Tag Archive | Stars

Paris by Night

Paris. A legendary city, in more ways than one. I assume that if you’re in a couple, walking through the “City of Love” at night under the twinkling streetlights on the small cobblestone alleys may seem very romantic, but since I am forever alone, I can calmly say 1) keep your mushy feelings to yourself, they make me quite jealous and 2) it’s a lot scarier when you’re all by yourself and those twinkling streetlights look like they’re winking creepily at you.

When I was little I was, like most kids, afraid of the dark. Thinking back this may have been due to the excessive amount of Calvin and Hobbes that I read before bed, where the whole “monsters under the bed” thing scared the sh*t out of me. As I grew up in Normandy I slowly conquered my fear of the black void that filled the room when my mom turned out the lights. I started being able to go outside all by myself and soon discovered the magnificence of Normandy/the countryside at night, the stars shining down on me reassuringly, the dog at my side. With no neighbors, there was never any threat, any danger.

Paris proved to be a very different experience (dare I say, duh? No? Okay then). I couldn’t see the stars anymore, there were no more familiar constellations guiding me, only the cold eery glow of electricity. For the first few years I didn’t know much of Paris at night, being occupied mostly by being awesome too young. But now, a junior in high school, I’m allowed to go out and only come back around 1 am. My family, being too busy with stuff like yelling at each other for no good reason, doesn’t care if I don’t come back for the night at all. As for coming to get me so I won’t have to make the journey alone? No way. Confronted with this apparent lack of caring, I started fending for ME and walking myself home.

Nonetheless, it’s spooky to watch all of your friends leave with their parents in safe warm cars and knowing that you have to walk all the way home, your awful (they really are terrible) self-defense skills being the only thing keeping you from potentially being mugged. And of course the only story you can think of is of the girl who got mugged on your street a few years back.

As I left my friend’s tonight, I shivered slightly even though the temperature was still high, and set off at a brisk walk through the deserted streets, trying to look (and feel) confident. I’ve become pretty paranoid, despite all of my attempts to be calm. Every person that I cross is immediately perceived as a threat, at which point I generally start running (bad idea?) only to then realize that it’s a frail old grandmother walking her poodle. Ah well. Paris is very different from, say, New York. The majority of French people go to bed relatively early, so you don’t see many humans out at midnight, though aliens abound. Even if you’re walking with someone or in a group, the atmosphere is very different, it’s hard to compare the Avenue Henri Martin in the daytime, a bustling, busy avenue, with the Avenue Henri Martin at night, tall trees casting shadows over the sidewalk, masking the faint light from the streetlamps. Night and day really are two different worlds. With sore blisters on my feet I ran most of the way back, heart pounding, clutching the bag from which I’d been careful enough to remove all valuables from. I took the trip one segment at a time, avoiding the smaller, darker streets, trying to blend in with my surroundings. When I finally made it to my apartment, forehead gleaming with sweat, muscles aching, I felt a singular sense of relief. I was finally safe.

Oh and look, my mom and brother engaged in a screaming match at one in the morning. Not so much as a look when I came in. How nice. Luckily for my insulted being, my amazing friends were kind enough to check up on me, making sure that I’d gotten home safely. I had, and I always do. Yet for some reason I get a little more scared each time, sure that I’m the perfect target. Despite all of this, I will not miss out on the wonderful nights with my friends. Whatever comes my way, I will face it, alone. And if it happens to be a threat, I will either willingly give up what they ask for or offer them a cookie as compensation.

The world is very big, and in perspective, I’m just a tiny speck of dust. As I finish writing this post, I find myself feeling more confident. To be fair, I’m also sitting on my couch, blocking out all high pitched noises with a cup of tea. Nevertheless, this small speck of dust will do anything to keep from being blown away in the breeze, and, hopefully, will grow into something like a mothball in terms of importance and influence. I now realize that that isn’t a very good metaphor, and if you have a better suggestion, I will hear it willingly.

Also, when I have kids, no matter where they are or what time it is, I will always be there to pick them up and bring them home safely.

Live long and prosper \V/

Yours sincerely,

The Mostly Confused Teenager.

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Superstition Ain’t the Way

But… but… I can’t help it Stevie! I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to let a black cat cross the road in front of me while I have full control of my mental capabilities; as in not stoned, drunk, or with any cute boy. Now that I think about it it really is animal cruelty to avoid black cats, they must be befuddled as to why people go out of their way to not come across them. I would hate to be a black cat’s shrink. And to all of those people saying “wow, she’s being really silly, their are no shrinks for cats”, I give you; total and utter effing madness.

I’m not crazy, I don’t have voodoo dolls that I keep in my closet or consult my horoscope with carrot-like precision, but I will handle a mirror with the utmost care, and when it comes to finger crossing, I am a pro. If I’m feeling particularly nimble I even cross my toes (TMI? TMI.). Based on experience I have concluded that I cannot find anything that I’ve lost without begging my cat and/or my dog for it. Yes, dear strangers of the Internet, that is sort of sad, but they get a kibble out of the deal and I get my stuff. Nobody’s complaining.

The other day I caught myself standing under a ladder, trying to see if it was solid or not. The result of this expedition was a look of horror frozen on my face as I lay on the ground, pinned under the ladder which was clearly not anchored well enough against the wall. Duh. I wasn’t hurt, mostly hungry, I suddenly realized that I reaaally wanted a snack (Does that ever happen to you? Wanting a snack in the wrong place? Oh dear that somehow sounds very strange. Am I getting off topic? Again?) but the small example of how my superstitions were affecting me made me question every person who told me that it was complete sugar. –> replacement word for ‘shit’. Oh I just said it, now there’s really no point in having replaced it is there?

My superstitious crap has gotten me into some awkward situations over the years. I have this one rule that says that when I walk under scaffolding, I can’t blink. The result of this is that a lot of people tend to stare at the weird girl who’s trying desperately not to close her eyes, in the process forgetting to breathe and ending up choking her way out into the open. But so far my life has been pretty darn good, so I’ll just keep being socially awkward and YOU just keep petting unicorns.

Although like any other teenager I have my wild and crazy moments where all judgment disappears and I turn into a hunk of raging hormones, I’m usually a goody two shoes. I’m the one who will remind people of the rules and be against doing anything rash or illogical (yes, watching Spock and Star Trek has ruined me). Just seeing the word “ain’t” in the title of this post is giving me the jitters. Don’t say ain’t or your mother will faint and your father will step in a pot of paint. Not very likely, and yet! I believe that if I do something morally wrong, the karmic retributions (FANCY WORDS HIGH FIVE) will be severe. Why? I can’t figure it out — I’m… confused. What else is new right?

Nonetheless, I won’t think twice about tackling you before you open that umbrella inside. I can’t toast with water because it’s against an old Hungarian wives tale. Since Friday the 13th is bad luck in some places and good luck in others, on that day I slink around in a disoriented fashion wishing it were the next day already. I want something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue at my wedding; a Doctor in a blue box would do just fine. If I find a penny, I will pick it up (although I have to point out that most people would, it is money after all). A wishbone wish is of the greatest importance to me. I always take an extra big breath of air before blowing out candles on a birthday cake. I have to wish for something in the 10 seconds after I’ve seen a shooting star. I knock on wood a lot. Holy cow on a cracker does that ever sound wrong.

And as for the picture of pure eye candy, you’re quite welcome 🙂

Live long and prosper \V/

Yours sincerely,

The Mostly Confused Teenager.

PS: I realize it may have made more sense for me to post this on Friday the 13th, but I don’t want to wait two weeks. So there.