Monday, August 9, 2010

Long Sunday, Part One

My story about Sunday is going to be split up into two (or three) parts because I'm too tired to write about the whole day, plus my dad said I have to wake up at nine tomorrow morning to show discipline, so I want to go to bed soon. Besides, I started writing this at three and it's now almost midnight, so I'll probably need another day to get a better pace. Also this is the boring part, so don't feel too bad about skipping it (or anything else on my blog).

Okay, so on Sunday morning there were a lot of us in our house. There were Stefanie, Ruben, Jan, Hannah, Ian, and me. My dad was out driving with Susanna. I got a call from my dad saying he'd be downstairs in five minutes, so I tried telling everyone to get ready because we'd be going downstairs soon, but they all ignored me so Ruben and I went down first.

Jan joined us, and then my dad pulled up outside the lobby with Susanna. We got in, and the others came down soon after, and then we left. My dad needed to know if we had to pick up Aunty Catherine on the way to church, but my mum wasn't picking up her phone so she couldn't ask her. A few weeks ago I had called Aunty Catherine, though, so I could just call her on my phone and find out. Unfortunately my phone chose that exact moment to stop working, so I had to use a key to pry the back open and jiggle the battery to restart it. Once the phone was ready again I found Aunty Catherine's number right at the bottom of my most recent calls list. If I had made just two more calls it would have been gone and we would have had no way of contacting her. Anyway, I called and asked if we needed to pick her up for church, but she said she wasn't even going to church that day, so that was a nice waste of time.

We had dim sum for breakfast. I ate a lot of fried prawns. My dad told Stefanie how to eat the porridge she had ordered. There were a lot of instructions and it sounded way too complicated for porridge. That is why I'm glad I just eat the prawns when I'm there.

After breakfast we went to church. Hannah, Ruben, Stefanie and Jan sat in the row of seats that was right at the back end of the church, which is usually reserved for families with children. There was no place for me, so I just stood behind them until somebody took a chair from a row in front and gave it to me. I found the ink-and-tip part of a pen on the floor. It was from a red pen. I wanted to draw on myself without ripping off Hannah's skin-watch, so I drew a fake scar on my wrist. I have to admit, it was pretty lame. I found other things to do with the pen-bit, though. I managed to draw an S and a H on Stefanie and Hannah.

The reverend's wife came to us and asked us to move up front because the back was reserved. There weren't any rows that were completely empty, so Hannah and Jan were hesitant to move forward because it would mean splitting up. I went up front with Ruben and they followed. I sat next to Ruben and in front of Jan, while Hannah and Stef sat next to each other and Susanna and my dad.

After praise and worship was over, Jan, Hannah, Stefanie, Ian, Ruben, and Susanna all left the sanctuary to go upstairs, so it was the second time I was the only one left listening to the sermon, but this time my dad was here so he could see that I wasn't lying and also that I didn't fall asleep. Also I borrowed two ringgit from my dad since nobody else had any small change they could lend me to add to my three ringgit for my usual RM5 offering. It was kinda weird, borrowing money just to give away. Oh well.

During the announcements, Uncle Kwon Hong wanted to greet the newcomers to the church, so he asked me where my friends went. I told him that they had all gone upstairs. He asked if they were coming down later for the youth meeting, and I shrugged my shoulders. After that I sent a text to Jan that said "Uncle Kwon Hong just mentioned your absence in front of the whole congregation. Nice going." Jan missed the point entirely and replied with "Yea... What an ass." I sent another text to him that said "Oh yes because I was totally talking about how HIS behaviour was inappropriate and not anyone else's. What an ass indeed." Jan obviously wanted to get back to his nap or whatever so he replied with "I don't care. I'm not replying to your next sms." The next text he received from me said "Dude! A gypsy just cursed my phone! She said that only the most handsome and intelligent son of a family had the power to reply to my next text, which is this one. Bummer."

Anyway, I didn't have any gum to chew so I kept myself from falling asleep by drawing on myself. I wrote a letter on the back of each of my fingers on my left hand so that it spelled out FATE, like Charlie did on Lost. After a while I wrote LATE above that, since that's what he changed it to later on in the show. I was still bored, so I rolled up my sleeve and gave myself his tattoo, too. I was pleased with how well "Living is easy with eyes wide shut" ended up looking on my shoulder, but later I realized that I probably got the tattoo on the wrong spot and I also probably got the lyric wrong. I had, but not in the way I had thought. The actual lyric is "Living is easy with eyes closed", I had thought it was actually "Living is simple with eyes wide shut". It's from Strawberry Fields Forever, by the Beatles.

Anyway, I also drew a DS on my right ring finger so I'd also have Charlie's Drive Shaft/Dexter Stratton ring. I drew references to stuff under folds on my pants (4 8 15 16 23 42, "You're waiting for a train", "I like Chinese") and I added some random nonsense at the worn-out bottoms of my trouser legs (A red splotch with an arrow pointing to it and a note that said "Totally not hobo blood" on one leg, "IF YOU CAN READ THIS YOU ARE TOO FAT" in mirrored handwriting for Jan to read on the other).

The sermon was pretty good. It was about Solomon and Paul's opinions on wives (mostly Paul's), and there was also a bit where I heard a nice analogy (or metaphor, or simile, or something) on forgiveness involving credit (Forgiveness BC), cash (Forgiveness for the robber on the cross), and gift vouchers (Forgiveness AD). Also the gift vouchers had an expiry date (Death). So that was nice.

Throughout the whole service I was thinking about letters that I might write in future. I told myself that I would make a note about it on Facebook later, but I didn't. I might do it today if there is still time left after writing this post.

After the service was over I was handed an envelope to give to my mum. I asked my dad if I could have the car keys so I could put the envelope there. He gave them to me, so I stored the envelope, and then I went upstairs. As I was going up the stairs Clement asked me where I had gone. I told him I had just gone to the car to store something. He asked me where I had gone during the service. I told him I hadn't gone anywhere, and that I was the only one among my siblings who had stayed behind. He asked me if I had fallen asleep, and I said I hadn't. He was all "I see, I see" like he didn't believe me. I don't know why he thought I went upstairs during the sermon. Ian's the one who usually does that. I also don't know why the only time he called me out on sleeping in church was the Sunday when I was wide awake. Whatever.

When I got upstairs, Stefanie and Hannah were playing with crayons, while Jan and Ruben were just talking. I showed off my boredom tattoos and the stuff I had written on my trousers, then I got some crayons of my own and wrote a crude poem. I handed it to Stefanie. She read it aloud:
"Roses are red
Violets are blue
You are so pretty
Can I please touch your-"
And then someone else snatched it off of her, and then Hannah snatched it off that person, and Hannah started reading it while Stefanie was begging for it back so she could finish. When she got to the punchline she sighed in exasperation and I thought that was hilarious. Stefanie grabbed it back and was all "Can I touch your books? Does it say books? What does- Oh." I showed it to Jan, but he didn't think it was funny. Ruben didn't think it was funny until I pointed out to him that I had dotted the Os in the last word, then he laughed. I still can't get over how perfect the first snatcher's timing was, I mean it was right before she read the last word and everything. I'm so juvenile.

Anyway, after Hannah saw my shoulder tattoo she asked me who did it, and I said that I did. She wanted to know how, and I said it wasn't hard. She tried to do her own, but she ended up reversing the J so it looked more like "Toseph Gordon-Levitt". I told her it would have been smarter to just write JGL inside the heart. Hannah and I helped Stefanie get "HL" for Heath Ledger in a heart on her shoulder. It came out quite nice. I shaded the heart to make it pop. I also tried writing Stef's initials on her back in 3D lettering, but I kept running out of ink and S is a hard letter to write on skin, so it didn't turn out as good as it could have. I also wrote "And these..." on the back of one hand and "...Are not The Hammer" on the other, and when I looked up, everyone was gone and I was left to clean up the mess.

I met Jan and Ruben outside church, and we went to the park to meet the others. They swung on the swings, but the whole swingset was not anchored properly and it kept popping out of the ground, so that was fun. I did some chin-ups on it. I was surprised how easy they were to do; I thought I was a weakling.

I got a call from my dad asking where we were, and I told him we were in the park. He said that he had told us to be downstairs for the Alpha Course, so I told him that I was only in the park to get the rest of them back to church. As we walked back Stefanie suddenly declared me her new Hannah and we walked back arm-in-arm. Hannah was jealous.

It only took a while for me to realize that I had already seen all the Alpha Course videos. Uncle Anthony kept repeating the same video over and over. I told Ruben that this was because he thought we were idiots. Anyway, I texted my dad and told him that I had already seen all the videos, and to prove it I told him what was coming up next, so he let me leave.

I went back to the park. I played on the swings a bit, and then I took a jog around the lake. I didn't stop to look at the turtles, though, because I realized that I still had the car keys and I wanted to be nearby in case we needed to leave soon. Instead, I took off my shoes and walked across the reflexology path. It wasn't as painful as I remember it being.

I was getting bored and sweaty, so I went to the car, cranked up the air-conditioning, and listened to the radio. Susanna wandered out of church, so I called her into the car and we listened to some reggae. After the reggae we heard We Didn't Start the Fire, which Susanna loved because of the chorus. We also heard Nobody by the Wonder Girls, which had another chorus that Susanna enjoyed. She tried to clap along, but she was always late. She loved it anyway.

The Alpha Course finished and I drove everyone back home.

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