Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Ode to the Hales Family

I am related to nine of the awesomEST people on earth. Here are a few reasons why:

Hannah: First of all, she is GORGEOUS. And I'm not just saying that because she and I have a certain love for Rapunzel-length hair in common. She also has dazzling eyes, and is one of the sweetest 11-year-olds anyone could ever meet. She puts most of her older brothers and sisters to shame when it comes to practicing a certain instrument with 88 keys, and she is also very smart and determined. Oh, and her middle name, Monet,, let me think *two millisecond pause*...yes, IS the coolest middle name on the face of the earth. (And let's not forget that her first name is a palindrome! Pure awesomeness.)

Olivia: If all the horse encylopedias in the world suddenly went up in flames, no fear! Olivia is near! Whenever I have any sort of question about horses, Olivia is the go-to girl. I'm guessing that not even Google's 87,500,000 hits for the search "horses" contains all the information she knows. Seriously. Her knowledge is incredible. On top of that, she is an amazing artist. No matter what she sketches, it comes out a masterpiece. You may want to get her autograph now, because I have a hunch that she will be world-famous before I even own my first Steinway (which will be awfully soon, in case you are wondering.) And one last thing I love about Livvy: her cute hair. And one last last thing I love about Livvy: she is so much fun to talk to! And one last last last thing I love about Livvy: she has UBER fast fingers--she almost beat me at a speedy piano finger exercise. And one last last last last thing...okay, okay, I'll stop for now. But I could keep going, you know.

Chris: Incredibly thoughtful polite good-looking Apple motorized vehicle vaccuum guru i-Pod collecting gentleman who also happens to be an excellent potter. Oh, and he'll probably live to be a hundred and five because he's very health conscious. Which would be kind of cool because he would live to see 2100. Anyway, expounding on my slightly adjective-rich sentence above, Chris is just the sort of person who is always thinking about others and what he can do or say to help them feel better. He always dresses very nicely, and he is certainly not the sort of person you would every catch belching at the dinner table, nor is he the sort of person who can say something sarcastic without apologizing within the ensuing five minutes, and, well, he probably has several gold stars racked up in heaven already. Chris was the cutest baby/toddler to ever walk the face of this earth, (or any other, for that matter), and his little blonde curls were the to-die-for kind. Not only is he still quite the handsome fellow (heehee, I'm probably embarassing him royally right now), but, ladies, get this: he likes to vaccuum! Yes, he'll be available for dates in only a year and a half.

Sam: In a nutshell: trumpet playing, eternal shorts wearing, biker extraordinaire who somehow survives on nothing but rolls. Someday, this guy is going to win the Tour de France, I tell you. Lance Armstrong will be nothing compared to Samuel Hales. In fact, Sam will probably also steal the title for most Olympic gold medals from Michael Phelps, just from biking alone. Yes, I am aware that that many Olympic biking events don't actually exist. Yet. However, once the U.S. Olympic scout team finds Sam, they will realize that more events need to be created. And then Sam will win them all. And then I will say something along the lines of "I told you so," but probably in less colloquial prose. On another note, Sam also happens to be one of the most down-to-earth and just-plain-cool people that I know. Nothing can throw off his groove. And, oh yeah, when it comes to driving, Sam is one of the most, no, THE most patient non-driver's-license-wielding 16-year-old I know. I suppose being the fourth-born does have its downsides on having three older siblings who are able to drive everyone else to school, run errands, and lay claim to the currently-owned family cars. I feel your pain, Sam, I feel your pain. Though I am not a fourth-born nor sixteen, I, too, lack a four-wheeled form of transportation. The driver's license that I put in my pocket each day is a mere mockery to the debit card against which it rubs all day long. ANYWAY...moving along, moving along. Long story short: Sam rocks.

Matisse: Mati is a Musician of the finest caliber. An Artist to rival her namesake. A Tremendously talented writer. An IPhone owner. Her Signature is one of the most elegant I've seen. Her taste in fashion is Sensational. Her Excellentness at all things awesome is almost incomprehensible. She makes cupcakes with moustaches. She drives a Honda Civic Turbo. She gives me rides to places in said Honda Civic Turbo. She has been to Europe. She has played a musical instrument at concerts in Europe. She owns and often sports red cowboy boots. She is the reason that the Thunderbolt (Timpview's newspaper) is no longer lame. She has opinions and has the vocabulary to express them. <--something not a lot of people can say for themselves... I love Mati.

: Lexi does cool things like running races in Santa suits. She also happens to make the most incredible cakes imaginable. Lexi is a certified scuba-diver, as well as a professional skier. She decides she wants to do something and then she does it. Like backpacking around Europe, for instance. Just curious: how many cousins can say they met up with each other in, oh, say, the Czech Republic? Cool ones, like Lexi. How many people can say that they ordered fish at a restaurant and still had the appetite to eat it when it arrived in its entirety--bones, head, eyeballs and all? Lexi. Who invented the phrase "Awesome Possum?" Leximus awesomus. Another obvious trait that cannot be ignored is Lexi's taste in shoes. Though she lacks a thorough knowledge of the more practical areas of footwear (such as flip-flops), I do have to admit that she just about makes up for it with high heels. Name a color, brand, or material type and she has a pair. Cowhide? Covered.

Spencer: One of the most courageous people I know. He is fighting a tougher battle than most people will ever have to fight, especially most 22-year-olds. Though he won't admit it, he also happens to be one of the world's best writers. I am anxiously awaiting his first book installment. Spencer is knowledgable on just about every subject, and speaks a good amount of Japanese. He is very quick to pick up and learn anything he wants. And, if Chris is the Apple guru, Spencer is the guru of Apple gurus. He is very generous and kind-hearted. Oh, and the epitome of cool: Spencer drives stick.

Uncle Stephen: I highly respect anyone who can successfully run his or her own business, especially having started from scratch, and Uncle Stephen is no exception. His graphic design company (Stephen Hales Creative) is fantastic and highly successful. And better yet, at his office, he has an assortment of all things Zorro. Some people collect stamps; some collect coins; some, shiny rocks; but you've got to admit, there's nothing cooler than a Zorro collection. His is by far the awesomEST personal collection I have ever seen. Aside from his unique collection and being able to draw and design anything, Uncle Stephen is a marvelous chef. Sunday dinner at the Hales' home is like eating at Pierre Gagnaire in Paris. To top things off, Uncle Stephen is one of the humblest people I know. If everyone had a boss or dad like him, this world would be a much lovelier, tastier place--aesthetically, socially, and the list goes on...

Aunt Calli: I saved Aunt Calli for last because I have to write at least a 5000-page novel in order to begin to divine to you the pure and absolutely wonderful person that she is. Firstly, have you ever heard of a primary president who was so good at her job that she never gets released (well, probably until she becomes the General Primary President, that is)? Or a primary president whose spoiled primary kids complain that they don't want to have lasagna for lunch at the next primary activity? Aunt Calli's expertise stops at nothing. Her flower arrangements are fit for the celestial kingdom, her cooking divine; the perfection with which she accomplishes everything is stunning. She is a musician after my own heart, and one thing I absolutely love about her house is that "classical" (forgive my colloquial use of the word) music is almost always playing in the background. Those who have heard her display her talents at the harp are some of the luckiest people on earth, and I fear I shall sink into the depths of despair if I have to live much longer without enjoying this privilege. Aunt Calli's house is beyond description, so I won't even try to describe it. English words simply do not suffice. If you happen to have acquaintance with a certain Grandma White, you might compare the two houses and the immaculateness of the decor within. Also like Grandma White, Aunt Calli is very kind and generous--somehow, she never forgets about anything or anyone, and she always goes the extra mile in everything that she does. She is one of my heroes. Um, heroines.

Danke, dear Hales Family.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

A morbid, mangled, murder mystery

My iPod earphones have been brutally murdered. Here are the straight facts of the case:

9:55pm: I walk into my bedroom in the basement of my parents' house, expecting to put my pajamas on and climb into my hundred-year-old bed (yes, the ancient piece of furniture on which I sleep is really a century old--my great-grandpa used to use the same mattress that I now sleep on whenever I visit my parents, poky rusty springs and all...but that's an irrelevant tangent).

9:56pm: As my glance falls to the floor next to my bed where my laptop is sitting, I spot some string that is exactly the same color and length as my earphones, minus the earbuds. I bend down and pick up said object, my disbelieving eyes trying to convince me that what I am seeing is not actually the mangled remains of a dearly beloved friend.

9:57pm: As I study the cord, I notice how very cleanly sliced each end is, as if the guilty culprit took a savage pleasure in doing his dirty deed as immaculately as possible.

10:00pm: I trek back upstairs to find a superior detective and show him the corpse.

10:01pm: My father studies the evidence and is completely baffled, as are my sister, brother, and mother.

10:05pm: My father asks if anything in my room seemed out of place, and if all my valuables were still where I had left them last. Luckily, my laptop and its cord had remained seemingly untouched, and the rest of my belongings had been safely stowed away upstairs at the time of the crime.

10:07pm: A suggestion is raised that my curious little six-year-old brother may have had a minute of alone-time with some scissors. Unfortunately, he is unavailable for questioning, as he was put to bed an hour ago.

10:10pm: I return to the basement with a slight feeling of unease, but mostly a great sense of bewilderment. Though my dear brother can sometimes be quite an inquisitive little fellow, he very well knows the value of a pair of earphones, as he owns a set himself. Just in case, however, I look through the bathroom garbage to see if I can spot my earbuds. My efforts are in vain.

10:13pm: I return to my bedroom and begin to write this blog post.

10:16pm: Suddenly, a dark streak passes through my peripheral vision, and I look down just in time to see a small creature streak from under my bed to the slightly-ajar closet door and disappear inside the depths of the storage therein.

10:17pm: "Aha!" I say to myself.

10:18pm: I run up two flights of stairs to my parents' bedroom.

10:19pm: "The murderer is a mouse!" I cry in distress. (well, maybe I didn't use those words or that tone of voice exactly, but let's not detract from the case)

10:20pm: After raising the alarm that the crime-committer had not yet escaped, I bravely run back down to the basement, finding the courage to face my enemy as I think about my dear, mutilated comrade splayed on the floor next to my laptop.

10:22pm: My father enters the room, soon followed by my mother, soon followed by my brother, soon followed by my sister. The room becomes a little crowded. As we begin unloading storage boxes from the closet, the room becomes very crowded. I retire to my bed and continue to watch the unfolding scene whilst contemplating the best form of revenge.

10:30pm: At last, the closet is emptied but for a box or two behind which the murderer cowers. Sticky pads are set at strategic angles around the box so as to allow no possible escape route. My father begins to move the last box.

10:31pm: Out springs the guilty one, choosing flight over fight. Almost immediately, his legs are snatched by the goo that awaits him. He struggles, pulling and chewing, but to no avail.

10:32pm: A ringing cry of victory resounds throughout the room. But then, "Lo! What have we here?" declares my father as his sweeping glance comes to a halt at the corner of the closet. (again, these words may not have been exactly those that were spoken, but one must consider the inexorable distress of the situation at hand and the affect it had upon my experience of the moment)

10:33pm: Out from the depths, my father pulls the sad remains of my dear, tormented earphones.

10:34pm: As my father pulls the sticky pad, mouse and all, out of the closet, he laughs a slightly evil laugh. My mother suggests we might feed the guilty one to the cat. But my desire for revenge suddenly disappears as I see the poor creature with the big eyes struggling to pull himself free of the entombing goo of doom.

10:37pm: After packing the closet back up, my father and brother take him and dispose of him. What his final end was, I do not know, and never shall.

Case closed.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

For ye unbelievers

If you weren't previously convinced by the loathsome descriptions with which I provided you of my G-POD living experience, I now have proof that I was not the only one who found the vortex of toxic waste quite disgusting: the first thing that one piano student's mother said today as she walked through the door of my new apartment was, "Wow! It's so clean!!!" followed by "You're very lucky you got to move."