Algonquin 2007

I have spent the past three days verbally sparring with a handful of 14-year-olds. In spite of their youthful enthusiasm, I broke their spirits relatively quickly by shouting things like "Get a haircut!" and "In a few years you're going to have to start paying taxes!" at them. They were doomed to fall in love with me from the start.


Man in Canoe at 6:30 am



Lily Dipper




"I don't care which one of them shows up. I am getting one of my cousins drunk tomorrow," I declared.
"But Amanda is only 15!" my mom cried disapprovingly. She is always trying to rain on my parades.
- 07/18/07

"You are just jealous because nobody wishes you ALL OF GOD'S RICHEST BLESSINGS," I said to her, quoting a card I had received (along with $25) from a great-aunt earlier in the week.
"If you say that one more time today I am going to throw something at your head."
"Fair enough," I replied and walked away.
- 07/10/07

We were in the same class for two years, but the only reason I even remember his name at all is because he threw-up one day in the first grade. My friends and I all spent the next few months emphatically avoiding the spot his vomit had landed, which happened to be right smack in the middle of the only doorway leading into the classroom.
I never thought I would be so desperately concerned about the health of someone that I was never even really friends with. Yet each night I squeeze my eyes shut and pray to a God that I don't even believe in, asking him to let this boy I once knew go into remission.
- 07/08/07


But other than that, I have a sparkling personality and a winning smile

Did you know that I am an asshole? It's true, I am. A giant one.
It is a realization that has been slowly dawning on me over the past decade or so.
I was once told, in so many words, that recognizing your own flaws is meaningless if you are unwilling to do anything to change them. I recognize that I can be judgmental, introverted, and suffer from a bit of a superiority complex. I hold on to anger for ridiculously long periods of time, and I frequently consider myself morally superior to those around me when, in truth, I am really no more moral than anybody else. And let's not forget the fact that I am incredibly flaky and have severe commitment issues.
Recognizing your own flaws does not somehow negate the negative impact that they have on both yourself and those around you, but I'd like to think that it is a step in the right direction.


July 11th

The circus is in town this weekend. They have set their tent up right down the street from our house. I remember you in your silly hat, with a smile plastered on your face, as you handed me a mound of cotton candy and told me that you had made special arrangements for me to ride the elephant. What I did not realize until years later is that anyone can make special arrangements to ride the elephants, assuming they are willing to part with ten dollars.
Each year I think that the fact that you are gone will not matter any more today than it did yesterday. This year I find myself surprised to realize that it does.
Those first few days I thought, "Yesterday this time my world was intact."
I continued to count time in relation to when you had exited my life for that entire first year.
I don't remember when I last visited your grave. I can't decide whether this fact would upset you, or if you would simply be pleased that I think of you at all.


It's been longer than 30 days so I may just have to keep him

Three years later and I still have the receipt for my dog (yes, I irresponsibly bought him from a pet store). One day, I plan on taking him back to the family run store where we first met, holding the receipt very clearly in my hand, and asking them what kind of return policy they have.
"I do not think this is the same dog that I bought here," I will tell them. "This one is much bigger than the one I left with. I am not exactly sure what happened, but I am almost positive that it is not my fault."