But Seriously, Music

A Ridiculously Long Post (With Pictures)

What is this feeling, so sudden and new? I felt the moment…
I walked out of my sophomore platform.
My pulse isn’t rushing,
My head isn’t reeling.
My face isn’t flushing.
What is this feeling?
Fervid as a flame, does it have a name?
Yes….yeeeeeeeeeees!
Freedom! Nearly-absolute freedom! And peace! And lack of stress!

Okay. Bad Wicked parodies aside, I am basically floating right now. Remember how I termed the past two weeks “Death Week” and “Lesser Death Week”? I wasn’t joking. They were every bit as crazy as I anticipated–maybe, in fact, even worse. Continue reading “A Ridiculously Long Post (With Pictures)”

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Book-y Things, Music

Book Review: Golden Daughter by Anne Elisabeth Stengl (and other things)

Dearest Interwebs;

Congratulations! You are again being treated to one of those “Betsy just doesn’t feel like editing before publishing” posts, which I know you absolutely adore because they make you feel better about your rationality.

Anyhow, I’m writing this en route back to Wild & Wonderful West Virginia. Thanksgiving break was delightful–with the obvious exception of the persistently terrifying cave crickets, which fortunately didn’t consume too much of my soul this trip–and now it’s back for the final two-and-a-half-week rush. This first week I’m affectionately referring to as “Death Week,” and the second I’ll term “Lesser Death Week.” This week includes the Christmas concert at the far end–for which I am a chorale member, Jubilate member, orchestra member, piano accompanist, prelude-player, and student conductor, because I make poor life choices sometimes–and the music theory final project at the near end–for which I keep staring at a partially-written piece of music blankly, muttering things like “rounded binary” and “leading tone resolution” and “passing 6-4 progression” and “dominant of the dominant” fruitlessly, hoping that such highbrow musical terms will inspire me. (So far, they haven’t much.)

“Now Betsy,” I hear you sweetly interjecting. “If this week is actually as deadly as you make out and you’re not just exaggerating again, why in the name of Sweet Bojangle’s aren’t you working on these things?”

While I appreciate your kindness (and your masterful use of idioms), this has a rather simple answer: a while back I volunteered to be an influencer reader for Anne Elisabeth Stengl’s lastest work, Golden Daughter, which I as to have done by November 30th. Which is, coincidentally, today! Why didn’t I review it over break? Because I was too busy taking naps. Worth it.

Anyhow, without further delay, on to the review.

golden daughter[That picture looks like I’m posting it with a terrible resolution, but I’m hoping it’s my screen.]

Golden Daughter

BEYOND THE REALM OF DREAMS IS A WORLD SHE NEVER IMAGINED

Masayi Sairu was raised to be dainty, delicate, demure . . . and deadly. She is one of the emperor’s Golden Daughters, as much a legend as she is a commodity. One day, Sairu will be contracted in marriage to a patron, whom she will secretly guard for the rest of her life.

But when she learns that a sacred Dream Walker of the temple seeks the protection of a Golden Daughter, Sairu forgoes marriage in favor of this role. Her skills are stretched to the limit, for assassins hunt in the shadows, and phantoms haunt in dreams. With only a mysterious Faerie cat and a handsome slave—possessed of his own strange abilities—to help her, can Sairu shield her new mistress from evils she can neither see nor touch?

For the Dragon is building an army of fire. And soon the heavens will burn.

As, I’ve mentioned before, I’m a pretty big fan of Ms. Stengl’s “Tales of Goldstone Wood” series. (Should that title be underlined? Italicized? Quotation-marked? Left alone?) Anyhow, that series–I like it. Golden Daughter was an absolutely fabulous addition, staying true to the series while still introducing something completely new.

One of the “new” things Golden Daughter introduces is the setting; while Heartless began in a fairly traditionally-flavored European-esque fairytale scene, Ms. Stengl hasn’t limited herself to that in following books. This particular book explores the Empire of Noorhitam, previously mentioned mostly in passing. (Well, I can’t say that for certain: the novella Goddess Tithe, so I hear, goes along with this work, but as I have yet to acquire Goddess Tithe, my knowledge is rather limited.) Noorhitam has a distinctly Asain flavor. Do you know how much fun it is to read fairytales that aren’t European-based? It’s not only fun, but it helps to keep the series fresh and unique.

While it’s different in its cultural setting, however, Golden Daughter ties in quite beautifully with the rest of the series. It’s rather incredible to me, actually, how Ms. Stengl can take a theme from one book and make it into a whole ‘nother story… Honestly, most of the connections fly completely over my head. One of the main characters, Sunan, appears as a rather insignificant (I thought) ship captain all the way back in book two, Veiled Rose…but I wouldn’t have remembered that if someone else hadn’t pointed it out. And all the references to the “goldstone” and the night of moonblood and the temple of Ay-Ibunda and Una’s ring…details which I wouldn’t have connected somehow come together. Actually, reading Golden Daughter made me want more to re-read all the other Goldstone Woods books, because I am completely sure I would catch a lot more subtleties now. Someday when music theory isn’t calling. Until then, if someone else cares to make some sort of index or glossary or timeline or something, that would be fantastic.

There’s a lot more I could say–about the characters (I loved Sairu, and Eanrin’s back, being chased by a fluffy lion dog names Rice Cake, no less!), about the plot (Mysterious? Check. Complicated? Check. Engaging? Check.), about the development of Ms. Stengl’s writing (I found Golden Daughter to be adult-ier than the beginning novels, if that makes sense…not that the others were juvenile…you know what I mean…I hope), about the length (deliciously long!!)–but this is already getting pretty lengthy.  A few random thoughts, and then the summary:

  • I wouldn’t recommend starting the series with this book. While you technically could–each book is written in a fairly stand-alone style–I still think Heartless is the best starting point.
  • As I mentioned, I found this book “adultier,” even a little bit darker at a point or two. Ms. Stengl has always been good at writing realistically, dealing with both the good and the bad, both the beautiful and the blighted, but it’s getting deeper. Not uncomfortably so, but so nonetheless. Evil exists, and she doesn’t shy away from portraying that.
  • I wasn’t as crazy about the allegory in this book as I was in some of the others. Heartless was a fairly straightforward Gospel allegory, and the subsequent books have delved into other themes. Golden Daughter has a Joseph theme, which , to my great chagrin, I didn’t pick up on until it was pointed out to me. I did, however, notice a fairly strong Revelation likeness, which I just wasn’t quite as comfortable with…probably because Revelation is already pretty debated about, and allegorizing an already-debated book just sits wrong on my dispensational upbringing, you know? However, I don’t think expounding on eschatology was Ms. Stengl’s purpose here.

In summary, I really liked Golden Daughter (though Starflower still has the most feels for me). One of my favorite things about the series is Ms. Stengl’s ability to create realistic characters is non-realistic settings. While I don’t expect to ever go dream walking, witness an attack on the Lady Moon, or discover a temple made of voices, I can see myself in the characters that did. They had weaknesses and temptations and failures like me, and sometimes they had strengths and victories like me, and that is what I love about these stories. Without departing from her previous books, Ms. Stengl has created an epic that’s fresh and surprising and ancient and familiar and believably unbelievable and heartbreaking and joyously glad. Read it. You’ll be glad you did.

Now. Music theory time!!

xoxoxoxoxoxo (just in case I don’t make it),
Betsy

disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book in return for my honest review.

College is Strange

Betsy Unfiltered

Dear World-at-Large;

Hi there.

Bet you had forgotten me, hadn’t you?

That’s perfectly alright. You probably had fewer bad dreams that way.

Anyhow.

This will be a super ramble-y post because I don’t feel like organizing my thoughts and I haven’t written for a month and a half and I just felt like checking in so y’all weren’t worrying that I was dead. You know that this is actually me and not some creeper posing as me so that you don’t get suspicious because no other self-respecting person would ramble like this. Why were you suspecting I was dead, anyhow? That’s super weird. Don’t you have any better problems to solve? Like ending world hunger or stopping Ebola or mailing me a space heater or practicing your special music for missions conference or doing a Sudoku…Suduko?….puzzle or something?

Actually, the practicing special music for missions conference is what I should be doing, but I’m not. It’s 10:30 at night and snowing and I just don’t feel like practicing. I will tomorrow. Maybe. Unless I get distracted by talking to my fabulous ex-RA or certain other friends.

Also, I should be doing my laundry. I started it this morning and then left and just got back, so I should probably finish. But that’s two entire floors below me and I’m pretty comfortable at the moment.

Know what I hate? When Pandora gets funky and just stops and skips an entire half a song. Pandora! I was just getting my little grove on! Why would you do that to me?

What am I listening to, you ask? Ummmm…my Josh Groban Christmas station. Shh. Don’t start judging. I can explain. You see, I never used to listen to Christmas music before Thanksgiving was over. But last year my delightful roomie–who’s been married for exactically two weeks now!!–got me started early. And I liked it. Christmas music makes me feel like it’s holiday season instead of get ready for sophomore platform and music theory finals and Christmas concert season.  And it is get ready for Christmas concert season, so we’ve already been singing Christmas songs and playing Christmas songs on the piano and playing Christmas songs on the violin and playing Christmas songs on the handbells and discussing Christmas wing decoration ideas and discussing Christmas vacation travel plans. As long as I’m in Christmas mode already, why not just break out the Josh Groban holiday album? Is that so wrong? It’s not like I’m already listening to family tradition songs, like the fife version of “Patapan” or Twila Paris’s Christmas tape or Michael Card’s The Promise. So it isn’t that wrong.

So what have I been up to otherwise? I don’t even know. Lots of stuff. Not very much. I have 14 credits of music classes this semester, which alternates between a lot of fun and a major headache. So. Many. Practice. Hours. On the bright side, I’m learning to conduct and modulate and become a better accompanist, which is just great. I’m still working in the library and doing Jubilate and accompanying at my church every Sunday and teaching the Wednesday night Tiny Trackers class and trying to figure out this RA thing and keeping my poor little fish mostly alive and making chocolate chip cookies and procrastinating on laundry. Speaking of which….blah.

Ok, I really do need to go switch loads. Yes, I have loads plural. It sort of piled up.

Last night I dreamed Ruth did my laundry for me. So I was sad when I woke up. But I also dreamed I grew a goatee, so I was very happy when I woke up. Actually, waking up was very happy because it meant I got to party basically all day: first, roadtripping to Charleston with one of my favorite fellows, then picking up my favorite RAs from the airport and going to Starbucks for chai, then going to the dean’s house for an early Thanksgiving dinner, then going to my favorite admissions girl’s house for a girl party.

It was a good day.

But seriously. Laundry is calling.

I should probably never write a post like this again.

But I probably will.

Book-y Things

Anon, Sir, Anon Cover Reveal!

Dearest friends of the blogosphere;

The loveliest of mornings to you! Actually, it’s nighttime when I’m writing this, because I’m actually being organized for once and scheduling this post, because mornings are difficult and I streamline them as much as possible. So I hope it’s a lovely morning, at least. I’ll probably end up drinking tea or something like that, unless I accidentally set my alarm for PM again… not my best morning. Hopefully this one is better.

Anyhow.

I’m fairly thrilled today, because today is the cover reveal for the lovely Rachel Heffington’s newest book, Anon, Sir, Anon! I was first privileged to “meet” Miss Heffington as one of my fellow Five Glass Slipper Sisters. I absolutely loved her writing style in The Windy Side of Care, so I feel pretty confident that Anon, Sir, Anon will be quite fabulous. Plus, the word “anon” is in the title TWO TIMES and that’s a pretty cool word. But you don’t even know what it’s about yet. So here ya go.

Continue reading “Anon, Sir, Anon Cover Reveal!”

Book-y Things

I Don’t Have Homework Yet…

…so I wrote the first “chapter” of my “thrilling” new story which is as of yet slightly untitled. Any resemblance to actual names or places are strictly coincidental, etc. etc.

Chapter 1: In Which Smithers and Libby Are Lost

The fog. It was incredible, thicker and darker than she had ever experienced before. Normally, Libby would have reveled in the mysterious atmosphere, but today, she was frightened silly. It was annoying, quite annoying, her tendency to irrationally over-react. Later, when the situation was all over, she would realize that she was never in any danger. Later, she would scorn herself for her foolish fears. But for now, all she could do was shiver, folding her arms more tightly around herself, forcing her feet to keep plodding up the hill.

The hill felt never-ending this morning. Libby’s backpack dug into her shoulders, causing her to bend under its weight. The fog worsened the further she climbed; the air grew chillier, the light became more obscured. By now, she could only see a few steps in front of her, and her overactive imagination kicked in. Perhaps she had missed the music building altogether? Perhaps she was wandering lost? She stopped and looked around. To her right, she still saw the handrail along the sidewalk, the trees on the other side dimly outlined. She made herself take a deep, calming breath. She couldn’t be lost. The only place this sidewalk led was up to Cherry Hall, the music building. She was simply groggy from the early morning and disoriented from the fog. She resumed her heavy plod. Continue reading “I Don’t Have Homework Yet…”

Actual School Stuff

Beware of Superlatives

Dear family, friends, acquaintances 2.0, and mortal enemies;

Greetings from the beautiful Appalachian mountain ranges! Yes, you heard me correctly; I have flown the land of cave crickets to dwell in the land of … these bugs. Don’t know what it is, and I’ve only seen it once, and I hope that’s the end of our relationship. 140820_0000

It’s been an eventful week; we left home early Monday morning (after Dad graciously found a way to fit all my piles of stuff in the back of the van), and arrived at school late in the afternoon. After kindly lugging the aforementioned stuff up a lot of stairs, and also getting my couch from the basement, and also getting some random and miscellaneous items from the basement, and also buying me supper, the family waved goodbye and headed off to go cabin-ing for the week. I stared at my piles of stuff disconsolately for a while, wondering why on earth I had so much, but eventually it got scrambled into some semblance of order.

ugh. :P
ugh. 😛
100_9237
much better..and purpler! Also, my dear parents bought me popcorn and the jumbo pack of Saltines…for sharing, of course.

Tuesday began our RA training week, and it’s been a wonderful time. The team has come together great, and I’m really looking forward to working with them and getting to know them better this year. The deans are especially fantastic and I already love them muchly. Event-wise, I was able to successfully become approved to drive the school’s 15-passenger vans, which was super scary. I haven’t disclosed on the world-wide interwebs the number of times I failed my driving test, nor did I disclose that little tidbit of information to the tester and the other RA’s as we were getting ready to pull out of the parking lot with me at the wheel. I did, however, betray myself with excessive whimpering and white-knuckled wheel-clutching. I confess my fears were mostly unfounded; it didn’t actually feel that much bigger than our Astro van. Though I didn’t have to back it up or parallel park it or anything like that, so that may have been much more difficult.

I also passed my CPR certification course, so I know what to do if I come across anyone choking, having a heart attack, simply not breathing, etc. Will I be cool-headed enough to do it? I suppose I’ll only know that if I’m someday in that situation…which I fervently, fervently hope will never happen. Have I already used “fervently” in this post? I don’t even know, nor do I care too much. I might have a few extra superlatives in here and that’s just fine.

In addition to becoming such a certified individual, it’s just been a huge blessing to get to know the deans and the other R.A’s. They’re some fabulous folks. It’s also stinkin’ exciting getting to know the new students who came in yesterday. So far they all seem super cool. (And no, I’m not saying that because I think they’re going to read this. I just honestly think they’re cool. Though it is a little weird seeing some of them who are younger siblings of other students I knew from last year; a few make me do a double-take, the sibling resemblance is so strong.)

Tomorrow, returning students…return, and classes commence again on Wednesday. Wait a minute. “Commence” means “begin,” right? According to Merriam-Webster, it does. So why do we have “commencement” at the end of the school year?

Oh well.

 Oh oh oh! I also decorated my door. 100_9236And yes, yes I do have a duck to hug.

It’s gonna be a superlatively great year.

Celebrations, Home

Loose Ends

Soon–so very, very soon–I’ll be back in the midst of the Appalachian mountains. Also in the midst of homework.

However, I am in neither of those positions quite yet. Instead, I’m mainly packing and/or procrastinating on packing.

Guys. Packing. Not as bad as cave crickets, but on a scale of brownies to cave crickets, “packing” is definitely toward the cave cricket end. I feel like I’m doing pretty well consolidating, and then I see how full the van is already getting. And then I remember the 1001 “little things” that I just need to “shove in somewhere quick before we go” and then I feel sad about my life. And then I argue with myself about if I really need all this with me or if I can get by until November just fine. And then I remember that I’m going to be an RA so I really need to do a bunch of Pinterest crafts quick so my room is super cute so all my girls love me. And then Mom reminds me that I don’t have time to do that, so my room will look something less than super cute, which is just fine because I don’t have room for all that stuff anyhow. And then I remember that I’m still procrastinating on the whole packing deal and I should probably get to it.

But instead I read “just one chapter” of North and South, which I picked up at the Half-Price Books trip Ben and I took the other week. It was great fun just hanging out together and reading Lost States in the middle of the aisle because we were too cheap to actually buy it and take it home, even though it looked amazing. However, I just read the Amazon reviews and it actually looks like it wasn’t worth our money after all, so we made a good choice. North and South, however, was definitely worth the $2.99. And the brother-sister time was priceless.

Speaking of quality time, Ruth and I also got to visit our very own beloved Kathleen this week! I’m pretty sure she’s responsible for almost everything I know about library work, and no matter how much I love my job, employer, and coworkers at ABC…Kathleen and the BBI library cataloging project will probably always be my favorite library experience. If you’re reading this, thanks again. 🙂

Other loose ends wrapped up this week…

  • DQ! My manager told me I can still work over breaks, so I may be back…we’ll see. it was a great experience, even though I didn’t always lovelovelove it. Daddy-o took us out for celebratory Blizzards the other night (yay employee discounts!), and I designed my own: Cappuccino Double Fudge Cookie Dough. It was quite as fantastic as it sounds.
  • Mending. I had a box of things I’ve needed to mend for quite a while and I finally did…it’s like getting a resurrected wardrobe! And sewing is fun. I miss it during the school year.
  • Shopping… Thrift stores are my biggest weakness. On the bright side, I feel fabulous. And I have a super fluffy pillow that’s sort of ugly because I never got around to pinteresting it into an owl or anything, but it’s so fluffy I don’t really care. If I ever feel like crying it will hold all my tears.
  • Church partying. The couple in our church who usually throws the Valentine’s party had a 6 lb. 8. oz., 21″ long reason that they couldn’t do so in February…but now that those 6 lbs. are grown somewhat (it’s a baby, guys, in case I’m being too obscure here. And I have no idea how much it weighed. That just sounded like good dimensions for describing a newborn), it’s the perfect time for a party, complete with top-your-own spaghetti and charades. Our very own Levi welded himself an imitation fencing sword last night in order for his Dread Pirate Roberts costume to look authentic. That’s dedication, folks. I simply safety-pinned a piece of notebook paper to my back. In all fairness, I was in the middle of packing up almost every item I own and creating elaborate costumes was a little low on my priority list. However, no one was put out by my lack of effort, and a fabulous time was had by all. I’m going to miss my EBC family very, very much!
  • Family time-ing. All nine of us got to do special music in church together last Sunday and visit the shut-ins, and all nine of us got to eat our traditional Saturday morning waffles today. It’s been quite a while since we could get everyone together, and it will probably be a while before it happens again, so it was pretty fantastic. Also Lilly and Ruth and I had a tea party which was actually a chocolate milk party. And we played some final rounds of telephone pictionary in which the phrase “my hair goes up” turned into Ruthie dancing with a variety of breads. My family is pretty much my favorite thing ever, and as excited as I am to get back to school…I’ll probably cry just a little when we’re separated again.

In other news, my mumsie and popsicles celebrate their 28th wedding anniversary today! Mom and Dad, wishing you happy anniversary was actually most of the reason I started this post. It took me a while to get to that point, but I made it eventually. Your wonderful example of godly love and faithfulness has set the standard pretty stinkin’ high! Thanks for providing such a reliable home for us all these years; if there’s one thing I’ve always been sure of (besides, you know, God Himself), it’s been your love for and commitment to both each other and our family. If I ever have a relationship with anyone besides a cat, I fervently pray that it will be as solid and successful as yours. (If I ever have a cat, I won’t look to you for advice probably, because Mom will want me to send it to a barn.)

Anyhow, all that to say, happy anniversary Dad and Mom! May you have many more years together.

Also, I realize it’s pretty late so you won’t even see this until the day after your technical anniversary, but adjust for leap years and time zones and stuff and it will probably be like spot on.

But Seriously, Home

Life Lessons from Fast Food

In honor of only having two days left at DQ, I thought I would share some lessons from the summer…

  1. I really like being called Elisabeth. It’s a good name.
  2. I’m really slow. There’s this time chart competition thing, and I’ve been consistently in the low slots. It really hurts my pride. I don’t like coming in last or even close to last. Learning how slow I am has been humbling. I’m really not as great as I think I am.
  3. People are quick to criticize others and even quicker to excuse themselves. I’m pretty sure I learned about this concept in psychology last fall (the Fundamental Attribution Error, perhaps?), and I’m quite sure I heard a sermon or two on it this summer (Hypocrisy/Judgmentalism, perhaps?). Because of this…
  4. Learning to have a patient and meek attitude is invaluable in interactions. I don’t have that anything close to mastered yet, but I hope I developed it at least a little bit this summer.
  5. Speaking of being judgmental, I will be much more understanding next time I have to patronize any sort of fast food place. Maybe the kid behind the counter is a stereotypical fast-food worker type…or maybe she’s just very confuddled by having counted change all day and this simple math problem that you’re asking her to do is inexplicably escaping her. All sorts of numbers are floating in her brain, and so if she stares at you blankly, it could be drugs, or it could be just sheer change-counting tiredness. Give her a break. Please. Because that was totally me several times in the drive through this summer and it was really embarrassing.
  6. Speaking of drugs, if you jokingly remark to one of your coworkers who “sometimes does illegal stuff” that the cop going through the drive through asked to speak to her…she probably won’t think it’s funny. Oops. 
  7. Wearing headsets is gross. You know how much of other people’s ear sweat is in those things? Way more than I want close to me. Too bad I don’t have much of a choice.
  8. The easiest way to make sure you get all your breaks is to take up smoking.
  9. Vanilla shakes are nothing more than milky ice cream. Save your money, people. Especially if you don’t even want the whip cream or the cherry.
  10. America has some very messed up priorities. People who buys their dogs cups of DQ ice cream are crazy. That’s some expensive stuff to just feed to a dog.
  11. Not all high school seniors know if France is a city or a country. Weep for the state of the nation.
  12. Do all things without complaining and disputing, that you may become blameless and harmless, children of God without fault in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world.
  13. People really like justifying themselves. When I ask, as I’m supposed to do, if they want to donate “just $1!” to the Children’s Miracle Network, a surprising percentage of them take the time to explain why they can’t: I did last time, I do that at work, no one ever donates to me, “I’m broke.” (False. If you can afford our ice cream you are NOT broke!) People. I am neither God nor your conscience. I really could not care less why you choose not to donate. Just pull around and give me your money so I can get on to the next customer.
  14. Pop radio is one of the most terrible things I have ever been subjected to. You know how people complain about classical music being boring and all the same and stuff like that? I present to you: basically every pop song I’ve heard. Look at these lyrics:
    One less problem without ya!
    I got!
    One less problem without ya!
    I got!
    One less problem without ya!
    [Ariana Grande:]
    I got one less, one less problem
    [Big Sean:]
    One less problem without ya
    I got!
    One less problem without ya!
    I got!
    One less problem without ya!
    [Ariana Grande:]
    I got one less, one less problem
  15. No job can compare to my library job. Just a few more weeks until I’m back. I can make it.
  16. God is good. From providing work in the first place, to giving me grace shift by shift, to reminding me to do all things without complaining, to granting opportunities to witness…He’s been so good and kind and faithful to me through this entire summer. Will I miss blending blizzards and taking drive through orders? Not at all. But am I glad I got to do both this summer?

Absolutely.

College is Strange

To whet your appetite

Dear All Four People Who Read This;

I know you’ve missed my ridiculous tales of school this summer…delightful tales in which garbage cans become normal places to munch from, raccoons become the objects of kicking, and libraries become the location of pickup lines and arranged marriages. Mourn not; in just a short 11 days I’ll be settling into my new dorm room and beginning my collection of ridiculous tales anew.

In the meantime, selected quotes from last year. You may or may not find these at all amusing, because they probably make no sense out of context.

Names changed to protect the innocent.

friend upon hearing of my fear to sit at the “sophomore table”: You can sit there if you want. Stop listening to the serpents that are telling you not to eat of the fruit of the grapevine.

friend on slang: “JK” means “not serious.”

friend on why I should appreciate some movie called “The Matrix,” about which I still am completely clueless: Wait, you’re from Iowa, right? So you like Chicago stuff? Because he wears a trench coat!

friend on relationships: Why would I need a girlfriend? I have a tractor!!

friend on the terrible state of the world these days: Did you know you can’t even register for a wedding at Dollar General?!

friend on her true feelings: If I were a sadistic person, which I am, deep down inside…

professor on her speech preferences: BUFFALO! I love that word!

friend on writing problems: How do you spell “MC”?

professor on detecting methods: I think that’s what Sherlock Holmes did. Besides cocaine.

friend on chorale neighbors: He takes up too much space for a skinny person.

friend on relationship preferences: This is nice and compact…just like I like my women!

professor on food: You can eat Lucky Charms without milk and still feel blessed. But to eat shredding wheat without milk–well, you just keep chewing and hope the saliva’s working.

friend on why she can’t promise me I’ll be one of her bridesmaids: Maybe you’ll DIE!!

friend on my mean face: You look like a butterfly dictator.

friend on skillz and a lack thereof: I’m worse at ping-pong than a horse that doesn’t even know how to walk.

friend on how to express remorse: See this? This is the deodorant of shame. WEAR IT.

friend on…I don’t even know what: I just wish I could feel something when I look into your eyes…

friend on braided hair: Sometimes, I think it would be fun to be a girl…

friend on food preferences: Yeah, jelly beans are gross. …wait. What am I saying? I think I actually like jelly beans. No. I LOVE jelly beans! What was I talking about??

friend on modernizing Song of Solomon: Your neck is like…the Servant Center! servant centerI don’t know. Would you rather have a neck like that, or a neck like “the tower of David builded for an armoury, whereon there hang a thousand bucklers, all shields of mighty men”?