The end of highschool is an exciting, yet sad, time in anyone’s life. It’s especially sad when, like me, you’ve reached the end of highschool, but you’re not quite finished yet so you watch your older friends leave you behind. That’s right, I have one more year and I am dreading the goodbyes and tears next summer when all my friends go away to different colleges. The goodbyes, unfortunately, are starting this year for me as some of my friends are a year older and, therefore, already leaving. On a happier note, I got to go to some awesome graduation parties. One of which was especially fun because, not only was there marshmallow-roasting and smore-making, there were water balloons! If you know anything about me, I would hope it’s that I love water balloons. I like filling them, I like throwing them, I like getting hit with them, I like breaking them over my own head. They’re just oodles of fun! A water balloon war is the only type of war I approve of or will ever take part in.

This war at my friend’s grad party was particularly intense as my competitors were much taller, much faster, and much stronger than me. Yes, they were boys. But not just any boys, they were Asians- dark Asians. They sort of blended into the night, making it much easier to use the sneak-attack strategy. It was also intense because the weapons ranged from water balloons to water guns; we even resorted to full buckets of ice-cold water at times (I really recommend this strategy as long as it’s used on someone else. The cold water doesn’t feel very nice, especially at night).

This is how it all went down…

The water balloons were gone. Low on ammo and morale, it was difficult to stay motivated. At times I wondered if I should call a truce, but no, I had too much pride for that. With my opponents looking thirsty for more, I guessed who would be first to break the stalemate. I scrambled for another weapon; any source of water I could get my tired hands on. The colder, the better. I found a stray water gun lying on the wooden deck, waiting for another chance in battle. I picked it up and prepared myself for attack. As I had guessed, here they came! Both of them running toward me, guns forward. Realizing I am not nearly fast enough to outrun the enemy, I thought I might buy myself a few seconds by slowing them down. I turned to shoot, but “OH NO! IT’S EMPTY!” Yes, my weapon was out of ammunition mid-battle. What could I do? There were no balloons and no other guns around. As I made my way to the safe-zone (inside where it’s dry), I came up with a plan so devious and so unexpected that I would surely be declared champion. I grabbed the bowl which had housed the water balloons from early in the battle. I filled it with water from inside (the coldest around) and even put in a few ice cubes from the cooler outside. This plan was sure to win the war because I would attack them first. They wouldn’t expect this. Victory would be mine! I saw my moment. Walking to the trampoline in a state of utter vulnerability, the enemy was off-guard and unexpecting. I leapt out and poured the icy water on them and ran. I had done it! I’d won the war! So I thought…


To be continued…

Not really.

So this concludes the dramatic, story-telling portion. Anyways, I crossed off #78. I’ve had a water balloon fight at night this year. Wahoo.

Warning: The events described, while based on a true story, are a dramatization. (Translation: It’s not exactly how it all went down.)

No Questions Asked (#45)

Last night I walked in 20 minutes after curfew soaking wet. I was literally dripping on the floor. After leaving the house with plans to meet my two friends at Skinny Dip (a frozen yogurt place), you would think coming home wet was unexpected and might be cause for alarm. This entrance, however, warranted no response from my parents. I got an “Oh, she’s home. We can go to bed now.” I even made a point to stay in the living room for a few minutes, walking in front of my dad watching TV. Nothing. Not one question as to why I was wet.

About to go into a “my parents don’t love me enough to notice something so blatantly obvious as walking in late and wet” panic, I texted the friends I had been with and one, who wasn’t there but knows me pretty well, to shock them with the fact I hadn’t gotten in trouble. In fact, it seemed to me they didn’t care at all. The text read, “Wow my mom had no idea. Wtf. My dad didn’t notice either. Great Parents. Really. I applaud them.” This was, of course, sarcasm. I could only imagine what kind of inattentive parents don’t notice when a perfectly dry child leaves for frozen yogurt and comes home wet. Surely, not my parents. Had I overestimated their ability to parent with absurd overprotectiveness all these years? I’m still in that stage when “My parents are the smartest people in the world!” turns into “I’m so much smarter than these clowns.”Could I be sure my parents weren’t unobservant potatoes for all my life and I just never realized? Maybe I got that from them.

The friend of mine who hadn’t been there when I got wet, but knew what happened replied, “Oh, well maybe you don’t look as wet as you should,” which was not likely, considering the trail of water from the front door to my room. He then went on to suggest, “or they’ve just come to expect there are certain… aspects of you…” EUREKA. I almost forgot, I’m a freak. It’s a known fact, weird things happen to me more often than most people; my parents can’t keep up with all the strange things I do. How could I expect them to ask me “What happened?” every time I come home? They would die from exhaustion. My mom even says, “It’s best I don’t know everything.” I understand that. Who can possibly put up with all my shenanigans? Then he justified my parents’ lack of curiosity further by saying, “I mean… as long as there is no blood or anything broken, they’re just happy you’ve made it through another day.” I had to admit, my friend was right to some extent. Still, this time the story wasn’t even that weird.

Let me assure you, the wetness wasn’t anything to be worried about. I didn’t get my head flushed in a toilet by a bully and no crazed killer attempted to drown me in the Chesapeake bay, but is it too much to ask for a little concern? After Skinny Dip we went back to my friend’s house because there was still a some time ;eft before we had to go home. We were outside with just our feet in her pool, talking, when I remembered something from my ToDo List, which it would be the perfect time to do. I think  you can guess now. We went swimming… with our clothes on. It was so fun! I loved it! We made air pockets with our shirts pretending we were fat and tried to laugh underwater. You know, the usual. Now I can cross #45 off the list!

I should probably just be happy my parents never get mad when I miss curfew. Thanks parents.

It's a little hard to see, but we're in a pool... with clothes on.

#54, 58, 60, & 64

The week before Governor’s School was jam-packed with funtivities, including a birthday party for one of my really good friends, Kelsey. She’s one of those typical highschool girls; she likes Harry Potter, going to concerts, putting feathers in her hair, going to the beach, and (most importantly) tie dying things. At her party, after having a water balloon/hose fight and soaking in the hot tub, we piled inside to play Just Dance and tie dye t-shirts in the garage. I’d never actually tie dyed successfully before and I have to say it was quite the experience. I got a professional “Tie dying for dummies” lesson with Kelsey and then I just went at it. The die didn’t always make it to the t-shirts, as evident by the colorful splash and drip marks all over the floor and table the next day. The next day I washed my t-shirt and it turned out beautifully, so I crossed #54 off the list. However, here is the confusing part. I followed all the directions I found on the internet for the crucial “first wash,” but still I was afraid to put it in the washing machine with other clothes (and for good reason it seems). I’ve hand-washed it an additional two times after the initial wash and still dye runs off the shirt. Am I missing something? Suggestions would be greatly appreciated!


The successful first wearing of my tie dye shirt. I'm so proud!

I have a lot of friends in theater at my school amd others so I’ve been dubbed “honorary theater kid.” For the past two summers I’ve been in a camp called Spotlight Productions where, after two weeks of rehearsal, we put on a full broadway musical at Virginia Wesleyan College. Last year it was Bye Bye Birdie. Clearly, although it’s not my forte, I love the theater, whether I’m a part of it or just an audience member. The first play I saw this year was back in March at First Colonial High School where a few of my friends were in a production of Seussical the Musical. Based off the real Dr. Seuss story Horton Hears a Who, it was most likely the cutest musical I’ve ever had the pleasure of attending. I smiled throughout the entire show (except during the sad parts of course). I knew #58 would be easy because I never miss any of my friends’ shows. I love to see them perform because it’s obvious they are so passionate for what they do.

#60 has by far been my favorite item on the whole listand I am proud to say that I have done it. A group of my friends love Cheeseburger in Paradise, the Jimmy Buffett themed restaurant, and we’ve made a habit out of going there whenever we have dinner together. One day we decided it was time to try something crazy, so we ordered a meal backward. Thank goodness our waitress was kind and understanding; she actually thought it was hilarious. I explained to her when she came to take our drink orders that we would be ordering a little differently and she smiled. We ordered a huge plate of chocolate nachos, huge triangular tortilla chips with powdered sugar, chocolate syrup, and sprinkles on top served with vanilla icecream on the side, for desert (the first course). It was probably the worst thing we could have done because we saved barely any room for dinner and appetizers after that. After forcing ourselves to stop, we all ordered the main course (which was difficult to force down after the chocolate nachos). Then, if I’m remembering it correctly, we got creesefries or onion strings for an appetized. By this time we were all full to the point of nausea. I ate hardly any of the appetizer, which was good because I probably would have had to loose all that lovely food the same way it had been condumed (if you know what I mean). I don’t reccommend this reverse of order. It benefits neither the customer’s stomach nor wallet and it causes all sorts of confusion for the poor waitress. Believe me, after all she had to put up with, I tipped that waitress incredibly well.

Mother’s Day weekend came along and still I had no idea what to get my lovely mom. I suggested that Friday her and I drive to Williamsburg (about an our outside town) and spend the day there having mother-daughter time. I don’t know why she said yes, but she did and so we went. Neither I nor my mother had been shopping at the outlet mall, but everyone seems to make a big deal of the low prices so it was nice to check that out; however, I didn’t understand what all the fuss was about. There were only two/three real outlet stores, only one of which we actually went into. It wasn’t worth it money wise, but at least it was a beautiful day and I got to spend time with my mom, which we never really get to do. I really enjoyed Williamsburg and so did my mom. We saw stables with horses for riding, which brought up some neat stories from my mother’s childhood. Wahile we were there we also visited the the College of William and Mary, which was beautiful and provoled some conversations about my upcoming college years and where I want to go, how my parents will survive without me, etc. It was fun and it lasted the entire day from 10am to 6pm; thus, #64 was crossed off the list.

#30 & 35

At my friend’s spring break party, mentioned in the previous post, we played manhunt in her neighborhood and so #30 was crossed off the list. Now, if you don’t know about manhunt, you shouldn’t miss out on this wonderful opportunity to learn. Basically, it’s tag and hide-and-seek wrapped into one incredibly fun game of wonderfulness (it’s especially wonderful because it’s generally played at night).The scariest part is always waiting to be found because, well, it’s dark and usually you hide alone. Since I didn’t know my friend’s neighborhood very well, we hid in pairs so nothing bad could happen (getting kidnapped, raped, murdered, all of the above). The danger of the situation definitely added to my excitement! This game in particular was very special. That night, one kid was found after an hour of searching in the best hiding place I’ve ever seen. He was in a tree; it had to have been at least twelve feet off the ground! However awesome his hiding place was, it isn’t something I recommend because I was afraid he would get hurt getting down. Plus, he was tagged before he made it back to base anyways, so it’s not a hiding place conducive to escape. Keep that in mind.

I got to cross off #35 at Summer Residential Governor’s School one day last week! A group of my friends were hanging out in the shade, playing cards and reading (not at the same time), so I decided to take one girl’s camera and photograph everything in sight. I’m sure it well surpassed 100 pictures. The subjects ranged from flip-flops to foliage to water bottles to trash cans. There was even a series of impressive creeper shots of people I don’t know, and some people I do know. The girl to whom the camera belonged would not have been happy with me if not for this list. I know she had tons of fun deleting all those pictures. I got a lot of laughs from my subjects and other witnesses. Even the owner of the camera was laughing. She decided she wouldn’t take it away from me because “[I look] so happy!” I’ll definitely do that again with someone else’s camera as a joke, because it was really fun! I learned that there aren’t that many things to take random pictures of in an open field at a college, except trees and garbage. This was a valuable lesson indeed.

#39, 42, & 51

A friend of mine had a party over spring break with no alcohol or drugs or any of those crazy things we teenagers do these days. Can you imagine? A high school party where friends gather to have a G-rated good time! Aside from throwing plastic Easter eggs at each other, experimenting with how many people we could fit on the porch swing before it broke, and playing cute kid games like manhunt and “Never have I ever,” there was quite a bit of dancing to a popular radio station that plays mainstream music (mostly hip-hop, pop, rap, etc.). I, being a white, oldies-loving kid, was unfamiliar with most of the music; however, I do love to dance. At some point in all the jumping and loud, off-key singing one girl decided to imitate the movement I was doing, almost in disbelief that I might actually consider it a dance move. To my surprise, it actually caught on among other partygoers. Yes, the dance move, later to be described as someone flossing their crotch with a towel, was a hit. This was mostly because of the move’s effect of making anyone who attempts it look like a dork; any kind of attention is good attention, right? In fact, this one awkward dance movement has enjoyed well over the usual 15 minutes of fame and has landed me, it seems, eternal glory. Now, at every event at which there is some sort of dancing, my friends will break out the move (which we’ll call the “crotch floss” for convenience). It has been known to spread like fire on such occasions, infecting other friends and nearby dancers with awkwardness. And with #39 checked off, I’ve discovered what true fame feels like; it can’t feel much better than this.

One of my favorite places to go in the whole world is my best friend’s roof. I love that it’s above most streetlights because light pollution ruins starry nights, no one on the ground can see you making it a private, relaxing, quiet place, it’s exciting in the danger of the steep slant and the small size of the window through which we crawl. It’s one of the few places I can be alone with myself and be content, rather than my usual constant need for company. My friend and I visit her roof often, but my favorite time is at night when the world is asleep and the streets are quiet allowing thoughts to be audible. However, the first time this year we hung out on her roof was during the day, which is still calming and wonderful. Other than the fact that dark shingles absorb sunlight and are, therefore, extremely hot, its nice to lay with nothing in your way of the sun except the occasional cloud. No bugs dare venture that high, no trees, no buildings, nothing exists but yourself and the sky. We goofed around up there (after putting down a blanket of course to avoid shingle burn) and took pictures and talked. Times spent on the roof with my best friend are memories that will last a lifetime; it’s where we have some of our best talks and can truly be ourselves. No matter how many times I have done #42, I will always love being on that roof.

Two weeks ago, before I left for Governor’s school, I spent most everyday at the beach with friends and every time was a new adventure. I don’t know what you consider a sandcastle, but I meant for it to mean “any type of sand creation.” Out of a heap of sand piled over my feet I sculpted a turtle. It ended up being fairly large, and longer than my arms could reach, so my friend stepped in for assistance. It was the cutest sand turtle I had ever seen; although, the legs on one side were never quite symmetrical with the legs on the other and I was being extremely OCD about the squares on the shell, having to redo them countless times before the creation was officially completed. Later, after I removed my feet, destroying our sand-pet, we went on to make a sun by the water with a wall surrounding it, blocking it from the waves. Artistic differences presented a problem with this sand creation as I wanted the sun to have long, thin, wavy rays while my friend wanted triangular rays (very unrealistic if you ask me). We ended up going in her direction with the triangular rays and it turned out to be the cutest sand sun I’ve ever seen. I would say #51 was a success, considering we didn’t bring the proper equipment for a more common sandcastle (buckets, shovels, etc.).

#5, 11, 13, & 17

If you’ve been checking my ToDo List, then you are probably aware of the fact that I have not posted about many of  the things I’ve been crossing off. In fact, there are so many items I’ve crossed off, there is no possible way I could talk about all of them in just  one post. To solve this I’ve split it up into three separate posts, possibly four, – the first of which is this one. Let’s start with #5, one of the less difficult items on my list. As an IB student (International Baccalaureate Program.. look it up and cry for me), I spend many nights with Coca-Cola and jellybeans, massaging my foot, splashing cold water in my face, using every means necessary to stay awake until my work is finished. Trust me when I say I can cross #5 off the list myriad times (only from this school year). Mind you, each time I stayed up all night, I’ve needed to use methods for artificial energy in the morning. Please, this is coming from experience, do not fall into the cycle of dependence on energy drinks or shots. Caffeine addiction is a nasty one. Energy drinks suck every good nutrient out of your body and it is ridiculous that people voluntarily harm their bodies this way. I’ve done it and I’m certainly not proud of it. I’ve talked enough about this…

Now #11 is a fun one! Personally, I think tattoos (when encompassing a meaningful message or for a worthy cause) are neither reckless
 nor the mark of a hooligan. In the Jewish religion, tattoos are forbidden from those wishing to be buried in Jewish cemeteries, which is why I am not allowed to have one. I doubt I’ll want to be buried in a Jewish cemetery and, technically, it’s my decision whether I get a tattoo or not, but both of my parents made it clear they would rather I not get one. (Yes, I’m Jewish and no, I will not tell you what tattoo I want to get. That’s a story for another time). In an effort to give my mother a panic attack, I planned to get a henna tattoo (temporary) on the boardwalk after spending the day with my friends at the sand soccer tournament. I decided it would be funny (funny in its ignorance) to get the crescent moon and star symbolic of Islam and the Muslim community. I got one at a sketchy booth and it wore off after a few days, but it was exciting while it lasted. My mom knew it wasn’t real and told me I was dumb to waste money, but I got her to admit that if it had looked real, it would have been hilarious!

I absolutely love doing things like #13. A couple good friends and I walked to the top of Mt. Trashmore (a hill made from an old landfill turned
into a public park… I suppose it’s pretty interesting) and screamed as loud as we could. Of course, there were a lot of people around who thought we were crazy ruffians I’m sure, but that’s the best part for me. Although my friend wore a skirt on that windy day to climb a hill and we had to hold a blanket around her while she walked, it was a really fun day! I honestly would not mind doing that again; it was an awesome outlet for my stress.

Almost done, I promise. You know me; I’m Wordy McGee. One important thing to know is that I believe concerts are the greatest “fun-tivity” ever
created. Obviously, I really enjoyed #17. My friend and I went to our first concert of the year at Naval Station Norfolk. Third Eye Blind, one of our
 favorite bands (there are a lot) played a free concert there, open to the public, so we had to go. It was a spontaneous sort of thing because the concert was not publicized very well. I recall the conversation going something like “Hey I heard Third Eye Blind is playing tonight!!” “No way!” “Yea! Want to go?!” “Okay let me ask my mom!” I love those sorts of plans, don’t you? They keep life exciting! It was an awesome concert, although we got lost on the way in a bad area. Since then, I went to see the Beach Boys (I guess it would be more accurate to say Beach Boy et.al.) at the beach and it was awesome; I especially loved watching all the drunk, old people trying to boogie oogie oogie. Really though, I love the Beach Boys and I’m so happy I went!

#3, 9, 118, & 121

Obviously it has been quite sometime since I’ve posted updates about my ToDo List and a lot has happened in that time. Since my first ever Skype sesh I’ve crossed off #3, #9, #118, and #121. Although I haven’t been successful in posting for every single item on the list, I’m making progress. There are approximately 52.177457 weeks in a year and there are 121 items on my list. Seeing as it is only the second week of 2011 and I’ve already been able to cross off five items, I’d say I’m off to a rather good start. I hope I’ll be able to keep this going.

Friday evening my friend came over because neither of us had plans so we looked at the list and decided #3 would be fun. Yes, we ate ice-cream outside while it was merely 24° outside. Well it wasn’t exactly “ice-cream” per say. We went to Skinny Dip so technically it was “frozen yogurt,” but I really can’t tell the difference because I like both! And 24° is only and estimation because that was the reported low temperature and since it was after 10 p.m., I’m pretty sure it was closer to the low temperature than the high temperature for that day, which was 42°. This is just rambling now, but it brings me to my next point.

Completing #3 made it necessary to complete #9 as well. In order to successfully purchase and consume the “frozen yogurt” outdoors it was impossible to be home before 10 p.m. considering we left my house at 9:50. Oh, my curfew is 10 p.m., by the way, not the official 11 p.m. curfew like most teenage drivers. This is because I am a relatively new driver and there is a “huge difference” in driving between 10 and 11 (says my Dad); although, I’ve been out driving after 11 before and it’s really not any different, but that is a whole other story. After eating the “frozen yogurt” my friend and I returned home around 10:45 crossing #9 off the list.

Next I was able to cross of #118 because I am finally able to do something with my parents old record albums: play them. For christmas my family got a record player and it’s pretty much the coolest thing I’ve ever owned in my life. I love it and I use it almost all the time. Ever since Christmas Day we’ve been playing records and dancing, the house is always filled with music. Not only is it a regularly used appliance now, it has also become a source of entertainment among my friends. They love going through the record albums and finding something they know. I’m so happy those records aren’t just sitting in a trunk, lonely anymore!

Last but not least, I completed #121. Someone told me that I “make [her] day” yesterday in English, or maybe it was history… Anyways, she is such a sweet girl and I’m glad I made her day. :]

Keep a look-out for more posts. I’ve already made plans for completing and crossing off a few more items from my ToDo List!

I lied.

Okay so I lied about my blog not having a purpose. I led you (my zero followers) to think that this blog is pointless, and well, it’s not. I apologize. I guess I’m not off to a very honest start here.

The point of this blog from the beginning is to share my list with friends… and I suppose strangers too (It’s bound to happen) because it’s important that this list is finished by the end of 2011. Why, you ask? Let me tell you. :]

Every year on the 31st of December, I’m sure you’re all well aware, there is a big celebration with boozing, and loud music, and a countdown and such; it’s pretty much a big deal. Since I was about ten and was able to actually understand the concept of a “new year,” in those last few hours before the ball drops I’ve wondered what the last year had accomplished. I ask myself things like, “What makes this year so important,” “Am I going to remember this year separately, specially from all the other years,” “What did I do this year that was special?” I come up with either really lousy answers or no answers at all and it makes me kind of sad. Not that I don’t have an awesome life, not that I don’t have a fun adventure every day, not that I don’t spend enough time with my friends and family (Although, I’d like to see my extended family more), that’s not it at all. It’s that I want to have something to make me feel like I haven’t wasted a year. I want something that I’ll be able to remember when they’re counting down 6…5…4… and be reassured that I accomplished something, that the year was special.

This year, I’m making that something public by putting a list on Facebook and this blog. The list is of things I’ve done and things I’ve always wanted to do. Some things are super simple and silly.. but the point is to make memories no matter what they are. This year I don’t want to be counting down to another year I won’t be able to differentiate from any other year. I want to count down to something meaningful.

This list is more like a scavenger hunt for fun, if anything. I hope that whoever’s reading this will believe in what I’m doing, whether it sounds completely pointless or not. All I want is to remember the good times. And as my years in highschool go by faster and faster, it’s nice to have these things, this list. It’ll be nice to know that wherever I end up next, how I got there, wasn’t all about the grades, it was about the fun I had too. People in programs like IB forget that sometimes, but that’s a story for another day.

I’ll be keeping track of my list right here on this blog, crossing off every item as I go. Maybe I’ll even post something about the tough or exciting ones. Maybe no one even cares, (I hope that’s not the case) but I’m doing this as documentation that I’m not wasting my time, my life isn’t dedicated completely to school or to my future. And I think everyone needs a list.

My ToDo List 2011

So i messed up big time this year. At the end of 2009 I made a list called “TO DO LIST 2010” and well, it was scarcely completed, it’s pathetic really. So this year, I’ve revised the list and I’m posting it on Facebook hoping that it will be completely finished this year. I’m really sad that I didn’t get to do a lot of these things this year so I’m starting over. Everything on the list I’ve done will be re-done and I’m going to need all you kids to help. This is going to be a really fun year- I mean obviously, just look at this list under the “ToDO List 2011” page! Some of this is stuff I’ve already done, silly, fun, simple things, but some of it is more difficult so I really need my friends. I picked a few people to help get me started that I tagged in a Facebook note because they are all well aware of what a huuge dork I am. Congratulations to them. But forreal, I’m going to take a serious whack at it this year to make up for my pathetic attempt last year. The legit goal is to completely finish everything on the list by 11:59 p.m. December 31, 2011. The ultimate goal is to have fun though. Thanks a whole bunch, I love all my friends for their help. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

yellow dahlia

yellow dahlia