The season of autumn has come. The leaves have all turned red, orange and yellow. It is in contrast to the crisp cold of the soon arriving winter. Nature seems to be on fire. The colors bring warmth to my days and my only sorrow is that that the warmth of the burning leaves is only in my mind. When cold winds blow, I wish that the warm colors could erase the chill and make me experience the summer’s gentle breeze one last time. One never appreciates the last breeze of the year – all because one does not expect it to be the last. We reason as it being so that tomorrow the breeze will once again gentlytouch our skin … or maybe the next day, if not the day after tomorrow. But I have longed for that soft touch too long now that I have come to understand that my desire is based on no facts.

The leaves of the trees are burning, but no fire lasts forever. It burns for a while before going out. A last breath similar to the last breeze of summer. What once was green has gone up in flames – glowing for a short period of time before being turned into the every day grey ash we all are bored with seeing. The chilly winds that characterize autumn greedily collect the burning leaves. Their cold claws make the leaves abandon their trees and silently fall to the ground. The wet ground makes the blazing fires go out. The dark pavement’s hard surface and the constant tap-tapping of shoes turns the redness of the fallen leaves to a grey, unidentifiable mass. It looks like wet newspaper with a tint of brown – the ultimate proof of that nothing lasts forever.

The sun has not been shining for weeks. Ocassionally it has peeked out, teasingly, from behind the clouds. Of course, that is when one is inside, sighing, wondering why life is never fair. Why is it so that life is a contstant battle for survival. We are no longer the prey of wild animals, something one would call a success. We are however the prey of our own kind, the people who are more greedy than the chilly winds of autumn. The kind of winds that turn the blazing redness of the abandoned leaves to the wet mass that cover wet pavement.

I do not like the word “fall.” There are so many things which are falling in the modern age of man, especially man itself. He seems to be at the mercy of the elements, and his misery is only accentuated by the season of fall. “Autumn” expresses some emotion, a glimmer of hope in an otherwise mundane world. The world is mundane, there is no doubt. At least not at the first glance. The members of mankind who roam the streets are gloomy, their faces pale. Their non-existant summer sunburns are since long gone. Pale and grey their faces appear to be, the grey clouds impede the sunlight from ever reaching their homes. Their smiles have been washed off their faces by the occasional rainfall. No season better symbolizes the fall of mankind better than fall itself.

As the leaves fall, so does the spirits of the common masses. Some try to smile and to be happy, but the sun is long gone. The November issue of Scientific American found its way to my mailbox, in the middle of all misery. I have never before read the whole issue in one day – that was how much time I had on my hands – rare hours I spent on a magazine. One of the most intriguing articles featured in it was the one titled: Cell Defences and the Sunshine Vitamin” by Luz E. Tavera-Mendoza and John H. White. The authors argued that deprivation of sunlight does not do man any good. The fairness of Northern European skin has enabled the people of the north to produce vitamin D through ancient times. The modern age has however brought a new style of life, one which deprives the people of their vitamins. This deficency has affected their health. They suffer from cancer and weakened immune systems. And no food can not make up for the lack of sunlight, all we can rely upon are dietary suppplements which tell stories of future dystopias. The article further states that during the summer the whole body exposure of sunlight makes up for part of the loss of vitamin D.
Me, loving to be kissed by the sun, often walk around in light clothes. I felt that maybe I had a chnace of at least being healthy in summer. I thought so reading the whole article until I came to the last page where a map was presented. It showed my home as lying in an area where the sunlight exposure is “insufficent most of the year.” In my own mind I theorized that the lack of sunlight I have been growing used to partly is to blame for my current state of mind.

I keep telling myself that one day I will not have to take the mundane colors of grey, I will not have to rest my eyes upon the pale people on the streets who have given up on life. One day, I will be kissed by the sun every day. But those days are too distant for now for me to draw strength from. Right now, I am yet another pale face for others to see, for others to feel sorry for. The majority of people never accomplished their goals, they never pursued their dreams. Eventually, they gave up on life, accepting that the mundane was their destiny. They will never be happy and they will never feel content. Perhaps the atmosphere which surrounds these people with no hope affects me more than I wish to realize. For, I am very sensitive to the feelings of others. The paleness of my fellow men’s skin coupled with the northern hemisphere’s deprivation of sunlight makes a doubtful I. Are the choices I am about to make the right ones for me?

Stockholm From Above One Day In The Middle Of Summer

Head turned to the ground, my face facing the wet pavement, I watch as my black shoes plow through the fallen fires piled up on the ground. Above me, some fires are still burning, the heat being imaginary in my head. Everything in nature seems to have reached a point of sudden death – the absence of the sun has made everything suicidal. The trees abandon their leaves, leaving them at the mercy of the greedy and chilly winds which blow over the world of grey. My tap-tapping shoes on the ground are part of the reason for why the leaves’ fallen fires are slowly turned to grey ashes. As the rain started to fall from the heavy skies and I longed for a day which still is far, far away, I asked my rational self the eternal question:

Would it not be wonderful if leaves were not fallen dreams?

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There are times when I think that the earth revolves too slowly around this closest star we like to refer to as our sun. Our blazing, warming, smiling sun. Our very own star. I have not seen it for a while, the heavy clouds in the skies have kept me from being blessed hy its beams. Even if I am not allowed to catch a glimpse of it, I know that our pale blue orb in the sky revolves around it and at the same time it revolves around its own axis. This is common knowledge today, a hint of the countless advencements we have done since the firt sentient human being stood up in their homeland.

There are times when I think of what life must have been like, so many hundreds of centuries ago. In some ways it must have been so easy and in other ways so very hard. Easy in a way that they had no modern day worries to be concerned over, hard in a way because they always feared to be the next meal of a predator lurking in the grass – somewhere out there. They may have feared for their life at times but at least they did not have to endure the every day stress we modern humans surround ourselves with. We think we are advenced with our space-probing technology, our global communication and our baffling political battles. But really, are we much more than the ancient humans we are descended from, or are we still those people, just with other tools and modern equipment?

There are times when I feel that I am ready to give up, that I can not stand the clock on the wall revolving anti-clockwise. They days I live through are so short, and still they seem to be without end. I wish that the future would arrive soon, and still I do not want it to. I am scared that I soon will have to stand all on my own and still I can not wait for that day to arrive. The days I live through are so very short. Just a few more hours and I would be delighted. But it is not always that easy. Not everything turns out the way one wishes it to do – most often it turns out in a wholly different way.

College really has taken the best of me. I felt so sure of myself, confident that I would master all challenges laid before me. Because I am Josephine, the one and only. She who can do everything. And just as well she who believes in herself a little too much, a little too often. I am struggling to keep up with the lectures, I am struggling to understand. It is not hard, but I am not really all interested in it. I feel that I have done my share of years in school, I am ready to face greater challenges. I wish to face the greatest challenges of my life. Not in a decade, but now.

I have second guessed myself so many times. Especially after my first exam, which I barely passed. This is what I am supposed to be good at, and still I fail. Is this really what I am supposed to study, is this right for me? There are so many other occupations I would be happy with having, why am I not studying those subjects? I already know the answer, and still I second guess myself. Either I will not feel like I am accomplishing anything, or the profession I want to have does not exist. I searched the Internet during one of my darker days, time I had stolen from reading and preparing for my upcoming final exam in anatomy, I searched for a new direction, a new goal. I scrolled through a seemingly never ending list of possible professions, and I found none which intrigued me.

I already know what I wish the most to become. But my age keeps me from realizing this dream, my current life impeds those wishes. In a decade or so, I may fulfil that wish of mine. But a decade is a long time. If the clocks I have surrounded myself with are moving backwards, if the earth revolves around the sun in the worng direction – then what am I to do? Shall I endure these first 3 years of which I have finished only 2 months. Two months which feel like an eternity. And after the 3 years I have barely started, I have 1 year before me and 2 more. And then another 2 years. Then I can work, though I will have other things in mind – making preparations for fulfilling my life’s dream. Studying, in a sense, for the exam I have been looking foward to for so many years. To be part of a profession which is not recognized because it is too important to mention. Too important to claim one wishes to be a part of.

It is hard when one’s mind is older than one’s life. When I speak to people, I fool them into believeing I am someone else, simply by being myself. What is up with that? It is like the I and the me are two different people. The person people see is young and frail, scared of everything. The person I truly am is compassionate, caring and mature. That these two people do not mix very well together has created the visible illusion of a frail person with few social skills. I know why this is, why people percieve me as someone I am not. It is because the person I am never has mixed very well with the person other people see. To constantly never be understood because one is older than one is – that is what shapes a person with weak social skills in public. An outgoing, kind person is hidden beneath. And the stress of college had burid this true me even deeper, she has not had the time to surface for a long time – only through my occassional analysis of the world I live in.

I have to endure these stressful times, these hard days. The workload I have to endure, I will graduate into a profession I will love having but never feel fulfilled with being occupied with. I will do all this, live through the days that turn from day to morning instead of the other way around, all because I am a decade older than myself. One decade into the future I will be truly me. Holding the new life I have half created. And then, I will smile. Then I wil be fulfilled.

I have my very own ideas, though they rarely are voiced. I have through my life learnt only to speak up on topics which already are accepted, and never become radical in any way. I am however a person of radical and unique ideas, though they are not as many as I would like. To hold them within one, to feel them grow, is not pleasant, for even the most radical of ideas need to be voiced at times. If so only for a second. For, life can only hold so many things at once, they can not all be closed in. It provides no development for anyone, nor personal success.

As I opened the newspaper this morning, I was reminded of a startling fact – a fact that has spawned radical ideas within me, ones I have never been able to voice because of people’s disrespect for the publication of such ideas. It was an article about the creationism vs. evolutionism movement in America, where religious fundamentalists wish to ban the scientific theory of evolution for a (in my eyes fictional story to tell by an ancient campfire) religious belief called creationism.

As an atheist, I have problems understanding how people can become blindfolded by their own beliefs. As a scientific person, I find it hard to believe I ever can come to be as blindfolded by scientific discoveries I or others make. I always take new ideas with a pinch of salt, for most often they are aiming at too distant stars or contain little or no truth at all. This regards all theories, news and ideas. At first, I may become a little obsessive, thinking that it must be too good to be true, or the reverse. But it does not take long after the initial shock for me to come to my senses, speak to myself in an inner, calm voice, and see the issue with a new pair of eyes. Most often, I can tell what is the truth and what is not from such an approach, and I prevent myself from going blind that way. I am also open to new ideas, and I will gladly admit that I were wrong, when proven wrong. For, I can not be worse than accepting defeat. There is no point in fighting an impossible battle, one I will unevidably lose.

Everyone is entitled to their own faith and sets of beliefs. To say that no one is allowed to think any differently from me, would be to go fundamentalist. I do not force my own beliefs upon others, I do not shove my own ideas down their throats. Rather, I keep them for myself, especially when knowing that they never will be accepted. When it comes to this, I will not join them because I can not beat them, I will instead muffle and never make a sound. Though, my recent trains of thought has made me feel that I through not speaking up have joined those I do not underdstand. It is because of realizations like that, that my radical ideas desire to smell the crispness of the autumn’s air.

People of religious beliefs are happy people, there is no arguing that. I have not met many, but I have met a few, who rely upon their faith in the every day and its stressful events. There are times when I envy them, for their calm and tranquility. There are times when I wish to be part of a belief, to think that there is no need to worry, for it has all been decided by someone greater than me. My accumulated knowledge of things and my common sense, has however kept me from doing that, it has made me remain myself. I can however never hate nor disrespect those who believe, for it must be a simple life. And, as I do not wish to be judged by those who believe, I am in no position to judge them by myself.

I do however draw a fine line between the people of faith and those who base their knowledge upon science and experience. What can be proven and predicted must be the truth, but if people wish to believe otheriwse, there is no wrong in that. I just do not believe that those who can prove nothing, but simply believe, should be prioritized and to be allowed to have the most to say. If the people of religion are offended by those without – when they claim that their scientific discoveries are the truth – why are the people of no religion then not allowed to be offended when the religion claims that it, and only it, speaks the truth?

The ideas of evolution have inpired many scientific and medical discoveries all in the name of the welfare of mankind. These discoveries have saved lives of many who believe that evolutionism is nothing but nonsense. To this I would like to contrast and ask, what greater good has the religious creationism done to people, other than to cloud their minds from what unmistakenly must be the truth?

There are many examples of what religion has done for mankind, in a positive context, such as to provide faith and security without requiring more than simple belief. To believe is essential to many, and I can not forbid them to do so. For, many are those who have been helped through hard times by the promises religion makes and the hope it provides.
There are however also many examples of what problems religion has created – problems the world would have been better off without. Even to this day religion creates problems and spreads proven lies – the one that I come to think of off the top of my head – the Catholic church’s claim that condoms are transmitters of HIV.

Mild beliefs have done no one any harm, the real danger lies within the realm of the fundamentalism – something which had done no one any good. Because of this history of theirs, to only create problems and nothing good, I do not think that fundamentalists should be seen as the only ones who speak the truth neither shouold they be the ones who decide the fate of the rest of us.

I have read that there are 20 out of 50 American states that consider teaching their children the ideas of creationism. I assume that these states contain a vast majority of fundamentalists (if the world ever many forgive me for using that word in that context). I am worried about this, for 20 out of 50 is not much less than half. And if 50% of the world’s most influential country believe that creationism is the truth, as opposed to evolutionism, what fate is the rest of the world then facing? The thought gives me nighmares, even if the sun may blaze high up into the skies.

I think that those who think creationism is the truth, should think a little more. What future do they wish for their own children to have, or their children, or their children? What do they wish for the future of the human race? Do they deep inside themselves wish that the world should be filled with fundamentalists (the friction between such groups and the rest of the population of the world is already a painful reality)? Do they really wish for mankind to be fundamentalist – blind for other ideas than their own? I think that the fate is horrible, if it is our future, that our race eventually will stagnate and most likely turn itself extinct.

I think that mankind has the potential to do greater things, to develop more, that the single man will grow to become more than the sum of his parts.

Children are our future, which is not at all cheezy to say. What would be the point of having children, if they were not our future, what would be the point of life when there is none, for without the children of the past, we the children of today, would never have been. Because children are ouyr future, the future of man, they deserve the very best we can offer them. Man is a species that has gone so far (and in the future will go even farther) because we have been standing on the shoulders of giants of the past. We have been able to rely upon our ancestors’ experience and through that evolve. Without this ability of ours we would still be the prey of great animals, trying to make a living by scavenging the savannah, our only tools being those one person has come up with, over and over again? It was quite possible the stone axe that was our greatest invention, being a tool to aquiring protein, making our brains grow. Without that axe, where would we have been? What if we could not learn from our parents, and the greatest invention of all time would have been forgotten through the passage of time.

Children are our future and because of that they deserve nothing but the very best. They deserve a good education so they one day can become responsible adults, for, they our children will be those who give birth to our grandchildren, the ultimate proof of that our lives had meaning. A good education is the solid soundation upon which the children will rely for achieving their future success. Children need to be taught the facts, not stories which will comfort them during hard times. Such stories they may learn at home, if their parents find it fit, as part of their cultural heritage from the domestic sphere. Some people’s culture may involve the stories of the Holy Books, while others’ culture only revolve around proverbs which, like religious stories, provide comfort and guidance through hard times.

The United Sates have forever claimed to be the land of freedom and the country of dreams. I do however not believe in this, which they all prod with, saying that this indeed is true. If fundamentalists, blind to proven facts, may dictate the future for the rest of us, what difference is there between such ideas and the ideas of dictators? American (and perhaps all other people in this world) wish to decide things for themselves. But then I ask, why can not schools teach children about the ideas of evolution? Why can not the religious and the scientific world peacefully coexist?

Albert Einstein, one of mankind’s great geniuses, said:
Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind.

People have a need, a desire, to believe. And I think that nothing, ever, can remove that part of the human mind. It is essential, not only in religious contexts, but in all. For, if I did not believe that I am facing a splendid future, then what point would there be to my life?

I am no believer, nor do I claim to know the truth. I do however understand how some may believe, for it must be such a comfort to rely upon something far greater than oneself – to imagine there must be no worries if only I live right, for my reward will await me by the time of my passing. I have no such belief, and still I am alive and well. I have my dark days, but so does everyone else. I have managed to pull through everything I have faced this far, and really, I see no point in changing a winning concept. A proverb I have come to love is the one which says: “If it is not broken, do not fix it.” And really, that is true.

I wonder, what ever happened to the historic context. In ancient Japan, the goddess Amaterasu [she who illuminates the heavens], the sun goddess, was worshipped as a deity. Other cultures have worshipped gods of all shapes and forms, like the Norse who who had many deities and a rich mythology. To this day, who believe that these religions speak of nothing but the truth? I have not heard of any Japanese who try to convince the world of that the theories of evolutionism are false and lies, all because Amaterasu-omikami was the ancestor of the imperial family. Neither have I ever met any Scandinavians who tell me, Josephine the atheist, that I should believe in Odin and Thor and their greatness, for Odin was the wisest of them all and as a scientific person, I share some of his traits. Neither have I heard them tell me to believe in the greatness of Thor, he who slayed the Midgard Serpent, he who makes the world shiver in fear when the thunderstorms roam the skies. No, those beliefs are since long gone. What makes Christianity any different?

Do you still believe that Thor is hunting giants when the sky is sparkling with lightning and thunder?

I am however not at all without belief. For, I believe in many things. I believe that the sun is always blazing, smiling, no matter where I am. The clouds have not made the sun go away, they have simply hidden it, but it is all for the greater joy of those who prefer clouds before the sun. I believe in that I have a brilliant future to face and to create for myself. I believe in the potential of mankind, that we have an even more splendid future to face, a future so bright we can never fully understand it. I believe there is a solution to any problem, for nothing is truly impossible.

I am also of the belief that we are not alone. There is no chance that we, the humans, may be the only children of the universe and its magnificence. I will forever believe this, for it comforts me, to imagine what other worlds must be like. Some say to me that I am nothing but a dreamer, with no future in sight. Someone as unrealistic as me must be crazy, without sanity. But, who are they to question me, when I do not question them? If science fiction and science facts make my days, can I then not be allowed to dream and to smile? For, I do not shove my ideas down other’s throats, claim that what I believe and only that, is the sole truth.

The Feelings of Sunset

October 3, 2007

The cloudy afternoon I found myself in the middle in, earlier today, has turned into a crisp and starry night. The velvet sky has spread its wings over the landscapes I call my home, my world, and chased the sunlight away over the horizon. It was a battle which had no winners. The day left with open wounds, coloring the sky in a deep crimson red before it went. The clouds were a matte reddish purple, for the darkness had colored them and so had the blood the day left behind. The night was hurt too, but the strongest of the two who battled each other. Its deep blue was scattered with holes, small tears in the fabric revealing what was hidden behind, a shining light, now scattering the skies as shimmering stars. It was a magnificent play to watch, and being nothing but a mere spectator of the great battle, I had the time to consider if I ever am going to win the battle I fight with myself.

Many are the things I wish to do and many more are the things I am expected to do. It is a fine line between remaining sane and losing it. In the midst of what I am supposed to do I feel the careful steps I take are less secure than ever before. I fear that if I look down from where I am now, I will lose my balance and fall. I do not know what awaits me on the bottom for I have not dared to give it a single glance.

I am afraid that I have done some bad choices in my life, though I have barely started to walk the roads they made me face. I keep second-guessing myself: “Is this right, what would I rather do?” Though it is silly to ask oneself questions one already knows the answer to, I still do, all in search of some reassurance I already know is not there.

But this is temporary, as are most other things. Some days are however worse then others, especially those days which are like today. A free day in the middle of the week and all I did was nothing. I did nothing useful for an entire day, but that does not make the day differ from any other day in my life. I spent the day pondering what will come next – my motivation’s glorius return or my mind’s gradual darkening. At least, an empty day like this, has spawned some new ideas, made already existing ones more clear. Perhaps there is some hope for me and my future after all.

The starry sky is like a reassuring friend, no matter what you ask it, it always twinkles and sparkles like a dear friend. It is reassuring to know, that there are eternal millions of shining lights which forever will guard one, even during the hardest of days.

The Three Per Cent

October 2, 2007

I have read that 3 per cent of the world’s population is more unfortunate than the remaining 97 per cent. That I have been part of that minority, I have always been aware of, but it was not until very recently that I realized that it actually is a blessing. For, we who are unlucky, we may entertain ourselves a lot, just by looking back at days that have passed, and what events we faced during them. If we share our experiences with others, they will laugh with you and they will admire your endurance. To be able to write about our disfortunes enables us to go back to them again and read, remember, laugh. And laughts, I have heard, are the bet medicine for any illness.

Though I did not feel like it when it all happened to me, I will tell you about my experiences during the last few days, spanning from Friday morning to the early hours of yesterday. It is just as much for you as for me. You will be able to laugh and smile, be happy that it did not happen to you. I can get this off my chest, see it from another perspective and one day go back and laugh with you.

Friday was the day of my very first college exam. I have to admit, already now, that I could have studied more before it – to have arrived to the exam prepared and confident. However, I did not. I had not been on top of the world the days preceeding the exam, for reasons I have not been able to understand. Some days one is better off never leaving bed, a well-known fact. Though, I have never been known for being able to remember such things on top of my head, or when I need to remember it the most.

I had re-written all my notes, for my noting handwriting is not for the weak to see. I note at the speed of light, in cursive lettering, something which by itself should explain what the outcome looks like. My handwriting is curvy and luxuriant (in lack of a better word) and as cursives it all turns into a b it would take a linguist or handwriting analyst to fully decipher. Having finished revisiting my notes from the lectures and having drawn the illustrations, I thought I was ready to face an exam. Of course, being one of the 3 per cent, I was wrong.

The exam was scheduled to begin at 8:3o in the morning, not a time for the living, in my own eyes. As a result, I had to go to bed early the evening before, leaving my trustworthy friend, the television, alone for the night. I could hear it moan out of despair in the darkness I had surrounded myself with by turning my light off. Of course, the moaning could be the muffled sounds of the accidentally non-muted TV through my bedroom door.

Going to bed early almost always results in having to get up early, at least for the unfortunate buch of people I seem to belong to. Me having to get up early almost always results in a visit to the den of nightmare creatures my morning mood can be compared to. Cranky and wanting to have slept longer, I miraculously got dressed and stumbled down the stairs, as I usually do. I am not the most gracious person the world has ever seen, but I manage to survive most days without any major injuries.

Because of the early hour of the exam, and the importance of it, I had to take the early train, leaving station at 7:46AM. Me not having fully awoken long before that, did not have the time to eat a respectable breakfast. Instead, I pulled a slice of raising and apricot bread from the freezer and placed it in the toaster. Leaving the toaster to do the anti-freezing for me, I packed my bag with the neccessities of the day: my notebook, a pencil without ink (it had given up on me while I was working with my notes), my wallet and a mobile phone. I do not bring much else to school. I can handle a maximum of 5 items without any of them getting lost. Having finished packing my bag, it was time for me to leave. I fished the slice of bread up from the toaster, only to realize that I had forgotten to turn it on and actually toast the slice of frozen bread I for the moment held in my hand. Not having the time to try to undo my mistake, I went to the train station, eating a frozen slice of fruity bread. The fruits were actually the most pleasant to eat, for the sugar in them had made them only cold, not hard.

I got on the train in time, luckily, and I arrived at my destination in time too. I saw this as a good sign, perhaps I was meant to pass this exam with a golden star. I cheerfully walked the way I follow every morning to get to the college grounds. I of course stumbled along the way, but I explain that with stating that the ground is uneaven and I was tired (or maybe I am just as ungracious I usually am while rolling down the stairs). It was a beautiful fall morning, the air was not of the winter’s crisp, but of the summer’s softness. The temperatures were surprisingy high for the season and that time of the morning. In my eyes, all good signs for my upcoming triumphant success, that I would pass this exam as easily (and without studying) as I had passed my high school exams before.

The leaves on the trees that decorated the side of the road were sparkling in reddish colors. The green is still present in nature, but the red is so bright it pops right out of the vegetation. The fountain on the neighbouring college’s grounds was cheerful as ever. The water leaped high up into the grey sky and fell just as cheerfully. Imagine if people were like that water! The we could be tossed arund with as the misfortunes pleased, but we would always fall as graciously and happily, for we know that we are the strongest and that the misfortunes never will rule us.

I did not run up the stairs of the building once I had reached it. I walked up the stairs, what is the point of being stressed when there is no need to? There was still some 15 minutes to go before the start of the exam. I sat down at a table outside the examination room and I met up with a person from my group (that person making up 1/10th of my group which makes up 1/6th of the whole class). She had some questions, and confident as I were, I offered to help her. I explained it to her, and she understood. I felt pleased with myself, that I could help her. If I could help her, what were the odds of me not knowing what I was supposed to know before the exam?

The exam was oral, but I already knew that. The exam would take place in groups of five (half of the group we usually work with).

The exam started and I was seated. I had dressed up just a little more than usually, because I wanted to make a good impression on the teachers who would monitor the exam. I wore a pinish purple blouse, a color with just a tint of grey in it. Checkered. I wore a black jacket and black jeans, my hair pulled up in a bun (as usual) with matching accessories. I wore my lucky earrings (though they never have given me any luck, but they are pretty) and I also wore a necklace of my own production. A stunning appearance I wish I had saved through a photo. Ah well, I could always dress up again and take a picture of myself.

The exam began, for real this time. We were supposed to draw our own questions to answer. (Before I tell you more about this, just let me point out that lotteries are not my thing. Everything which is decided by chance naturally keeps the odds against me, for I am one of those unlucky 3 per cent. I never win anything, not even in win-each-time lotteries, for usually, they are out of prizes by the time I draw.) So, I drew 5 questions from a pile, I was allowed a few minutes to write down some quick answers before being supposed to read a question out loud, answer it and let someone else do the same until we all had answered all the questions.

I knew very well what the answers to the questions were, and I wrote it down on my little notepaper. The problems started to appear the moment I opened my mouth. Because I have zero verbal skills. None. Nada. Of course I should have seen it coming, but it was one early Friday morning and I was tired (And who wishes to believe the worst about everything? The glass is half-FULL people!). One hour and a half later, 75 minutes of agony, we recieved our grades. Because I had failed terribly because I can not speak to people in a normal way, I recieved a pass. A simple pass! That truly ruined my day.

I did not exactly fly on little pink clouds to the train station after that ordeal, especially not after having heard from my group that they all had earned passs with distinction. I was a little upset. A very upset. Because despite my cheerful and positive approach, even I can feel beat at times.

I went to the train station with a rainy cloud above my head. But then again, so did everyone who was outside that day, it was still fall outside with thick clouds covering the skies. Because I would be home alone that day, and really did not feel like doing anything to ensure my survival for the rest of the day, I took the subway to the shopping mall. I figured, if this day has been plain bad this far, to 10AM in the morning, I could always try and make it a little better by spending some money. Spending money makes all women happy, and as I am not as unordinary as I would like to be, it makes me happy too.

The time in the mall went smoothly. I bought some beads and recieved a bonus check due to my frequent purchases. I also bought two pens as my previous pen had run out of ink. I still felt a little beat, despite my purchases, so I also bought a bag of candy. It was the last thing I could think of that had the potential to cheer me up a little.

Not being in the mood to take the 30 minute walk home, I decided to take the bus. By the time I exited the mall, my bus had just left. But, I am used to that kind of things, so I stood by the bus stop, not knowing that the next bus would take some 30 minutes to show – I could just as well have walked home.

As I stood by the bus stop, pondering the morning’s events: my lack of verbal capacity and my half-failed first exam, a microphone appeared out of nowhere and behind it a news reporter. A man with a camera on his shoulder accompanied the reporter. She was the typical stereotype of a news reporter, the kind of person you see all the time in the movies. She had blonde hair, glasses and quite colorful clothes – she was the kind of person who wanted to be seen. Especially in front of a camera.

She wondered what I thought about the lower taxes, and what I thought about the higher price of bus tickets. I did not know what to say and because I was not content with the exam I half-failed just a few hours ago, I went into a strange case of shock. I could not believe my misfortune. National TV wanted to interview me about the price of bus tickets – the first time I rode the bus in over a year!

At times, I think that I have a strange curse over me. Or that I am just part of the 3 per cent. Either way, I like myself just the way I am. My life would not be very interesting if it were not for all the strange things which keep happening to me.

The bus ride home went smoothly and so did the rest of the day. There are only so many things which can go wrong when one is curled up in a sofa with beads and some candy. The only thing was that the TV channel I watch insisted on reporting that Jorja Fox may leave the cast of CSI, something which made me freak out just a little. As the person I am, with a love for control, I was greatly unsatifyed by the fact that I could not find any information on the topic – only rumours. I am still kept in the dark to this day.

Saturday went smoothly, just as Friday afternoon. I spent most of the day beading and the worst even of the day was that I accidentally pricked my finger with my largest needle. Blood was spilled and as I have a fear of my own blood I near fainted.

Sunday went smoothly too… It is strange that the most smooth of days are when I am not doing anything. This is my logic – if nothing is going on, nothing can happen. And that may be very true. Except for one incident I still suffer from. When in the shower, I opened a bottle of soap and I cut my finger on it. Pretty deep too. Blood was yet again spilled, and I near fainted.

Monday morning, I was late for the train. Just my luck, I would dare say. As a result of that, I was 10 minutes late for class. A class with the same teacher that was in charge of the verbal exam. I felt rather small trying to enter the classroom as silently as possible, being obstructed by a locked door one of my classmates had to open up for me.

But I am not discontent with my life. In fact, I am on top of the world. On numerous occassions, every day. That is just the kind of person I am.