Sunday, October 27, 2013

"A Friend Like You"

As the shutters over the gym windows slowly opened, a grainy shaft of light passed over the folded bleachers and shone directly on Marisa's strawberry blonde hair, freshly flat-ironed. Once again, I was feet from the light. The remixed music from years back blared through the speakers above us, the local techies cringing in pain at the poor sound quality. I didn't care much for out-of-tune Evanescence, myself, but it was more of the beat that I was worried about. Taking care as to not throw a punch to the air with my injured wrist, I followed the directions of the kickboxing video offered to my gym class during last week's Workout Wednesday.

The people on the screen, the coaches repeatedly told us, were professionals in their sport and knew what they were doing. This, of course, prompted the two coaches to survey the students taking the challenge and help them hone their skills. I was given a bye for standing front and center with a hurt arm, and I doubt my technique was at all correct. One thing that I was certain of, however, was that I was the only student in the room of eighteen remaining in time to the song. Three cross-punches with my left hand, skipping beats where my right would have struck, then stepping with the opposite foot between beats to deliver a kick. Bouncing in my tennis-y fashion, I read the teleprompter as the (obviously Australian by accent) man announced the next exercise.

"Alright," he panted, "We're going to keep that up, just like we were, but then adding a jump kick into it!" I stopped in my tracks. If there was one kick that I couldn't time nor complete, it was the jump. I'll say now that I'm not a P.E. perfectionist, but if I can do all of one thing but one portion, then I must learn how. The first jump kick or two didn't work, and I nearly fell over. (Typical me.) As I returned to regular push kicks, a short Asian boy - the immensely popular Jordan - slid on his shorts a few feet in front of Grace, the girl to my right.

"Come on, Grace!" he exclaimed, putting a smile on her face. She delivered. I tried to hide in my shadow, hoping not to be humiliated by the boy who everyone loved.

"You, too, Red!" he called out, "Come on!" I laughed uneasily at this, but I gave it another try. Near-failure. That did mean success, however. Jordan stopped his routine and walked up to me, giving me a high-five. I never again made the jump kick, but the adrenaline from making a single blow kept me going.

When the program had ended, I walked with the rest of the group towards the courtyard outside of the locker rooms. The girls and boys parted from one another. Jordan had been walking nearby, so I walked up to him.

"Hey, man," I said, "Thanks for the boost. I'm really grateful for friends like you!" I turned towards the locker room, triumphant in my words. I think that Jordan turned and reached back.

"But Red," he called out, "I barely even --" Before I could hear the end of Jordan's sentence, the door shut behind me.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

10 Things About Me Tag

Hello! The wonderful Khloe Grace of All Things Good tagged me to post the first ten things that come to mind about myself, and the first ten things that come to mind when deciding what I want to do before I die. Here I go!

Ten Things About Me:

  1. Most of my friends call me Red.
  2. Even though English is my favorite class, I have the worst grade in it of all of my other classes .
  3. I write two blogs.
  4. I have won three Office of Letters and Light events (NaNoWriMo, Camp NaNoWriMo 2013 (both)) and intend to try for NaNo November this coming month. 
  5. I feel capable of disabling a person using only my trusty tennis racket.
  6. I have walked up to the scariest, tallest, most buff end-grade student at my school and taught him a lesson in Spanish on the spot. (That lesson helped him earn an A on the test the following day, he said.) 
  7. I believe that tennis skills apply to all P.E. sports and that I am at an advantage with them, even though I'm really not, in most cases. 
  8. I'm infamous for debating with every science teacher and substitute science teacher that I've had in the second semester, last year. 
  9. There is a football in my apartment. No, I don't know how to use it. 
  10. I am an amateur birdwatcher. 
Ten Things I Want to Do Before I Die:
  1. Attend Bumbershoot 
  2. Take a falconry lesson
  3. Attend a tai chi course (and practice in my school's courtyard when I'm alone, as the sun rises)
  4. Attempt to buy a lighthouse on the Pacific Coast, intending to live in it
  5. Finish and edit the draft of a novel
  6. Publish said novel 
  7. Go camping
  8. Nap in a field of wildflowers far from the highway
  9. Make such a witty remark that the mean girls in my English class never speak to me again
  10. Face-cake! 
In the spirit of giving (and of face-cake, because face-cake), I hereby tag anybody who wants to attempt this challenge! Be sure to comment with a link to your finished post, as I'd love to get to know you better. :) Better yet, I'll be able to follow your blog, if I haven't already! 

All the best,

Ruby Red

Thursday, October 24, 2013

The Plot Journal

"Oh, you'll never be a writer," Emaline sighed, smiling in adoration over me. I laughed along, attempting to mimic what she had done with her hair, something impossible with my unruly curls. The half-cylindrical building surrounding the six cracked tennis courts just ten minutes from the city center was teeming with aspiring players, including myself and sixteen-year old (as exclaimed several times the day before) Emaline. A warm, lazy breeze slid droplets of sweat from my shoulders to my chest and back, making way for more stink.

At this point in time, I was a fifth grader, feeling at the top of my game (even though I really wasn't). Emaline was two months new, having moved from another tennis club to ours. She had appeared friendly, and constantly talked about her love for writing. After a downtime from writing in the fourth grade, I was excited to have started working with words again, and I felt Emaline to be one of my greatest supporters. At that time, I truly looked up to her and her letters to Christopher Paolini that never actually got answered, I found out. I had decided to show her my plotting journal, a concept that I still keep up with today. She glanced in at the first page. Scribbled on its wide-ruled lines were snippets of possible first lines and character names. She closed it and handed it back, scoffing.
Oddly enough, I never saw Emaline again after that day. Her words stuck with me, whether making me overcome her words by writing, or by pushing me down when I moped in a corner. There's just something about criticism, isn't there? Something unfair and debatable that can make or break a person's future, sometimes both at once. 

Thanks a lot, Emaline. For what, I'm not exactly sure yet. 

The first scene from the fifth grade was about a girl by the name of Sabrina. She had fallen from a small height and was bobbing in saltwater, hoping to float back to shore while overcoming the shock of the event. 

Now, I'm in the eighth grade. My likely first scene will be about a boy by the name of John - about fourteen, at this point - catching his sister, Sabrina, before she falls. 

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Here There be Rubber Ducks

Simply, I don't know anything better. With NaNoWriMo just around the corner, I've checked into my local Third Place Books to get things going again. At the moment, I'm curled up near the corner of a table with leftover potato chips of Jenn's and my own soy hot chocolate. (Soy, you ask? I, for one, actually like how it tastes, opposed to cow milk.)
In truth, I'm so impressed as to how people of several ages not around my own can band together and be equal friends for the same cause. Around my own peers, it's plenty awkward if there were to be an adult around. Same goes for someone younger. But what if they were at the same level as we were? Still, due to  our stubbornness, it wouldn't be the same. I'm aware that this comes with reason, but it just makes me appreciate my mixed groups of friends more. My D&D group is composed of people from my age to parenting age, whereas my writing group can go up to grandparenting age. (Once again, I'm the youngest.) To me, the difference is nearly laughable. With age, one can gain enough sense to learn inclusion, I conclude.

No matter who's participating and no matter how it's responded to, NaNo season is officially here! Go Seattle ducks!

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Attempting NaNo 2013

Hello, my dears! I have decided to attempt my second NaNoWriMo this year, but to change things up enough to accommodate my busy schedule. My thinking is that, after months of writing burnout, I am in no shape to write a novel. Instead, I'll be trying for 1667 words a day of any fiction that I can possibly eek out of my skull. This means a lot of D&D adventure recreations, a considerable amount of in-character complaints, and quite a few blog posts, to boot! I'm excited for NaNo, but I feel like I'll be falling asleep more than usual (the usual being every few minutes, these days). Cheers for coffee! :)


Sunday, October 13, 2013

Glitter on the Keys

This might be the first bit of clothing that I don't think I'll ever use. Still, it's such a pretty mask that my mother picked up with Rick...I'll find a way, won't I?
Today, I also walked all the way down the hill and into the town on my own - finally - for the first time. I didn't see anything weird, and I was filled with such adrenaline that I didn't have any emotions past excitement as I walked. I bought hot chocolate at the Molbak's and brought it back for Rick and my mother.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Nothing Like Golden Gardens

Just behind where I was standing, there was a willow tree and a rope tied to it. I tied a loop in the rope and made a standing rope swing for myself to use. I climbed the tree and over the rocks as the tide came in, and sprinted all the way back. Funny how I wait till the last moment to finally let things go.

How do you feel about me posting a picture/short thought every day?

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Observing Columbus Day

Columbus day is almost here! Let's light the cannons and go....hunting!

A friend of mine once told me that one would theoretically celebrate Columbus Day by, "Walking up to someone's door, knocking, and telling them, 'This is my house now'." To this day, I can sort of agree with them. (Just a thought.)

This post isn't exactly a restatement of school being a pain in the behind, but do enjoy this infographic by The Oatmeal.

Sunday, October 6, 2013

4700 Miles and a Promise

This post is in partial followup to, "Imogen Heap's 'Little Bird' and the Story of Me" . If you would like, take a look at it.

On the twenty-first of every month, starting with August, I've e-mailed a friend of mine who was torn from me. He moved to Truro, England, out of a family issue. I ground my knuckles into the keyboard and ended up tear-ripe every day. I still am. I trusted - and still trust - this one particular friend more than any other person, and we've been friends for as long as I can remember. 

...and just hours ago, he e-mailed back. He apologized for not getting back to me, but assured me that he was (and that I was to be) alright. He described his new living situation and how much he missed everyone back home. I often wondered if I hindered his transition, but I'm confident that I still have a friend in the one who had to fly away. Before this friend moved, I was surrounded with rumors; Goodbye parties that I hadn't been invited to, denial of the gifts which I so carefully packed, etc. 

...but just hours ago, he e-mailed back. 

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Last of the Summer Picture-Taking

The maple outside my window is still green. It and all the other deciduous trees in the culdesac have just begun losing their leaves, though the weather is begging for otherwise. Indeed, summer is ending.

fun fact: All the pictures on this site
were taken with my phone.

See? Green. Right there.