Jun 24

The Hues of Blue

It was a jet-blue broiling summer morning; so hot, even the flies seemed to be lazy and wallowed in the sunshine reflected off the windowpane. My brother and I, under the supervision of our dog Lappa, were soaking in our pond to avoid the sweltering heat. It was the peak season of the blue color: lapis-lazuli lupines and blue flag irises were in full bloom. The sky, reflected in the water, was cobalt, enhancing a cyan colored inflatable sea-lion, Dolphy, on which my brother was sprawled.

Even the tormenting heat rarely gets our St. Bernard, Lappa, into the water on his own. When he swims (an ocurrence to celebrate) he looks like a half-submerged tank, ochre in color. Gulping berry-blue pond water on his way, he cools off after a minuete or so, gets out, and shakes crystal-clear droplets on everyone and everything.
May 06
essay 1 comment challenge: Today

The Crown Jewel of Japan

The Crown Jewel of Japan
I first learned of longtails this May, while preparing for a poultry show. In an argument with my brother, I declared that no domestic fowl is more gorgeous than my pure-bred Barred Rocks (a stupid dare if you ask me now).

A web search revealed silkies, cochins, brahmas…. and an Onagadori. I lost to a unanimous vote for the exotic looking fowl, though I discovered the beauty of long-tailed breeds.  

At first glance, Onagadori look like they were photoshopped; a small, banty rooster with a fifteen foot tail (at least). Yet, this is not a joke.  Onagadori actually do exist and were a thriving form of living art in ancient Japan. This extremely rare breed is a result of scrupulous selection and crossbreeding through many centuries.
May 01
fiction, humor 1 comment challenge: Arm

Luxurious Amenities

Luxurious Amenities 

When I was seven, I had a huge problem with organization. I didn’t seem to have enough time, no matter how hard I planned. For example, my reading “time slot” was half an hour, but I couldn't tear myself away from the most intriguing part of the story. So all my plans for the day were screwed up.

To resolve the problem with scheduling, I came up with the idea of developing multitasking skills. My inspiration was Napoleon, the Emperor and a tireless military leader of France.

When I found out he could write, talk, and listen at the same time, I was ecstatic. I didn’t know if it was a fib, but decided to try.

My attempts were disastrous. I ended up messing my writing project, while trying to solve math problems and watching cartoons. After several other unsuccessful attempts I gave up the idea.

My second fancy was the feature of extra arms. Ever since I watched Spirited Away by Hayao Miyazaki, the image of eight-limbed Kamaji swept away my imagination. Though my brother said that I would look weird with eight arms, he determined that three would be sufficient.

Three arms! I was delighted. I would do two things at once, like holding a book and eating breakfast, or doing math while hanging on the monkey bars. A third limb would never be on the way, while eight could create a problem.

I searched in every Hogwarts book for a limb growing potion. I consulted my brother. He recommended to “mix up dirt, leaves, rotten crabapples, grass, wax, and chocolate.” I was disgusted, but he assured me that it would work.
Apr 15

The Strive for Neatness

The Strive for Neatness

In the fall, my family and I visited my relative’s house in Boston. At this time of the year Vermont’s colorful pastures were covered by foliage.

When we arrived to our grandma’s, the first thing I saw was the impeccably manicured, neat lawns with inch-long, smooth, bright green grass and bushes in fancy shapes (no dead leaves at all). Do they have different seasons? The crowns of the trees told me that three hours South-East of Vermont they also had fall.
Apr 07
essay 0 comments challenge: Lucky

The Mystery Of Number Four

The Mystery Of Number Four

I sat down on the couch and pulled out the Sudoku puzzle book. “Same thing in level three…”: I noticed a repetitious pattern I figure out the number FOUR. “That should be my lucky number!”

I wanted to get evidence to support my hypothesis; is my special connection to this number the reason I figure out all the fours immediately?  My plan included several steps:

1. Find the connection of the number to my name, zodiac sign, etc.

2. Research all the symbols associated with the number

3. Study the different cultural opinions and beliefs 

4. And finally, decide how it can help me in solving the Sudoku “no sweat”.

In my opinion, the plan was very scientific and foolproof.
Mar 31
humor 1 comment challenge: Perfect

Miss Perfect

        It was the perfect day to so something intricately special. The sky was robin’s egg blue, birds cheerfully chirped outside; spring was in the air.
        With no idea of exactly what to pull off, I plopped onto the couch and flipped through Backyard Poultry. A flashy article, adorned by a seductive picture with the tempting title, “Easy Angel Fruit Cake,” caught my eye. The more I looked at the photo, the more watery felt my mouth. To top off my craving, memories of my friend’s birthday-party cake were popping up in my mind. Dollops of lemon curd, whipped cream and jam…. it was a finger-licking treat. I firmly resolved to make it, imagining myself presenting the finished delicacy to the family with the air of Miss Perfect.
Mar 25

The Storm Swimmer

     It was a pleasant, late afternoon. My brother and I were joyfully splashing in the lake, I experiencing a face to face encounter with guppies, minnows, and occasionally a browsing larger fish, my brother paddling with an amiable crocodile. Looking happily across the water, Gong, as we named the floatie, cheerfully showed off a blue patch, camouflaging the hole on the place where a mouse happily snacked on plastic.
     Gasping for the air after chasing a foot-long trout, I shook off streams of rain when distant thunder claps reached my ears.
     Hurriedly changing, I dashed to the car but was stopped by my brother’s scream, “Bring the floatie!” My eyes spun around, searching the beach. Gong was floating on the edge of the water.
Mar 17
essay 1 comment challenge: Illegal

The Silly Mouse Inside Us

     “I know it’s illegal, but it’s the weekend. The ticket ladies don’t usually come out on Sundays, so I’ll be fine,” I kept telling myself as I parked my car next to a hydrant after finding no legal parking space close enough to my destination.  Obviously, when my car was towed I was beyond myself with anger, but not remorse.
     When we do illegal things, covering them up with excuses, don’t we harm anyone except ourselves? And isn’t it strange that our wrong doings always backfire on us? For example, in my case, the fire department was not be able to reach the hydrant and called the tow truck.
Mar 10

Haunting Trampoline

Haunting Trampoline

When I was about seven, I had a burning desire to get up before dawn, pull on a sheet, and wake up everyone in the family by pretending to hover over them like a ghost. I started to go to bed early, thinking it would help, but could not fall asleep at six in the evening. After worrying everyone sick for a few weeks with my weird behavior, I saved enough money to buy an alarm clock.
Mar 03

The Age Of Computer Records

The Age of Computer Records

It was Monday morning. A blizzard was howling outside, my grandma and I were plowing through the snow to get an X-ray for my wrist. The entire arm hurt as I fell down on the skating rink.

Though the fear that I have a fracture was disheartening, I longed to visit the emergency room. The ambulances, medical equipment, doctors, and suffering fellow patients, like in movies, seemed fascinating.

When we got to the clinic, I was disappointed. No screaming sirens; the lobby was a stylish empty waiting room with a few chairs, tables with magazines, and couches. No humans (the receptionist excluded).

“Maybe it's like that,” I thought, “the exciting stuff is in the hospital rooms.” I didn’t get to find out soon.