Friday, March 26, 2010


What is it to be smart? Is smart when you make good grades, but don't remember anything you learned when 3 o'clock rolls around? Is smart when you can pick up almost any musical instrument and figure out how to play every scale or even a song? Is smart when you're a parent, and you can sense when your child is in danger, be it big or small? Is smart when you're an athlete, and you develop a strategy in the middle of a game that makes you win? Is smart when you get a high score on an entrance exam? Is smart when you can tell when people are upset and know what to say to make them feel better?

Okay, maybe I got a little carried away with that, but what does it mean to be "smart?" My friend Yellie came over last night and said to me,"Gosh, it sucks to be smarter than all your friends." Which was followed by a laugh. Then she goes on to brag about her 28 ACT score, three points higher than my own wimpy 25. But intelligence is more than an ACT score. Sure, she can score higher than me on an ACT, but I have a higher grade in Spanish. It's not from her lack of ability; she gets caught up in how smart she is and thinks she's the best at it. Therefore, she should not need to study or do her homework. Who wins there?

She has natural ability, academically and musically. That much is the solid truth. I do not have much natural academic ability; I have to study a lot. Musically, ha! Might as well forget that one. My point is, intelligence is more than that. I'm not saying she's not smarter than me, she probably is. It's just not about an ACT score.

Okay, maybe all this is just to make myself feel better for not scoring higher on my ACT. But I STUDIED. I don't think she even did. I TRIED. Well, can't really get any scholarships for that. Poo.

Monday, March 8, 2010

The Comfort of Consistence

Humans are creatures of habit. There are many things we do just because we have done them that way in the past; sometimes these habits simply change. People change as they get older, get more life experience under their belts. (No pun intended.) When we see our friends or our children or our younger siblings grow up, they can seem totally different from who we once knew. Yet every so often, in this chaotic world, they surprise us with what we least expect: consistency. When that friend bakes you cookies on your birthday like they used to, or that son or daughter looks at the Veggie Tales character on T.V. a second too long, or that younger-but-still-teenage brother swiftly wipes his freshly picked boogers on Dad's Sunday Best; we see that person who we have always loved and adored.

Today, all of this was expressed to me one single look.

I was going through some old favorite CDs for some inspirational song to add to a mixed CD for a friend. Slipknot's Subliminal Verses Vol. 3 stuck out like a sore thumb. On impulse, I immediately popped it into the player and switched it to Pulse of the Maggots, which was a favorite when I was a Freshman. Before I know it, I'm propelled into every word, every chord, every beat. With my brother's hairbrush/my fake microphone in hand, I start bouncing around the house in some energetic head-banging, bone-crunching, body-slamming dance while screaming the lyrics. Towards the end of the song, I begin to come out of my daze long enough to glance at Kali, who is staring at me with a look that said it all.

In this world of chaos, where some little tom-cat heathen infiltrated her magnificant palace (Keeran), there was something that had not changed. After the months (and years) of stressful essays, night-time work shifts, morning and afternoon classes, constant studying, and elaborate scholarships applications... I was still that same little dorky Freshman who frequently rocked out in their underwear before going to the school dance, only this time I was rocking out in the few minutes of free time that was squeezed from my primp-time for work. I realized in that moment, that I was comfortable being a kid forever (4 weeks before my 18th birthday, mind you), and so was Kali because it baffled Keeran long enough to stop stalking her for a few precious moments.