Wednesday, September 28, 2011

A Guest Blog by Kai-Kai: My Agitating Kinfolks

 For the first time ever, I'm featuring a guest blogger, my daughter Kai-Kai, who wrote this essay based on "The Outsiders" for school.  I thought it was hilarious and an apt picture of our family.  I also don't remember the chicken drumstick incident.  Enjoy!            

My Agitating Kinfolk
Many times in life, humans encounter events that they believe unfair, bothersome, and angering. I have felt this way many times in my life. One of the main conflicts in my life is the way I fight with my siblings. Almost every day, we find something new to argue about. My sister, Ling, is the oldest and is in tenth grade. My brother, Ren, is the baby of the family and is in sixth grade. Being the middle child is hard, because half the time you’re responsible for being an older sister, and the other half you get blamed for being an annoying younger sister. Throughout my time living, I have felt many things are unfair, especially things that have to do with my brother and sister.

Kai and her brother at the age of the
infamous drumstick incidence
            I remember one time I thought life was really unfair. I was about five, and it was an ordinary day in my life. Lunchtime came around, and my mom was microwaving leftover baked chicken. Back when my siblings and I were kids, we loved to eat chicken drumsticks. We would wrap a napkin around the end bone, and eat the top.  Since we were eating leftovers, there were only two drumsticks left. I tried to be diplomatic, so I challenged my sister to a game of Rock, Paper, Scissors. Whoever won got one of the drumsticks. We began shaking our fists.

“Shoot!” I held out scissors, but my sister held out a rock. I had lost. Immediately, I began to scream and throw a temper tantrum. I didn’t even bother bargaining for the second drumstick. My mother sent me to my room, so I stamped up the stairs of our house, swung the door to my room wide open, and lay down on the floor. 

Anguish swept over me as I lay on the carpeted ground. I wailed in misery. I would not get a drumstick. Disappointment brimmed in my body and I trembled, wallowing in my own sadness. I cried a while longer, and then pulled myself together. 

When I had calmed down, I haughtily pranced down the stairs. I entered the kitchen. My brother and sister sat together at the table, contentedly chewing on their chicken, which were wrapped neatly in napkins. My lips trembled again, as I stared longingly at their drumsticks. My mother then offered me a chicken thigh. I could burst into tears and stomp back upstairs, refusing the chicken thigh like it was dirt under my foot. Or, I could sit down and eat the chicken and forget about the whole incident. I heaved a big sigh, sat down, and ate the thigh, trying not to be jealous. After lunch, none of us kids could even remember the whole brawl, and we went out to play as usual. But, that was just one example of a time I thought life was unfair.

Us agitating kinfolk when Ling was 7, Kai 5, and Ren 3.
(At our 10th anniversary renewal of vows)
            Now that my siblings and I are older, we don’t fight as much about ridiculous things. I actually like to spend time with my brother and sister. My brother and I love to goof around and make videos of us acting out little skits. My sister and I love to shop together and tell jokes to each other. 

          We still have our squabbles and disagreements, though. A typical day to day conflict that we have now starts like this: I’m in my room, reading. My sister is in her room, doing homework, which is like cutting marble-slow, difficult, and lengthy. My brother has finished all of his sixth-grade homework, and is bored. He runs into my sister’s room, and yells, “Hello!!” He flops onto her queen-sized bed and rolls around like an excited hound.

“REN!” she’s shrieking as loud as she can. “GET OUT OF MY ROOM!” He continues to roll around and disrupt the orderly position of the blankets, creasing the perfectly made bed. “You are such an annoying brat!” my sister screams at him. 

Finally, I realize that I cannot read my book with the incessant screeching. Something inside my body snaps, like an elastic band.  I smack the book facedown on my bed, swing my legs off the edge, and stomp downstairs.  “JUST BE QUIET!” I holler at both of them. 

My sister is very furious now. There are two unwanted outsiders standing in her room.  “Both of you, get OUT!” she screams.

I yell at my brother, “Let’s just get out so she’ll stop squealing!” By now, my mother has gotten involved.

“Ling, stop screeching! Ren, I don’t see why you need to be in her room!” She sends all of us to each of our respective rooms, and we stew silently for several hours. By dinnertime, the storm cloud of conflict has been blown away, and we’re all back to normal, talking to each other.

            In life, we can be disappointed by people, events, or places. These things we feel might not be fair. If you have siblings, you have probably experienced times where they got something you didn’t, so it felt unfair to you, and you exerted anger at them.  I have felt angry at my brother and sister so many times a day; it’s hard to keep count. No matter how many times I tell myself that I hate my siblings, that they’re annoying, and that they want to make me miserable, I always manage to forgive them and reconcile with them. Even though we feel exasperated by people, we always manage to still love them.
            In The Outsiders, Ponyboy feels the same way. He loves both his brothers, Darry and Soda. Sometimes, he feels like Darry is cold and harsh and doesn’t actually care about him. When Darry strikes out and hits him, Ponyboy runs away, surprised and hurt. As he runs to the park, he tells himself that Darry doesn’t care about him, and doesn’t want him around. But as the story progresses, and Ponyboy spends more time with Darry, it becomes clear to him that Darry really cares about him, and they begin to understand each other. By the end of the book, Darry and Ponyboy are getting along, and Ponyboy realizes how much both his brothers love him. 

          At the end of the day, you may feel like life is unfair still, but you also realize how much you love your siblings, even if they drive you crazy.


Roland said...

Like! Nice post Kai Kai!

Scott MacLean said...

I love it. Kai, it's a joy to see your perspective on all of this. Great writing. Pssst, don't tell anyone, but the thighs are better than the drumsticks. More MEAT!

Tara Edelschick said...

LOVE this post.

I'm going to let my boys read it. I want them to know that eventually all of the squabbling can lead to harmony - or least love and joy.

thanks, Kai.

Madeleine said...

This is so awesome. I love it!

TTH :) said...

i love how kathy could still wear a qipao after THREE KIDS!!! amazing. :D