Tag Archives: Competition

My Christmas

Yesterday was pretty sweet. My cousin from Montreal was home for Christmas, and my grandmother got me a super competitive board game called Cathedral. The point is to place more buildings on the game board than your opponent by strategically blocking off territory. I love games like this because for whatever reason, I’m obnoxiously competitive. We also played a game called Password. We decided that we would do sibling teams because we knew it would end badly. It was my two cousins against my brother and me. My two cousins think nothing alike, and my brother and I think nothing alike, so it was hilarious. I got a lot of great presents from my family, but I’m most excited about my new bass guitar, and my copy Saint Faustina’s diary.

I realized something rather embarrassing when everyone had left, though. I had gone to Mass the night before, but I had not had a particularly Christ-centered Christmas Day. In my defense, my grandmother had stayed overnight and we had had company all day, so I didn’t exactly have much time to sneak off and do much. I had some, though, and I should have recognized and used it. I started reading Saint Faustina’s Diary today, and she wrote something that I think is helpful. I don’t remember the exact quote, but basically she wrote that the future scared her and that she realized the past is unchangeable and not really worth thinking too much about. I empathized with her being a little freaked out by the future, and I’ve realized over time that I have a tendency to dwell on the past. It used to drive me crazy, but it has died down quite a bit. When I went to bed last night I prayed through the Joyful Mysteries of the Rosary, and then I crashed. My mistake bothered me last night, but that was last night, and I can’t do anything about it now.

One really cool thing was that my cousin (not either of the cousins I played Password with) told my mom that he really liked the Christmas Mass because our Priest’s homily was basically a history lesson. Apparently there has been preserved, what is believed to be, the wood from the manger that Jesus was placed in as a baby. My cousin asked my mom why they didn’t teach that kind of stuff in history class at school because, he said, it might convince more people to believe, even just a little bit. I’m my cousin’s Confirmation sponsor, and unfortunately, I’ve never really been able to figure out what he believes or how much he believes. This sounds to me like he at least wants to believe. I’m going to start being more of a pest, I think. By “pest” I pretty much mean Catholic nerd.

Anyway, I’ve had an otherwise pretty relaxing day today. I was going to work on my book, but I’ve decided to take a little vacation. As I said, I started reading Saint Faustina’s Diary, but I also wrote a little in my own “Honesty Journal,” which I will be sharing with no one, and I started teaching myself the bass part of “Man On The Moon” by R.E.M. I may not have it exactly the same as the original, but I’ve figured out a fair amount of it primarily by ear, which has been great fun. It took me forever, though. I was using a pick instead of finger picking because I’m just used to that, but it actually sounds right, and at least for now, I might stick with that style, just for goofing around. I haven’t just sat in my room and played music for several hours in a long time. The crazy thing is, it seems like I almost forgot how much fun it is. Ironically, I’m wondering if I’ve accidentally become a bit of a workaholic, and in some ways, a perfectionist. I think taking a┬ábreak will be good.

Because in my world guinea pigs can fly!

2013 Camping Recap

All the tents are coming down and supplies are going back into buckets. It’s only a matter of time before we have to get in the car and head back to Massachusetts. As we predicted, my aunt on my dad’s side, one of my cousins on my mom’s side and I were the only ones who wanted to stay longer. Camping is the best… as long as it’s not raining, and we had a VERY sunny week.

I did almost everything on my camping to do list. We had a boys vs girls Capture The Flag game and to my utter most shame, the boys won. It wouldn’t have been as big a deal except most of them were 10 years younger than us, which meant they were around 6-10 years old.

The talent show went way better this year. The audience was bigger and a few more people were willing to participate. Both of my Godparents did something, which was cool. I distinctly saw a guy with a guitar hiding in the back and I tried to coerce him into playing something, but he chickened out. I need to figure out a way to get more musicians interested in it next year. A lot of people complimented me and said I did a great job hosting it, which was super nice since I’m not exactly used to doing that kind of thing.

Yesterday I swam a mile with my mom, my brother and a bunch of cousins. My dad played floating life guard from his green canoe, which mostly amounted to antagonizing swimmers. The waves weren’t so bad on the way to 3rd Beach, but they were awful on the way back to camp. I’m not the best swimmer, and I was pooped by the time I got back. There were a lot of boats out, and on top of that, it was windy. I ended up going to bed around 8:30, and I matched my sleeping record; 15 hours after finals week last semester. I sleep great at camp anyway.

Some things that I hadn’t anticipated happened as well. I got to hang out with a very cool cousin on my mom’s side who I had previously only known through Facebook. He had a very interesting take on spirituality and he was very fun to talk to. I also did quite a bit of guitar playing and did a little promoting. Today I got to be part of a jam circle which consisted of 4 guitars and a banjo, which turned out to be very fun. We actually jammed on one of my original songs.

I’m doing 1 or 2 open mics next week and I’ll hopefully get a recording session in before summer officially comes to a close for me. I have a week and a day before I’m back to the grind. I’m not looking forward to school as much as I usually do at the end of the summer. I guess I’m just sad that camping is over. It was exceptionally good this year.

Because in my world guinea pigs can fly!