September 20

The Apple Core Complex

So, I’ve accumulated so many decorative pillows that it takes actual strategy to figure out their transport arrangements to and from my bed. Does anyone else seem to have this problem? I bear a likeness to Godzilla knocking over buildings as I try to get under the covers each night. Getting home after work today, I was so exhausted that even this task seemed far too daunting, and thus I sat, at the foot of my bed, staring down my plush and tasseled adversaries right in their bladders. (So, pillows have bladders. I actually Googled “pillow jargon”).

And why was my hoarder’s nest of pillows so detrimental to me on this particular night? My lack of energy came courtesy of the common cold: the only modern-day institution in whose dealings I wish some racism still endured, and yet it remains cruelly indiscriminating. It strikes when one least expects it, and the only thing to be done is slap on a cold compress, drink some tea, and try to imagine a world in which sounding like Donald Duck is cause for celebration. Which is also commonly referred to as, “the past five days of my life;” I was so dazed at work today that I walked by the same busbin six times before I remembered that I was looking for it! Forget about taking a “mental health” day; I need a day for “mental retardation”.

 

And now, we’ve finally arrived at the story behind the my The Big Bang Theory-esque title. (“We’re” not sure why “we’re” talking like the villain in a melodrama, but I guess we’ll just ride this one out.)

Only 11 students chose to take advanced English this year, so the class was relocated to the office boardroom- as if to tell us, “You higher minds are indeed as superior as you feel.” My fabulous teacher Mrs. Joyce is thusly persuaded to bring all of her teaching materials down from her classroom each morning like a sherpa, while teachers with more popular courses settle into her space until lunch.

There are two students who can be relied upon to be first into the boardroom each morning: me, and the guy who I have been particularly frantic and impish around lately (which is NOT AT ALL relevant to the story! … ;) ). I suppose that Mrs. Joyce has picked up on our habitual keenness, because on this particular morning, she stood waiting for the two of us to enter, circa-together, at her usual spot in front of the white board.

“I have a mission for you.” she said in her usual offbeat, wry aplomb.

“Shoot.” *Ohmygoshishelookingatmetellmehe’snotlooking* answered.

“You know where my classroom is, right? Well, I need you to get there before the teacher who uses it first block. When you open the door, on your right you’ll see… well, whaddya call it… You know, those screens they use for the projectors… well, on the string that you use to pull it down, you will find an apple core. I need you to cut the string just before the core, and bring the core back to me, no questions asked. Maybe someday I’ll explain.” She handed us the key without another word.

And, sure enough, when we arrived at her upstairs classroom, we discovered the rotting apple core hanging, as-promised, from the string of the projector screen. In one swift motion, I lunged for the scissors on her desk while Dreamboat fumbled to hold out the cord. The mission went without a hitch except for one bewildered freshman, who after witnessing the whole thing could scarcely utter, “…Did that just happen?”

The looks on our classmates’ faces as we burst into the boardroom waving a piece of stale fruit most likely matched our initial confusion at hearing her request. But fortunately for my (and your) curiosity, Mrs. Joyce immediately dropped the act of secrecy; she explained how, upon returning to her classroom after lunch the day before, she had spotted an apple core on her desk. Knowing immediately that the man who had left it has her classroom for 2nd and 4th period, she decided to send him a message. Using enough masking tape to dress a fatal wound, she fixed the apple core to the string of her projector screen, and stuck a fork in it. It was only the next morning that she remembered the apple core, and determined that it “wouldn’t be fair” to the first-year teacher using the classroom for her homeroom to discover an apple core hanging at the front of the classroom with a giant fork in it.

I cannot wait to see if every English class will be this exciting! I get enough heart palpitations sitting next to *smileandlaugh,waitnotsohardhethinksyou’rechoking*; that class is slowly giving me angina.

For the moment, all I have left to do is bludgeon my way through the small village of throw pillows separating me from my bed.

Goodnight for now!

Avery

 

-419

September 6

First Day of School!

As the new school year begins, I am gratefully reminded of the sanity of my fellow high school students. Remember when one’s school status was determined exclusively by the words that rhymed with their name? Some parents legitimately set their children up for failure from day 1. Remember Maddy? Me either. “Fatty” rings a bell, though. How about good ol’ Cooper the Pooper Scooper? Hairy Harry? God forbid any of you went to school with a boy named “Dick.”

As for my experience, elementary-level word association extended so far as to christen me “Avery Slavery.” Now, none of the other kids seemed to mind that “slavery” is many parts more a concept than a specific noun, or even an action verb. This truth resonated with no-one, it seemed, as they shouted “slavery on Avery!” inviting every 1st grader within a 100-ft radius to pile on top of me. Nor did it stop my ascension to the top of the list of beneficiaries from her fellow pupils unloading their colouring books and glue sticks onto her for transport between classes. If kindergarten had superlatives, I definitely would have made “Class Slave.”

For the first time since my mother left her teaching job to stay at home with my brother and me, both of my parents were working on the first day of school. This meant that the event received no greater accentuation than any other day in the calendar year; we had left over butter chicken in the fridge and extra hamburger buns on the counter, and from this we hastily crafted what my dad now refers to as “Sloppy Raheeds.” We did go for a family walk after dinner, but turned back before we had gone half a mile in order to finish up homework and teaching prep before it got dark. At least, it gave us a chance to share about our days.

My highlight was the Catholic School Welcome Assembly. I was seated next to a young man who was stoned out of his mind. It’s actually hilarious, the disparity between the strict religious kids and the “wild” partygoers at my school. It’s binary. Sort of like apartheid, with a lot less social tension. The pot-smokers hang out in certain hallways, take certain classes, and the more studious youth group-goers stick to their own parts of the school. Having friends in both circles, I almost have to inconspicuously flip on a beanie to go from one to the other. I think that the problem is the occasional radical in both groups; the guy that comes to math with red eyes and dilating pupils, and the girl who asked me just yesterday, “What’s your favourite secular band?” I sometimes wonder what would happen if two such people were stuck on a desert island together. It would probably explode.

What was it like at your high school? Any culture-shock experiences similar to mine at the welcome assembly, or were you the one who was doing the shocking? ;)

Bye for now,

Avery

 

-416

August 27

Noodle Boy

Poor Peter had the worst day today! And I totally blew it; he looked like a holocaust victim when I walked into Science class, but I didn’t ask what was wrong because this obsequious and nasally kid Jimmy asks me that every day and it pisses me off. I just didn’t want to make him uncomfortable. Unsurprisingly, Jimmy carried out his same routine on Peter. Only, Peter gratefully obliged and gushed about what a horrible day he was having, and left me completely exasperated.

Peter had woken up sick, but his parents accused him of faking and angrily drove him to school after he missed the bus. This meant that he had a raging headache for his Math unit final and was not exempt from fitness testing in gym. Not to mention, our school musical choreographer has recently been calling him “Noodle Boy” (a reference to his lanky and rather unresponsive arms) and hollering at him to be louder in front of the entire cast. To make things worse I accidentally poked fun at him about the “Noodle Boy” thing, when what I meant to say was “You are SO not a noodle boy.” This is a new record for me; I have befuddled what I was trying to say in the past, but never before has something spewed out as its antithesis! That was a regretful bus ride…

It’s funny, even though I am now equipped with a car and a driver’s license, I still prefer to take the bus on mornings when I don’t have to stay after school. I guess I like having time to reflect on things other than “that semi truck is about to crush my car.” And with proper Ginger Gravol sedation, finishing homework on the bus is not such a fanciful task! Unless, of course, it’s homework from Religious Studies. No amount of sedation can prepare anyone for the breed of subjective “personal reflection” essays that litter the syllabus like gum on the streets of New York.

On that note, I received a perfect grade on my Religious Studies project! Mrs. Guise was impressed with my allusion to Saint Mary in my anti-abortion video; she even asked me how I thought of the idea! (Obviously I didn’t tell her that I brainstormed “things that would please the most radical Catholic on the planet…”) I jest, but I am rather proud of the video. Like, “Pick on someone your own size?” That stuff is genius. Also, my mid-semester report from my Science teacher Mr. Coltaire ended off with “If I only had an army of Averys, life would be so great!” I am not sure if I should be thrilled, or on the lookout for anyone coming at my scalp with tweezers… Mr. Coltaire is a phenomenal teacher- one of my all-time favourites! He gives us two weeks to hand in any assignment, just in case we cannot find time in 332 hours to do a 20-minute lab. pfft! What does he think I do outside of school? Sports?

Speaking of which, our Gym class floor hockey unit is in full swing, and, against all genetic odds, I played well today! Considering I have the hand-eye coordination of the world’s first computer, this development made me rather (way too) excited. But Butch-Of-The-Year nominations are still too far off, so I cannot say anything for sure…

I was definitely joking about our school’s celebration of masculinity, but I suppose that, in some ways, “butch” is a fairly accurate description of me. For instance, I used to wish that I wasn’t a girl just so I could show off my pecs. (And, they are actually pretty massive. They probably account for 60% of my boobs.) I have my childhood weirdness to thank for this; between grades 1 and 4, every Saturday morning would see me up early and completing 300 push-ups in sets of 20, to pump-up music courtesy of “WOW Hits 2002″. (I would also run for 20 minutes on the treadmill; I think what finally brought the tradition to an end was one morning when I thought it would be a good idea to run with my eyes closed, tripped, and slammed into a wall.)  But, alas, “feel my pecs” and “feel my boobs” have two very different implications for two very different genders…

 

What about you guys? Did you ever wish to belong to the opposite sex? And why?

Bye for now,

Avery

 

 

-421

August 24

Results M-Avery

As it is nearly November here in Denver, I am reminded of how Remembrance Day is coming up in Canada, and of how much I lament that it is not celebrated in the United States. (Although I do understand why. The whole premise of the holiday is to make up for the other 364 days of the year on which Canadians show absolutely no patriotism.) Mall shoppers across Canada will soon be passively assaulted by nice old people collecting donations in exchange for the universal-grade, built-to-fall-off, velvety red pins worn on jackets or blouses for the weeks surrounding the holiday. All of the money raised goes towards care for veterans and other victims of war. Everything about the celebration lends itself to a joint feeling of community, charity, and respect for our fallen soldiers. We share a moment of silence at 11 o’clock am on November 11th, often during ceremonies put on by schools, churches, and museums that are open to the public. Before I moved to Denver, those Remembrance Day services were the closest I ever came to feeling American.

This year, though, a pacifist organization called Ceasefire.ca is distributing white poppies to boycott Remembrance Day and demonstrate a belief in “peace not war”. How ironic that they are able to make such a publicly disrespectful statement about the soldiers who died for their freedom only because of the soldiers who died for their freedom! For a group to decide that they condemn an action while in the same instant they shamelessly reap its benefits is incredibly hypocritical.

Even if the campaign is not purposefully abrasive and defiant, it is certainly progressing this way. By going against tradition on such a long-standing national holiday, their poppies take attention away from Remembrance Day’s true meaning and upset the feeling of reverence and solidarity that accompanies it. Not to mention, the proceeds from the white poppies go back into the production and distribution of more white poppies, and not to charity. Yeesh.

…Yikes! It’s almost like an alien took over my body for a moment there. Was I just writing about politics? When I started the blog, I never would have imagined that we would end up here. *shudders*.  I guess I am just trying to fill up space at this point; after all, isn’t that the best way to give any spiel a little substance? To throw in some patriotism? ;)

Anyways, how about some relatable teen content? Won’t that be refreshing?

—> I think my boobs are officially the perfect size. I mean, my areolas should get a bit larger, but nobody sees those anyway. I have heard that girls’ breasts typically stop growing at 16, so I am right on track! I guess my hormones finally just got together in a boardroom and said “We’re not leaving until we have a plan to get this done.” Doughnuts and coffee were had by all, surely.

 

Too much? I think I dove back into the coming-of-age-movie-type genre with a little too much “gusto”… Let’s try this again.

“How was your day, Avery?”

Well, we just got a new vacuum at work, so I got to try it out! After dropping several passive aggressive comments to my employer about our previous vacuum’s state of disrepair, I think he could tell that I was visibly excited by this new development, but he was kind enough not to point out the fact that it is incredibly pathetic to get so fired up over a new workplace appliance, and that I must consequently not have a social life. However, the vacuum is only about a foot tall, and I found that I had to crawl around on my hands and knees to use it! This becomes even more ridiculous when you consider that the restaurant I work at has over 3000 square feet of surface area, and is a minefield of chairs and tables that have to be moved and replaced as I go along. Discrediting the small feeling of nostalgia I experienced at getting to use something that looks like it came straight out of a child’s playhouse, that vacuuming session was the most frustrating experience of my life. An hour later, it was a rather frazzled version of Avery who shuffled into her boss’ office and said, “Please. Never. Again.”

I wish I could stop thinking about Peter. The worst part is that I know it is completely idiotic! I just hope that he and I can be friends, because we have so much in common. In fact, I think my thoughts towards Peter are primarily fuelled by a desire for a friend, not a boyfriend. He is just so thoughtful! On the bus today, he spent 10 minutes trying to position himself so that he wasn’t blocking me from the conversation, even though the bus driver yelled at him a couple of times and the sun was in his eyes. :) Amy Copansky was also on the bus today. I tried to strike up a conversation with her, forgetting just how little we have in common. (And, as my 2nd period teacher always says, history repeats itself when we forget about the past; it was painful.) It’s odd, because she and Peter really hit it off. I think that it is because they have similar temperaments, while Peter and I share similar hobbies. …Hmph. (that’s NOT a humph, and definitely not a harrumph; more of a reflective sigh with a side of “grunt”).

It was awkward when Amy made a casual reference to another guy on our bus, Matthew in my social class, because I completely blanked on the name. Naturally, I had to dig myself into an even deeper hole by finally figuring out who she was talking about and then going on to explain how I typically just refer to him as “Ken” because he looks like a barbie doll. Belly-flopping into a pit of snakes at this point, I also mentioned that he doesn’t know I do that. That he doesn’t even know me at all. *shudders*

Does anybody else experience this when talking to someone they do not connect with? Somehow getting yourself into trouble by rambling on awkwardly as the person stares placidly past you? Just me? Okay. Great.

Bye for now!

Avery

 

-383