“So it’s like a double war”

Over in Afghanistan, they have the whole government like is gone and the Taliban is now in control and then they have COVID and the Delta variant and everything else that everyone is dealing with. And people, some like the scientists are calling like COVID like a war, you know, ’cause it’s like the death toll is similar to a war. So then, in Afghanistan, they just had this huge- this huge um insurrection? I don’t know what you would call it, but the, the huge- this huge takeover and then they have COVID, so it’s like a double war.

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“People can change colors. Like they don’t have to be one color all the time”

I feel like I have this one really close friend who I would think of as a yellow. So I think of this person as a yellow ’cause their favorite color is yellow and they’re always so bubbly and bright and optimistic. They like to think of everything with like a half, like the cup is half-full type mentality and they’re just one of the sweetest person, one of the sweetest people I know. And that’s why I associate the color yellow with them. But yeah, I really like this question and I definitely have thought about it before. Sometimes I wonder like how others people perceive me, like what color they see me as, and it’s a really nice way of like seeing how other people’s minds work and how you showcase yourself to them and how they perceive it. So yeah, I see friends as like pinks and purples and blues. Sometimes, even like people can change colors. Like they don’t have to be one color all the time.

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“I think the last happy memory that I have of you…”

It makes me think of an ex-boyfriend. This is going to get depressing real fast, I think. But essentially an ex-boyfriend of mine, guy that probably actually I would consider as my first love, he was in high school. He was a high school sweetheart. One of the last things he said to me during, during our break up actually, I know, so depressing, was you know, he was, we were talking and he was recounting one of the last times like a previous time one time when we had talked and gotten together just before that. And it was, he was basically saying to me like, “You know, like this has been really hard. I think the last, like, happy memory that I have of you was when we went to this park one day and you were wearing this like yellow, striped shirt.” And, you know, he was like, “Yeah, I remember walking up to you. You were sitting on the swings, you were swinging back and forth and that yellow was just really bright and you looked, it looked really good and exciting at the, you know, there was some flowers behind you, and they were also yellow and you basically matched the flowers.” And I don’t know. This is like, so depressing, but he basically said like, “Yeah, you know, I feel like that was the last time that we were happy together. And so, you know, I know this relationship is over, but when I think of you, I’ll think of that day.” And that is what I think about. That was the first thing that came to mind when, you know, really I thought really thought about the color yellow.

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“I know I should have felt more emotion, happiness, unbridled joy than I did…”

“Um, like, I went to the Fall Out Boy concert. I think I told you guys about that. And it was fun. I enjoyed myself. I scream, shout, sang all the songs, ‘cause I know all the words ‘cause I really like Fall Out Boy. Um, well, I mean you can’t really do that to “Save Rock and Roll,” but the rest of them, you can. Still did not like that “Saturday” was the ending song, ‘cause I think there’s — I mean, it’s not a bad song. I just — there’s just songs I like better. I would have liked, y’know, “Immortals.” That’s a better song, better to sing to, also. Eh, they played “Centuries,” I know it’s a popular song, it’s not my favorite, though, I don’t even like it that much. Um, I just … I don’t — I, I know I should have felt more emotion, happiness, unbridled joy than I did, if that makes any sense. Like, I wasn’t not happy, I wasn’t sad. I was elated to be there. I mean, sixteen years of failed attempts to see that band between their hiatus and a pandemic and moving across the country several times. It just — I should have been able to feel more and I didn’t.”

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“The first time I had ever cried tears of joy and they were just spontaneous”

Joy feels like happiness. It’s exuberant! It’s, it’s overwhelming. It’s a good feeling. It just feels like, I don’t know, fun? I guess exuberance is kind of the best I would feel it, sometimes depending on your level of joy. I think you can have different levels of joy. When I was a kid, I was ten years old and my parents bought me a new bicycle. And I had been riding my, my sibling’s girls’ bike when I learned to ride. She no longer lived at home. And you know, it was what it was. I mean, it was a way to get around as a kid. Well, and my parents, to my surprise, had me go out into the- into the barn and there assembled into the barn was my brand new bicycle. And it was a beauty. It had built-in headlights and it had a big tank on and it was, you know, and it would probably weigh like a ton-and-a-half. I don’t know. It was gorgeous, but it was great and I, I was so joyful. So happy that I literally cried tears of happiness and tears of joy. I had always heard about it, you know, tears of joy. I thought that was some kind of a, you know, something I think that they imagined for stories or something, but they really were tears of joy. The first time I had ever cried tears of joy and they were just spontaneous. So joyfully, joyfully- joy feels really great to me. It’s just an exuberant feeling of, you know, the whole world is, is right. Everything is great and it’ll never be that good again. And I’ve felt a series of joy. I’ve had joy since then, but I, I’ve never quite had the same tears of joy for such a thing like that. I, I was completely caught by surprise. And even talking about it now almost, almost seventy years later, fifty-seven years later. I’m sorry, sixty years later. Fifty-seven years later, man. It’s, it’s, it’s I can still remember how great it felt.

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“How could I completely just forget that?”

Tell us one of your favorites. Favorite joke? Okay, I know. It’s like the oldest one ever and the most boring one ever. Why did the chicken cross the road? There’s nobody here to stay any, like, what. Oh my gosh. I’m so sorry I missed that. I don’t even know the answer anymore. Is it like to get to the other side or something? Oh my gosh. How could I completely just forget that? That’s like one of the first jokes I ever heard in my life, and I don’t know how I remembered that. I think it’s the one of the first jokes that I ever told to somebody. Oh my gosh.

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“I believe that the most creative design that I’ve seen, has been our family’s designs.”

Do you like carving pumpkins? What’s the most creative design you’ve seen? I think the most — So, yes, I do like carving pumpkins. And I believe that the most creative design that I’ve seen, has been our family’s designs. So, every year like we have this book where it’s like a lot of pieces of paper that you can cut out and then you like get the paper wet and put it on the pumpkin and then you use cutting tools to cut out the outline. So ours always turn out really cool. We’ve done things that have words on them. We’ve done like castles, just like a ghost. I think we might’ve done like a witch with a broom. We’ve done tons of creative designs, that no one sees because we live on a private road up a long driveway, so no one sees them anyways, but I think it’s just fun to do, fun to be creative for a little bit. Yeah, it’s just fun.

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“You guys should go try it, any Indian store they’ll have it.”

So yeah, does orange represent anything in my culture? So I’m an Indian-American. I have an Indian culture. Our flag. Our flag, had one of the stripes in our flag is orange. A lot of our foods, like, you know, our spices, our sweets, they’re orange, or like a shade of orange. I don’t why I didn’t think of that. We have a sweet called laddoo. That’s probably my favorite orange colored food. It’s a delicious sweet. You guys should go try it. Any Indian store, they’ll have it. Its laddoo, L A D D O O. Best Indian sweet. A lot of clothing in Indian culture is also orange. I know for weddings, we have a ritual where everyone wears yellow or like a shade of yellow or orange and it’s just part of the ritual.

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“Yeah, orange, door hinge. That rhymes somehow.”

Can you think of some words that rhyme with orange? Almost rhyme? Okay, okay. Orange, orange. Orange. Or… hinge. Door hinge. A door hinge! Is that even a word? Is that like a thing? I think that’s a thing, right? A door hinge. Yeah, orange, door hinge. That rhymes somehow. Door hinge. Yeah, isn’t that like the thing that like keeps the door attached to the wall? Is that even what that is? Am I thinking of the wrong thing? That’s what that is. Right? A door hinge. Yeah. Why am I forgetting what a door hinge is?

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“But it also taught me how to be adaptable.”

Yeah, going into that, I guess and then and then COVID hit. And that just changed everything. I lost like a year, sophomore year, just of like how to like properly be organized, manage school, how to like go with that. But it also taught me how to be adaptable, you know, adapt to everything like that, even though the curriculum for this thing was always just like vastly different. Thought it was gonna be so much harder than it was. And I just got out using the bare minimum. And of course, I was dealing with a mental strain of being in isolation. So, probably after about half a year, I probably just burnt out and did not care anymore. Plus there was a month in time, actually right around the one-year COVID anniversary woohoo! March was such a fun month, just a lot of just horrendous mental health issues happening in every aspect, you know. Friends, family. Just all of that just kinda happened. So, yeah. Actually funnily enough, got an email from my French teacher being like, “Hey, you disconnected in class. Are you ok?” And then I kinda spilled the beans to her and everything like that. Then I got an email from my counselor about two hours later. It was like, “I’m always here if you need to talk” and I’m like, “You know what, I’m doing ok. I’m keeping an open dialogue with my parents.” So yeah, we’re looking into whatever that is, I guess. But it definitely changed how I viewed school and just like, I wanted a break too the summer, you know. Truly take some time and like hang out with people, you know, just have a relaxing summer, you know, take a break. That didn’t happen because I had to take a government class due to scheduling issues, they could not work it into my schedule. So yeah, that was oh it was so, so much fun. So, I truly never did get a break. So yeah, that was definitely fun. Still not done with the class as of August 19, 2021.

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