Friday, March 26, 2010 | By: Brianna

Drastic plastics tonguing street corners restlessly.

I have decided that it greatly annoys me when I step into the shower, turn on the water, and a lightbulb turns on. I'm not talking a literal lightbulb, I'm talking lightbulbs of the metaphorical variety. I'm talking the "EUREKA!" lightbulbs. The "oh my gosh, so that's what gravity is!" lightbulbs.
The lightbulbs that make me want to jump out of the shower sopping wet and run naked across the hall to grab a pen and paper.
I don't think my roommate would appreciate that very much.
Okay, so I'm thankful for any lightbulbs that grace me whenever they grace me, but could they just delay their arrival for until I get out of the shower and maybe dry off a little bit?
I don't think my notebook would appreciate being dripped on.
This is the perfect opportunity for someone to invent a waterproof way of documenting those lightbulb moments. Especially for writers such as myself who have short attention spans and horrible memories. I would keep it in a pocket. Somewhere. They'd have to install some sort of shelf in the shower specially crafted to hold this waterproof documenting device. Honestly, whoever invents that will make a mint. I would tell all my friends, and just think of the number of novels, poems, philosophical arguments and worthless headlines could be written just because the person could write them down immediately after thinking of them.
While in the shower.
I know I would buy one. Whatever it may be. Laminated notebook pages and special pen (maybe a Sharpie, they work everywhere)? Some type of waterproof messaging, note-taking device? Handheld, of course.
Think of all those lightbulbs saved.
Instead of burnt out.
Saturday, March 20, 2010 | By: Brianna


Thank you, to prompt websites that make my life easier.

May was a college student. That is to say that she spent the majority of her time during the week in the library, and her Fridays and Saturdays as far away from the library as she could possibly get. And being the dutiful college student she was, she called her parents once every two weeks to assure them that yes, she was doing fine in classes, and no, she wasn't letting her boyfriend push her around. Mostly because she didn't have a boyfriend. But that wasn't the point.

This particular afternoon found May, the college student, on a train, on her way home. And for May, home meant a great number of things, most importantly, home meant being within the same city limits as her former high school boyfriend. And he was one of several reasons she didn't have a boyfriend at school. The other reasons being the names of innumerable STDs that she was fairly certain the fraternity boys at her school collected and a certain overprotective father who didn't like bikers, artistic types or political science majors.

But I digress. At that very moment, May sat in her very own seat on the Amtrak home, with her laptop open on the fold out tray in front of her. The light from the screen was dimmed since she had her power cord in her bag and she didn't feel like fiddling around with the dimmer. Besides, she didn't need to see perfectly in order to play Spider Solitaire. It was rather inconvenient that the train didn't have Wifi, but hey, she had Moulin Rouge and a set of headphones in her bag if she felt the need to entertain herself with something other than pixelated images of shuffling cards.

May shifted in her seat, fighting to get comfortable in the chair to which she would be confined for over three hours. After fidgeting for a good bit, she discovered that she had been sitting on a ball of crumpled paper. Furrowing her brow, May picked up the paper ball and opened it, smoothing it out on the corner of the tray table that wasn't taken up by her laptop. When she uncrumpled it...
Tuesday, March 16, 2010 | By: Brianna


Yesterday I finished a book called Paper Towns by John Green. And being the nerd that I am, I decided to look up "paper town" in Wikipedia, and discovered a whole slew of information on fictitious entries out there in the real world. On maps, in dictionaries and encyclopedias, on the's really fascinating to think about. Where do people come up with these things? That they're just going to make up a word and throw it into the dictionary.
These are traditionally used as copyright traps, so if your made-up word shows up in someone else's dictionary, you know they're copying your dictionary. But I have to wonder with the Technological Age and all, are these entries just waiting to be found? Are they being made because people have the potential to find them?

I wonder what kind of fictitious entries there are out there? Have more been created recently?
I wonder...
Sunday, March 14, 2010 | By: Brianna

Good Thing...

"Good thing my daughter's focused."

What does that mean?
After talking about whether a friend has "what it takes" to get through four years of design school, that's what my dad comes out with.
"Good thing my daughter's focused."
What does he mean by "focused"? Focused on my studies? Focused on skating by with a decent grade on that paper I wrote the night before it was due? Focused on what I'm going to do all weekend when I'm not on duty? Does he know I want to be a novelist? That I want to write fiction, ridiculous things about plastic lawn flamingos, a girl that wears enough clothes to clothe a third world country and a green snakeskin hand bag with an attitude? Does he know that I want to pick up a French major so I can actually understand what Edith Piaf, Renan Luce and Kyo have to say? Does he know that I'm really focused on figuring out what I'm going to do next year when I should probably be doing my homework for Philosophy? Does he know that "focus" doesn't really have a definition for me with my scatterbrained thought process? Does he know that while he watches a Shania Twain concert online that I'm upstairs typing about how I don't know what he means by "focus"? Does he realize that I have more questions about "focus" than I could ever have about the nature of pickle relish? (Why IS it so green anyway?)

Okay. So maybe I'm latching onto one word and expanding it into something ramble-worthy. Very possible. Probable, actually. I should be focused on re-learning what little French grammar I knew before so I can dive into whatever classes I want to take for that wonderful French minor I've got my eye on. Or maybe I should be focused on an idea for that brilliant novel I'll write one day. Or focused on watching the second Back to the Future movie with my brother and getting him to stop playing Xbox for a little while.
Or maybe I should just stop writing about what I think "focus" really is.
Thursday, March 11, 2010 | By: Brianna


Okay, the thing about Arizona is that my dad loves it. And me being a bratty teenager as I once was, I needed to hate it just because my dad adores it. I needed to hate absolutely everything about Arizona. Every rock, every speck of dust, every cactus, every street name and tourist attraction. Just because my dad was in love.

Now that I'm a little older than "bratty," I'm mellowing out. Arizona is still not my favorite place in the whole wide world, but I no longer hate it with a passion. And if I do, it's just to be contrary.
I do greatly dislike the weather. I'm not a fan of heat, I'd rather bundle up than strip down. Personally.
And I am pretty scared of cactus. They're deadly, come on, who wouldn't be afraid of something that could cuddle with you and draw enough blood to feed a football team of vampires?
And you have to admit that nearly everything plays into stereotype when it comes to Arizona. There are streets called "Teepee Road" and "Buck-eye Trail," and a town called "Apache Junction." So many stereotypical western restaurants and tourist attractions, I wonder how the state can live with itself. Does it realize that it's entire purpose is tourism? The Grand Canyon is the best feature of the landscape. Okay, the red rocks are cool too. And petrified wood. And a couple other long as I don't have to get too close to the cactus.
And let's face it, Arizona is crawling with retired police officers. Most old people go and live in Florida, but not the police officers. They go to Arizona. Why is that?

Cheeky Arizona, flipping the bird at me with those handy obviously doesn't care about my opinion.
Sunday, March 7, 2010 | By: Brianna


Time trickles against the will of those who would have it stop. The few grabbing at the frayed hem of Time's robe, the strings loosening between their desperate fingers.
"What?" Time asked, tired of the constant clinging.
"Just stop for a second."
"I see no second here."
Time walks on, her desperate train imploring her to stop . Just for a tad. But was IS a "tad"? Time snickers at her own wit.


The young woman walked with care. She held the leash of a silver haired mutt, and she wore dark sunglasses. Sitting down on a park bench, she let out a breath.
"Lovely day."
"Gorgeous," agreed the dog.


What IS popcorn anyway? How is it related to corn on the cob? Maybe it's a distant cousin. A bastard son of an illegitimate union between a corn cob and a peanut? How would that even work? So a corn cob and a peanut walk into a genetic laboratory...Sounds like the beginning of a lame dinner joke.
Saturday, March 6, 2010 | By: Brianna

The Hour Past Midnight

In being up later than I normally would be, I notice a number of different things. For one, it's astounding how quiet the street outside is. At home, I'm pretty sure I can hear the busy street near us, and the train especially in the early hours of the evening.
And then there are the empty pop cans clanking down the hall. After spending two or so weeks believing that my residents drank a lot of pop and were just making sure that they recycled correctly, I discovered that no. Oh no, my residents are far too clever for that. They strung up four feet worth of pop cans. From the ceiling. In the inlet where their door opens. Needless to say, every time someone enters or leaves that room...::clank:: ::claaaaaank:: Annoying? Absolutely. Especially at 1:30 in the AM.

And now my sleep-deprived brain has begun pondering what "AM" means. And "PM," for that matter. I supposed "After Midnight" would be appropriate for "AM," but where does that leave "PM"? "Past Midday"? That seems like a stretch. I wonder who came up for those terms. Was it the train system giving us time zones and neat ways of saying "in the afternoon or evening" without resorting to 13:00? But then the Europeans run on 24hr clocks. So was it the crazy American that gave us the weird measurement system that decided that the U.S. should have two 1:00s in the course of a day? Why would you do that? Naturally if I'm saying I'm going to meet someone for lunch at 1:00, they assume I mean in the afternoon, but what if I had no sense of when lunch should be eaten, and I showed up at the restaurant at 1:00 in the morning only to realize that the joint's hours are 9 AM to 10 PM, leaving me standing out on the curb without a "lunch"? What then?

A random update on my Lenten goal to write every day of Lent...I'm actually doing surprisingly well. I did cheat a couple times, making up for days I missed by writing extra, but hey. At least it's getting done, and there were only a couple days like that anyway. Chances are when I get home all this effort is going to be forgotten. Hopefully that won't happen, considering I'm so proud I've gotten this far writing every single day. That never happens. Never... I always promise myself that I'll get into the habit of writing every day, but I never actually buckle down and do it. What makes this time different, I have no idea, but something's working.

Maybe it's the procrastination.