For my inaugural post on Chromatic Conflux: Wix Edition, I wanted to tell you a story about a stone very close to my heart: my dearest, deceased pet rock Aubrey. Check out StuFLaW as well.
Sweet but a Psycho Donuts
Like many stories, this one goes back to elementary school. My third-grade class took a trip to see this improv troupe to begin an investigation about comedy. However, to get to the theater where the performance was, we had to go past a store called Psycho Donuts. Psycho Donuts had a sign that banned all pets except for a list of pet types that were permitted; for example, service dogs. On that list was pet rocks.
Fast forward to fifth grade. There was something going on at my school involving decorating rocks that I was marginally invested in. Anyway, I found a decorated rock.
I took him home, and named him Harold. He became my first pet rock. Harold was a special rock. He learned some rock commands, such as “sit.” But, most importantly, he was my precious darling rock. I never formed that special bond with Harold that I would come to create with Aubrey, however.
Eventually, Harold passed away.* His memory will live on in all of our hearts.
Last year was my last at my elementary school, Helios, that I had loved and treasured for a total of seven years. Suffice to say that that was not my first choice, but my first choice was not honored in the matter. Anyway, I knew I needed a keepsake to remember it, a small artifact** that I could treasure. That was where Aubrey came in.
Aubrey eventually joined Harold in hell,**** about December of 2018.
The Naming of Rocks
When I named Harold, I'll confess that I didn't put a lot of particular thought into these names. However, names people generally think of heavily skew male, traditional, and Anglo-Saxon. Think of Bob, Joe, or Fred. So I wanted to establish contrast with Aubrey by using a hyper-modern female name. I like the name Aubrey, as a matter of fact. It never did seem to catch on in a major way, though.***
While Harold was a pet, Aubrey was special. I will never forget her. She symbolized, in some ways, all the great times I had at Helios, all the memories, all the important parts of my experience. In fact, I should probably just paste Dear Aubrey, my poem about this, here, instead of anything else to memorialize her. This is technically accessible from a previous post on this blog, Homework, Homework, Homework.
“Dear Aubrey, you may only be a stone;
You represent, though, every memory
Of Helios, my former school and home:
For that, my rock, you are a treasury.
And when you died you kept your thoughts intact,
So when I search, and seek a thing I left,
I try, but I cannot, in time, go back;
Instead I must go on, yet I'm bereft.
I constantly wish for your soul's return,
Although your death has not really caused pain:
I cried; I thought; I asked; I mourned; I learned,
It overall might not have been maintained.
Dear Aubrey, I forever mourn your death,
But, finally, my rock, I've caught my breath.”
Thanks for reading what I wrote. And Aubrey, if you're listening, goodnight.
*If you want to know how, you're out of luck. As with Aubrey, it would not be in Harold's wishes to discuss the gruesome details. I still possess his corpse. Rest in peace.
**For the record, I don't believe that rocks are artifacts, since they are parts of nature; however, it serves many of the purposes and effectively fulfills the role that an artifact would. In other words, you get the idea.
***Not sure if stats back this up. This is based on a rough guess based on the people I generally interact with in daily life.
****I love you, Aubrey. Enjoy your stay in the after! I hope you remain there, in all its glory, for all of eternity.
Rest in Peace:
Thanks for everything.
You may have died, but your spirit will live on;
and I will forever love you.
The whole "Aubrey" gag (don't tell her it's a gag) very much relies on the whole absurdist humor of having a pet rock. It's all done rather seriously, except for a few random words that undermine it. In this entire post, there are two (setting aside, for the moment, both the premise of a pet rock and this paragraph, for fear of infinite loops on the latter.) Bonus points for locating both, though it's probably fairly easy. One is in this footnote.