Playing With Lightsabers

Tonight at work, Jasper finally brought in his Force FX lightsaber that he got for half off.  (Now this is interesting—earlier, while writing in Word, I discovered that it automatically capitalizes the word “Mudblood”—but it doesn’t recognize the word “lightsaber”.  Weird.)  We turned out the lights and were playing with it (this sounds so dirty…*sigh*).  It was most awesome.  It was Anakin’s lightsaber, so it was blue and so pretty.  I was describing to Cortney how it lights up gradually, like it’s actually igniting, and she said, “That’d be really cool if it had sound effects, too.”  And I pointed out that it does.

“It makes a sound when you swing it,” I said.   “Well—no, it’s always humming, but when you swing it around, it purrs.” I just liked that line and found it funny after I thought about it, so I had to make note of it here.

Speaking of work, I have more stories again.

First of all (and this is mainly for Tinny, because you’ll find it as shocking as all the rest of us did), Jackie was fired.  (That’s not the shocking part.)  The shocking part of that is that she allegedly bitched at Caroline, who then shoved her against the wall…!?  So then Jackie threatened Scot in some way, and threatened to send in the cops to arrest Caroline…and she was fired.  Caroline…little old friendly grandmother Caroline…none of us could picture it.

This, also, will mainly amuse Tinny.  There’s this new guy who washes dishes—Eric—and we were trying to remember his name tonight, and I said, “Bob, it took you almost a whole year to learn Teshura’s name.”  (I never call you Tinny around him, because I don’t want to confuse him.)

He got this huge, sheepish grin on his face and said, “Why do you say that?”

I said, “You never said her name—it was always, ‘Hey, Ginny—and you, too!’ or, ‘Hey, Ginny, you and your friend come over here and do this,’ or…” and here he interrupted.  His face was rather red, and he still had the sheepish grin on his face, and he said, “You guys noticed that?”

“Yeah, Bob, we noticed…we were always joking about it.”  I laughed.

“Yeah, I’m bad with names,” he said.  “Hers was a hard one—I didn’t get it until right before she left, even!”

“Oh, trust me…we noticed,” I said, still laughing.

I love the philosophical conversations/arguments we have at work sometimes, too.  Like, tonight, for example:  We were cleaning up after everything, and Steve said, “Sometimes I wish I was Samantha from Bewitched; then I could just wiggle my nose and everything would be clean already.”

I said, “Or Jeannie from I Dream of Jeannie; then you could just bonk your head, and it’d be done.”

So then we started trying to name all the fictional characters we could think of who could get the cafeteria cleaned faster than we could.  Among them were:  Yoda, Darth Vader, Superman, the Genie (from Aladdin), Tinker Bell, Mary Poppins, Elliot (Pete’s dragon), Harry Potter (well, really Hermione, but I didn’t know if Steve would know who that was), Ursula (from The Little Mermaid)…and…oh, I feel like there are lots more I’m forgetting….

But the point was, Steve trumped us all by saying, “No one beats this:  Mickey Mouse when he’s the little magician guy.”

We all oohed and ahhed, but then I pointed out that he didn’t really get anything cleaned faster; he just had help.  And besides that, the “help” took it way overboard and just got him in deep shit.

Just a brief amusing story:  Yesterday at school, I was in the library writing for about an hour and a half before stepping out into the dazzling sunshine.  So I was all in that mindset of turning all of my thoughts and actions into 3rd person.

I went digging in my purse for my sunglasses, but instead of thinking, Where are my sunglasses?, my actual thought process was, Where were her sunglasses?  I just…think that’s funny.  Haha.

And it’s late and I’m tired now, so I’m just going to post this for now.

A Wookiee Christmas and a Will Ferrell Dream

Forget everything you have ever heard:  Plan 9 From Outer Space is not the worst movie ever made; The Star Wars Holiday Special is.

For the most part, it wasn’t even laughably bad; it was just unspeakably so!  No plot; I’m serious!  Things just randomly happened—random characters appeared and disappeared, musical numbers were performed merely for the sake of taking up time!  Carrie Fisher sang.  Entire scenes of Wookiees conversing in Wookiee (with no subtitles, might I add) were played.  That was the whole movie, basically.  The one brief scene with Darth Vader was stolen right out of A New Hope.  There’s a place in the end when Chewie arbitrarily stares into space and dreams about things that happened in A New Hope—some of which he didn’t even witness.  None of it fit into the timeline at all (which led me to the conclusion that it must have all been taking place in a separate dimension—although, as I pointed out, I didn’t know why I was bothering with the attempt at rationalization when there was no rationality to any of it at all).  The cartoon made more sense than anything else, even though we couldn’t see why that was placed in there, either…and right in the middle of everything.  There was something like soft porn, and there was a Bizarro Rocky Horror Martha Stewart.  I didn’t understand!  I still don’t, and I promise you—I never will.

On with the Will Ferrell dream.

I was bored one night, and nobody could hang out, so for some reason I decided to drive to St. Augustine…alone…down A1A (a drive that I do love, but it’s already creepy when you’re with somebody—imagine being completely alone at about 8:30 when it’s dark).

I arrive, park, and go walking down St. George Street.  I’m just walking along, and everything is closed, and…nobody is there at all, except me.  And I’m walking…and then I pass this little arcade thing, where there is a light on, and somebody is inside, hyperactively running around to various machines.  It’s Will Ferrell. I stop, look at him strangely, and continue on my way.

About two hours later, when I’m coming back in the other direction, I see that he is still in there, and now he looks drunk, and is clinging on to an air hockey machine (because that is apparently the only way he can keep himself upright by this point).  And he’s whacking the puck against the walls of the machine, and he just really looks drunk.  I walk in and say, “I would be absolutely delighted to play a game with you.”

He looks thrilled, too, and gives me the…not the puck, but the other thing…um…whatever it’s called.  He then takes out a large white plastic egg and starts trying to hit the puck with that.

I say, “Uh…what’s that?”

He replies, “Harry Potter.”

Of course, this line somehow makes perfect sense to me in my dream, so I just nod and continue playing.  I think the way I interpreted it was that it was supposed to be Norbert’s egg, and it was some sort of children’s toy.

We give up on the game after a while and just walk outside, and he’s clinging onto me for support…and we round a corner, and there’s Kristen, who immediately goes all fangirlish and wants a picture with Will.  I happily oblige, knowing well about her obsession, of course.  And he then clings onto her and slurs, “Great!  I have a girlfriend now!” which thrills Kristen even more.

And then Cortney, Nicole, and Katie all show up, and we’re all standing together looking at Kristen and Will Ferrell and saying, “Awwww, how cute!”  Not really like us at all, but…there you have it.

And that was really it.  I’d better go to bed now.

Return of the Husband and a Trip on the Delray Express

The husband finally came back today.  From what I could make out for myself (disregarding Psychobrat’s and Oz’s comments afterward), he said he had told his wife he didn’t think he needed to talk to Oz, but now that Oz had almost hit his wife, he changed his mind.  It was honestly pretty boring, and I could hardly hear anything.  Oh, well.  It’s not as though I didn’t get any excitement from the whole thing.

My mom and I are taking our trip tomorrow to Delray Beach.  We’re going to see my aunt and uncle; should be fun.

I haven’t been on a train since I was in Europe.  (I miss Europe.)  That’s been, like, almost 10 years now.  I remember that I’ve always liked trains.  And now they remind me of Harry Potter, since I have so few recent memories attached to them.  So in case there was any doubt of my dorkiness, I intend to make the ride very Potter-esque:  I’m wearing my Gryffindor shirt and sweatshirt (if it’s cold on there); I’m taking Quidditch Through the Ages and Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them; I’ll even have the music on my iPod.  I’m looking forward to it.

I’ll probably spend two and a half hours listening to Les Miserables, since that’s like watching the movie almost, and I’ve got a book, and some sleep to catch up on…I think I can keep myself occupied all day tomorrow.

Earlier today, while sitting here, by the back door, I heard a distinct rustling sound in the backyard, and looked out to discover my George leaping and bounding and pouncing, probably on lizards.  My darling cat; I love him so much.  And that’s the first time I’ve seen him hunting and pouncing in…gosh, a long time.

*hastening with the entry because falling asleep…words…not…making…sense*

Everyone have a lovely weekend, and I’ll see you when I get back!

Secrets Internalized

I recently referenced a story I am currently writing that takes place within the world of Harry Potter.  You can now read the beginning of it for free here or here.  (I recommend the first one since the second didn’t let me keep my formatting.)  It’s still a WIP (work in progress) so I’ll be adding to it as I go along.

Secrets Internalized is a short story about a smart and ambitious girl in a war-torn country who gets an internship with a major news organization and immediately begins suffering abuse at the hands of her evil supervisor.  She discovers that an old friend from school is hanging around some shady folks and decides to follow the lead, stumbling upon a terrorist plot and putting herself in increasingly more dangerous situations as she gets more and more deeply involved in her determination to rise above her evil boss.

It’s also fan-fiction.  So if that’s your thing, maybe you’ll dig it.

My “original” main character is pretty much Spencer Hastings from Pretty Little Liars, set in the 1981 Wizarding world (months before the Potter murders).  Here, I have this cool fan art my friend made me to prove it:

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I’ll give you one paragraph here so you can see the writing style, but you can see everything that’s currently available by following the links above.  Please enjoy:

1 August, 1965.

Beneath a thin crescent moon on the coast of Fylde, all was still but for the gentle waves lapping against the shore and a breeze that whispered of rain.  Great clouds loomed over the sea, shrouding even the stubbornest of stars.  It might have been impossible to see clearly on such a night on another beach, but this beach happened to be home to a very popular amusement park.  Dazzling lights from the roller coasters and Ferris wheel blazed and stretched their way down the coastline for nearly two miles.  It was precisely here, where the lights from the park met the edge of darkness, that a short, porcine man by the name of Mr. Niles Smudgeworth stood waiting.

 

 

Inside the Daily Prophet

I have to share this site I discovered.  It’s called myNoise and it lets you play ambient sounds to help you focus or relax or whatever you want.  There are so many different sounds available and you can combine them to make new ones!

Last night I was trying to write a scene that takes place inside the Daily Prophet, and I went to this site to find something to help me focus.  I used three different sounds to basically create the inside of the Daily Prophet.

First I took Cafe/Restaurant and turned down all the clinking dishes and all other noises but the voices.

I then added Factory (or Industrial Revolution–it seems to have two names) to add the sounds of a printing press.

Lastly, I added Fireworks and turned most of them down to low, sporadic blasts, to give the illusion of wands occasionally producing spells.

It’s so perfect.  Exactly what I would expect that environment to sound like.  I’m never writing without this site again!  I’m going to continue creating environments for every scene I want to write.  I highly recommend this to every writer and will definitely be donating in the future.

Dreams of Malfoys

Well, Sister got my shoes for her birthday.  (She’s on this whole kick where she’s stealing my look and it’s really obnoxious.)  And when we were all gathered around the kitchen table as she blew out her candles, she held up her foot and said, “Look at my new shoes!”  I just sort of rolled my eyes off to the side so no one would see, and then Milo looked at me and said, “Awww…isn’t that cute?  You have the same shoes.”

I looked at him in a way that was like, “I will laugh politely now, but I will kill you later,” and he looked at the expression on my face and said, “Oh, that is a great look!”  Hahaha.  I imagine it must have been.

I had a dream about the Malfoys last night.  Fortunately, it isn’t too clear in my mind anymore…something to do with me going to a summer camp and meeting this guy I didn’t recognize (Malfoy) who wanted to be friends, until he found out that I don’t come from wealth…but he invited me to come and hang out at his house for a few days after camp was over, and I met his parents who hated me; it was really scary.  I was lying there in the guest room at night, in the dark, and it was scary in a way like, afraid-to-go-to-sleep-those-people-downstairs-might-kill-me-maybe-if-I-lie-really-still-under-this-blanket-and-don’t-breathe-they-won’t-see-me-and-won’t-know-I’m-here scary.

And then after a couple of days, they made me leave, and by then even Malfoy hated me, because his parents did so much.

I woke up and thought, ‘What was the point of that?  Why couldn’t Cortney have had this dream!?’  It seems like there was a lot more to it than that, but I can’t remember what it was.

Anyway, I think that’s all for now…yes.  Good night.

More Potter Dreams

I dreamt I was Harry Potter last night.  It was really strange because Ron and Hermione weren’t there.  And I can’t remember ever thinking about them.  It was like they had never existed.  When the dream started out, I was walking across the bridge next to this girl that I don’t know.  We were on the way to one of our classes, and I made an offhanded remark—a joke, I was completely joking, and that is very important to understand here—that “Sometimes I almost wish I was a Slytherin.  Their colors are just so much cooler than Gryffindor’s.”

It was a bad joke.  It really was.  I was completely disgusted by it when I woke up.  And the girl just looked at me with no expression…just like looking at a wall.

Parts of this dream are blurry now.  I almost forgot it completely after I woke up.  But I remember sitting in the Great Hall at breakfast one day, and now nobody was sitting with me anymore.  All the Gryffindors were sort of gathered together in little groups, and I knew they were all talking about me.  I saw them looking at me and whispering….

That night, while I was sleeping, my wand disappeared.  I woke up the next morning and it was gone.  The other guys in my room were giving me that blank stare, but it was almost like I sensed a “gleam of triumph” in their eyes.  I knew that these guys had stolen my wand.  But I couldn’t accuse them.  Apparently all the Gryffindors, for some reason, already thought I was a complete jerk.

So I went to class.  I was scolded by every teacher for not having my wand.  I saw Gryffindors staring at me everywhere, and I knew word had spread—they were all in on the joke.  I suddenly knew what it felt like to be completely alone.

And it only got worse.  The whispers continued.  My wand didn’t turn up.  I started receiving cruel notes in my belongings—which, I guess fortunately, I can’t remember what was inside—and at mealtimes, disgusting, non-edible Potions supplies mysteriously ended up in my food, while I saw students laughing outright.  And then the whispers became jeers.  They were no longer trying to hide anything.  They became downright nasty.  And then someone stole my tie, so I started getting in trouble with every teacher again for not being properly attired.

It is interesting to note that the only people I recognized in this dream were the teachers and Malfoy and his friends.  Everyone else seemed to be a stranger.  No—Dean and Seamus were there.  I did see them.

When we got to Potions, Snape announced that we would not need our wands that day, making sure to give me a Snape-ish look.  I was relieved by this…at least maybe I wouldn’t get a zero for the day.  He asked us to take out our textbooks, and I looked in my bag…and it wasn’t there.

I looked up, and all the Gryffindors were staring at me gleefully.  Everyone else in the room had their books out.  Snape approached my desk and said, “Potter…where is your book?”

“I don’t have it, sir,” I said, glaring straight ahead.  Snickers from behind me.

Snape had a field day.  “You don’t have it….  Unprepared for class once again, Potter?”

“Yes, sir, I suppose I am.”  I was growing furious.  I still didn’t even know why I was being singled out in this way by all of these students who were supposed to be my friends.  It hurt.  I could only pretend for so long that it didn’t bother me—it did.  I was alone and friendless, with plenty of enemies to boot, and for no good reason that I knew of!

“What a surprise,” Snape sneered, and looked at Malfoy approvingly.  Apparently, he thought Malfoy was responsible for this.  I knew he was wrong.  At this point, Malfoy was not my worst enemy—the Gryffindors were.  “You’ll just have to take another zero, then, won’t you?”

Potions was hell.  And I was livid.  I had had enough.  When class was over, I stalked out of earshot of Snape, approached another girl I did not recognize, and said, “I used to have this idea of Gryffindors as the epitome of chivalry…sort of like the Knights of Camelot.  Why can’t someone come straight with me and just explain why everybody hates me?  I don’t understand; I mean, is that too hard to ask?  I guess Gryffindor just isn’t what I thought it was.”

And I walked away from her.  I thought, as I walked away, that she had looked quite stunned.  Maybe she hadn’t expected me to actually confront anyone about the issue.  That must be what it was.

But then from behind me, a couple of students—Gryffindors—ran forward and apologized.

“Harry,” said the girl to whom I had once joked that I might want to be a Slytherin, “we didn’t know.  We thought you knew what was going on.  We didn’t know you had no idea.”

“Everybody thought you were this stuck-up snob,” a guy said.  “We thought you understood why everyone hated you.”

“But now we see we were wrong,” the girl said.  “Let me be the first to say I’m sorry—I think I may have started everything, because I took you seriously when you made that Slytherin comment.”

That’s what this was all about!?” I asked in disbelief.  That was completely ridiculous.

“Well…yes…a bit,” she said, obviously embarrassed.  “We just thought you were really full of yourself.  That was just the last straw.”

And then everybody came forward together and apologized.  All of them.  That was really spectacular.

And I think that’s where it ended.