The Transfiguration

everything is sacred

Posts Tagged ‘alli

Dance of the Day #621

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As the school year comes to an end, goodbyes seem to be a growing theme. Tonight Alli held a sort of goodbye party, complete with chocolate fountain. The sweets available were overwhelming, and nearly all of us developed chocolate mustaches at one point or another. With the leftover red velvet cake, the giant bag of skittles and this party, I have been engulfed with sugars, and can practically feel all the tiny carbon rings coursing through my bloodstream.

Alli is going away to Tennessee, and it is uncertain whether I’ll ever see her again. It’s a frightening thought. Almost everything that happens to me in life seems reversible, or temporary; goodbyes are never permanent, and I can always see my friends again soon. Occasionally relationships may gradually dissolve and vanish with your notice, but it’s rare to know that you won’t see a person again while you are still on good terms. I am not particularly close to Alli, but she is still leaving, and I had to make an appearance for her sendoff. She made an entry in my blue book, so I’ve caught a little bit of her for posterity – a guarantee that our lives intersected at one point in time.

skaian skirmish

Written by Umbrella Man

June 5, 2010 at 1:06 am

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Victory of the Day #557

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This is such a College Photo. Or something along those lines. It is one of a very large species of photos – groups shots with a blend of Cheese Smiles, laughter and awkward expressions, vampire eyes, the requisite beer glasses (though only one of the glasses here was actually used for beer) and even the glimmer of a stranger’s glance hidden in the background.

These cups are important, actually, as well as the cozies hugging them: we all went to Trivia Night at Woodstock’s Pizza, and our team, dubbed Team Double Chin, won two of the four rounds. The glasses and cozies were our prizes, and we clinked them together proudly.

Most of the trivia questions were beyond me – history and sports, especially – but I did manage to contribute a few times. I knew the one rule of Calvinball (do you know it?), and what Nintendo made when they first started out (to which I actually devoted a Photo of the Day), and somehow I knew the name of the Clintons’ cat (Socks!). Even if we don’t know the answer, it’s fun to discuss it with my teammates, and build toward an answer with our collective knowledge.

I’ve a glass of my own, and two cozies to go with it, and I’ll keep it as a trophy, and a memento of the night. This was a lot of fun – certainly worth getting back late. It’s far past my bedtime… goodnight~!

complicating, circulating

Written by Umbrella Man

April 2, 2010 at 12:26 am

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Carol of the Day #439

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The gregarious Alyssa lead a troupe of jolly singers around the campus tonight, spreading the magic of holiday cheer wherever it was welcome. Our first stop was at Tacos Morenos, where we marched in and waxed melodic about a certain reindeer, and from there we took a circuit around the dorms, filing through halls and singing outside windows and balconies. I think our best reception was in this little square – a few people came out onto their balcony and cheered us on, requesting an encore (which we had planned on anyway) and somberly declining our invitation to come sing with us.

There is something about caroling that makes it very difficult to join spontaneously, even though the nature of caroling kind of lends it to spontaneous invitations. It took me about fifteen minutes to decide that I did in fact want to go along, and while I’m sure that many of the people we met would have enjoyed singing with us, they simple could not agree to such an emotional investment on the spur of the moment. You have to psych yourself up for it, I suppose.

There is a verse to Jingle Bells which I had never heard before. It ranks alongside the mysterious secret lyrics to Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star. Here is the second verse, sung to the tune of the dashing through the snow bit:

A day or two ago
I thought I’d take a ride
And soon Miss Fanny Bright
Was seated by my side
The horse was lean and lank
Misfortune seemed his lot
We got into a drifted bank
And then we got upsot

The forced rhyme at the end is rather surprising, considering how easily the rest of the song flows.

These songs are starting to drill into my mind, planting firmly the Christmas spirit. The air here lacks the smell of Christmas, but it’s still starting to feel like it…

gone away is the bluebird

Written by Umbrella Man

December 5, 2009 at 2:35 am

Huddle of the Day #426

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From top left to bottom right: Muriel, Anna, Derrick and Alli, in a cozy pile after a delicious pre-Thanksgiving dinner. The room was perhaps a little dim, but it was warm and cozy, and smelled of the holidays. We each contributed a tasty homemade something to the feast, and it turned out perfected. I managed to create some reasonable imitations of my mom’s chocolate chip cookies and vegetable soup, which was palatable even though I completely forgot the lentils. The other dishes were delicious as well: candied yams made with maple syrup; the requisite mashed potatoes, improved with the addition of garlic; green bean casserole with crunchy little somethings on top; biscuits, salads, stuffing and pies; and homemade apple cider. I think several of us brought foods that our parents make, which makes me feel like, as we grow up, we carry on the traditions with which we are raised, and are weaving all of these traditions into a new sort of culinary tapestry. It’s a wonderful feeling, and I am definitely looking forward to doing similar things with friends from home when I get the chance.

People are ephemeral, and infinitesimal in the grand scheme of the universe, and when they blur together in mobs or countries or cliques they all appear the same, but each one is absolutely beautiful. I think it’s absolutely amazing that, after making friends at home and talking with them for hours on end, I can meet new people here and have new conversations with them, and find that they are every bit as interesting and that I can agree with them on so many things. I feel as though I could speak with every person on Earth and be fascinated each time by the vast labyrinths of thoughts and desires each one holds.

Anna spotted four shooting stars that I missed entirely.


brothers on a hotel bed

Written by Umbrella Man

November 22, 2009 at 4:09 am

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Rink of the Day #416

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I apologize for the shaky camera, but I suppose this is what you get when you try to give a first-person account of the local roller skating rink. And I realize it’s very noisy, but there are certain sounds in it that I’d like you to notice, like the the little kids all singing along to Beat It, and one of them saying what the? when she sees me rolling around while crouching.

Also note the father and daughter fallen on the floor on my second lap – if you look closely, you can actually see them start to lose their balance, and when the camera turns back to them, they’ve fallen completely. Some time later, the Village People’s YMCA song played, and everyone mimed the letters to the music.

Something about this makes me feel like I’m watching a recording of a dream – the stumbling vision, the momentary passing glances at strangers and friends, then moving onwards, trying to slip between other skaters and sliding along an inch from the floor…

One thing I should say about the kids at this rink – I’m really proud of them for being such good sports, even though I didn’t know any of them. There was always someone falling down, but none of them cried, none of them asked for help, and all of them were able to stand up and keep skating. I actually crashed into the same kid twice – he happened to trip up right in front of me while I was rolling squat, and it is a little difficult to make quick turns without the leverage your knees provide. He didn’t complain – just stood up and kept skating. Good kid.

I actually slipped up a few times myself, while trying to skate backwards. I am baffled by the people who can make a 180º spin without losing momentum or balance – just skating backwards from a starting position is like trying to learn to walk again.

A few moments after I finished recording the video, the lady at the front desk spoke on the intercom, calling the kids back for cake, and asking that people don’t sit on the rails or skate while crouched. Bah humbug! She just doesn’t want to see anything out of the ordinary.

Beat It – Pomplamoose

Written by Umbrella Man

November 11, 2009 at 10:48 pm

Posted in friends, people, strangers

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Photo of the Day #415

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It’s difficult sometimes to fit everyone in a single frame. Sitting at one end of the table, up against the wall, there was no way to capture everyone’s face without asking them to pose for me. This was the closest I could manage, and so from left to right we have Trevor, Rob, Alli, Alex and Michael. Not pictured, but present tonight, were Pearce, Devin, Anna, Pearce’s friend Julian and the neighbors from next door.

So many people, and so many conversations twisted together!

It’s late, and I’m very tired, but I can sleep in tomorrow morning, so I can go to bed with ease. Good night. . .

ear-pearcing shrills

Written by Umbrella Man

November 11, 2009 at 1:52 am

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Something of the Day #406

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Mufasa teaches Simba about the Great Circle of Life, there are glowing skeletons on the wall, a black cat watches from the ceiling and two jack o’lanterns huddle together as their days dwindle.

I’ve been sitting on a thought for a few days now – for the past week, or more, actually – and I still haven’t quite gotten a handle on it, but it might be congealing a little now.

There is something about people, and the things they build, the stories they write, the faces they draw on post-it notes and the way they stare off into the distance when they are thinking that amazes me.

And, for that matter, it is astonishingly beautiful the way a pen looks on paper when you are trying to find your words, and candy corn looks lovely when you see only the yellow bits, and there was a little bit of something on the kitchen table that I nearly made friends with this evening.

Alli sang her own version of Prince Ali from Aladdin (Prince Alli), and I could see a smile grow across Anna’s face when Alli laughed.

I’m not sure what this something is, but it makes me slam my fist on dining hall tables, and makes me want to walk on the ceiling, and spin down the stairs, and sit perfectly still and listen the sound of a sponge on dishes and footsteps outside. I could fall asleep and explode through the window in a fit of laughter and still not land within the emotional spectrum that would allow me to understand this something.

But I’ll find it! Tracing the edges of it, one feels absolutely invincible. Suppose you could take it in both hands?

can you feel a little love?

Written by Umbrella Man

November 2, 2009 at 1:02 am