ASSASSIN (I just wrote “ass” twice. I’m so tired.)

I was on the phone with my mom last night when she said, “Wh—hang on.” Ten minutes later, she came back and said, “Oh my God. Your dad just caught two girls hiding in our garage. They’d been there for an hour while we were eating dinner!”

It really says something that my first response was “Oh, God,” and not “There were… people… in our… garage?! What?” But the thing is, my brother Alex is playing Assassin. It’s a school-wide Nerf gun tournament, and those girls were lying in wait for Alex to come home. One of his teammates has already been killed, so Alex was actually hiding in a bush somewhere over at one of their houses to assassinate them. I’m told it was all very comical. There are very strict rules about this whole thing—you can’t shoot somebody on school property or at a school event (i.e., football games, or else Alex’s entire team would be royally screwed as people fired their Nerf guns on the field), and you can’t go inside somebody’s house unless invited by the parents.

“Dad did what?” I practically shrieked.

“He invited them in.”

“You realize that’s the exact opposite of what you’re supposed to do,” I said.

“Well, yes, but they’d been hiding in the garage for an hour! It was cold out!”

“Mom,” I said, exasperated, “you can’t invite them in! It’s like vampires! Once you invite them in, everything’s fair game and all hell breaks loose!”

I’ll let you know how this story develops. If Alex’s team doesn’t take out one of the girls by the end of the week, they’ll be eliminated. THE STAKES ARE HIGH.

Snow Days in April

I’m bitching about weather again, but not MY weather. That’s the important thing. It’s raining, and I am content sitting in my room and eating chocolate. No problems there.

But my hometown had a snow day today. A snow day. In April. There was too much snow for them to get an education. And this is even taking into account the fact that they’ve already had EIGHT snow days. EIGHT. So it wasn’t like the Snow Day Committee got together, shrugged, and said, “Well, we have some snow days to spare. Let’s throw ’em a bone.” No. We are generally allowed three or four snow days every year. They have now had nine. They are going to be in school until July. No, at this rate they aren’t even going to HAVE a summer break. This school year will transition seamlessly into the next.

The only reason this pisses me off is because I’m petty. When I was in high school, we did not get nine snow days. We got, like, one or two snow days, plus some questionable calls during which the superintendent did not call a snow day and people nearly died braving the blizzard on their way to school, and then all the parents complained on the school’s Facebook page.

Here, have a story about gym class.

I have about twenty minutes to write this post, but I don’t want to write anything if I’ve got nothing to write about! You guys deserve better than that. I want to stop this one-post-a-day thing, but I also don’t, because I’ve made it to APRIL.

When I was in elementary school, we used to have to do the “pacer” in gym class. I don’t know if this is a universal thing, but we would run back and forth in the gymnasium while elevator music played (it probably wasn’t really elevator music, but it’s been twelve years and that’s what it sounds like in my memory) while occasionally the robotic voice on the tape would call out how many minutes we’d been doing it. And I think you could do twenty minutes total, and I would usually get to sixteen or seventeen and I’d be dying and I’d think, “Oh my God, I need to stop.” You could stop whenever you wanted to (it wasn’t torture or anything) but you were encouraged to keep going as long as you could. I was also a masochistic little fifth grader with a streak of pride, so I’d make myself do the whole thing until I was basically crawling back and forth and sweating all over the gym floor.

The point of that story is that I’m probably going to keep making myself crawl across the metaphoric gym floor of this blog.

Obstacles. Today is all about the obstacles.

Today I am back at school. My duffel bag is sitting, very much an obstacle, in the middle of the room. And I fully expect it to stay there until I go home for the summer in 45 days. (Not that I’m counting.) I’ll just take things out as needed and step over it occasionally. That’s how much I hate unpacking.

(It should come as no surprise that I have already unpacked all the food.)

I didn’t realize it was Daylight Savings Time today. That tells you just how much I slacked off over spring break, and how deeply I cloistered myself in a nice big cave of denial. I was up at 2 a.m. when suddenly it was 3 a.m. It was bamboozling. Now it’s 7:10 p.m., and it’s still light outside, and it doesn’t make sense to my internal clock.

I’m working with kids again. [PANIC ENSUES]

I’m HOME. And tonight I’m working at an elementary school carnival with Allison and Tara. My dear brother will be manning the juice stand in the cafeteria. Once my shift is over, I’m going to do the Cake Walk as many times as it takes to get me some freaking No-Bake Cookies. I  mentioned this in an article once, I think, but Alex has an uncanny knack for winning at the Cake Walk, and then proceeding to select the most shit cakes. But I mean, it’s been a few years. Maybe his tastes have evolved. I have a knack for not winning ever, and then watching parades of nine-year-old children snatch the cakes I’ve had my eye on. It’s kind of a tradition at this point.

I’ll reiterate for anyone who’s new to Elodie World: I’m bad with kids. Kids are my Achilles’ heel. I’ve been known to frighten them without even meaning to, which puts a lot of things in perspective, because I can really scare a kid when I’m actually meaning to. (I once told a ghost story while babysitting that traumatized.) Right now I have “Do You Hear the People Sing?” stuck in my head, which I can tell already is going to be a problem. Particularly the line “the blood of the martyrs will water the meadows of France.”

Wish me luck. I’m going to get myself a cake this year if I have to hide it under my shirt and bolt for the parking lot.

Happy birthday to me

Twenty years ago to this very day, I was born and I ROSE FROM THE ASHES LIKE A PHOENIX DEMON INTENT ON CONQUERING THE WORLD.

Sorry. That’s the fun version. The real version is that I was born in the middle of a blizzard and everyone was cold and it took about four months for me to smile at my parents. I think they’ve always held a grudge.

All throughout middle and high school, there were three other guys in my grade that had the same birthday as me. And I always felt like it was a competition. None of us were friends, specifically. There was Guy 1, who was a major jock and kind of an asshole; Guy 2, who was really smart and a huge Harry Potter nerd and we probably could have been friends if not for the reason that we just weren’t; and Guy 3, who was at the forefront of the stoner clique. Now, we all knew each other, and I know we were all aware of this quadruple birthday fiasco we had going on. And it wasn’t that big a school. Guy 1 was on the football team and was friends with my brother. Guy 2 had been the object of Tara’s discreet affection since elementary school. Guy 3 had dated my friend Kathryn at one point. We all knew each other. We had exchanged words. But we weren’t friends. We never so much as delivered a “happy birthday” on each other’s Facebook walls. Because this was a competition only one could win.

I haven’t seen any of those guys in two years. Well, except for Guy 1, but that was just a quick giving of the finger when he cut me off in the Wendy’s parking lot.

So now I just share my birthday with Abe Lincoln. And Jesse Spencer. Whoo boy. *fans self*

Tricia

Quick story that I have never told anyone, ever.

When I was in gym class in tenth grade, none of my close friends were in it with me. On day one I assessed the situation and quickly glomped onto a group of girls that I sort of, kind of knew and made an effort to hang out with them so I would always have a group to play volleyball or badminton with. High school survival skills. Anyway, I knew all their names… except for one girl. I vaguely thought her name was probably Tricia. But I avoided using her name, because I wasn’t completely sure, and after two weeks of doing laps around the gym and chilling in the locker room together, it was getting more and more awkward to ask. Besides, in a school our size, it wasn’t really permissible to not know someone’s name. I doubt we all knew everyone’s names, but if you didn’t know it, you didn’t ask. We were kind of on the borderline. Our school wasn’t small enough to know everybody, but it wasn’t big enough to act like you’d never seen them before. I could’ve checked the yearbook, because we’d both been a part of this school system for most of our lives and she was definitely in there, but this idea only ever occurred to me during gym class, and by the end of the school day I’d forgotten.

One day, however, I was forced to say, “Tricia, pass!” during a misguided attempt on our gym teachers’ part to make us all play field hockey. I just threw caution to the winds and went for it. And she passed to me, and I thought, “So that is her name,” and I felt vindicated. I felt powerful. I was a knower of names.

And so for the next few months, I called her Tricia. By now you’ve probably surmised by now that this wasn’t her name. It wasn’t. Her name was Kate. But she never corrected me. Tricia wasn’t even CLOSE to Kate, but she just went with it. Looking back, I have no idea what she thought about this or why she never took me aside and said seriously, “Okay, what the hell?” I just don’t. And it will remain a mystery until the end of time.