Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas!

Hello, and a merry Christmas to you all! I can still hardly believe that Christmas has already come and gone. Ever since coming home from college, I've been working just about nonstop in a major department store. It's been a blessing to have the job and the OCD part of me has enjoyed folding and refolding all the clothes in my department, but I'm not sure how I feel about the grown-up part to it all. I work from either 11-7 or 9-5. The long shifts drain me of creativity and energy, and I haven't been able to write on my novel hardly at all. Nevertheless, before work started I almost finished it and now have just a chapter to go. I'm currently reveling in a few days off of work, and I plan to use this time to finish my book and to write a support letter for...wait for it...AFRICA! Yes, you read that correctly, I am one hundred percent for-sure going. I just have to raise a ton of money since I'm a broke college kid, so this could get interesting. I'm seeing a lot of lemonade stands in my not-so-distant future.
This Christmas, I had the brilliant idea of recording a CD of improv piano for my friends and family. However, as I continued recording, I decided to put the CD on the internet. Completely ridiculously, I now have an album for sale on bandcamp and a couple songs for free on noisetrade. Keep in mind that all of this happened in a matter of days, since this is improv piano and one can't exactly polish and practice improvised songs. So this is pretty much my insane life. I don't want to accidentally get rich or famous, though, so up until July all proceeds (if there ever are any) will go towards my Africa trip. Huzzah!
Anyways, it is two days after Christmas so if you'll excuse me, I'm off to play with the best Christmas present ever, my TARDIS and Doctor Who action figures. (Jealous?)

Thursday, November 10, 2011

My brain is a hostage.

I must confess that I have quit a cappella club. I really did try to like it, since I adore singing, but I just couldn't do it. Instead, I've been going to Scottish country dancing club. I have yet to master the skip-change (the central step in Scottish country dancing), which makes for an interesting evening of Rosemary holding my hand and proclaiming in a British accent, HOP- two-three, HOP-two-three. Despite the embarrassment, it's really quite fun. Since I'm an idiot and raised my hand when she asked the everyone who had been to club night in class, I actually got to perform one of the dances for the class's enrichment today.
My novel is also coming along really well. I'm at 49,321 words, which is pretty impressive (50,000 words is the NaNoWriMo goal), considering that all my professors assigned huge projects, essays, and readings due around the same time. Of course. The problem is that I can barely make myself focus on the aforementioned work. My characters have taken my head hostage, refusing to let it think about anything else or do anything productive other than writing them. I have never written any characters as fleshed-out and real as these, and they genuinely haunt my head. When telling a friend about this "problem," she said something about the book not being real and I stared at her for a second. I'd actually forgotten that the entire story and characters only existed in my head (and in my computer, of course).
They are so real to me that, when I had to write something painful for my MC, I had to buy myself chocolate as an incentive. I've stared at people crossing campus that look remotely like my characters. I've broken down crying about the story and laughed out loud while crafting a joke. A difficulty (and blessing, sometimes) about being a writer is the intense capacity to feel. I feel everything my characters do, whether it be depression, rapturous bliss, or fury. It's wonderful and awful at the same time. Ah, well. The life of an artist.
On a different note, since I love causes but have next to no money, I was quite euphoric when I discovered GoodSearch today via NaNoWriMo. Basically, it's just a search engine that donates money to the cause of your choice for every Web search you make (and it's free!). Oh dear. I sound like an infomercial, don't I? Anyways, you should definitely check it out if you're, like me, broke but wanting to help out a cause!
Well, I'm off to write on my novel...I mean, work on my essays. Heh, heh. Oh! Before I go, I must bestow some wonderful news upon you. Instead of a cappella club, I went to a readers' meeting for my school's literary journal called Jeopardy! today. I think I'm going to be a reader, which basically means that I'll read submissions, vote on them, and critique them a bit for the magazine which sounds a lot more amazing to me than singing for an hour (sorry, a cappella. I promise I still love you! Will you accept my humble offer of vegan brownies and black licorice?).

Sunday, October 23, 2011

I've been tagged

I won! I won! I WON!
Hehe. Occasionally I get a little over-excited about some things (read: everything). But that's okay. A hilarious Sparkler just gave me this award, which I've never heard of but am assuming it's the blogosphere version of a Pulitzer prize. I'd start preparing my acceptance speech, but I do need to tell seven random things about myself and then tag seven bloggers with 100 words or less. Let the good times commence...

My seven things:
1. I am so indecisive that I almost couldn't decide which "thing" to start with.
2. I just applied on a mission trip to go to Africa this summer.
3. I'm a broke college student and peanut butter is my hero!
4. I work in an art gallery.
5. I am a bibliophile and write just about all the time.
6. When in the presence of (vegan) sugar, I've been known to eat way too much of it.
7. I have seven younger siblings, all of whom I got to see today.

Now, onto the seven bloggers:
1. The life story of a chick drummer named Kat, - she's a drummer and just generally awesome.
2. christellingstories -  his passion for God and for people is so inspiring.
3. Confessions of a Debate Nerd - who could possibly resist that title?
4. Faith Like a Child - everyone could use a little more faith like a child.
5. five.minute.anyday - I really like the premise of this blog.
6. A (Not So) Normal Teen - she posts wonderful poetry.
7. A Snapshot of Motherhood - mom's blog is pretty cool.

Huzzah! I'll consider myself officially "awarded."

Monday, October 17, 2011

Bouldering, writing, and a cappella

Hello, friends. Sorry that I've been so sporadic about blogging; it's just that every time I sit down to write a post, I write a few lines, laugh at their corniness, and then shut off my computer. Despite my recent ineptness at blogging, progress on my novel is going really well (you know that one novel that I never mentioned in my posts? Yep. That one) and I'm at the proud landmark of 35,707 words. I started this novel in September and have not yet tired of it. For some reason, this one is so much fun to write and makes me laugh out loud and cry, sometimes at the same time (yes, I know I'm the author. That's beside the point). I wish I could tell you what it's about, but apparently it's not a good idea to put unlicensed material on the Internets for billions of eyes to see if one is planning on publishing it. (I know, right? Who would've thought?)
I have also become addicted to bouldering. In case you don't know what that is (and truthfully, a month ago I didn't either), it's rock-climbing in a  gym without a harness. It's dangerous, extremely difficult, and covers one's hands with perpetual calluses and blisters, but it's just about the most fun way to work out I have ever tried. The possibilities for creativity are endless: you can pretend you're a super-spy, trying to escape a flood, or were raised by apes. Personally I prefer the first option, since it's a little less stressful.
Anyways, these past few weeks, I have been going to a cappella club. I had a Great Plan that I would try out for the "Breakfast at Tiffany's" solo tonight, so I got all excited. However, when I arrived tonight they informed everyone that they'd cut one song out of the three for the concert. Out of "F* You," "Stand By Me," and "Breakfast at Tiffany's," guess which one they cut?
I would gladly have tried out for "F* You" if only they'd used the radio version--I mean, the range is perfect!--only, I don't swear. I still don't understand why it's cool to drop the F-bomb repeatedly throughout a song, but it's okay. They said that we'd sing "Breakfast at Tiffany's" later in the quarter, so I still have my hopes up for that shiny, beautiful solo! Eventually. For now, I'm just going to have to OooOoooO to my heart's content (gotta love altos). And even though I didn't get to try out, I was planning on it. That's pretty huge for me, the girl who won't sing in the shower for fear of someone overhearing. So that's something, I suppose.
I also am going to try to give blood tomorrow for the first time in a year, and then I'm planning on going bouldering after that, which may or may not be a good idea. Let's see what happens.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011


Hello, everyone! I am--officially--moved in. I'm a college student, guys. This is so weird. Do you want to hear about the adventure that was moving in and the first day of classes? No? Well...I'm going to tell you anyway.
My roommate and I decided beforehand that we wanted to loft our beds, but after getting all the bed parts, we changed our minds and bunked them, which meant that we had to carry all the parts downstairs and to the hall next door. It was glorious, awkward, furniture-carrying fun. But bunk beds are cool, so it was worth it. After we'd gotten semi-situated, my mom and I bought an "easy assembly" table for the microwave. There were somewhere around 30 screws, but no holes in the table. We didn't bring any power tools (and a sonic screwdriver doesn't work on wood), so we had to borrow the RA's and manually screw in each and every one. It was quite the adventure, but now we are extremely proud of our little table. We're also apparently in one of the nicest dorms on campus (the honors program does have its perks) and we had enough room for a couch.
Monday and Tuesday were the gigantic info fair days on campus, and I signed up for Bad Wolf, the Vietnamese club, the Scottish country dancing club, and sailing (the last of which I will not be able to attend due to scheduling conflicts, unfortunately).
Anyways, that was all fun and exciting, and now I just finished my first day of classes. AHHHHHH! It actually wasn't as stressful as I'd thought, though. I found all my classes without issue (although I did have to ask a guy in my science literacy class if I was in the right building...I just had to be sure). My honors professor has a sweet Scottish accent and my Scottish country dancing instructor is a cute little British lady. My science literacy and Spanish 301 professors both also seem really cool. I'm also one of three freshmen in my Spanish class--but I understood everything that was said perfectly and am feeling pretty confident about my skills. The worst class for me will probably be honors, but that's only because I hate talking in class. I'm sure college will beat it out of me.
I've also had an interview in the library and a nonexistant interview at a museum since i've been here. The library interview went pretty well, but I biked halfway to the museum interview before calling the supervisor (I got lost, but in all fairness it was my first day) only to find out that the position had been filled a month ago and she'd sent me an email...Yeah, no. That email never happened, because if it had I definitely would have remembered it. Being a teenage author, I'm pretty used to rejection letters, but I always take note of a new one. Oh well. I have an interview at the campus art gallery tomorrow, so hopefully that goes slightly better.
OH, AND I MADE FRIENDS! I have no idea why this is such a shock to me, but everyone is super-friendly here. I had the hardest time meeting new people in East Wenatchee when I moved there and only made a few lasting friendships, but here everyone's like, "Hi! My name's ____. Friends?" It's quite a new experience for me, but I'm definitely enjoying it. I think by default I've become a little more outgoing simply because it's expected. Last night, I played Spoono (Uno plus Spoons) with my roommate, suite mates, and some other girls on my floor, and have already met a few people in my classes and around campus.
Yes. College is amazing. I have the strangest feeling I'm not going to need my unlimited meal plan, though; I've been here since Sunday and have only been to the dining hall about four times. I guess I won't be getting the freshman 15...

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Time goes by quickly and you should.....oh, there it went.

Do you know what's ridiculous? I just had to update my profile because, believe it or not, I am no longer a senior in high school! I'd make some cliche statement about how time "flies," but all of us who watch Doctor Who knows that it normally passes "really, really the right order." But whether or not time feels fast when it's passing, it just keeps going and going and never stops...well, until heaven, I suppose.
Isn't that odd and slightly terrifying? On the first day of September, the month I leave for college, I find myself procrastinating on packing my things, bombarded with college mail, and trying to figure out what in the world I've gotten myself into. Don't get me wrong--I'm excited to leave and start life out on my own--but all the same, I'm just struck with this sense of urgency. I can't slow--or speed--the time until I leave...or until I graduate, get my first "real job," start finding gray hairs, or, y'know, die.
(Yes, I am in a morbid mood today, thank you very much!)
But seriously. Have you ever thought about that--that even if you lock yourself in a room and don't do anything for your entire life, time will keep on going?
The thought makes me cringe every time I go and waste time on the Internet, miss my Saturday alarm, or shrug off another chance to meet with God. I only have one life and I feel like, in this culture, I am encouraged--no, ordered--to squander it. As long as I'm happy, I might as well spend my life on whatever brand of entertainment I choose, right? At least, that's what society says.
I guess I just don't want to wake up one morning with wrinkles on my skin and a hair full of gray hair and wonder where all the time went.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

My life could be a sitcom.

I'm not dead, I promise! (But wouldn't that be a plot twist?)
Anyway, I felt a bit like launching into a blog post with no justification as to why I haven't written in...over two months (has it really been that long?), but I suspect that you would think that was incredibly rude. So, I shall summarize my hectic, awesome, and sitcom-worthy life for you now...
On June eighth, I flew out of East Wenatchee to stay with one of my best friends in Little Rock. While I was minding my own business, watching an episode of Doctor Who, a flight attendant spilled a soda all over my laptop, whose name is Finnick Weasley by the way. Finnick was not pleased. I wasn't either, and seeing how I don't even drink soda in the first place, I thought it was quite the cruel fate for my geeky little mechanical companion. However, Finnick, though a bit sticky, survived. (And I am now typing on my new MacBook Pro, which is significantly sexier, better, and less sticky than Finnick.) I made it to Little Rock--and then Colorado--and had a wonderful time being with my friends, most of whom are college-bound like me. I also spent every moment in the car listening to Chameleon Circuit's new album, Still Got Legs. Again. And again. It is so good. (Why have you not clicked on the link yet? Click on it!)
A few short days after returning home, I started up my first job since Izzy's: cherries. Saturday was my last day of waking up at 4 a.m., driving up in the mountains, and sorting cherries in an orchard all day. It was ridiculously fun, but I am ridiculously glad that it's over--one can only wake up before sunrise so often before it becomes a bit draining. Actually, it was draining in more ways than one, since on the last day, my phone and iPod were stolen right out of my car. I left my window open about an inch to keep it from overheating inside, but someone used a stick to unlock the door and then took the things from the glove compartment. It was quite a sad day. So the moral of the story is: don't roll your window down when you park your car (or don't leave valuables in it; whatever floats your boat). Anyway, I'm praying that God will be glorified in this situation, but it's still a bit frustrating.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Blue Hair, Green Converse, and Certifiable Insanity

Remember, oh about a couple of months ago, how I told you I was giving you a salutatorian speech and then had to admit that was a misunderstanding and I actually was not giving a speech? turns out I lied to you twice. Sorry!
Recently, I got a call from my high school counselor that said I actually could give a speech if I wanted. Either way, it was up to me. And do you know what I said?
Do. You. Know. What. I Said?
I said yes.
Actually, instead of "yes," I'm almost positive I said "sure" with a self-assured, carefree inflection to my voice. Staring blankly at the receiver, my insides lunged to recapture that abhorrent little word, but it was too late. Some convoluted part of me had already committed to a mission of certain death.
As I'm sure you are already aware, I am not a public speaker. Aside from my Spanish class this quarter, which has eight people and requires participation, I almost never speak in class. I write just about all the time, but verbally expressing those words in front of ten (or several thousand) people is pretty terrifying.
Myself and I, we had a long talk after agreeing to make that speech. On one hand, I was of course terrified. But on the other, I was secretly proud of myself. I knew that I was probably going to stumble over my words and make an utter fool out of myself on Graduation Night. But if I'd declined, I think I would always regret it.
I want to go out and change the world, and there's no way I can do that if I can't talk in front of people.  So, just to cement my stupidity for all eternity, I got two strands of my hair bleached and dyed blue the day before (to match my school colors of red and blue, of course) and started preparing.
When I first wrote my speech weeks before, I kept going over and over it, feeling oddly guilty but not knowing exactly why. Then, one night I was talking with my mom about graduation (who was dying to know what my speech was about, since I quite obstinately would not share it with anyone). She challenged me to put God in my speech, and that's when I realized exactly why it hadn't worked before. Leaving God out of my speech to please high school administrators was, in essence, lying. My Christianity is part of my identity, so giving a salutatorian speech and not mentioning my faith would be like going up there and mising part of my face or something. So I reworked it the night before the deadline and turned it in and, to my surprise, my counselor didn't cross out the "G-word" with red ink or phone me with directions to rewrite. Even during practice, he didn't say anything. I could hardly believe it.
The night before graduation, I barely slept, thinking about standing up in front of thousands of people to talk about the future, following one's passions, and God: no small task for one eighteen-year-old. By the time I ascended the stage decked out in my red robe, green Converse, and blue hair, though, all the butteflies had practically vanished. My voice was clear and I barely stumbled at all over my words.
When I returned to my seat, this huge feeling of relief washed over me. I did it. Now that I (voluntarily!) gave a salutatorian speech, I can do anything. I'm reminded of the verse Philippians 4:13, which says, "I can do all things through Christ who strenghtens me."

Sunday, May 15, 2011

The Learning Curve

This weekend, I attended a conference called Write on the River, which is a conference for writers. On a...river! (Bet you didn't see that one coming.) I went to several workshops, and at the end I got to meet with an agent.
Holy. Waffles.
Now, don't get me wrong. I've queried agents and publishers loads of times, but pitching a book in person is completely different. By the time my appointment came around, my palms were sweating and my voice threatened mutiny.
I introduced myself and started rambling a mile a minute about my most recent completed novel, tentatively entitled The Hostage.
This is how it went down:
"It's about this girl...whose mom dies and she and her dad move to a new city and--she really likes crime shows, so she's trying to figure out what actually happened--anyway, her dad goes missing too and...she finds weird files on his computer and goes to D.C. with her friends--and she finds out her dad was not actually her dad, but that he's really an undercover FBI agent. And the guy who really is her dad is her best friend's dad and is trying to poison the city because he's mad at the State for taking away his daughter. That's it!" *Deep breath.*
Excuse me while I go laugh and/or cry at myself.
Granted, my book isn't the easiest to explain, but I don't think that was my problem. I've just explained it so many times and I was so nervous for the appointment that I lost the pathos of my work. Instead of focusing on the character development, I just rapidly described the plot in a way that made it sound cliche and mundane. And yes, I hate myself for it. The agent was very nice, though, and recommended some books on plot development (zing!).
After thinking about my appointment today though, I realized that I--and quite a few Christians--have the same issue with Christianity. A lot of Christians have been hearing about Christ for years and are so nervous about sharing the fantastic message of the gospel, that they completely lose it. I know I do! Just like handing over your "baby" (writers-speak for manuscript) over to some lady in a black dress and heels is terrifying, so is sharing your very reason for existence. While it makes sense to you, anyone who doesn't agree with you is going to think you're absolutely insane.
Only...just because an agent (very nicely) rejected my book, does that mean I should stop writing? I couldn't if I tried! So whether you've shared your faith once, twice, or five hundred times, you should never stop because you make a fool out of yourself.
Because Christianity, just like writing, is a learning curve.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011


A mere five syllables, this word has been the grounds for urban sprawl, war, and ambiguous, never-ending "progress." Moving forward.
Okay, you got me--this is a post on...politics! Well, sort of. So feel free to stop reading now if you'd like, but I just felt like I had to say something.
Personally, I can't understand why America is thrilled that Osama Bin Laden, who in their minds symbolized terrorism, has been killed.
Yes, he was dangerous. Yes, he should have been apprehended and been punished for what he did. But...murder? Osama killed Americans because his religion taught him we are "evil." And why did we kill Osama again? Hmm.
I know the death penalty is a sensitive topic, so sorry if I offend, but I don't believe in it. At all. (Osama didn't get a fair trial either, but that is an entirely different matter.)
I just have to believe that there is hope for everyone, whether they are cheaters, liars, mass murderers, or sociopaths. Jesus died on the cross so that everyone can be saved, not just the people who go to Sunday school, obey curfew, and pay their taxes. During his ministry, he hung out with prostitutes, tax collectors (the corrupt kind),. and all sorts of ungodly people.
Osama Bin Laden destroyed countless Americans' lives, so saying that he"deserved" death is sort of, well, obvious. But honestly, who doesn't? God is one-hundred percent rightous, so having just one--one!--bad thought is enough for eternal separation from him. Then Jesus died and rose again, a power great enough to break every curse laid by sin.
God valued life enough to send his only son down to the world to die so that all of humanity could have a second chance. If God can forgive the very people who nailed his blameless son to the cross and murdered him, then he could forgive Osama Bin Laden.'s too late.
I know it's really easy to get caught up with the idea of "justice," but I really don't think that it merits taking the life of another human being. God is just and everyone will give an account of their sins and triumphs at the end, but there is always redemption until the last breath.
There is always forgiveness.
So this is me, getting off my soapbox, smiling sheepishly, and taking an awkward little bow. Until next time, dear reader!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Change is Good. Usually...

Hello friends, stalkers, and people who've stumbled upon this blog by mistake!
As you might have noticed, I've changed a lot on my blog over the course of....a few hours. Yes, I have no life. Thanks for asking.
Anyway, I thought I'd point out the most obvious change: the name! I got to thinking that My Penciled Muse sounded so pretentious. I mean, I don't use pencils for blog posts and it's not like I own a muse or anything. The name started out as a joke, but then I kind of liked it, so there you have it! I'm just another pretentious hipster.

The end.

I apologize for the shortness. Can I interest you in a knock-knock joke? Knock-knock...


For the most part, I like to think of myself as a nonconformist. I listen to obscure music (think Doctor Who-themed Chameleon Circuit, which you should totally check out if you happen to be a fan of the Doctor, by the way), wear classic Chucks with my Sari dress, and have crazy frizzy hair that I don't bother to straighten. But as it turns out...I was wrong. Last year was the first time I heard about One Day Without Shoes, the TOMS-inspired day which is exactly what it sounds like: a day to go around barefoot and raise awareness about the need of kids in countries like South Africa and Honduras that don't have shoes. It's an awesome idea and I really wanted to do it last year, put it bluntly, I chickened out. What I said was that I hadn't gotten the high school's okay to show up without shoes, but what I meant was, I was too dang terrified to not wear shoes. Which is, y'know, ridiculous. But I'll get to that later. So this year, as I am doing dual-enrollment at the local community college (which will remain unnamed to make sure you don't stalk me or anything), I decided to go for it! The morning of, I put on my jeans and flannel shirt, grabbed my backpack and...left! I did it! However, the scene in my bedroom before I left was sitcom, material. I kept going back and forth: I want to go barefoot. But what if my professor kicks me out of class? So what? It's for a good cause. But...I have perfect attendance! They won't even notice--professors don't look at feet. People will looookkk at meeee! That's because you're barefoot, sweetheart. Besides, it's a good cause. Just go, already! And I went. *Cue laughtrack and applause.* This is a little embarrassing to even type out. Here I was, thinking I was so different, inspired, and carefree and I almost couldn't even show up to class without shoes. I don't know what my deal was. After all, not wearing shoes is sort of like not wearing sleeves or gloves, except...not really. But the point is, shoes are an article of clothing that should be optional. How was I supposed to call myself nonconformist while freaking out over a clothing article? Let me tell you, it was a bit of an eye-opener. Then I realized...I'm a Christian. My views COMPLETELY contradict with most of the world's. I live life for God, or at least try to. But if I was worrying about people staring at my naked feet, what would I do if someone challenged my beliefs? Or got mad at me for talking about "religion?" What then? I hope that I would stand up for God and myself and just be different. But honestly, until last week, I don't know if I would have. If it hadn't been for One Day Without Shoes, I doubt if I would have noticed my conformity and had a chance to challenge it.
So here's to individualism, self-confidence, oh...and bare feet.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Indoor soccer, war, and all things frightening

I used to watch sports movies in which the "other" team would be so horrendously rude, mean-spirited, and awful that I resigned them to works of fiction incapable of existing in the real world. Because, no one really acts like that....right? Apparently I was wrong. I'm not going to bore you with a long account of last night's indoor soccer game, but I will say that it just about destroyed my perception of humanity (okay, that's a bit on the dramatic side, but you get the point). There were pointless slammings into walls, pushes resulting in penalties, and one horrific instant where someone very purposefully sat on my teammate's head (who was then rushed to the hospital with a concussion). And while she was lying on the field crying with the coach and medic surrounding her, one of our opponents started doing a victory dance. The horror of it was, the game didn't even really matter. It. Was. Just. A. Rec*. League. Game.
*Rec - (adj) enjoyable and/or relaxed exercise. See: recreation.
If I'd wanted to play an extremely competitive and hateful sport, I would've taken up rugby, Foosball, or Quidditch. There are a few possible explanations for the other team's uncalled behavior, though: 1) They thought "rec" stood for record, as in the World Cup of Indoor Soccer or some other ostentatious title, 2) They were secretly cheap assassins hired out to murder the members of our team (but failed, thankfully), 3) Playing soccer *somehow* reminded them of prom when Billy Joe stood them up and they never got proper revenge, 4) They forgot to tell us that they really were trying out for a part in the next B-movie, Kleats, Grass Stains, and Broken Ribs, and the director was there and everything, or 5) Yeah. I got nothin'. They were just awful.
The soccer game, awful as it was, reminded me that the human race is in desperate need of saving. I'm sure some of the members on the other team are good people (at least off the field, anyway). They knew how to have a good time and most of them shook our hands at the end, but during the game they transformed into something terrifyingly supercilious and self-absorbed. "Good" people, deep down, are really selfish and cold.
Wow. I just depressed myself.
But all kidding aside, that's not the end of it! Humanity is heartless, but God isn't. No matter how awful the soccer game, he wants all of the team members for his own. Whether people express their hatred outwardly or keep it all inside, it's just as lethal. But God can (and already has) rescued humanity from this hatred and malice...with Jesus. They might not accept it or make a change, but the hope is there.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

The Future! Or something.

Before I start this post, I have to get something off my chest.... I'm a liar. That's it. There it is. As it turns out, as a salutatorian I do not have to give a graduation speech, so my last post was completely and totally useless! Sorry. It was unintentional lying, though, so would that be called negligent deceit? Hmm. Anyhow, sorry about that! Since you (probably) can't hear inside my head, I thought I'd let you know that I'm typing in an accent right now. And not just any accent....a BRITISH accent! I know, I know, you wish you were me, but as it turns out, watching old Doctor Who episodes for hours on end can severely damage one's brain. Which led to the following conversation..... Me: Mom, I changed my career goals a bit. My mother: Oh yes, what are they? Me: I want to be, erm...a TIME TRAVELER! My mother: Well, why don't you travel just going forward one year at a time, Courtney. Ha, ha. She's brilliant. For the last eighteen years and eleven days, I've been trying to figure out what to do with my life. Now that I'm an almost-graduate, I hear the word Future about fifteen times a day. Which would be nice if I had a clue what to do with it. It's sort of like an ugly Christmas sweater given from a well-meaning relative, but much, much scarier. And, on top of that, it's too big and I can't find the receipt. According to my mother, I have to go to work, pay taxes, and buy groceries like a normal human being. That's sad. I was sort of hoping to change the world. But I'm going to make the best of it and TRAVEL the world....with the money that I make from some job which I have yet to decide on. It will be something exciting, though. I'm sort of waffling between ER surgeon and foreign correspondent. First stop (hopefully): England! I'll just keep a lookout for any blue boxes along the way.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011


Hello, my name is Courtney Clifton, and I am a salutatorian. Which, unbelievably, annoys me. I'm *somewhat* of a perfectionist. So, if you ask me for my GPA I will cringe and tell you 3.994, thanks to ONE semester in HONORS Chemistry where I got a 92. (See what I mean?) But, I'll admit it, I'm still pretty excited to be salutatorian. That means only one person is better than me! (Kidding.) So I was in the midst of my victory dance, rendering a (500) Days of Summer-esque accompaniment to "You Make My Dreams" when I remembered.... Graduation speech. .... ... ... That, my friend, is the sound of fear. Also, silence, since the song ended at precisely the wrong moment. I know it might be hard for you to believe, considering how incredibly witty and hilarious my blog is, but I hate public speaking. Hate it. I get cottonmouth, my palms start sweating, and I quake with the fright of standing in front of people and making, you know, inspiring sentences that also make sense. I have no idea why, since I like people, but something about standing in front of them and trying to keep them entertained for an indefinite period of time terrifies me. So, I went through my options: 1) come down with a mysterious illness, 2) fake my own death, 3) lose my voice, 4) forget how to speak English, 5) decide to take a road trip across country at the last minute, 6) turn into a insta-star and have to travel the world before June or, 7) suck it up and write the speech, already. Sigh...... As far as I can see, the only real option is 7. Unless my life transforms into a teen novel or sitcom, in which case, who knows what will happen! Mystery! Drama! Suspense! Unfortunately, life is entirely on a different plane than fiction, so odds are I will probably end up writing the speech. And I will quiver with fright, not forget to not lock my knees, and remember the day for the rest of my life! I will be.... ...SALUTATORIOUS! (Cue dramatic music and lights.) Ladies and gents, I just invented a word. Maybe I can pull off this speech after all.