Tuesday, September 7, 2010

The End, Part II.

So I couldn't stay away. I'm here. It's for my corporeal family and friends, so it has real names and places and less talk about boys and food. But feel free to hang out for a spell, if you like. Maybe I'll give it a mashed-pumpkin background too.

Friday, June 11, 2010

The End.

I know I started this late. End of November, freshman year--so it's more seven-eighths of high school than all four years. But I can pretend, say that I approached my new school as a writing project rather than my life. It took a while to learn to disconnect, and then a while to plug back in. Regardless, I have loved doing this. Writing about school and music and whatever caught my fancy, writing when I was dead-tired or miserable or had nothing to say. I doubt I'll stay off the self-documentation train for long, and wherever I go next I'll post here.
It's been real, guys. Stay cool.
-Leela

Graduated.

I woke up multiple times last night, jolting up like I had suddenly remembered something in sleep. My dreams were disconnected and discomfiting. But I was feeling fine about graduating, so it might have had more to do with the eating bender I went on Thursday.
Gown, heels, honor cords. My cap was covered with googly eyes, I quite liked it. I sat next to Andrew, and our chatter made the whole ceremony feel less...ceremonial. The sound system was awful, I missed most of Melinda's and the SCA vice-president's speeches, as well as Eric's, though I did catch him mentioning Fancy Friday. That was nice.
The commencement speaker was okay, even if I did have to strain to make out his words. Love what you do, I think he said. It was suitably vague.
For not having to actually say anything, I was surprised to find myself stage-frightened. Nothing terrible happened.
After we'd all filed out of our rows and formed a scrum in the back hallway, I walked around getting hugs. It was a bit overwhelming but no different than all the other graduations I've attended. I had to hunt to find Katherine, and was relieved, once she showed up, that there had not been some drastic shift in our dynamic.
I did not speak to Clark or Nick or Alistair or any of those boys. We were never friends, after all. I did talk to Samuel's sister, Sally, and it did not make me sad. Eric ambushed me and mentioned he had my phone number; I told him to use it. I was put in a number of pictures and, feeling cheerful, gave extreme grins.
Then I went home with my family and felt strange. Just strange.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

In Preparation.

Graduation practice today. The gowns make you so sweaty, I forgot my honor cords, a vice-principal read every name: dull, just dull. Alice, Katherine and I were chatting as we exited, and I said, "Wait. That's the last time we're ever going to do that. Leave the school. The last time." They shrugged and we kept walking.
The whole proceeding reminded me of why I am so glad to get out of high school. These last few months, or perhaps this whole year, has been an idyll of adolescence (yes, who knew such a thing existed). But as a freshman and sophomore, even for some of junior year, that place was the source of all my troubles. I couldn't wait to graduate; I guess I still can't. I am proud to have finished unscathed, and with so many experiences.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Incomplete, But What Isn't?

What I'll miss about senior year. Not memorable occurrences, but repeated happenings that gave me consistently peachy days:

Melinda (and Sam, on occasion) singing Michael Jackson
class-led tangents in chemistry about sexting
also in that class, making signs for Katherine instead of listening to the teacher
listening to boy bands, Top 40 and sixties pop in yearbook
crashing out after hard practices
drawing a stick figure in the corner of every page of Alice's calculus notes, starting in January
handing out stickers on Fancy Friday
speaking of which, Alice's Fancy Friday outfits (when she remembered)
Goodwill sprees with Katherine
bringing up art history with Anna at odd moments
being the only person in study hall actually working
having a study hall in which to work
escapist or nonsensical conversations with Mr. Atkins
getting to know Karen, Bambi, Christen, Lauren
sleepovers with Anna, even the one when we did homework until four in the morning
getting snowed in
watching Community, Parks and Rec, and 30 Rock
oh yeah, and Glee
gawking at Nick in English

There's a passage from Prep that I thought about many, many times this year:
"The probable outcomes were not in our favor; we were hovering in that thin space before resolution, when the cards still might, but probably would not, fall in our favor. Usually, I just wanted to learn the ending. At that moment, howere, the suspense didn't bother me so much. It was a warm spring night; at least for a little while longer, it was almost nice not to know how it would all turn out."
Back when Anna didn't know if she'd gotten into the University of Pennsylvania or not. At the start of cross-country races. After taking AP tests, sweating and disoriented. Staring out as we drove back from Montreal, New York was so bleak and beautiful I wanted to cry. It seemed so possible that we might all get exactly what we wanted.

Hurm.


Katherine's mother took this picture of me fifteen minutes after the prom roller coaster began. It will be my only because it encapsulates every picture--you can tell I'm awkward and uncomfortable but, I think, not unhappy.

Sports awards tonight. Melinda got sportsmanship and Alice got MVP, no surprises there. They're half of the 4X100 relay team, which won at states on Saturday. Won! They represent everything joyous and beautiful about running that I fell in love with more than a year ago.
And now the running's done. Embarrassing, but I wish I could keep going. I wish I was good enough to run in college, so that my entire life could be class-practice-sleep-repeat. These are silly wishes born only of Kate Greer and my desire to belong somewhere.
I mean, Montreal, it's giant, who knows where I'll find to fit in?

Saturday, June 5, 2010

My Camera's Broken, Remember? My Brain Too.


After practice one day.


Staying up late to write an analysis of this book. It should have been an all-nighter, but I gave up at five and slept in until ten. I got a 94.


After getting ready for prom I was not particularly tolerant.


Feeling and looking kind of manic. Late-May syndrome.


Tie-dying seriously stained my hands. Took a few days to get off.


Coconut water!

Friday, June 4, 2010

Basically.

Woke up before six, drove to school. Today was prank day. Chalk, greasepaint, plastic wrap, parking all over the lawn, water balloons. The usual.
Had an awards ceremony, a brunch. Went home and watched movies with Katherine. Then we went to Braxton's photography show, just a little thing but pleasant. Katherine and I went out to the patio and looked down at the summer evening. "The city looks so peaceful from up here," I said.
We walked around downtown, then the grocery store. We were low-key. It was easy to forget, until right now, that I'm done with school. Done? I'm not going next week; exams. I have a form to turn in, and I have to go to graduation practice Thursday. Then nothing, forever.

I've decided to quit blogging. At least this way. It was always more of a journal than a website, and in any case, I will soon be too old to keep putting words onto this sweet-potato background. So I'll keep doing the post-a-day until I get my diploma, and then I'm out.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Freeze-Frame.

There was a scholarship awards ceremony tonight. I went, even though I didn't technically have to, because despite all attempts I am still more focused on beginnings and endings than actual life. And this was a big-deal ending.

But I just couldn't take it. Anna found out she received a $10,000 scholarship and I hated her so much as she walked up it was hard to stomach myself. She is one of my best friends, and I should be happy for her. But I'm not. I must not love her. I sat there as all these familiar faces walked up in their fancy clothes and flashed back to the day musical ended, when I drove around back roads, screaming. It felt the same. I try and try to reconcile what I want to be and what I irrevocably am. Ooh, that was a bad sentence.

But I didn't drive around screaming. I just lied to Alice about having to pick up my sister and ran out, literally ran. There had been a terrifying five-minute thunderstorm while I drove to the school and the air had turned hazy. It was an insanely romantic evening. Tess Lynch got engaged, you know? Anthropologie is channeling Faulkner, the Franzen piece in this week's New Yorker broke my heart, Jessica Watson is back on land. I'm addicted to nostalgia.

Mr. Atkins has called me all sorts of things this year--"subdued," "engaged," "hard to read." He was probably right, every time. I may not be good at summarizing myself but I am very good at being myself. I can't change.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

"Lemon Shorts!"

Goodwill outing today. I have the most fun shopping there. The frank lighting, the same detergent smell on everything, the polyester. Just love it. I got some regular clothes (like, mall-store material), a mod-ish pink dress, and strange flat ankle boots.
When "Young Forever" comes on the radio I listen, sometimes. My favorite part is "popping up on Forbes Lists, gorgeous."
Avett Brothers, "Kick Drum Heart." Yep.