New York by Luna Alcorcha

On December 24th of 2017, I awoke to the whistling of Peter Bjorn’s “Young Folks” at four o’clock in the morning with the jitters. I picked up my best friend and her mom (well, more so my father drove the car that picked them up while I was in the backseat) who seemed to be sleepwalking and within five minutes we were at the airport. A “bon voyage” from my mother and a “stay safe” from my father and suddenly I was in the security line twirling. I was finally there for myself. Not to drop anyone off, but to get inside of an airplane and leave California, the only state I knew and loved, for the first in my life. SFO to JFK.

Once I had been settled in the window seat, I was conversing with my friend and her mother about “how could it even be possible that you have never flown in an airplane?” Once the airplane started down the runway I grabbed the hands of my compadres for comfort and then we were in the air. San Francisco became miniscule so quickly and I understood the fear of giants clearly. At most, my everyday life is confined to forty nine square miles and to be traveling two-thousand-nine-hundred miles from that borough was confirmation that it was much easier, than some would suggest, to leave. While I was on that plane, sipping my ginger ale and leveling my breathing with filtered air, I was stunned with realizing people from all over the place want to visit San Francisco because of its glamorized attractions. I, along with many others, don’t always take time to recognize the specialness in living here, but maybe San Francisco’s community is bonded tightly because we are grateful to be here.

One thing never shown in the movies is how far the JFK airport actually is from Manhattan. The subway ride there was fully inclusive of fraud homeless men with pristine white jeans, tourist, and of course, the sweet rats. My friend, her mom, and I arrived at the Brooklyn apartment we were staying at and at midnight we realized that it was still Christmas Eve and that it would not hurt to check out Time Square; Time Square in the movies is not at all close to the buzz and thud of the real life scene. Over the course of the week that we stayed, my BFF and I walked in the evening around Redhook. Now when I remember walking back to the apartment in the twelve degree weather (feels like zero) I realize that people travel for the more simplistic moments. The moments of walking to what can so easily be imagined as “home,” or talking to the subway worker that gives a warm familiar hug, and the most reassuring, being asked for directions in a foreign place.

Luna Alcorcha, class of 2021

Cracking People Up by Luna Alcorcha

On October 24th Creative Writing welcomed in Sam Hamm for a mini-unit on Humor. We began each of our classes that week with a ditzy episode of Looney Tunes, which was then followed by a discussion on an entertaining work of writing that we had been assigned to read the night before. Parodies of the famed Romeo and Juliet balcony scene and an amusing telling of an anecdote were some of the pleasant homework assignments we were given. Mister Sam Hamm recalled a memory for the class when a companion of his questioned whether or not an equation to make something funny is existent; which leaves me to wonder, what makes something funny?

Clearly, what is funny to me is not necessarily funny to you, and this comes from an individual’s ability to personally connect to the joke. Perhaps the things that manage to get laughs from the majority of the human race include an irresistible puppy chasing it’s tale or an adorable babe doing something silly in all their cluelessness. Also, in order to understand the humor of a joke you must be informed what it is about; would someone who is unaware of Donald Trump be able to decipher why SNL’s skits on his mediocre management skills crack people up?

When it came down to writing humor we were guided to write what we find funny. For the parody of the romanticized loved story of Romeo and Juliet I wrote Romeo’s part to fit the persona almost exactly replicating one of a hoodlum. I got much of my inspiration from what I could find on Social Media, what had been posted was never intended to make someone laugh, in fact it was meant to be taken quite seriously. Although, I am not sure how someone could take a dopey rant about taquerias as profound.

What I have the most fondness for are inside jokes between my friends and me. Usually in the middle of the workday I will be sitting alongside my comrades, one of which will say something, innocently reminding me of what I share with my dearest friend, and will then prompt me to laugh seemingly unnecessarily. Although it is not a grand conclusion, I now grandly conclude that what results in our stomachs aching from laughter comes from a firsthand empathetic effect that jokes have as they poke fun at something we love or hate.   

Luna Alcorcha, class of 2021

Two Past Lunas by Luna Alcorcha

I can easily remember when I was the ages six, seven, eight, and nine. It is not an unimaginable time ago, yet it seems like I live in an entirely different world than the one I lived in barely a year ago. My memories of my own immaturity and early learning have not been neglected. I still appreciate the simplicity of the Junie B. Jones book series, playdates that my parents had to schedule, eating an ice cream with 65 grams of sugar without having checked the label, and along with the young minimalist lifestyle came an easy and dignifying human decency. When I was six, I never had to intently watch what I said and to an adult, nothing that came out of my mouth seemed offensive because I was a harmless, adorable youngster with quintessential big cheeks and frizzy curls. No longer are my cheeks rotund, but now have morphed inward to create an elongated facial structure. I have to precisely pick my words or face critical consequences if I don’t. Honest words are not seen as cute and entertaining if you’re not under ten; now, candor comments help to create an ill-mannered persona.

 

It sounds shortsighted, but I haven’t realized or really given myself the time to clearly acknowledge how much I have changed as an individual, until today. This consciousness changing insight came to me at the movie theater when I was left seated alongside two six to eight year old girls who giggled at the scene when the girl and boy kissed. I heard their squealing and whispers, then when I looked over I wanted to laugh at how they both tried so hard to cover one another’s eyes. That is when I was able to recall the emotions I once shared with those girls. I can understand what scared them so much about watching a kiss performed by two actors who get paid for it. I know that whenever I watched any romantic exchange at seven years old, I felt immediately guilty for having witnessed something so “dirty” and “adult”.  So many things that made me excited or riled me up at that age don’t anymore, they just come across as insignificant. I miss the privilege of not overthinking simple interactions and ideas. I find it funny how things that are so present and important now, were not even relevant three years ago when I was giggling with my friend about make-out sessions and filming infomercials with our dogs.

 

My time and experiences are in high school now. A bedtime is nonexistent when loads of homework must get done. Your grades have much importance, more than in years prior. Still, I am enjoying my time here with its change of pace and I know it will go by  fast. As someone that has so much more to be taught, I wonder if the seniors of Creative Writing look at those of us younger than them and miss these years or if they can see right through us because we are so predictable and egocentric. Thanks to being seated next to two past Lunas, I learned that I need to show compassion to small boys and girls because whether I can remember it or not, I once felt very miniscule next to all these big people.

Luna Alcorcha, class of 2021