Why, hello there. You must be the replacement year I ordered six months ago. What took you so long? Oh, yeah, I get it. Back-orders are a nasty affair. Well, I'm so glad you're here. Let me show you around a little bit. There's some figgy pudding warming up on the stov- oh, yes, fire is totally expected. Now, over here is photo album from the last year...
I started it with the best of intentions, I really did. But the time, it just started to slide out of my fingers in this maddeningly deliberate stream. I soon lost myself in myriads of schoolwork and tournaments.
Would you believe that I attended nine tournaments last year? NINE! To list those off in quick order, I was at the Concordia Challenge, the Clarion Qualifier, the Puget Sound Qualifier, the Inland Northwest Qualifier, the Emerald City Qualifier, the Tulip Cup, Region 2's Regional Invitational, the National Invitational Tournament of Champions, and the National Championship.
At the Puget Sound Qualifier, I ended up competing in a debate form entirely new to myself - namely, Team Policy. And the most surprising thing was, I actually placed/got speaker awards in the new form, too!
You could say I was pretty successful in speech and debate last year. And I would most likely agree. But I consider it far more important to our new partnership that I am now an alumni of homeschool. highschool speech and debate. That's right. I no longer compete.
Over last summer, I went on two road trips to California in the space of three months, with entirely different people. Both road trips were amazing, for different reasons. I spent over a month on the East Coast, all the way from Boston to Key West and back up to DC. I attended a conservative political leadership camp, and alternated between loathing it and loving it.
I taught at speech camp again, but otherwise had a very low-key summer. Three sets of friends finally started dating. I lost some friends and gained some new ones. And then I started college last fall. See? That's me on my first day of school. Pretty skittish looking, I know.
Epic Times: Debating my duo partner Calvin, hanging with Rubbish and Gabs in Old Town San Diego (especially when we found the root beer shop), playing music in the cold with Gray, peach goo fights with Ophelia and Tenor and HatGuy, wandering around DC with an unlimited Metro pass and no parental supervision, the road trip to Southern Oregon with Cassandra and Shorty and Shrimpy, zip-lining in Hannah's backyard and falling off, watching Hot Rod with Jay-EE and Lil Clay, Shorty running into a handicapped parking sign with her face, singing the Water Buffalo song in a final round of impromptu and WINNING,
First: Serious sharing of testimony, pregnant friend, time on a subway, time in a cab, time throwing up in a museum, time being 18, time hating a friend, time at a Sounders game,
Most nostalgic songs: Mood Rings, Butterflies and Hurricanes, I've Got Friends, Shankhill Butchers, the Water Buffalo song, Na Na Na, Float, Scalliwag, Nine in the Afternoon, Famous Last Words, Ain't No Rest For the Wicked, Sara Smiles, Resistance, Apres Moi, Soul Meets Body, Fever
Favorite memories: Summer Waterfights, star gazing with Gray and Ophelia, singing the doxology with Ophelia and Tenor and Sethasaurus in the peach fields, hanging with Calvin and practicing duo, my amazing speech club, being kidnapped by Gray and Ophelia and HatMan and MusicMan, painting my face green at a Sounders game with Pipsqueak, being a penguin with Wrath, and then with Cassandra and the Professor and Ms. Incredible, singing nonsense with Ms. Incredible, debating with Mr.Affable and then against him in Finals.
Major Hits: Mrs. Jackson, chains in my hair, little black dresses and little black swimsuits, Pass-A-Grille Florida, classy high heels, team policy debate, peppermint hot chocolates,
Best Books: Mr. Monster, I Don't Want To Kill You, the Book Thief, I Am the Messenger, Alan Wake, I Surf Therefore I Am, not a fan, The Once and Future King,
Music: Paul Baloche, Muse, the Decemberists, Peter Bradley Adams, My Chemical Romance, Coldplay, Manchester Orchestra, Michael Buble, Three Days Grace, Three Doors Down, Panic! At the Disco, Matt Redman, Christ Tomlin
Keywords: big ball of negative emotions, fast, slow, euphoric, resolution, confession, hopeless romantic
Keywords [inside joke edition]:Rubbish -heap, sweetie-lambkin, trippy, cool beans, Gertrude and Alfonso
Favorite teacher:Mr. McDevitt
Best quotes: "Sprague. It's like Prague plus sprouts minus the tasty."
Well, I hope you can make yourself comfortable, 2012. There's a guest bedroom back there if you plan on sticking around for long.