in fucking carnegie hall! It was pretty cool, but like most things, it didn't really hit me until afterwards, where I started jumping up and down and screaming in front of all of the guys who sell fake watches.

Wow, there is so much to say. But if you want to know more, ask me, or watch this space for more random anecdotes. I get to see my friend now!!