June 11, 2009

Royal Flush

Last time I played poker, I kicked ass. However, we were playing for checkers, so I didn't win any money. Goddamnit.

Speaking of Royal Flushes, though, I couldn't find any notecards today, and I didn't want to do something immediately productive, so I decided to study spanish, but couldn't, due to the lack of notecards. To circumvent this issue, I found a stack of post-it notes that my father received recently. On each side is written, in large letters A ROYAL FLUSH. On the the upper fourth of each sticky is written:
A ROYAL FLUSH Portable Restrooms 1-877-###-####. www.aroyalflush.com

Said website opens to an extremely classy picture of a portajohn on a beach. Needless to say, phrases such as mortificade fondo (embarrassed bottom) are feeling right at home.

Were you aware that the standard portable toilet weights 235 pounds?
That is 101 pounds more than yours truly! I definitely could not lift that.
Speaking of portapotties, I love Glee. The T.V. show, with the singing glee club members. I almost wish it were September just so I could watch it again.

Also, since I'm working on my portfolio, here is a short paragraph of my musings on race.

I'm underexposed to those of other races. It is difficult to view black people as unique individuals when I only talk to two or three of them, and many others would say that those kids "act white." It reminds of Mean Girls, when they introduce the lunch tables, and there are plenty of cliques for the different social groups of white kids, but the groups of racial minorities must form their own, like the "Asian nerds" "cool asians" "unfriendly black hotties," as opposed to the multitude of white groups. Unlike white people, whom I see as individuals, or, at the very least, specific labels, black people are in their own category, labeled only as "black."

Deep, huh?

AND, as if your day couldn't get any better, I leave you with a piece of fiction I wrote last year, for English class.

They meandered their way down the old path, arms around each other. She tripped frequently, much preferring the view of him to that of the path. It was just so wonderful. She couldn’t think of a better word. She and Derek, finally alone. She snuck another look at his smiling eyes, and snagged her toe on a rock. He caught her just before a tumble became unavoidable.

“C’mon, Lynn. Let’s sit.”

They settled themselves with his back against the tree, and her back against him. She leaned into his warmth, pulling her knees up to her chest. He reached his arms around her to fiddle with her shoes. He talked idly, and she responded with half her mind. There was always talking. The small town they lived in used to have farms and a small factory, but the products of the factory had long ago gone out of style, and the farm produced less than the amount needed to sustain the town. People were living on their savings, constantly talking about what they had lost. Lynn and Derek, still young, mostly just farmed, and usually together. They were always talking, but this nearness, this closeness, was so wonderfully new. Lynn leaned into him, smiling again.

“If we don’t get going, I won’t have time to show it to you,” he said, pulling himself up from behind her. He walked about ten feet away. “You coming?”

“I’m working on it. Maybe I’d be a bit more motivated if you would tell me what you’re taking me to.”

“Nope. It’s a surprise.” He grinned.

She smiled back, and then stopped when a barrier suddenly appeared between them. The sky began to flicker light to dark so quickly that the wood seemed bathed in twilight. Derek’s arm reached out imperceptibly, and sparks shot across the barrier where he touched. Then he was gone.

“Derek!” Lynn shouted and leapt up. She was halfway to her feet when he appeared again, but before she could even process that he was back, the wood was once again empty. “No!” She tried to run forward but landed with her face on the earth. He had tied her shoelaces together when they sat against the tree. She lifted her head up, searching for him. The grass turned brown, wilted, and then grew again. When it reached its tallest point, Derek returned for another moment. The cycle repeated thrice more while Lynn lay on the ground.

Lynn lifted her head to look at Derek. With each flash there was some difference, some change, it was, it was- he was getting older. He had filled out a bit, and now his hairline was receding, each reappearance with less hair. His clothes, body, and facial hair all changed, but one characteristic stayed the same; his sad eyes gazed solemnly at Lynn during each instant he returned. But he was getting older. He already looked middle aged.

Lynn pulled herself up, but her tied together shoes kept her from reaching the barrier quickly. By the time she got there, Derek would be a withered old man. She hauled her body off the ground again and threw herself forward, towards the barrier. Her hand slipped through, but she didn’t notice.

Then, she felt a quick pressure on her palm. Confused, she looked up, and her eyes caught Derek’s as he held her hand. An instant later, the connection was gone. Another moment, and he returned. She tried to squeeze back, but by the time she could react to his presence, he was gone. She began to time a returning squeeze with the growth of the grass, matching them so that she clasped when he held her. She smiled up at him, pleased at her success and enjoying the small touches and the fleeting glimpses of him. He was growing into a beautiful old man.

A moment later he vanished, and this time, he did not return. He was young, then old, then- “No!” Lynn cried. Her eyes began to fill. She went to wipe her face with the hand behind the shield, but could not break away. She watched the hand through her tears. Its nails grew longer and longer, looping into a spiral. The veins became more prominent; the skin wrinkled. The joints tightened without her control, and she couldn’t open them. Soon she lost all sensation in it. The hand curled into a tight ball, then began to shrink further. It was eaten away, and Lynn pulled her arm back from the shield. Skin had grown over the edge, but she was now without a right hand. She pulled herself back from that horrible wall that had taken both her hand and her Derek.

She gazed down at her stump of a hand, then turned and watched the endless cycle of the trees. She stood there for hours, trying to comprehend the events that had just occurred. Finally, she took a deep, calming breath, and turned to walk back to town. When she was about halfway there, the strobe light sky ceased, and she was once more bathed in sunlight. By the time she reached the town, it was empty.

“Hello”, she called, her voice quaking, “Is anyone here?” The was no response. “Hello?”

The she heard someone call. “Rodney, I found another straggler.”

“Huh?” Another man, most likely Rodney, responded

“Never mind, I’ll bring her in myself,” he yelled back, then rounded a corner and came face to face with Lynn. “Hello!” He said brightly, “I’m just going to bring you in for a few tests, then you’ll be free to go.”

She looked at him blankly. “What happened?”

“It was a bit of a scientific test. Six hundred years ago, a group of scientists isolated your town in a time bubble. Basically, every second for you was a few years outside, or something like that. I was never much good with math.”

“Wha- why- How could you do that? Isn’t it illegal?”

“You weren’t producing anything, and you were taking in more benefits than you paid in taxes, so they figured there wouldn’t be any negative impact on the economy. And, well, the guy who instigated it is long dead, so he can’t exactly go to jail. All we’ve got to do is pay a few fines, which is well worth the new scientific knowledge. There were all sorts of different microbes six hundred years ago. And there’s been some change in genetics overall, and you didn’t have psychiatric drugs, so your mental processes are fascinating, and you are stock full of extinct microbes. Did you know, we’ve already found sixteen variants of Acute viral nasopharyngiti? It positively amazing.”

Lynn fought to comprehend the barrage of information. “You imprisoned my entire town just because we weren’t contributing to the economy?”

“It’s not like you were harmed, and it was only for a few hours, technically, and-“

Lynn cut him off. “Not harmed! My right hand eaten in front of me, my boyfriend is dead, and no one even asked me anything!”

“Well, um.” The man seemed unprepared to deal with anything except happiness. “ You’ll be monetarily compensated, I’m sure, and we can get a prosthetis no problem. And just think of your gift to humanity. The world has changed so much in six hundred years. You’ll be able to bring history to life. It’s amazing, it’s wonderful, it’s-”

“Horrible!” She cried, and sprinted away from him, past the boundaries of the town to the graveyard that lay a behind an old church. She let the adrenaline from her shock carry her through the gate in the old stonewall. The graveyard looked faded, broken down, but also larger than it had before. She ran past many sections, searching for the area that bore Derek’s family name. She found it at last near the back. There it was. It said his name, his birth and death dates, and then a short statement. “A man who lived many long years, but whose heart shall always belong with the love of his childhood.”


Jackie said...

wow. that story was...vibrant with emotion. absolutely INTENSE.

i have nothing else to say.

vicky/bruney said...

WOW...that story sooo good, it's amazing how you manage to combine an awesomely written story and real-sounding scientific knowledge...the story kinda reminds me of 2001: A Space Odyssey, ever seen it?

In other news, my brother has blocked my portfolio site on my computer with a password that I can't guess...Kinda glad though, I really do not want to think about US ANY LONGER, plus I'm EXTREMELY mad that Ms. Opmin gave me a THREE!!!! on my story...if you want to hear the full story, I sent you 2 mins worth of angry gchats...


Tea said...

thank you very much. We all know how much I love showing off my writing (because, really, it's wayyyy more fun than working on my u.s. portfolio)
and I already read and responded, vicky. Then I left about a zillion lines for jackie as well. And it wasn't two minutes. It was like five lines.

Gretchen said...

i remember that story
our english teacher from last year came into the english room during the final and half the class was like "hi!!!!!!"