Monday, August 22, 2011

Fifteen Characters

The Rules: Don't take too long to think about it. List fifteen fictional characters (television, films, plays, books, etc.) who've influenced you and that will always stick with you. 

1. Eowyn - The Lord of the Rings

I love her bravery and her tragedy. And I like that she finds Faramir in a way and place that she never expected. She wasn't looking, she was heartbroken, and tada! Just the right guy happens to be across the hall.

2. Bigwig - Watership Down

Yeah yeah, he's a bunny. But he's a brave bunny! He saw what needed doing and did it. He didn't allow his fear to master him, even though he put his life on the line multiple times to protect or save his bunny brethren. 

3. The Pevensies - The Chronicles of Narnia books

I couldn't pick just one. Peter, because he has always been my ideal of manliness. Susan, because her life was a warning. Edmund, because he was a betrayer but humbly turned back to Aslan. Lucy, because she never lost faith.

4. Catherine Morland - Northanger Abbey

The nearest and dearest of all Jane Austen's heroines. 

5. Samantha Carter - Stargate SG-1

She rides a motorcycle, she can pick locks, she knows how to dress up, and she's literally a genius. She can keep up the guys but she's not ashamed to cry. She awesome! 

6. Eponine - Les Miserables

I guess I don't really like Eponine as a person, but her story is fascinating. And I really got to know her, per se, so I think I'll always have a lot of sympathy toward her.

7. The Doctor - Doctor Who

Specifically Ten, of course. I didn't really learn anything wonderful from this character, but he's the first character that has made me cry THAT MUCH. *cries*

8.  Horatio Hornblower - The Horatio Hornblower Series

He is the most tangibly, immediately real character I've ever read; C.S. Forester wasn't shy about giving him quirks and flaws and shortcomings and humanity. 

9.  Zuko - The Last Airbender

I LOVE REDEMPTION STORIES, and his is one of my favourites. Also, I was pretty much in love with his many hairstyles.

10. Truvy - Steel Magnolias

She's a huge part of why I chose to be a hairdresser!

11. Anne Shirley - Anne of Green Gables, etc

Anne has such a beautiful way of looking at life. She's the girl I always wanted to be, with her grey eyes and grace.

12. Elphaba - Wicked

What girl has not, at some point, felt beautifully tragic?

13. Dorcas Lane - Lark Rise to Candleford
Her reactions to difficulties are always charming and encouraging. In particular, when *spoilers* Minnie ruins her mother's wedding dress, she is obviously heartbroken. But instead of blaming Minnie and sending her away, she gently resolves to teach Minnie respect and self-discipline. She is mature, but full of mischief.

14. The Cast of Firefly

Again, I couldn't just pick one -- some stand out more than others but as a whole they are such a rich array of people. Their camaraderie and courage and fears and failures are so believable and endearing that I cannot help but love them all. 

15. Mrs. Miniver - Mrs Miniver

She clarified and beautified so many things for me. She could see beauty in nearly everything, sometimes an odd beauty, but she always managed to draw contentment and joy in her surroundings. 

Because I love the Lion King thiiiiiiiis much

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

The Grand Adventure of Staying Behind

A couple weeks ago I was talking with my dear friend Laura Katherine and I mentioned to her how there are a few people I always keep "on my radar," meaning I'm always aware of them in a room and in my prayers. I quietly watch over these people because I love them best.

"Who are you talking about?" she asked.
"Oh, Abby, Nathaniel, you..." said I.
"So, basically your family," she laughed.

Yeah, pretty much.

She's going away to college this week. I am excited for her. This is good, this feels so solidly right that there is no doubt God has grandly orchestrated it. She will learn and grow -- and she will help others learn and grow. I am certain that her presence there will be an unlooked-for answer to prayer for some of the people around her.

I know this because she is such an important part of my own growing and learning. Her fingerprints are all over my life: books and letters and drawings clutter up the nooks in my room. More than that, she is a teacher, confidante, playmate, sounding board, bosom friend. So much of me is made from what I've learned from her.

Part of me is freaking out that she's leaving. Who will I watch over? Who will watch over me?

God is still sovereign, even over goodbyes. And I remind myself that this is in no way a goodbye, it's a "see you soon." I mourn the end of a season but I look forward to different seasons.

For now, I am here... on a grand adventure at home.

Our Prom Date... sort of.

Tuesday, August 09, 2011

High Fives and Trust Falls

Have you ever gone in for a high five and your partner in crime jerks away at the last second? To the other person, it's a haha-gotchya! moment, but to me, it's BETRAYAL.

It's a betrayal because I am very, very bad at high fives. I go up, I line up, I mess up. My coordination is just that lame. Yes, I've tried the trick of watching the other person's elbow. IT DOESN'T WORK GUYS. Instead of crisply smacking my partner's palm with my own fleshy extremity, I aim for their elbow. It results in an awkward chase as my hand goes down and they try to follow. I can't tell you how many of my high fives go like this:

"High five!"
*awkward chase*
"Oh, let's try that again."
Despite this, I always give it my all. I love high fives. They're the all-purpose contact sport of communication. You just had a baby? High five!  Saying goodbye to a random acquaintance and you don't want to hug them? High five!  It's time for ice cream? High fives all around!  And when you give a really good high five, the kind that makes a sharp cracking sound and your palm sting a little but not too much, you achieve high five mastery for the day. It's pretty much worthy of another high five.

So when somebody pulls that haha-gotchya! thing on me, I really feel hurt. Not because they just made me look even stupider than I usually do during a high five. It's because when we're winding up for a high five, it's a commitment. I'm going to smack your hand and you're going to smack mine. We have entered a morally binding contract until smacking do us part. If you pull that high five, you have essentially served me divorce papers. I'm taking the house AND the kids!

Don't do this, people. If you were doing trust falls, would you hold your arms out until your partner turned around but then let them fall to the ground? No. You wouldn't, because that would be a betrayal.

What they do? They're smiling in your face!