Voice of Truth

Comes in six flavors: up, down, charm, strange, top, and bottom. Cones and cups available.

I Wrote a Short Story 26 October 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — Aly @ 9:29 pm

You are so proud of me, are you not? ;) When I say short, though, I really mean short. It’s like a page. Anyway, it is right here:

She did not usually appreciate flowers. They were short-lived, liable to fall apart at the smallest touch, and the “fragrance” gave her headaches.

But this flower was different. It was nigh on perfect. It had been picked from the front garden of her house. It was, as Fate had obviously willed, a rose. A white rose. It did not even have too strong of a smell. Her father had plucked it that morning, and had presented it to her as she had climbed into the car. The presentation of such a gift had been rather unexpected, but this only added to its perfection. In most flowers, she had noticed, the imperfections ruined the symmetry, the beauty, and the wonder of the blossom.

But this flower was different. What imperfections it had, rather paradoxically, only added to its beauty. The slight discolorations of the edges of its petals, the yellowed center, and the sepals slightly skewed, they all enhanced rather than degraded. “Beautiful” any flower could achieve. But now, there was but one “perfect” in her heart, and it was this seemingly ordinary, literally garden-variety, simple white rose. It would be far too late when she understood how deeply she felt for her rose. No other flower had inspired such feelings in her before, especially so subconsciously.

But this flower was different. As she approached school that day, flower in hand, she waved her father good-bye and walked up to the front steps. Her friends saw the flower, and admired it too. One boy, feeling comedic, placed it in his hair. She, surprising herself, took it back wordlessly. Had it been any other flower, she would have been angered and refused to touch the thing again.

But this flower was different. She did not understand it yet. It was only later that she realized that nothing so trivial could have marred the beautiful blossom. She turned to greet more arriving friends and offered the flower to her best friend to examine. Then, he arrived. He was a good friend of hers, with much in common. It was inevitable, then, that he, too, would want to see the rose. He reached for it, trying to pull it away from her best friend, but her friend pulled away. In the scuffle, he “brokeded” her flower. An entire half of the flower was gone. The ground was littered with white petals. Her flower, her (as she had finally begun to comprehend) beloved flower, was broken. She could have easily blamed the other girl, as he did. She did not know why she did blame him. If it had been any other flower, it would not have mattered to her so much.

But this flower was different. Perhaps his feeble attempts to cheer her up maddened her more than the broken flower itself. The look on her face when he placed the remains of the flower behind her ear (to conceal the missing half) may have shown him the sadness she barely understood herself. Maybe the worst was when he placed it behind his own ear, trying, as the other boy had, to effect a laugh. He looked silly. But then, he was a boy with a broken flower. She looked sad, for she was left with something far worse. She was a girl with a bit of a broken heart.

It is kind of amazing, don’t you think? ;) I like it because it is all based on fact, except that in real life, I never had such an attachment with a flower. I am probably going to submit it to the PHS Literary Magazine, but just in case they don’t love it, I figured I should put it up here. I also put it up on my Facebook, and I bet my close friends (whom I got to read this like five times) are probably tired of it already.

I got this whole idea from none other than the wonderful Ms. Lucia Harvilchuck, who heard enough of this first period to say that it sounded poem- or short-story-worthy. It just swirled around in my head for some time until I just started writing it all down. Three drafts and a weekend later, here I am.

Oh, and many thanks to Melody, who helped me work out what the hell was going on with my verb tenses. You are amazing!


Science Fair

Filed under: PHS — Aly @ 2:43 pm

My science fair project is not going well. It is kind of sucking right now. I swear, it pulled a Dr. Jekyll on me. Let me explain.

My whole project is based on the idea that a culture of the water bioluminescent bacterium Vibrio fischeri that is exposed to polluted water samples will have a marked decrease in bioluminescence. That is all well and fine, but the problem is that recently, the culture has not been glowing. This pretty much destroys the entire premise of the experiment. The thing is, we had a previous culture that glowed magnificently, but it ended up that we had to order a second culture because somehow, the culture became impure and stopped glowing because other bacteria were taking up all the nutrients. :P

The second culture seemed fine, but it, too, did not glow. We learned from the company that sold us the culture that something was wrong, and they sent us a third sample for free. Well, guess what. That one does not glow either. Which means that I am epically screwed. >.<

As for the Dr. Jekyll reference, after making the first successful potion, Jekyll spends the rest of the book trying to get more of that ingredient, and every time it does not work, he gets angry because the chemical was not “pure” like the first one. Of course, in time, he learns that the first batch was really defective, and he has no choice but to endure the transformations until the end. My situation is kind of reminiscent of that, except for the fact that my bacterium is actually supposed to glow.


My Favorite xkcd Comics, Part One 25 October 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — Aly @ 3:55 pm

xkcd is pretty much, amazing. There are so many of the comics that are so hilarious and great that I can’t help but do some posts on my favorites. Starting from the beginning, we have . . .

Comic 5! This one is so cute. I just love it. :) Not much else to say there.

Next up, comic 17! I like this one mainly because of the fractal. However, the cute nerdiness of it makes me smile too.

Comic 18! This one is absolutely epic. It is so full of win. Every time I am in chemistry and tin comes up, I always mutter to myself, “snapple.” Very few people understand it. But it makes me happy anyway.

Comic 29! This one makes me happy for some reason. Don’t ask. Just enjoy.

Comic 30! This one cracks me up every time I see it. *sigh* I realize I am laughing at cannibalism. Considering that I am a vegetarian, this is very odd. But then again, xkcd is very funny. *looks back at comic and chuckles once again*

Comic 32! This is one of those Randall-get-out-of-my-head ones (Randall Munroe is the artist of xkcd). I have actually considered whether my “purple” is really the same as your “purple”. It is just such a great thought, I think. And it doesn’t hurt that the comic is funny. :)

Comic 37! I have adopted this practice for some reason. It makes me smile every time. The best part is when you look like an idiot because you moved the hyphen in your head and now you cannot stop laughing and no one else knows what you are talking about . . . yeah.

Comic 45! The last panel, with the “Shit.” is so great. Plus, anything that references Schrodinger is automatically funny.

Comic 52! Such a great quotation, no? And the whole “no adjacent circles are the same color” thing is so cool.

Comic 55! One of the best ones, in my opinion.

You know, I think I will decorate my locker with xkcd comics. I’ll pick some good, appropriate ones and print them out some time. :)


My Weekend (Mainly) 22 October 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — Aly @ 1:27 am

Yeah…my whole “keep this blog updated and be responsible” thing did not work out so well. I wonder what I should do now. :-/

On an unrelated note, my bffaeaeae made a blog. I am happy and kinda jealous because his blog is cooler than mine, and also despite his supposed terrible writing skills, his posts are fun to read.

On a third note that is not associated with the first two, this past weekend was great! Friday was amazing, mainly because of the homecoming carnival. The school newspaper (of which I am a staff member) had a booth selling samosas, lasagna, egg rolls, and cookies. We made almost $150.00, and ended up having a ton of good food left over. Yum! An event that was fun to a lesser extent was the pep rally following the carnival. The only reason it was so fun was that my bffaeaeae made an epic sign. It was modeled after the one in the xkcd comic, and we ended up holding it up during the pep rally. Some people got the Wikipedia reference, but a total of maybe five got the xkcd reference. Yay for élitism! (The very fact that I am using an accented e shows how strongly I adhere to élitism. See what I did thar?)

Saturday was great too. First, I watched Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb on Turner Classic Movies. It was hilarious and pretty much amazing. How awesome is Stanley Kubrick? After that, I managed to dodge cleaning my room, which is what my mom wanted, by taking forever to get ready for the fair. It was kind of last-minute (if you count 18 hours’ notice “last-minute”), but I was really excited to go because I wanted to meet up with a group of my friends from middle school. We all sort of split up, because two of us are at PHS, two are at different high schools, and one moved to Augusta, Georgia. The fair itself sucked, but that was expected. The rides were not really that bad, and the real fun was just waiting in line for the rides, catching up. I am so glad I went.

This weekend, I ended up watching three movies (well, two were for school. But still) and procrastinated as usual until the last minute. (The latter really means that it was technically only fun until the “last minute”. However, that is expected and normal at IB.) In addition to Dr. Strangelove, I also watched Girl with a Pearl Earring and Elizabeth (the 1998 Cate Blanchett version). They were part of an extra-credit assignment for my AP European History class, in which I had to write a one-page reaction paper to each movie I watched. However, Mr. Jones specifically told us to watch both Elizabeth and its sequel, Elizabeth: The Golden Age. I could not watch The Golden Age, so I only wrote the paper on Girl with a Pearl Earring. To be honest, I enjoyed Elizabeth much more than Girl with a Peal Earring. I will save my criticism of it for another post, but suffice to say that it was just too awkward.

The rest of the time, I just played Facebook Tetris and read stuff on the Intertubes and listened to podcasts. Which is also fun (I am kind of running out of superlatives, and not feeling creative at the moment, so “fun” it is, for the umpteenth time) in its own way. :)