Hello girls it’s Wednesday… er, Sunday… uh, Monday.
So I’m writing this early because I have drivers ed. On Wednesday and hopefully I’ll make it to services meaning and, either way, by the time I get home I’m going to have to do homework quickly and pass out. I can get by without sleep, in fact I usually do, but during the week it gets to a point where I’m just running on empty. If I do, by some miracle have time on Wednesday I’ll add to this, but otherwise, this is all prewritten on Monday because I didn’t have school.
Also, girls, Le-Shanah Tovah Tekatevu (may you be written down in the book of life). Sunset on Wednesday night marks the beginning of Rosh HaShanah, the Jewish new year. This is the beginning of 5771. Long time. ראש השנה, in Hebrew, “Rosh HaShanah” directly translates to “head of the year” (thanks Wikipedia). In case you didn’t know, we Jews have our own calendar, you should check it out; it’s pretty inaccurate (it’s measured by the moon). Traditionally, on Rosh HaShanah, we eat apples and honey, for a sweet new year. It sounds strange, but it’s actually delicious. Rosh HaShanah marks the beginning of The Days of Awe/ the High Holy Days/ The Days of Repentance. The Days of Awe/ the High Holy Days/ The Days of Repentance are all the same thing. They are the Ten days between (and including) Rosh HaShanah (New Year) and Yom Kippur (The Day of Atonement). During these days you are supposed to be extra charitable (not that you shouldn’t always be charitable, as the Rabbi reminds us) and ask for forgiveness from others and from God so God will right you down in the book of life. Essentially this is as it sounds, but I’ll explain anyhow. In Judaism it is taught that in the first 10 day of the new year God will decide who will live and who will die so you wanna be extra good so you can live ‘til next year. That doesn’t mean that if you’re a bad person you’ll die or if a you’re a good person you’ll live… it’s just a recommendation or something of that sort. The Torah doesn’t really teach of a hell so I suppose this is just supposed to show that God will punish bad people? I dunno, a discussion of Judaism and the afterlife can wait for a whole other blog, lets just say we’re all different. I should tell you about my own take on these here and I will, but I just want to make sure something’s clear. I don’t think that you’re gonna be written down in the book of death if you don’t go to temple or you’re not Jewish or you don’t believe in God or any of that. I’m not trying to say that, I’m really not. This is purely informational as I support what ever you believe no matter what. I’m not saying what I believe is right, hell, we could all be wrong, I’m just saying this is what the holiday is and I’m about to tell you what I believe. Feel free to agree or disagree. Yep… So, I’m actually a pretty terrible Jew. I probably won’t make it to services on Wednesday night. Right now (on Monday) it doesn’t sound like I’ll make it to services on Thursday either as I’m not so comfortable with missing class. I don’t really say sorry when I actually do something wrong. I’m loud; I’m rude, I’m proud. I question… A LOT. On Yom Kippur you’re supposed to fast (there are exceptions. If you’re a kid, or it could be harmful to your health you shouldn’t be fasting.). I’m almost 16. In the Eyes of Judaism I have been an adult since my Bat Mitzvah about three years ago and I’ve never made it through I whole day fasting… I get to about 4 in the afternoon and I say, shit, it’s gonna get worse than this cause I can’t eat ‘til about this; fuck it, I’m gonna go eat an apple. This year Yom Kippur is on the same day as my school’s homecoming. My family and I are going to the kids’ service (to be fair, my brother is 7) and then I’m going to watch some tennis and soccer and go to a dance. I am going to try to fast though. So let’s finish this up. I, Emily Blue Warshauer, am not a very good Jew. I dropped out of Sunday School. I ignore invitations to join youth group. I’ve never successfully fasted. I won’t skip classes to go to services. I’m unapologetically rude. I’m going to spend a good portion of the most important holiday of my religion at school (probably, at least I’m planning to). I got a lot of the information for this little discussion from Wikipedia. I question a lot… like miracles… creation… I dunno, maybe, but I’m kind of a fan of Darwin here. In fact some people say I’m a deist, not a Jew. I still see myself as a Jew though, and really it’s about self-identification, if I identify myself as a Jew than I am one. Okay… moving on.
Excerpts from a conversation with Katie today:
“When I imagine dating him I imagine a lot of sitting next to each other listening to radiohead, mocking movies together, and annoying the hell out of other people together. Also, sitting next to each other reading books” -Emily B. Warshauer, almost 16-year-old girl.
So I write quotes on the windows of my room a lot. Currently I have:
“A kiss with a fist is better than none” –Florence + The Machine, Kiss With A Fist
“I think you’re crazy, maybe” –Radiohead, Motion Picture Soundtrack
and the text from this Picture:
So that’s that from Monday. If I add to this I’ll add it bellow.
Ok, I was right. I’m busy. Going to services so I’m missing some school so I iz extra anxious… I may start moaning because of it… STREZZZZED. Ok. AH! Also, debate class, best thing ever.
Insert Short Story Here (look, I know it’s long, but I dunno, I’ve been told it’s pretty good. It got Honorable mention in The Scholastic Arts and Writing Competiton):
The One I’ll Miss
I suppress tears as I prepare to begin my eulogy. I found the perfect place for him on my favorite path under the birch tree. Clover grows around it in the spring and summer. It’s by the lake. He’d love that, and every time I walk past it, I’ll think of him and remember the good times together. Even though I’ve done all I could to prepare myself, I’m not ready now that it’s finally time to let go, to say goodbye for good and to learn to face the world without him.
Now that I’m saying goodbye forever, the things I wrote for him don’t seem good enough. I don’t seem good enough. He deserved someone smarter and more talented than me. His best friend should have been more creative; she should have brought out his strengths and introduced him to new situations. As I look back, I can see that I was no good for him, and now that I realize it, it’s too late. This is not the only thing that doesn’t seem right. As hard as I worked on our last goodbye, the people I wanted to be here are not. The crowds of people here to celebrate his life, and the ways he changed their lives, are not here. Even his family is only here because they have to be. They lean against the tree bored. I could not bring anyone who would show that he had more than just me as a friend in the world. I dragged my brother here, but he is not support. He smiles like the death of my best friend is some kind of joke, holding back laughter as I try to keep hot, wet tears from running down my face and mixing with the dirt and sweat, the true sign of a hot July day like today. Even at the funeral of my best friend, people are ready to laugh at me. The people who would have actually helped me could not come. Mama is too busy, and Daddy is at work, and Miles is too little to talk, let alone understand the sadness of a funeral, so I’m stuck here with Ross who is “trying” not to roll his eyes.
As I take in the sorry scene my brother nudges me, telling me to get on with it so he can go back and play with the friends from whom I dragged him away. He can’t take all day for his stupid older sister and her stupid friend who he didn’t like when he was alive. Why would he show any respect for him now that he’s dead; at the least he’s here to celebrate that my friend is finally gone for good. I glare at him and gulp back tears to try to begin our last goodbye. Then an idea strikes, and I whisper in Ross’ ear. Laughing yet annoyed he steps forward. He is kind enough to do this for his grieving older sister, the same one with whom he often fights, but he will not by any means do this for her “poor” late best friend. He looks back at me, rolling his eyes, telling me that I now owe him, as he begins to speak. “I didn’t know you that well,” he starts. His first grade mind doesn’t have the vocabulary my much older third grade mind has, and for a moment he seems at a loss for words, but slowly I can see it come to him as he opens his mouth to speak again. “My sister really liked you, but I don’t know why. You were only-…” I shove him, cutting him off, and shoot him a look that could make anyone cold, even on a day like today, reminding him that now is not the time, that he should play nice. He glares back and continues, “but anyway my sister’s sorry to see you go, and I guess I’m sorry to see you go, even if I think it’s stupid that she liked-,”
“Not now,” I hiss angrily reminding him that I’ll beat him up if he isn’t good.
“Well, you know what I mean,” he continues, trying to fix his mistakes, “goodbye and everything.”
I nod at him and step forward, still choking back tears and clutching the forget-me-nots I picked to my chest. The flowers were his favorite. He liked their small shape and blue hue; he loved the dandelion yellow middle; he felt it accented them perfectly and made them truly, well, unforgettable. The flowers will always remind me of him. As shy and quiet as he was, if you looked he was everywhere: along the wood path by my house, growing with the lily of the valley, even between the cracks of the sidewalk. He was in the sky on a perfect fall day, in the walls of my house, in my school backpack, the nametag on my desk. He was there even if you didn’t notice him, which most people didn’t, but I noticed, and I loved him and his quiet vibrancy. Now I had to say goodbye to that. As I opened my mouth to say goodbye to my best friend, I could not find the words in my head, the ones that I had thought out carefully, trying so hard to describe all he meant to me, one last time. I had to say something, the silence had taken too much time, and Ross seemed to be ready to dump my body in the lake, so I began.
“Well, words can’t describe you, who you were, and if they could, I can’t use them well enough to put you into words. You were beautiful and perfect. I don’t know anyone who truly disliked you, even if they say they did. So many people love you even if they never realize it or admit it. You fit in with everyone, yet you were so different. Some people may not have noticed that you were there at all, but now that you’re gone they’ll notice. The world won’t have the same snap or zing; it won’t fit together any more, at least not for me. Even if no one realizes your place in the world of art, if they never understand, then that may be that, and that’s okay, but even if they don’t realize what’s gone, they’ll see some difference, because you had a real talent for art. You belonged in the sky, in the rain, in the deep blue sea, in the forget me-not-flowers you loved so much, the ones that will now remind me of you because they too are versatile and lovely; just like you they belong anywhere and bring out my good side. You brought out the good in me, the happy side, the one with the funny jokes and words I meant. You gave me character and reminded me to be different to strive to be like you. As good as you were for me, I was no good for you. I made you fit in with everything else. I made you into everyone’s basic idea of what you should be, and I’m sorry for that. I’m sorry I didn’t make you different. I’m sorry I didn’t make people see your greatness, the greatness everyone should have seen, the greatness that should have been understood, the greatness I should have showcased. I should have made everyone see in you what I saw in you. You deserve recognition, and I’m sorry. I’ll miss you. The things I love won’t be the same without you. My world will be turned over. You were always there for me, when they made fun of me and yelled and wouldn’t let me play. You were the one who would come and sit away from all them in the far corner of the playground, when we would sit with nothing but some blank paper and imagine. I don’t know how to go on without you, but this is goodbye, forever. I’ll miss you.”
By now my cheeks are striped with tears. I allow my brother to finally leave. I stand there alone now and stare at his blue body, now less than half an inch long. After about a minute, I cover him with some mulch and write “ RIP sky blue pencil” in the sand before walking home. I try to erase the tears from my face as I trudge towards the front yard, already beginning to forget my sadness and loss. My mom is watering the garden, and by the time she sees me I’m smiling. “Are you ready to go buy a new box now,” she asks me.
“Can I buy the box of 100,” I ask, excitement in my voice.
“Absolutely,” she replies. I smile and run to the car as fast as I can.
Quote: "I'll be laughing with everyone I see/ can't believe/ how strange it is to be anything at all"
What I'm Listening To: Creep- Radiohead
What I'm Watching: Novak as he suddenly blinks... Not currently, just in AP US... it sounds better than "the pages of my text books" or "drivers' ed. videos"