Story Time!

20 07 2010

To my mind there is nothing more useless than riding with my father’s trade caravan. I am the youngest daughter and, while I am by no means unintelligent, I am of no help on these trips. Father brought me only to sweeten up the buyers with my beauty and tea-pouring skills. To make a five week journey on the back of a recalcitrant horse only to pour tea for fat old men is demeaning. Especially this year, as I am forced to leave at the height of the Season.

More importantly, though, I leave mere weeks after becoming engaged to His Lordship Sir Delmonte. Sir Delmonte is the most handsome and most influential young man at Court. Some think that he will be the next King and he will if the Council is not a gaggle of idiot geese.

My father is smart. He knew my two half-sisters would never catch His Lordship’s eye. They are overtall and not blessed with surplus intelligence. Moreover, it is well known that Sir Delmonte favors fair complexions and green eyes. My stepmother is dark complexioned in the tradition of our people and her daughters take after her. My skin is white and my eyes are jade and, as I have said, my father is no fool. Read the rest of this entry »


Peter and Penny

11 07 2010

First there was Peter.

Not because Peter was more important than Penny but rather Peter’s parents decided that he must be born and so he was. Penny’s parents had less resolve and were younger so she was a little behind.

For the first dozen years Penny was taller but she didn’t mind because she hadn’t met Peter yet. Without Peter to measure herself by she didn’t have to feel gawky. No girl likes to feel gawky, especially when she is very young. About the time Peter started growing Penny began taking piano lessons.

Peter’s parents bought him a red truck on his seventeenth birthday. They were not wealthy people but Peter’s father had certain ideas about what growing boys needed. These ideas included things like lots of protein, a dog of no small size (Peter’s dog was name Archie), tennis shoes and a truck.

Peter put a toolbox and his dog in his truck and was content. For a while, anyway.

Penny spent a lot of her time doing odd jobs like babysitting and lawn mowing and the occasional afternoon in her parent’s bakery. By the time she was eighteen she had saved up enough money to buy herself a piano.

The parent’s of Penny, who were supportive but not visionary, told her she must keep the piano in her own room. Penny’s room had been on the second floor but she gladly took up residence in the smaller downstairs room in order to have the piano near. She painted a daisy on the music stand and was glad.

Peter first saw Penny as he was driving through her neighborhood one summer afternoon. He was twenty and home from college and she was eighteen, still giddy from the novelty of her new piano. He glimpsed her as she fetched the mail. A flash only, of a bright smile and lean, freckled face.

Peter drove through that neighborhood a lot that summer.

Luckily Peter’s best friend Jeff also lived in the neighborhood so he didn’t have to think up many excuses to be in her general area.

September loomed on the horizon before Peter finally met Penny.

It was at a neighborhood barbeque. Jeff had mentioned it to Peter and Peter had shamelessly begged that he be invited. Jeff laughed at him and told him to bring watermelon.

So Peter came. He was late and a group of the younger kids had turned on some music and were dancing in the cul de sac. Penny was right in among them, swinging a pig-tailed little girl around in circles. She swung to a dizzy stop and laughed, wrinkling her nose at the kids.

She straightened and brushed her hair back, the kids swirling around her like water.

Like a man in a dream Peter shoved the watermelon into someone’s waiting arms and walked right up to Penny. His knees were curiously gelatinous but determination kept him moving.

“Hi.” The laugh was still in her voice.

“Hi.” He smiled.

They’ve been Peter and Penny ever since. We celebrated their fortieth anniversary last month.

“Of shoes and ships and sealing wax….”

9 07 2010

“… of cabbages and kings
and why the sea is boiling hot
and whether pigs have wings…”

Name THAT poem, kids.

The past months have been interesting, to say the least. I’ve had my fifth experience as a bridesmaid, participated in a dance recital for the first time since I was 16, opened a private art show at a local restaurant and finally decided to attend art school. First things first…

Bridesmaid, Part  V

It was a glorious day, tinted pink and green and all over sparkles. The groomsmen were handsome, the bride beautiful and my dress a marvel of engineering. I worked my rear off in full bridesmaid mode the entire time. My self-appointed jobs included feeding the bride and groom snacks during pictures, making witty banter with anyone who looked the least bit unoccupied, helping the bride go to the bathroom (a wedding-day classic that I had never experienced before) and many more. Favorite memories include waltzing with Trevor, demanding that the groomsmen entertain me because I was tired of witty banter, getting my hair done and watching as two wonderful people promised to love and honor each other for the rest of their lives. Least favorite memory was watching the bride and groom drive away, knowing that a beautiful day was over.

I really hate the wedding reality of making new friends that you never see again. I would have liked very much to spend more time with some of those amazing people!

I’m going to skip the ballet recital and the art show… I don’t feel like writing about either.

As for art school… It has become very clear that this is the only option that stirs my heart. I’ve had enough of being a marginal artist. I want to pursue my heart’s desire of working on film and writing books, both of which line up directly with a degree in Illustration. I’m meeting with my art mentor tomorrow to talk about art school and whether or not it’s worth it. I’ll let you know how that conversation goes.

There you go, kids. A brief update. Hopefully I’ll be able to come up with something more in depth next time.

Also, you should read Wil Wheaton’s blog.