Sunday, August 30, 2009

How Can One Summer Possibly Be This Awesome??

I have a feeling this could take a while. I don't know how I crammed SO much stuff into one summer. To quote the great detective Adrian Monk, "Here's what happened:"
1) Church Camp- Mount Pleasant, PA, in a nice little Mennonite Church Center called Laurelville (I'm putting it out there now that I am not Mennonite). Lovely place, lovely people. We learned a lot about each other and played lots of Buck Buck. If you have never played Buck Buck (chances are pretty big that you haven't), it's a really stupid game that's ridiculously fun to play. One team stands in a line, each person bending over and holding the waist of the person in front of him/her. Then the other team jumps on the backs of the first team's line one by one. The team that falls first loses. Stupid, right? Also quite painful. But fun, nonetheless. Okay, moving on.
2) Elton John/Billy Joel Concert- Okay, seeing one of the two of them in concert would have been unbelievable. But both?? Geez, I don't think I could have been more excited. We learned on the way in that every woman stops at the first bathroom they come to when they get to the stadium, so if you ever need to use the bathroom before a concert, go to one farther down, because there will be no one there. Anyway, a couple songs into the concert, the pedal on Elton's piano stopped working. First of all, an Elton John/Billy Joel concert is the sort of concert for which these things should most definitely be checked. But, alas, it stopped working anyway. I don't know if you're aware of this or not, but Elton John is known for his horrible temper. So we could all tell that he was not pleased by this at all. Billy Joel was hilarious, because he was doing everything he could to keep Elton from losing it completely, but in all honesty, I think he was making it worse. He played the Battle Hymn of the Republic, he offered to switch pianos (to which Elton replied, "That wouldn't fix the pedal," obviously not finding the joke to be very funny), and at one point he threw off his jacket and dove under Elton's piano after offering to fix it himself. Keep in mind that Billy Joel is 60 years old. But he couldn't fix it, so the stage crew pulled the piano off the stage and the show went on. I honestly think that the whole ordeal made the show better. "At least," said Billy when they realized Elton's piano was broken, "you know we're not recorded. This is what you call a real rock and roll f***-up." I think we all agreed that if we were to pick one of the two to hang out with, we would definitely choose Billy Joel. At one point somewhere in the middle of the show, he pulled out a flyswatter and started wavnig it around everywhere. Evidently there was a fly, but I think after a while he just enjoyed the attention he got while he waved it around. Anyway, the music was absolutely amazing, and they played basically everything that was of any importance in both of their careers. They played music for almost 3 solid hours. I have never seen such amazing piano playing. So. That was incredible.
3) NYC- So, before I begin this description, I'm just going to say that I forgot my camera and was very angry with myself for the whole trip. This is the reason there are no pictures to go with this section. Anway, my dad and I went to New York City for my sixteenth birthday, as is tradition in my house. It was pretty excellent, as NYC usually is. We went to Ellis Island, which was WAAAAYYY cooler, and also way bigger, than we expected, and required another day to finish. We also went to the Statue of Liberty, which was not as cool (and also involved many more stairs than we expected), but is something that every American should do at some point in his life just to say he's done it. We also saw a show on Broadway, which is also a must. We saw an Alfred Hitchcock story adapted into a comedy called The 39 Steps. It had a cast of four people, in which one man played the main character, one woman played three women, and two other men played every other person the man and woman came across. It was extremely creative and very well done. We walked down Wall Street and 5th Avenue, and we saw Ground Zero, where they're building the 9/11 Memorial (it was literally right across the street from our hotel--we could see it from our room). We also doot-dooed our way through the entire 16 1/2 minute recording of "Rhapsody in Blue" on the way there, which I found to be quite amusing.
4) The Wedding!!!! Wow. It's still hard for me to believe that my sister is married. This is going to sound remarkably cheesy and overused, but to me, Tiff is still my big sister that I played Barbies and House with when we were little. So, anyway, the day before the wedding, all of the girls (including my mom) got mani-pedis, which was exciting, because I'd never done it before. We had lovely nails. The wedding was at a beautiful little stone house/wood cabin from the 1700s. All of us bridesmaids and Tiff had stayed the night before (after having our bachelorette-type party thing), so that we could just wake up and get ready. We didn't exactly account for all of the waiting, though, so we passed the time by staring at some puzzle pieces while Melissa actually did the puzzle. I have to give credit to Tiffany, though, because she was very patient, even though she wondered why she chose an evening wedding. I don't blame her at all. Eventually, after all that waiting, it got to be about an hour before the ceremony started. And... It rained. Hard. Immediately after Tiffany came back in after her photoshoot. It was not supposed to rain that day, I might add. But, with the help of a Doppler radar, some patience, and some nail-biting (not literally, thank goodness), we chose to wait it out and squeeze the ceremony between storms. So the ceremony began, a little late, and slightly more damp than we had planned, but just as beautiful. It progressed as planned, if not a little tearfully, and right as the couple lit their unity candles, it started to pour. Again. Luckily we had a very large reception tent, so somehow every guest and every member of the wedding party managed to get under the tent with chairs and everything in five minutes. I have to sincerely thank the wedding planner for the umbrellas, too. So, with everyone a little bit wet but just as happy, the ceremony finished and Tiffany and James were officially married. I think the rain just added to the beauty of it all, and I personally think that it's very fitting that it rained at Tiffany's wedding, because Tiffany happens to be one of those people that can never do anything the normal way, and I mean that in the best and most loving way possible. Apparently there is an old wives' tale that when it rains on your wedding day, your knot (you know, "tying the knot" when you get married) will be tied tighter because of the rain. It couldn't have been more perfect. Tiffany and James are absolutely perfect for each other (and not just because they're both very small), they had the most beautiful wedding, and I love them both!!!! They're living in Denmark now, trying to figure out exactly where they're going to settle down. Best of luck to you both!!!!! *I'm going to be professional here and thank Broadleaf Photography for the pictures.*
5) Hollywood, CA- My mom and I took a lovely trip out to Hollywood a couple of weeks after Tiff and James left, a) to relax after the wedding, and b) to take a trip during band camp since we don't have to be there anymore!! With lots of help from our GPS, Rupert, we made our way through the city. Here are a few things I learned about Hollywood during the week:
  • Hollywood is only fun if you're a tourist or a movie star, and if you are the former, it's really only fun once.
  • The mountain that the Hollywood sign is on are NOT as pretty as they look in the movies and pictures. I don't know what they do to them in photoshop to make them look so nice, but they are really ugly. The entire landscape of Los Angeles is brown, scrubby, and hilly. Not exactly the most beautiful place ever.
  • The cities you see in movies are usually on a backlot of some movie studio, in which there are no built-in doorknobs, benches, lightposts, or newspaper stands, because these are things that change over time. They get put in when filming starts.
  • If you ever want to go to a movie premier with any remotely famous person, get there at least two hours early and be prepared to shove people out of the way to get pictures.
  • Brad Pitt needs a shave. Badly.
  • George Hamilton is just as tan and dapper in person.
  • The Judge Judy set is made of plywood that's been stapled together with a staple gun.
  • Lots of stars drive black Range Rovers.
  • The Hollywood Walk of Fame is a several-day task.
  • There is a dress code for seeing a taping of The Family Feud: no white shirts, no shirts with logos, and no shorts. Interesting. And when you clap, you have to clap up by your face so the people watching at home can tell you're clapping.
  • 1/2 hour Sitcoms take 5 1/2 hours or more to tape but are very entertaining because they hire a comedian to keep you laughing between takes. If you ever go, expect your face to hurt a lot when you leave.
  • The Kodak Theatre has a MASSIVE stage.
  • When watching the Oscars, no seat is ever empty because the Kodak keeps a line of extras in fancy clothes to fill in seats whenever someone gets up.
  • The Oscar is named such because some woman that worked for the Acadamy in the '30s or '40s thought the statuette looked like her Uncle Oscar.
  • Stars' Homes Tour busses are extremely tacky and have annoying guides. Never take a tour. Get a map and find the houses yourself.
  • Hollywood is not actually a very nice place to be if you leave the middle of Hollywood or Sunset Blvd., and Sunset Blvd. does not have much to do unless you're extremely rich.
  • US 101 (the highway) is extraordinarily useful if you're driving from Universal City to Hollywood Blvd. Also, if you ever get lost, chances are you'll end up on Cahuenga Blvd. We did. Every time.
  • Road signs are not very clearly labeled in Los Angleles.
  • Madame Tussaud's is awesome (if not a little creepy), and the Hollywood Museum has tons of interesting movie trinkets.
  • John Wayne's feet are not actually as small as people like to joke. He was wearing riding boots, which make your feet look smaller, so his feet appeared to be very small. John Travolta, whose spot is right next to John Wayne's, bought the biggest pair of boots he could find just to make fun of John Wayne.
  • There are a lot of interesting trees in Los Angeles.
  • A cemetery in the middle of a city actually exists. It's between a parking garage and a bank or something.

*Just a note about this cake.* My friend Suzy's mom had made the little chocolate cookies that you see on it, and Suzy thought that they looked like cow pies, and she had the brilliant idea to make a cow pie cake. She was extremely excited when she found out that they were throwing me a party, so she made me a cow pie cake. And yes, we know that the 1 is backwards, but we didn't realize until after we took the picture. 6) Surprise Party- My friends are the coolest ever, and they threw me a surprise sweet 16 party! We had been trying to get together to have a party celebrating our AP scores all summer, so naturally I assumed that that was what we were doing. But when I got there, all of my friends were there and had a lovely party for me! We had a cake and everything! I still can't believe that I have friends awesome enough to throw me a surprise party. We played all kinds of games that have kind of become traditions in parties of ours, like Balderdash and Apples to Apples, and we also played Catch Phrase (which is very entertaining to watch) and Scene It, in which we learned that we do not know as much about movies as we thought. We watched the end of The Dark Knight, because the last time we had had a party we never finished it, and one of my friends had never seen the end. Apparently everybody kept telling her different endings. I don't know why anyone would do such a cruel thing as that... It's not like I did, or anything. Anyway, we had tons of fun and it was a great way to end the summer.

There's still one more week of summer left!!! We just had our Vikingfest, where we got our schedules, and most people that aren't anyone I'm friends with went to the football game and had tailgate parties and such the like. Believe it or not, the SCA actually scheduled tailgating into the Vikingfest timeline. Anyway, I mentioned that we got our schedules at Vikingfest. But what I didn't mention was that there were no teachers on the schedule. I think that everybody was extremely angry about this, because a lot of people already knew their schedules and just wanted to know who their teachers were. So it was really a waste of time and paper. Sometimes it amazes me how stupid our school system can be.

Anway, that's about it. Pretty amazing summer, no? I'm still digesting it all, so to speak. It all went so fast, and now school's starting and I have to go back to my boring routine. But I guess it's all for the best.

~ Snooty Crumb

P.S. I don't think that I'm ever putting this many pictures on here ever again.

1 comment:

  1. Ah SC,
    Welcome to the world of blogging!:) Great start and description of your forgot Smoky Joe's!:) I don't blog since we still just have dial-up but I have to say, your pictures came up quickly!!
    Please oh please, don't stop putting on photos...they are so much fun!;)
    Here's to a great start to the school year!:)
    Mrs. G