Free Time, Say What?

Since school has ended I’ve been struggling with the idea that, woah now, I control my own time. Dude, that’s all sorts of crazy. I better spend this amazing thing by swearing violently while watching episodes of Breaking Bad and refreshing my tumblr feed! Then, when I get too sick of myself, I’ll text friends who live somewhat far away and decide to walk an hour or two to hang out with them.

 In all seriousness, I’ve lost a lot of motivation. Which is kind of terrifying. And strangely ironic, considering the fact that just a couple of months I posted here that, “I’m too self motivated to become a burnout.” Which is probably still true, since having noticed that’s exactly what I’m doing, I’m trying to be a little bit more responsible. By, you know, doing things like studying for my permit*. I think I’ve become a teenager, and it’s a bit gross.

Yeah, driving, that’s a thing now. Weird. I’ve never been overly eager to get my license, and it really doesn’t even matter that much to me, but I figure that I should learn how to drive before I graduate, even though it’s not really useful at the moment.

 In the meantime, when I’ve been going through bursts of actually doing things, I’ve been making art, going for really long walks with only semi-determined destinations, and getting drenched a couple times a day. Walking in my town is a dangerously moist undertaking, made doubly so when the dryer isn’t working.

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Soaked selfies. Huzzah.

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At a cool place I walked to the other day, a local graveyard.

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Forcing myself to be productive, and accomplish things in my sketchbook again.

In other news, I’ve learned how to use my scanner. After that many years of putting it off because I thought it would be hard, it really wasn’t. Took me five minutes of unpleasantness, tops. Having realized this, you can expect to see a lot more of my art here, since it’s easier to upload higher quality images now, and I always manage to screw up taking photos of art.

Until whenever I next decide that it’s been too long since I’ve plugged letters into cyberspace,

Kaelen

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Bullet points, footnotes, over considering things I don’t really need to consider yet.

This last Thursday I went on a trip to a local arts school, which was super inspiring. Going there pretty much cemented the fact that I actually don’t want to be a librarian- or any other form of desk job- however, which is a thought I’ve been trying to ignore for the last little while. I’ve been attempting to ignore this because I really like the concept of having my life packaged up in a neat tidy little box. My previous box was:

  • Graduate with a few I.B. courses and a scholarship or two.
  • Use the above to partially skip/fund my first year of university at Memorial.
  • Get my B.A. at Memorial, my Masters at Dal, graduate…
  • Get a job? Fingers crossed?

All sounds good, but something clicked the other day, and all the thoughts I’ve been thinking came together and I realized that:

 The turn over rate for being a librarian, at least where I live, is miserable. As books become more and more outmoded my hopeful job would become more and more likely to just involve working with data and information on a computer, or some such. Sitting in a room and affixing labels to books, assessing their condition. Sitting behind a desk, holding small volunteer events that nobody really comes to. Not only would I not be assured of getting a job- after all that time spent in University- it wouldn’t really be a job I would want.

 To paraphrase a local librarian I once talked to, “You’re thinking of getting that degree? That’s great! Very excellent. Oh, you want to know about the chances of actually getting hired? Well…hehehehehe…how do you feel about moving somewhere cold and wet where the sun never shines?”

 So. Yeah. Things just clicked, and I realized that the neat little box wrapped with a bow I had was more like a wet sheet of newsprint tied up in twine.

 I’m not throwing the plan entirely out the window. I’m far too anal and too much of a perfectionist to not want to know what I’m doing with my life. However, there is a good chance that it’s going to be in the arts. There is also a good chance that unless people throw scholarships at my head when I graduate (no matter what my plans, I will apply, because free money is my favorite kind of money) I will be open to the idea of taking a gap year, in which I get a bunch of jobs, sell things I make, and see if following my dream of having an art driven career is actually going to work out. If it does, great, I’ll probably go take a degree in costume design, or fiber arts -thank heavens I have no plans for raising a family, because I’m quite aware that those careers offer no immediate stability. If it doesn’t, cool, but at least I will have a better idea of which more conservative, ‘normal’ job I do want to go after.

 In summary, a few thoughts.

  •  I’m in grade 11: I can take a breath, if not a deep one, before putting plans into action.
  • I don’t hate where I live, but I certainly don’t want to allow myself to become settled here.
  • Art is cool, it’s my passion if I can say that without sounding cheesy, and even if in few years time I change my mind, I can always switch out. I just don’t want to be stuck behind a desk, doing something that bores me senseless in order to afford to send my kids* to school, pay for the house the husband and I bought in the burbs**, and the second car.

 Well, that  was a spiel. But I’m actually not stressed about this. I’m too self motivated*** to become a burnout, so maybe I’ll put a little faith in my future self to know what’s up.

*Apparently my brain correlates sitting in a cubicle with having a sudden change of heart and wanting kids.

**No offense to those who live in the suburbs. You guys always have Arcade Fire to fall back on.

***I fully realize that this comes off as an egotistical statement, but it’s true, simply because I like being in control of my life. Hence the fact that I just wrote out this many paragraphs on a topic that I don’t need to consider to this degree until sometime next year.

“not a face”

I haven’t had hot chocolate in far too long. I don’t know why I really regret this, seeing as by the end of an average mug of hot chocolate my stomach no longer wishes to associate with me. Stomach association aside, it’s fall, leaves are turning colours and making for some satisfyingly crunchy walks (my friends look at me strangely, but it’s worth it)– it’s hot chocolate season!

It’s also soup season, apple crisp season, pie season, tea season, and many more.
If I didn’t believe that every season is food season, I think fall would win that award.

In news completely unrelated to ingesting things, art class is a hip hopping time. Alongside the other IB11 student, I’ve been making a clay cast of my face.

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The procedure for this is kinda interesting and full of many steps that go something like:
1- Spread scads of petroleum jelly over face. Cringe throughout. Apply a little more for good effect. Cringe yet more because that stuff is nasty.
2- Lie still while people put plaster of Paris bandages on your face. Try not to laugh. Fail, not miserably, but somewhat disconsolately.
3-Once everything is dry and off your face, pick the plaster out of your teeth for the entirety of your next class.
4- Using the plaster cast, shape a clay model of your face, and begin to paint said model once it has been fired.
5- Realize skin is really hard to paint. Realize nostrils are really hard to paint. Realize painting is hard.
6- Instagram your “not-a-face” like crazy throughout the previous five steps.

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Enjoy food season!
Kaelen

School Day Ruminations

A grand total of two days of school finished, I’ve come to two realizations:

1) My brain likes to troll me by releasing stress-y chemical things at inconvenient times (which is something you’ve probably realized if you’ve read this blog for any amount of time)

2) I am better at actually doing work than discussing work.

The first day was a bit of an overwhelming attempt at trying to process every single thing we are going to be doing this year at once. Yet by the second day, where we actually began to do a few things and get started on one thing at a time, my brain took a chill pill and I enjoyed myself a lot more.
After two days of class, I’m starting to get a vague idea of how my day is probably going to end up going.

A Block:

 Math with a teacher who is apparently, “A really nice person! She really is! But she can’t teach…and…I’ll just pray for you.” With only one day of review and a fifteen minute attempt at learning everyone’s names under my belt I can’t say where my levels of crazy are going to be. I really hope this turns out to be a good class though, because starting off the morning by learning math from somebody who can’t teach math will get old really fast.

B Block:

Sociology! This class is one of the grade twelve courses that is open to grade elevens as well (Kaelen’s heart did a little happy dance during course selection last year when she found out that some 12 courses were now open to her) and there are way more people that I know taking the class than I expected. I’ve also heard varied opinions on this teacher’s ability to teach…I’ve had him before as a sub, where he decided that the biology video we had to watch was boring, the sheet we had to fill out unintelligible, and as such he was going to nix the sheet and put a different video on using his netflix account.

…Who knows how this could end up.

C Block:

 Last year nobody bothered to tell me that you need to take at least grade ten level french in order to graduate (actually, you need grade ten and grade nine, but since I wasn’t at school for grade nine that one was kinda’ let slide.) which is why I’m now doing grade ten french in grade eleven. Core french has a reputation for being excessively easy, but on the other hand I’m ridiculously incompetent when it comes to French, so I really couldn’t try for much more.

In this class there are quite a few of the niners (now grade tens) from last year who I had in the demonic-niner-science-class-from-hell…AND ALL OF THEM HAVE CALMED DOWN. I’m pretty sure that there must be a certain switch that’s activated by your homeroom teacher as soon as you advance to grade ten, which makes you a decent person who people don’t want to slaughter for never shutting up with the racist/homophobic/sexist banter.

D Block:

 If IB English doesn’t kill me I’m going to enjoy every minute of it. My teacher is one of the more notorious instructors of the school (she once refused to accept a rewrite because it was in the wrong font) and so far everybody in the class is too afraid that we might fall under her wrath to actually act up…or, you know, breathe loudly. As such, it’s one of the quietest classes of my day. I feel like it’s going to be a ton of work (which is something I knew when I signed up for it) but completely and totally worth it. Not just for the possible university credit at the end of it, but for the simple fact that I love English and learning about it makes me really happy.

I also feel that this class is likely to be somewhat ridiculous, as our teacher is quite a hardcore christian who has some relatively (for school) raunchy books to assign to us for our upcoming year. (as you know, I’ve already read some of the books that we’re going to be assigned….can any one say “Love In the Time Of Cholera”?)

D Block:

 There is no way to explain how extremely delighted I am for Pre-IB art. I bought my art journal yesterday (the art journal that I’m going to use until the end of grade twelve…the art journal that is going to be worth a large portion of my mark at the end of everything…the art journal that is going to document my progress for the next two years of my artistic development) and I’m now terrified to actually begin to draw in it. Which would be why it is still in my locker, unmarked, with the pages lovingly smoothed out so the spine can’t crack and the stickers still on.

Because of a scheduling conflict with IB English, I couldn’t actually get into an IB art course, so I’m instead hanging out in the back corner of a grade ten class doing a bunch of non-grade-ten work. Good times. I’ll probably be posting pictures of some of my finished projects here as they get completed over the course of the year.

Much like how I get more and more verbose throughout my post, my excitement for my classes more-or-less gets steadily stronger throughout the day. Didn’t mean for it to turn out that way, just sometimes I get really excited about things and then I write lots. And, by the end of the day, after my IB classes, I feel pretty pumped.

This may change, and at some point I will most likely go through a period of  just feeling stressed after my end of day IB…but for now, I remain Pumped.

Huzzah.

Kaelen.

 I’m caught somewhere between feeling nostalgic for a summer that’s still got one day to go and excited for the routine of fall.  The  weather seems to be reflecting my own indecision- It’s getting ready to be fall yet still hanging on summer, with  those wonderfully warm days tempered by chill breezes that make September my favorite month.

 It feels weird… this is my first “official” summer break and next year will be my last. I know I’m only going into grade eleven, but a lot of my friends are going into their last year of high school, and all in all it’s just a reminder of  the fact that being a teenager is a very small and fleeting portion of your life which far too much emphasis is put on.

 (Somebody, quick, smack me before I turn into Holden Caulfield.)

Maybe I should just take Lupin’s advice.

 On a more amusing note: although only the grade nines start on Wednesday, my art teacher asked me to come in to talk about the IB art 11 course I’m going to be taking. I just have to come in for the last class of the day, but I’ve come to the conclusion that I quite want to dress in all black clothes, oversized glasses and a neck scarf, then walk around school the entire day, thumbing my noses at the grade nines and drawling things about how someday “You too may do IB”, and, “These are mature things you wouldn’t understand”…just generally being a pretentious know it all jerk.

I probably won’t actually go through with this.

Probably.

 

 

Dealing with the end of summer by messing with the fragile brains of niners in the name of being pretentious…so tempting.

The last two weeks made me remember stuff.

Mostly just stuff about myself, because I’m an egotistical little twerp like that. It’s funny, the things that give you a sense of deja vu while you’re studying for exams/writing exams/living life/rejoicing in the warmness of sunshine. Things remembered include:

  • I sunburn really easily. I am a pale, pale, pale ghost who rarely ventures out of her gloom cavern because when she does she always forgets to apply sunscreen. Now I am a pale ghost with legs that are all red on one side from where the sun did it’s work while I was stationary for hours on end. (I will admit, the contrast of lobster red to phantom white is pretty amusing, if slightly painful.)
  • I have no life whatsoever. This was realized when I was filling out the hours I can volunteer at the library (The whole getting a summer job plan kinda fell through…it’s kinda too late now. I’m just gonna’ volunteer everywhere instead and make my resume look fancy for next year.) and for the life of me couldn’t think of a single social event that would conflict with me selling my soul to the librarians.
  • I really like kooky dead artists. So much so that I’ll spend large amounts of time painting “forgeries” of their work for art exams.

 

 

(apologies for the crappy pictures, by the way. I-pod cameras are convenient, but far from great quality, especially when paired with  the deadly combination of bad florescent lighting.)

  • David Bowie “fills my heart with love today”.
  • Exams are never as bad as you think they will be.
  • Stressing for exams is always as bad as you think it will be.
  • When I’m nervous I stress eat. When I’m really stressed I barely eat at all because food makes me feel like puking. Needless to say, exam week introduced me to some fairly weird eating patterns. (Nope, I don’t have any eating disorders, despite how suspicious this sounds! Normally I can eat like a horse, no matter my mood. Stress just tends to affect me strangely.)
  • Rehearsing monologues is fun. Although since I have been leaving my bedroom window open due to the nice weather I’m kinda sorry for our poor neighbours who have to put up with my audible nattering on about how “the boy love is  perjured everywhere”, “nor is my life important” and how “I am so much better than before”.

And on that thespian note…

Kaelen.

Random Thoughts and Photographic Tomfoolery

Having succesfully put off bringing home any books for the past three days I’ve reached the harsh and unfriendly conclusion that, since I know I won’t have any free time over the weekend, the next two nights are going to be study nights. (I do realize that by typing these words I have immediately earned the hate of every person with a larger work load than me. Please, dear stressed readers, don’t fret. I will be swamped just as much as you very shortly.)

I’m starting to feel that I should be freaking out soon…I have a science test on monday as well as an oral presentation (three person group in which one person has done absoloutely no work for a presentation that is going to be worth a large amount of our history marks.). I also have two English presentations that I need to begin stressing over soon, one of which is going to be very offensive (my partner and I are writing a short story called ‘The Prostitute’s Tale’. Please, dear relatives, do not disown me.) and the other of which is probably going to comprise of me doing all the work (I hate having my partner assigned for projects.) for yet another oral presentation that has a lot of weight with which way our marks lean.

In addition to all this, there’s only about another month until exams, I need to start thinking about a summer job (I really don’t want to work at Timmies, but job opportunities in Saint John do not seem to be very friendly for your average fifteen year old.), I’m already worrying about next year’s classes, etc ,etc.

Blargh.

Funny, I’ve decided to try and stress less…let’s see how that goes…

Fortunately my life is not entirely composed of stress…there is always reading (‘The Jungle’, by Upton Sinclair), music (Sufjan Stevens, Animal Collective and the Arctic Monkeys. My music taste is being corrupted by my pretentious hipster friends.) and other ‘artsy-fartsy’ outlets, my current obsession being photography.

Over the last week or so I’ve been playing around with the shutter speeds on my camera, with fairly pleasing results.,,

And then, just to top off all of my angsty shutter speed image shenanigans, I decided to experiment with a little light painting:

Between my camerafuntimes-exploits and the music I have been listening to lately, I feel equal parts pretentious and artsy.

Kaelen.

Things Done This weekend:

Books read:

  • Just finished ‘Animal Farm’ by George Orwell. Fun fact, Orwell’s actual name was Eric Arthur Blair. Learned this because my Social Studies teacher, Mr Theobald, who loves to go off on half hour long tangents about cars and Germany and boarding schools in the middle of class, told us to look it up for homework. In case you couldn’t tell, Mr Theobald is awesome, despite (or perhaps because of) how little work we actually get done in that class.
  • Currently reading ‘Interview With the Vampire’ by Anne Rice. Good, but the father-daughter relationship between Claudia and Louis is creepily pedo. ‘Cause nothing screams ‘vampire’ like twisted adoptive relationships!

Creativity wise:

  • I finished a pair of mittens that got cast on Thursday night. Fun fact, none of my teacher’s cared that I knit through all of my classes. (almost- we were working with clay in Art, and I didn’t particularly want to make my yarn dirty.) Mr Theobald didn’t even look my way when I dropped my yarn on the floor and had to chase it. I told you he was awesome.

  •  Last night I was feeling glum, so I painted a sketch from over three months ago and listened to the Smiths. By the end of ‘The Queen is Dead’ I had some art finished and a better mood. Who knew that angst could be productive?

Social Situations Not Avoided:

  • Went to the I-act coffee house on friday night. It was a good time, although I was kinda kicking myself that I didn’t go the Saint John High coffee house the night before, since it was apparently really great. Shoulda, woulda, coulda. Ah well. Next month.
  • FreeSchool! To sum up, the idea of freeschool is a whole bunch of people gathering together to share their knowledge and skills in workshop settings, eat food, meet like minded individuals, all for free. Gotta love the people who volunteer and put so much work into these things. Yesterday was my second time attending, and I enjoyed myself, although I did end up showing up a bit late. Staying up till one journaling and listening to Grizzly Bear will slow down a person’s morning.

Random Stuff:

  • Internetting, as per my usual forms of time wasting.
  • Sleeping in, waking up to my Dad playing Enya, with sunshine coming in my window and breakfast already made.
  • Presents were bought for my younger brother’s impending fifth birthday. Silly Putty, colorful bubble mix and straws that flavor your beverages. I kinda want to keep all of the items I picked out for him, and I don’t know quite what that says about me.

The Things That Are Currently Making My Life Awesome

 

  • Starting tomorrow, I will either be at I-act or the Imperial Theater at least once a day, for eight days.
  • The reason being, it’s production week for CINDERELLA THE FUNKY PANTO. Yes, you heard me correctly, I used full caps, because it’s Cinderella The Funky Panto.
  • And now you know that Friday the sixteenth at seven and Saturday the seventeenth at one you will be going to the Imperial and paying twenty bucks for adults, seventeen for students and seniors, to watch two hours of seventies flavored funky panto spangled awesomeness.
  • Anywho…
  • Today in art class we had a guest speaker come in, to show us how he created 3-d characters for animations, specifically characters designed for games. This was pretty cool for a couple different reasons, being A) 3-D character design is cool, B) My art class which is usually super noisy and obnoxious actually payed attention for once, and C) He designed the very first app I ever got on my Ipod, Trade Nations. (I didn’t have the heart to tell him I deleted it because it kept asking for money, and got kinda boring kinda fast.)
  •  I’ve broken down, and finally admitted to myself that I will be attending cab this year. For those of you who don’t know cab is short for cabaret (no, not that sort of cabaret) which is the fancy christmas dance at my school. And all the awkard highschool couples apparently go to grind on the dance floor. (sorry for the mental image). I will be not going to grind, but to boogie and make a general ass of myself with my friends. (the hyper sort of ass, not the stupid and drunk sort.) Anyways, cab itself isn’t all that super awesmazing, (just a stereotypical teenage person dance), but some of the things connected to it are, namely being:
  •  The Variety Show. I’m pretty sure this is just a fancy name for ‘Talent Show That No One Will Bother Coming Too, As It Is Right Before Cab, And Everyone Is Going To Be Busy Doing Their Hair And Stuff’, but what the hey. I ‘auditioned’ by acting out a couple lines of my monologue that I keep in my back pocket at all times. (which reminds me, I should really memorize another, non-Shakespearean monologue.)

  • Another interesting thing about cab would be some of the conversations it generates. Namely, me (female, and despite what I tell my relatives for shock value, straight) walking up to my (female, straight) friend and asking her out as my cab date. Because couple’s tickets are cheaper than singles tickets. (it’s discrimination against all us forever alones.)
  • Pre-I.B. English class. This is the class I’m doing the worst in, yet it is also the class I think I love the most. (Actually, I lie, that’s art. But English is my second favorite.) We just finished our assignments on Romeo and Juliet, and as much as I love Shakespeare I was glad to reach the end of the assignment when I did. Not that I’m bashing the play, the play is great (the play’s the thing), but Romeo and Juliet themselves were pretty darn irritating by the end of it.
  • My adult friends randomly coming over to my house, and asking me to do their makeup, with instructions like, “Make me look kinda…um..feline. Like a crazy cat lady that got really into it.”
  • My friends in general, really. And, yes, I’m looking at all you I-act people. And Mozart Nerd. And the rest of you who are skulking in the corners. You know who you are.
  • Firefly. As in the show, not the bug. (those things are cool too, though. If you squish them on your hand they leave smears of glowing bug guts.) It’s like a western meets scifi meets steampunk (sorta) meets a whole bunch of random hippie mechanics…..it’s pretty wonderful.
  • Christmas break is coming up. Last day of school is the twenty third…and then I get until the ninth. Which means I also get my birthday off. So, yay-etty!

 

Okay, I think it’s time to wrap this post up now, seeing as it’s quarter to one in the morning, and I’ve reached the point where I’m typing words like ‘yay-etty’.

Goodnight!

Kaelen.

You have been schooled.

Ever wondered what public school looks like from the eyes of a fourteen year old who has never been in the system before?

 Voila.

***

First off I went  to the office, since the principal had requested that I start my day that way.  They gave me a bus pass, and told me to hang my coat in their closet as I didn’t have a locker. (still don’t for all I know.)

First class was I.B. Social Studies. Didn’t really knock my socks off, for two reasons, being 1) that I was late and had not a clue what I was supposed to be doing, and 2. there was a substitute that had her nose stuck in a book the entire time and gave not a flip what I did. (all this being said the class was surprisingly well behaved.)

Up next was ‘achievement period’ aka sit in your homeroom and catch up on homework period. I was escorted up to the correct room only to be told by my homeroom teacher to go to the cafeteria…apparently even though he is ‘technically’ my homeroom teacher he doesn’t ‘teach’ my homeroom…we go chill with some other teacher in the cafeteria for forty five minutes.

Second class was math. A guy I know from Iact goes is in the same class as me (the only class with anybody I know) which was rather nice. The teacher (also a substitute.)went over some math that I already knew, but seeing as I didn’t know it very well and she taught a new (faster method) for factoring perfect square trinominals (the name scares me too.) it kept me interested.

Third was science. Gah. Ugh. I seriously felt a urge to punch people in the head throughout the entirety of science. There were about four boys scattered throughout the class who refused to copy down what the teacher asked them to, asked dumb questions, and all in all made complete jackasses of themselves. To top it off there was a random quiz at the end of the class with only three minutes till the bell rang.

Lunch. Beautiful one hour of lunch. I went and sat against some random person’s locker (seeing as I don’t have one yet and all) and hung out with various peoples I know from I-act.

Visual arts was my first class after lunch. I’d heard the teacher was a little out there…and it’s true. She kinda’ is. I couldn’t tell whether she was in control of the class or if she just couldn’t wait for us to get out of there. Anyways, I love drawing which is why I chose visual arts as my elective (Tech as my other elective, but that starts next semester.) And although it wasn’t all I thought it was I did enjoy the class. I think that once I begin to relax a bit, meet people, and understand the teachers I’ll enjoy that class more.

My last class was I.B. Language Arts. Most certainly my favorite out of all the classes! They were just starting Romeo and Juliet when today, and it looks like it’s going to be a good time. The teacher was awesome, and it was a class where I actually got to use my brain and interact with the other students really got to explore the meaning of the play a bit, and throw ideas back and forth with the teacher and other students.

Then it was bus time (which, for the record, was my first time ever riding a bus by myself. Which is sad but true.)

And then my math homework which completely kicked my butt until I finally kicked back and figured it out. (not really a math person.)

Kaelen. 🙂

 

 

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