Monday, August 26, 2013

Professors, Prespiration, and Precipitation

Dear rain,
If you could save the whole precipitation thing for the days when I don't spend more than five minutes on my hair, that would be great.
Umbrella-less College Kid

So all my "doings up" for the first day of college classes slid off a little with the weather. Whatever. I'm over it. The good news is that my history teacher has a healthy sense of humor, a passion for the story of history and not necessarily the dates, a low stress, full-class participation final, and contains a very strong likeness to John Goodman. I would have posted a picture of him and Goodman for you to compare, but couldn't locate one anywhere. Very sneaky Professor Paul, very sneaky.

My College Algebra professor, however, was not so internet protected, of which I am glad because ever since I saw him I've been wanting to show you the preciseness to which he is a mix of both Professor Lupin and Arthur Weasley. Observe.

 Brilliant. Simply Brilliant.

His mannerisms are much more to the likeness of Lupin than Weasley, which makes me a little weary. If you recall...

But so far so good. I mean as far as 4x - 7 = 13 goes. It's nice to know that Math 1050, if not the rest of college, isn't beastly first off. That's definitely a comfort, however short lived. 

So I'll get back to my Sullivan 9th edition, $126.50 College Algebra textbook, and leave you to your internetting. 


Saturday, August 17, 2013

She Who Must Not Be College

I’m not a terrible hoarder. I mean, I’m much more likely to keep a piece of paper, strip of ribbon, or ripped pair of jeans than I am to throw it away, but my stashes have shrunk incredibly from the heights they reached when I was seven.

I remember having to designate a room-cleaning day because not only would it take the full twenty-four hours to complete, but it almost became a family event with all the help it required. I remember Katie army crawling under the bed and unearthing its treasures into the middle of the room for me and Jessica to go through while Mom and a couple of my younger sisters organized the closet.

Each object from the depths of the closet, bed, drawers, and any other crevice of the room was allowed one of two places; a select box of keepsakes, or the trash can. I hated this part of the room-cleaning because not only did my imaginative mind hear the pleas from each marker drawing, speckled chicken feather, and beaded necklace to keep it out of the trash one more week, but I couldn’t bear to think of the day when I just knew I would wish I had it back.

Over and over I would fret over the objects just boarder lining between treasure and trash, and Katie would roll her eyes and ask, “Are you going to take it to college?” For most objects this would bring a giggle at imagining myself old and in college with a piece of twisted wire on the shelf, or wearing a torn Pocahontas nightgown. But in the last week between summer after Senior year and first-semester college freshman, this question became much more real.  

Fortunately, I had a third option this time. In addition to my college-bound cardboard boxes and the dump, I also had the green plastic bin which will sit and remain in storage at my home in Happy Valley Utah. The only trace of me still left at home. Well, that and my toothbrush. I had to forget something, right?

So now while sitting on my newly spread blanket in a room a few degrees colder than I’d like (I’ll figure out the thermostat later) I ponder on these objects. I’m beginning to feel a faint connection between myself, the bin, and the toothbrush. Like we’re long distance penpals. Or like they’re a wifi connection that’s just close enough to give you a couple bars. Like I’m Voldemort and they’re my horcruxes, and as long as the bin and brush remain, I’ll be able to come back. This “moving away” thing isn’t permanent. I think I understand Voldy now.

So just to sum it all up here, always carry a spare toothbrush because if you forget yours somewhere and accidentally turn into Voldemort, at least you won’t have bad breath. The end.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Welcome To Emilyn

Introductions are a very large part of everyone's lives. There will always be new people to meet and new names to match to faces. But ever since I was a little girl, introductions have caused me a certain pain that kids with normal names will never understand. It goes like this:

"Hi! What's your name?"



"No, EmilyN."

"Oh, Emilyn? Emilyn. That's a pretty name." (Yeah that's what everyone says. Like that makes me forget their inability to hear the last consonant of my title and give them the liberty to stomp on my identity).

After kindergarten and all the introductions which came that year, I kind of got used to this opening conversation, and began to try different tactics to avoid it. I tried by emphasizing the n very clearly from the get-go, like this:

"What's your name?"



So that didn't work. (Emilynd? Really?)

Further along in my childhood I attached the phrase "It's like Emily, but with with an n" to my introductions, kind of like Anne of Green Gables' "Anne with an e". I never really liked that either because I had sort of developed a grudge against all Emilys. See, if the Emily community didn't exist, people wouldn't just jump to the conclusion that I was one of them. No offence to any Emilys out there, but you all made my childhood miserable.

Just recently I had an interesting encounter while taking surveys at the call center I work at. (Yeah, yeah I work at a call center. Get over it.) Most survey introductions at this place begin something like, "Hello, my name is Emilyn Cannon on behalf of so-and-so-company, and we're taking a brief survey about such-and-such. Is this a good time for you?" At which time the respondent on the line has the opportunity to sigh and subject themselves to the "brief" fifteen survey minutes ahead of them, swear in my ear and go off about how much of an idiot I am to call at dinnertime, (Wait, let's think about this. Who's the one who answered the phone in the middle of dinner?) or politely explain their disinterest in taking the survey. This particular time I encountered a lady who preferred the last option. Although I insisted the survey would only take a short time and expressed our extensive value in her opinions and input, she further honestly stated she wished to not be called again. I told her I understood and thanked her for her time.

"Thanks Emily. Bu-bye." And she hung up.

Any other time I would have ended the call and entered the correct disposition for the circumstance, but there was something in the way this woman spoke that made me pause. She spoke so kindly, and seemed to relate so perfectly to how I was feeling. I think it was the familiarity in the way she had addressed me that was simply astounding. I honestly stopped my absent-minded swiveling in my chair to sit a moment with my mouth ajar and reflect on this moment. I had been calling people all day who maybe even took the survey, but never once thought about who I was, what I was doing, much less what my name was. This woman shot understanding straight into my heart just by acknowledging that I had a name. I felt like she knew me! I felt loved and accepted, like I had somehow been welcomed into her world as a human being, a person, and maybe even a friend.

Except she had called me Emily, and this fact almost brought me to tears.

Why couldn't I have a name that people recognize? One that can be easily picked out through mumbling lips? One people can relate to even when they know nothing about your life save your voice over the telephone lines? N; oh thou cursed letter! Be thou heretofore called shame!

On the bike-ride home, I pondered my name for neither the first, nor the last time. Emilyn. It really is quite pretty. And I can't ignore the fact that because of my name's uniqueness, I've hardly had to deal with the issue of attaching my last initial to my name to prevent confusion. So just when I had about pedaled to the top of Center Street and begun rolling along Canal Drive towards home, I reached a conclusion. I had already come to grips years ago with the fact that there was nothing I could do to escape my name and the slightly awkward introductions it's sure to bring, so that was nothing new. But I realized, in addition, that this Emily part is only the beginning. I am the N at the end of my name, and that is something I am willing to fight for. I can't escape the Emily that I will always be seen as at first. But as I do and say and be, and people realize who I am, they will have to face that little N because I'm gonna give it all it's worth. Finally, after 18 years of anguish and awkwardidity, I can greet this finishing letter with an open hand, and together we can gallop into the sunrise of who I can become.

Anyway, I originally thought about naming my blog Emily with an n, but then the URL would be which looks like Emily with Ann, and though that does have a little allusion to the Anne of Green Gables, it is missing the e, and it's mostly just confusing. It's like, who's Ann? So, no. But I have taken a big step towards this new identity of mine by singling out both the Emily and the N in my title. Clever? I know.

Let me also take a moment to say hooray! I've finally finished my first post! Welcome to my blog one and all, (yes, even you Emilys) and I hope you enjoy the minutes you may spend here.