Today is a good day. Today is a thrilling day. Today is a fabulous day. Today is the day that I got this e-mail:
Dear Madelyne Adams
Congratulations! We have accepted “The Forgiveness Turtle.” Within the
next few weeks, we will be sending you galleys to proof. If you haven’t
already sent us a brief third person bio, please do ASAP.
Please respond to this e-mail to notify us that we are granted permission
to use your work in our next issue.
Thank you for your fine contribution to our magazine.
Foliate Oak Staff
It’s a small, university press but it is a start. Did I ever think I would get this start? Not really. But it still happened.
So I finished my reading a bit early for rhetoric and I get to spend the rest of time until my afternoon class writing. Is this how people who don’t procrastinate feel all the time? It’s bliss.
Just as finished typing that, Radio Waves, by the Eli Young Band came onto my iPod so I must amend that statement. Free time spent writing listening to Radio Waves imagining a dimly lit dance hall and clinging to someone in boots and jeans shuffling me in circles: THIS is bliss.
Yesterday, guys, something epic happened: for those of you who missed it, it snowed in College Station, Texas. I don’t know if you know anything about Texas, or happen to fancy yourself familiar with the weather patterns here but snow on February 23 is definitely not in the norm!
Around two o’clock in the afternoon, while valiantly trying to absorb the more than mind-numbingly boring reading for my rhetoric class, my eyes are glued to the window like one of those kids you see in the movies or Christmas commercials about snow and miracles. Flakes are falling faster than my two-year-old niece can shake the snow globe we seem to have entered into.
May I remind you, disbelieving reader who is now saying, ‘Psh, whatevs’, that on Sunday afternoon it was in the balmy fifties or so and I was wearing shorts, flip flops and t-shirt, dreaming about Spring Break, brought oh-so-rudely out of my reverie by the announcement from my roommate, “They say it’s supposed to snow on Tuesday.”
I dismiss the absurdity of this statement because “they” said it was supposed to snow a few weeks before Christmas last semester and all we got were a few flakes that stuck to nothing. I’m wearing shorts and flip flops for crying out loud! I look pasty as hell and nowhere near ready for slipping back into the old one-piece for summer work but the summer is one step closer because it’s sunny and it’s Texas.
Fast forward to the snow globe scenario. Again, let me reiterate: this is Texas. This is south Texas. This is February. This is not supposed to happen. No one is equipped for this. No one has gloves so those that are smart enough to heed the burning of their palms as they scoop up handful after handful of ice to make a sloppy snowball turn to covering their hands with stinky boy socks (you know the kind, white with the gray toe and heel and worn thin by icky boy feet). There are girls caught in the middle of their run in shorts and t-shirts (though I’m not complaining about the trio of Corps guys running by in shorts and tennis shoes, their bodies steaming with heat…ahem).
So I run outside (with a camera of course), totally confused and amazed. The campus that I’ve become so familiar with is now cast in a shade of white I never thought I would see before, as if the campus were getting married. Veronika, Paul and I run on over to the grassy knoll for some frolicking and romping in the snow. There’s some good-natured snowball throwing with the inevitable crotch-shot and snow-down-the-neck moves. Of course, we’re only following the motions and acting the way we’ve only seen in the movies because, in Texas, this doesn’t happen.
We run around campus, wanting to hit all the high points: bonfire memorial, the century tree, academic plaza. Of course, we get distracted and only make it as far as bonfire memorial with some side trips and lots of picture taking thrown in. I drop my brand-new Christmas camera in the snow. We find a puppy that I want to steal. Paul tells us some traditions. Veronika bounds about like an unrestrained child. The snow is all the things they say it is: a blanket of white, mystical, magical, fluffy and sparkling. It is the most amazing afternoon of my entire year to date.
The next morning it’s the sunniest it’s been at 9 a.m. this semester, my body is just beginning it’s painful protest of all of the activity from the day before, and all of the snow is gone.
Welcome to Texas, the bipolar state.
It’s not childish to say ‘I told you so’ is it, especially if the situation really really deserves it, right?
If you could just leave one little clue somewhere, just a hint that you maybe, sometimes, think about me. You don’t even have to miss me. Just think about me every once in a while.
To live in this world
you must be able
to do three things:
to love what is mortal;
to hold it
against your bones knowing
your own life depends on it;
and, when the time comes to let it go,
to let it go.
So I’m wasting time today instead of brainstorming ideas for an essay due Thursday and, while organizing a random drawer in my room, I found this blue spiral that I thought I had lost. It thrilled me quite a bit.
It was a spiral that I started at the beginning of my senior year (I don’t like conventional journals). Some of things in here, I don’t remember writing, some I remember painfully well, and some I remember ending differently. And, when going through it, I realized that the majority of what I wrote was mostly either about feelings or lists, or lists of feelings. As I have no use for the feelings stuff, I felt the lists might be more amusing.
List #1: List of Questions, Take 1: (there was never another Take 2, so I don’t know why I felt the need to call it this)
1. why does a heart break?
2. how do you get over someone?
3. why does it always have to be a love story?
4. why, instead of boys, couldn’t I be obsessed with something regular, like lacrosse?
5. why does fred have no last name? (I’m not sure which Fred I was referring to, as I do not know any Freds…)
6. why is it never enough?
7. why can’t I ever feel at home in the exact place my feet are planted and not feel the need to be elsewhere?
8. why can I take risks with the little things but not with the big?
9. do I take big risks?
10. am I satisfied with the life I’m living?
11. can/do I make decisions I’m proud to call my own?
12. is this one of those things that can only be answered with time?
13. do I own up to my mistakes as often as I think I do?
14. why does this pink nail polish seem to glow?
15. should my skin really be this brown?
16. why don’t my legs ever stop itching?
17. if everyone wanted to be different wouldn’t that make us all the same?
List #2: Places I like to Write (in the margin, the very important added note: what does this list say about me?)
1. on the floor
3. in my bed
4. in the car
5. behind the counter at work
7. wherever whenever I’m supposed to be doing something important, like now (nice to know things still haven’t changed)
8. on a plane
9. on the subway
List #3: Questions We Ask Here at Longleaf (some that made sense, and some that really had no business being asked while we were on the clock but we got bored a lot and had some very smart people who favored our establishment)
1. room for cream?
2. would you like your receipt?
3. if you shoot a bullet straight up, what happens? also, what happens if you shoot the bullet straight off into the distance?
4. what would you do if someone got hit by a car right now in front of the shop? (spurring the greatest thing ever to have come from Longleaf: the Emergency Action Plans [EAPs in lifeguard lingo] for every possibly emergency that might happen, and then some)
5. what can I get for you?
6. and then what happened?
7. what would happen if there was a shooting here? (Josh’s answer: you’d probably be okay since most of the lawyers who come in here [half our clientele] are all carrying guns right now. What the hell?)
8. what do we do if we get robbed? what if he has a gun?
9. is there more upstairs?
10. honey wheat or sourdough?
11. was the Air France crash a conspiracy?
List #4: Questions I need to Remember to Ask (Someone) (and never did, sadly)
1. have you ever seen a manatee?
2. what’s your name?
3. do you think when we see something as a “sign”, its really our brain either a) explaining a random occurrence we happened to notice, and/or b) our brain trying to tell us of our true feelings on the matter?
4. do you think life is ever meant to be beautiful
5. think of more later…
List #5: Places That Make Me Happy Without Even Trying
2. the library
8. downtown/historic areas/old architecture
And now, three last thoughts…
1. The night folds around you like a cocoon of uncertainty, blanketing your sense like a quilt on a cold evening. It promises little, guaranteeing only mystery and questions.
2. I feel often like I am two different people: the person I was raised to be—Christian, polite, wanting and going after the same things my parents wanted for me, Republican—and the person I was intrinsically meant to become—creative emotional, proud, distant. The rebelliousness, the confusion, the loss of connection with my true self, came on when the two clashed.
3. Sometimes, often, every day I regret making the choices I had found necessary to move on. A person shouldn’t be something you should be able to cut out of your life like a bad habit or a horrific wardrobe choice. And since I dislike regret, I try not to think on the things I’ve lost. So I keep it simple. I think of how stupid I was in the Before time and remind myself that I am now making unstupid, sensible choices in the aftermath of the After period.
That’s all for now, folks.
There has been a recent spike in my Tumblr activity: reblogging, hearting things, and following people. It adds some color to my life. I’ve found some REALLY great blogs to follow, like the one with the food pictures, and the other one where it’s little notes that people have written to their loved or not loved ones (obviously, they’ve made such an impact on me since I can remember their names). The only down side is, I love looking at the pictures of the artfully arranged food, but if I don’t eat a cupcake soon, I think I might die.
When I read a story I think of you; when I write a story I think of you; I think of you in the shower and in the driveway and as I put each foot in my big black boots. I’m not quite sure how to take you out of my story yet.
What’s Google Wave??