How to Get Scared by a Binder

I’m overwhelmed by how much space that’s been taken up by papers. Paper is so thin, if we had only seen what paper looked like we never would have guessed how easily they stack on top of each other. I can see the papers overflowing my binder like hot pasta with water boiling over the pot. They remind me of the monstrous book of monsters from harry potter.

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From Halloween grams to college career pamphlets, nothing has been thrown out. Most of the papers have never been touched for months, not even looked at. Yet I still hold on to them. And so begins the battle of stuffing papers into a space that doesn’t exist. Oh what agony, to be looking for something that wasn’t even there. Or flipping through all compartments of a two inch binder until you finally find what you’ve been looking for, only to find that it was in an obvious spot you’ve overlooked twenty times. The papers have consumed me. My chest carries the burden of being pressed by weights. Breaths feel heavier like a smoker wheezing for the last full breath of sweetness called life. It would be a
daring move to open my binder out of leisure.

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Finally the day comes where you can’t escape the pain of cleaning your binder. The time has come to sort, file, and throw papers out. And it’s dreadful. But once it’s been finished, a new feeling arises. It feels fresh and the weights have been lifted. Breathing is easier now. And all is well. Skip ahead a few more months , and you’re back to square one, it’s like you’ve never escaped from the place you started from. There’s no proof of progress because nothing has changed. What a shame.

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New beginnings, second chances, they are like drugs that inspire you to do great things. When you write a new year’s resolution, you feel obligated to accomplish every goal and it feels like nothing is impossible. You get another chance of becoming the better version of yourself you haven’t reached. Second,third, fourth and chances don’t change anything if you don’t force change. Christians baptize themselves to become reborn, to cleanse themselves of their past to make a better change. It usually only happens once. It would be useless to baptize someone who is constantly sinning with the intention of sinning. Don’t wait until your binder is filled up, clean it every week.
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The Constant in a Good Friendship

When I used to live in garden grove I had a best friend named Min. The height of our friendship was during middle school, we would hang out as much as we could during the weekends,after school, in the summer.

I never really liked hanging out and so min had to forcibly convince me to go outside. Most times I would turn down the offer , seeing that missing a  pretty little liars episode was worth giving up a social life. But then there were times where I agreed and eventually we started hanging out a lot more often, and I have never regretted it once. We would go over to a close friend’s house, Alexis and the trio was united. We were really close to each other and sometimes we’d sneak out to our midnight swimming sessions in our apartment pool.

Min tied our friendship together so when she moved, we started to drift apart. I missed taking walks around the neighborhood or going to hmart, and buying a bunch of snacks just for the heck of it. All of It went away along with min, we would visit each other but that didn’t happen often.

It’s hard to find a friendship where you’re able to connect with someone easily and comfortably. Making new friendships is difficult when you’ve been friends with the same people for years. You forget how to play the game. How I met your mother is a show about a guy trying to find “the one”, the significant other that was meant to be, the couple that agreed with the universe. I think there’s a version for friends, and to me , it’s when two people are comfortable with each other right from the beginning. But there is another type of friendship where you have to work to make it flow.

I once got in a fight with a friend about what a true friend meant, and what you had to be to be best friends with someone. I argued that real friends are friends that are “meant to be”, she countered my argument saying that it was about the commitment two people made, and how hard they tried to make their friendship work and support each other. Coming back to it, I’d agree with it because it’s about who is suporting you and loves you.  If you’re the only one in the relationship trying to make things work, it’s better to break off the friendship. No matter how hard you try to make things click, it wont change.You can’t force people to like things they don’t.

The defining moment of when two people get closer together is they are truly honest with each other. Being honest to your friends can seem like a burden when it comes down to the gritty stuff. I don’t vent a lot and there are several factors as to why I don’t “open up” .

• I don’t want anyone to feel bad

• It’s hard to know whether someone wants to listen to you or not

• Trust can be questionable

• People get annoyed easily

But when I do vent it’s because…

• People can relate

• It feels good to let everything spill

• It clears up confusions

Honesty isn’t something that’s given to you immediately, it’s like working towards a promotion. It’s what separates a friend, from a best friend.  Which is also why I can still call Min my best friend to this day (along with other reasons).

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A Few Complaints About Texting

Teenagers are supposed to be the “pros” of texting. I, on the other hand, am NOT a pro when it comes to texting. In fact, texting has always been complicated. It’s a great alternative to calling someone, when you don’t want to hear their voice, or your own. You can type out poop emojis to express fear, joy, pain, anger, but that’s what makes emojis confusing and people can misinterpret your message easily and often.

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Figuring out the tone of a text can be as complex as watching shutter island at the age of seven. Key and Peele’s video about “Text Message Confusion” is a perfect example of how two people interpret one message. *Beware* profanity is to be expected( The title even says uncensored). You can always ask what the person meant in their message, but who wants to ask that regularly. It’s like asking someone what an acronym is every time they use it, it’s tiring.

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Texting can be like the guessing game, you can go from using playful nicknames to getting into fight you weren’t aware of until they told you. There are so many youtube videos, vines, and memes about text messages going wrong. Then there’s this whole ordeal of when to text someone back, and waiting at least three days or some mumbo jumbo.

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There is no amount of question marks and exclamation points to express your frustration correctly unlike a call, in which you’re able to sigh,laugh, scream, etc .Texting the word “sigh” or “ugh” doesn’t have the same effect as saying it out loud. You also can’t be sarcastic in text, which is unfortunate. I tried one time, but it ended up in a messy argument.

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When you’re in a call with someone, you can detect how they feel and conversations are more sincere because it’s like talking to someone face to face. The reason why there are so many haters on the internet is because they don’t feel the repercussion they would get when they would actually say it in person. However this can also work to an advantage, if you’re too afraid to say something in person it’s easier to type it down.

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Another thing I’d liked to point out, is read receipts. Dang those read receipts, I’ll be texting someone and waiting for their reply back when I see that sneaky word on the bottom labeled :“Read” . What is up with people reading your messages and not replying back? I know who’s not going to be invited to my ultra extravaganza laser tag birthday party next year.

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If texting is complicated right now, I don’t know where I’ll be once everyone starts riding hoverboards. I miss having hour long phone conversations with close friends and being able to express how I feel during the moment. Phone calls are superior to texting when it comes building relationships and getting to know someone better. We’ve all heard those stories about people breaking up over the phone, but it’s worse when you text someone that you want to break up with them. When it comes to convenience texting is the better option, because who has time to call people nowadays? But overall ,I’d rather pick rare phone calls over conveniences. 

We are the Main Characters and Extras in a Play

I haven’t paid much attention to my surroundings as I used to. When I would walk through the hallways of my school, I would look at everything and everyone around me. Nowadays I kind of just blur everything out. Have you ever played hide and seek and thought that if you didn’t see anything you assumed that no one could see you? Your perspective controlled the game, but you ended up losing. Child logic -0 reality -1.

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After making unpleasant eye contact with other kids in middle school, I learned that people don’t look at other people as they walk by. It was this unspoken rule that I’ve only heard of by the eighth grade. Maybe I was just a weird kid, the stereotypical homeschooled kid that had a prom in their basement. Well whatever it was, I started doing what the normal thing was, it wasn’t much of a change. It’s kind of useful now, when I see someone I don’t want to talk to, I can just walk past them without feeling awkward. I use that same logic, as long as I don’t see them, they don’t see me. It’s kind of selfish to think that way, especially since people might think you’re looking at them when you’re just wandering off on your own business.

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I came upon an instance where I met someone who was so focused on what they were doing, they didn’t even realize what was happening in the classroom. People would be talking amongst the tables in our classroom, and there’d be this girl who did her work and when you asked her something she was completely oblivious to the conversations heard so clearly amongst us. It was like she was in her own world, no one existed but her ,until eventually someone would break the barrier between the two worlds to ask for homework help.

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Occasionally I’ll get into a binge of questioning everything, and a topic that comes up a lot is being in a society. I figured my public persona is the only thing that’s keeping me from becoming Equality 7-2521 from Anthem. I feel like I lose a connection to people when I just blur everyone out of the picture. It’s the same feeling you have when you lose connection to the internet, you’re left with the question of what do I do now. I’d probably be living in a cabin in the forest somewhere if it weren’t for the internet. Sometimes I get caught up by own thoughts I forget about the importance of the things around me.  Living in your own world, is like ignoring the world itself, but maybe I’m wrong.

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Humor Is Tricky

I love sharing things that I think are funny with others because I want to make others smile, and when they do ,it feels like we accomplished something together. Delivering great jokes is the equivalent of winning a debate with people cheering you on by the sides. You’ve got that smug smile almost breaking through, but you play it cool acting like it happens all the time. But when things don’t go as planned, it’s like singing in the shower and having a stranger knock on your door telling you to shutup. It’s that fist clenching moment that makes you feel like the man whose cry sounds like a dying duck.Everyone has a different idea of what funny is, what you think they might find funny, might be the opposite. Another person’s humor is something you can never be certain about unless you’re related to them, then you might have a clearer idea of what they find funny because families usually share the same sense of humor(but honestly, who really wants to share jokes with their thirty-five uncle who eats cheesy potatos every friday night). I get really worked up about telling funny jokes or stories and when someone doesn’t laugh, my heart sinks. I think about those breathing practices and hand motions I learned from doing yoga with my mom and watching Sharpay get ready to sing on stage. By then I’m in the phase where I fight off the fact that I am butthurt, when really that’s all I can think about. The last step, so universally known among un-funny people is regret. Oh GOSH! WHY DID I JUST SAY THAT. JUST LOOK LIKE YOU’RE UNAFFECTED BY THEIR CONFUSED FACES. DON’T TRY TO EXPLAIN IT, IT’LL MAKE THINGS WORSE. But then you go ahead and try to explain how that thing is funny by shoving it down their throat….but it never goes well. Most times I’ll be stuck in a situation where I can’t recover quickly so I’ll bob my head and avoid as much eye contact to shield myself from my audience’s laser eyes of judgement. Sometimes you just have to embrace the fact that people have different likes and dislikes or accept that humor isn’t your strong area. If you enjoy what you do, keep doing it, embarrassment is temporary anyways.

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A baby possum and family pride

I remember the time a baby possum came into my house, it was dark and I was with two of my brothers. I think it was during a weekend and we were alone. It was a memorable experience in my childhood that lived up to the romanticized adventure stories we’d hear, but never really cared about. We had a game plan to figure how to get the possum out. The oldest one of us, Solomon took charge of what we should do, how to cope with being under the same roof of a foreign MONSTER, and how we were going to execute our plan.

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So our plan went like this.The first thing we did was to build a safeguard, because in no way were we going to catch rabies at the age of seven, nine, and eleven.  Protection was the most important tactic—and it was all we could think of. We gathered pillows from our bedrooms as fast as we could nearly tripping at the last step of the stairs, but we also had to make sure that the possum stay put while we gathered our defensive equipment. My youngest brother was watching over the possum that was behind our tv, while my brother and I slid over the stair railing into our protective space without going beyond our borders. We arranged our couches as a barricade, and that’s when we encountered our first problem. The only way we could get out of our homemade couch and pillow fort was to climb over and out of the staircase. I was the only flexible one so it all was all up to me to bring the necessities that kept our hungry hearts alive.

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The adrenaline was pumping and we were fidgety from excitement, it was like getting ready for a track meet that determined where our ranks would be placed. We all knew that there wasn’t really a threat to our safety(because of the barricade), but at least I pretended to act as if it was. It was so fun joining forces against something that we were all against, that I forgot how unpredictable an animal could be. Being scared together was kind of….thrilling or perhaps I was the only one thinking this.

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Later that night, my oldest brother, Isaac, came home and found out about the possum. He wasn’t mad that we messed up the house, he just laughed like he was in disbelief at how prepared we were to battle against a rabid possum. Okay so I’m exaggerating, the possum wasn’t rabid. It didn’t move at all, literally. My oldest brother had to get a golf club and drag the possum outside because it was playing dead the whole time it was in our house. Once the possum was out, it scurried back into the pile of leaves I’m guessing it came from. We got all hyped for something my oldest brother took care of, if we had known this I think nothing would have changed. We’d go through the experience even knowing what we did was redundant. I guess siblings aren’t so bad to live with.

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