Monday, December 21, 2009

I am Tanya the Banana

When I was little, I did a lot of singing to myself.

Based on the impersonations my mom has done, I’ve gathered that I had a sweet but persistently nasal voice as a child. I chatted with everyone around me, made up songs, acted out scenarios and the like.

The first time I procrastinated to my own detriment, I was in 1st grade. I waited until the night before to start my book report about seals, and had to stay up until 1 am finishing it. (When my mom reads this she will mutter to herself about me telling random people on the internet about how she made me stay up so late. Don’t worry mom, it’s just us here.)

In grade two, I completed a literary masterpiece that was a testament to the long-winded nature that my burgeoning personality would someday actualize. It was 23 pages long, about a talking, walking banana named Tanya. She went on an adventure that would put even the most adventurous of the fruit family to shame. (I feel like the most adventurous fruit would be a kiwi. Not the most rugged perhaps, but certainly willing to embrace a come-what-may outlook.)

One Halloween, my dad channeled all of his creative prowess into transforming his sweet, nasal daughter into an all too realistic rendition of a vampire for Halloween--complete with a trickle of blood at the corner of my mouth. I went to one house, saw my face in their hallway mirror and ran home crying because I scared myself.

This stuff may be evidence that I have been a wordy, sensitive-souled oddball since day one; that as children we are pint-sized versions of whatever we are meant to become as adults. The same way a seed holds all the potential for whatever tree it will become.

I truly marvel at minds unlike my own. Bring me your orderly, your methodical, your shy huddled masses yearning to interact free. I want to study them because I don’t get it and I want to so bad. That’s pretty creepy, I know. I can’t fathom a world where people don’t know how to verbalize their feelings and articulate their interest in another person. I want to body swap and see it firsthand.

So does this mean it’s all there already? If I woke up one day and decided I wanted to be a professional organizer, or a mechanical engineer or a shy cemetery security officer it simply couldn’t be? As much as I’d like to denounce that, proclaiming that with the power of will and determination at the helm I steer my own destiny, I’m just not sure.

I think no matter what, I’m going to be a clumsy girl who dreams up stories about adventurous inanimate objects and accidentally leaves her car keys in the toe of one of her heels behind the bathroom trashcan. I don’t see an end in sight to eating dinner in the bathtub, or making friends with strangers who are semi-unwilling.

Because we used to eat rice crispy treats for breakfast. And my favorite song as a kid was Buffalo Soldier.

Because the rules don’t always have to apply and when I was little somebody told me I was just fine the way I am.

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