Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Maenad

There was just a moment in her early years when this behaviour just started to feel normal, natural. She would gather up her friends, usually at dusk, and bring many vessels of wine, place them in a field, usually a spot pleasing to the eye, then they would all drink and celebrate. Dancing would often happen about half way through the evening, then the clothing would come off. No one was ever embarrassed about it. It was all in good fun and all for the sake of Bacchus of which her and friends were followers of. She had hoped one day that the god of wine himself would appear and drink with them but week after week he never appeared. Sometimes she felt like they were getting pissed for no good reason, especially when she felt the effects the morning after. The pounding in her head, the aches in her bones, the horrible taste in her mouth – she was no longer a young girl able to purge the delicious poisons from her body. She had seen Maenads before (I guess she was one of them now) and they always looked so much older. She then made a mental note to look at her reflection in a still pool before the next festival and see if she was now one of them.

Monday, November 21, 2005

The word gazelle made Casey uncomfortable, even somewhat nervous. There wasn't any reason for him to write it down on paper this time but it could come up later in the 3 hour-exam time and throw off his carefully planned schedule. 3 essay questons -- 3 hours -- a half an hour for the first question, an hour and a half for the 2nd and the remaining hour for the third. Generally he found that there was usually 15-20 minutes left over for him to check over and read his work, making a few minor changes here and there but only if he could finish an exam without coming to one of those words. Casey doesn't remember when he created the list of 7 forbidden words. It could've have gone as far back as childhood because they just seemed to be there forever. Moving to a new city was strange in that he had to bring the list with him -- a crumpled up folded piece of paper always kept in the top drawer of a desk. If there was no desk it was always kept inside the dictionary his grandfather gave him, slipped in between the title page and not the front cover. People looked for things in the front covers of books and Casey knew this. The first question asked him to compare and contrast the differences between the main characters in two Dickens. Easy enough Casey though since he was a pretty big fan of Dickens, which was a strange thought in itself because really who was a fan of Dickens. But Casey admired his use of words in such a pragmatic way. The sheer fact that Dickens knew he was paid by the word and decided in order to amass enough money to make a living solely writing that he would decribe everything in great detail down to the dust motes in the corner of an old Victorian mansion. That awareness of the power of words really inspired Casey. The hall echoed with the scritching sounds of pens to paper. Casey stopped and looked around at everyone dilligently writing, with a few people starting at the ceiling and shaking their heads.

Gazelle was one of the words, vivisection was another. Both probably safe on this question. Casey continued to write making comparisons, parallells and juxtopostions between two made up people in two books written over a hundred years ago. He stopped for a moment, checked his watch and saw he was well ahead of schedule right now. Things were looking good and at this point nothing would stand in his way to finish this mini essay. Although question 2 was right around the corner.

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Jesse does a wheelie

Jesse wanted a BMX bike so bad he could taste it. There had been a number of time already where he had asked his parents if he could get one for his birthday, for Christmas and every other holiday where there were presents given. He was starting to feel like there was some strange conspiracy preventing him from having a BMX bike. Jesse wasn't a follower -- none of his friends had a BMX bike. In fact the fad with all his friends leaned towards your typical 10-speed. The strange thing was that there was no reason why he wanted that kind of bike, well except for one -- the desire to perfect the best wheelie. Even this he didn't want to show off to his friends but rather just to know for himself that he could do one.

This obsession with poppin' a wheelie became so apparently one day when he took his little sisters tricycle out for a spin and got up enough speed to get the front tire up in the air. But sadly only for a few seconds. The second time he tried to gain more speed by driving down a gravel hill. Gravel hills always scared Jesse because once his friend Steven built up way too much speed going down and ended up tumbling and scraping his face along the rocks. This was something that Jesse did not want to experience. But at this point, things were getting desperate. People gathered around and word spread through the city that a kid was planning on trying to pop a wheelie on tricycle was was literally 3 sizes too small for him. A crowd has already gathered at the hill when he came up looking pretty ridiculous in his baggy jeans on the tricycle. His sister in the distance was crying and screaming for Jesse to get off her only means of transportation especially since the Green Machine had to be put by the curb because another one of Jesse's friends who was too big for it sat on it and broke. Jesse's sister was heartbroken even though the Green Machine was Jesse's when he was younger.

The hill was large and the grey stones glimmered in the sunshine that day and at the top of the hill, Jesse looked over and saw the bottom and tried to map out in his head where the right point would be for him to attempt the wheelie. He began to pedal and the crowd gasped. In the seconds when he started tumbling down the hill Jesse heard his mother in the distance screaming out to him. He couldn't make out the 3 letters she was scream. He me next? What was she saying? He looked over and saw the line of people screaming by, trees, leaves, squirrels and then finally caught on in focus glimpse of his mother. She had beside her a shiny lime green BMX bike with a huge red bow attached to the front. Jesse blinked once trying to figure out if it was like the flash of a subliminal image, if it was actually a real thing since he only caught a second. The lime green image was left on his retinas as the world flew by. And in that moment of joy when he realized that his mother had FINALLY got him the only thing he ever wanted, he suddenly remembered where he was and what he was doing and what he was supposed to do in the proposed spot. The wheelie. He lost control of the pedals and let them take on a mind of their own and as the tricycle finally hit level ground he used all his strength and weight and lifted the wheel off the ground. He had done it and done it looking ridculous on a tricycle. He didn't need that flashy lime green BMX to make his dream come true. As the wheel hit the ground he turned around and looked up and saw the the crowd had disappated and all that was left was his sister screaming:

"Give me back my bike you jerk."
"Shut up! Where's mom?"
"Mom's not here, no one is."
"Oh."

Didn't like lime green anyway thought Jesse.