Recently, I have been thinking about what makes people who they are? And if you look into the depth of someone’s character, what would you see. More importantly, what would you need to see in order to know who they really are?

Or in that same breath, what would you show someone else to prove who you really are? Can that happen in a moment? What if a moment is all that you have, could you rise to the occasion?

It’s a strange prospect, but the following is a ten minute film about my life –

First scene, a few years old walking through the mall holding hands with my grandma. Camera at my perspective. I look up and she looks down smiling.

(30 seconds)

Next scene, me sitting on a turquoise and steel chair in her 1960’s style kitchen. My feet swinging as she loving makes me some buttered toast at the counter. I smile and get excited as she brings it over to me.

(30 seconds)

We’re in church. I see my grandma in the second row. I sneak up from where my family sits to go be with her. She had a reddish brown coat and a matching hat with a wide brim. She looks very classy, like a 1940’s starlet. She has a small fuzzy creature pinned to her lapel. It doesn’t have a nose or mouth. Just a fuzzy ball. But deep in the fuzz, it has these sparkling amber eyes. She knows I like it. She looks down at me. She reaches in her purse and pulls out a a white tin box with the word Luden’s written on top in big black letters. She opens it and sneaks me a lemon shaped piece. I look around to see if there’s anyone watching. Seeing we are in the clear, I eat it quickly.

(30 secs)

At school, drawing in the classroom. The teacher asks me a math question, her hands on her hips and looking smugly around at the other students. She’s calling to attention I shouldn’t have be drawing in class. She wants to prove I wasn’t paying attention. I answer casually and go back to drawing.

(30 secs)

Coming home I see our white and grey cat Marshall. He’s at the end of the driveway in front of our garage. He has a black bird pinned down in the grass. I run from the car to stop him. The bird is in bad shape. He is not well but he is still alive. I get a shoe box and keep him in my room. In the morning, I check on the bird. He’s stiff and he doesn’t move. I go to the backyard. Reverantly, I place the bird on the swing my dad built. I sit in the other swing opposite of the black bird. We swing together. It is my first experience with death.

(1 min)

A silent black and white clip like a movie in the 1920’s cuts from scene to scene. Playing in the backyard, my brother tags along after me. He gets his frisbee caught in the big tree that towers above our other trees. My brother comes to me asking if I’d climb up there to get it. I brave the heights and when I give it to him, he holds it up triumphantly. Fin

(1 min)

Nine years old, me in the back yard, playing with Jenny and her older brother. We’re playing pirates. She pulls me aside using the apple tree to block her brother’s sight of us. She tells me not to let him catch us. She kisses me. Time slows down. When she’s done, she pulls away and tells me I’m her boyfriend.

(30 secs)

Riding on my bike through my neighborhood. I jump off it and park the bike in front of small store front. I enter. I smile at the convenient store clerk. He smiles back. He starts working. I steal a chocolate candy bar and some big league chew. Before I leave, I pay for something small. I smile at the convenient stork clerk. He smiles back.

(30 secs)

My eyes streaming with tears. I stand in the center of my childhood bedroom holding a stiff ball that used to be my pet hamster Sprink. My mom comes down. We sit on my bed together. She holds the dead hamster in her lap. I lean in into her looking for comfort. Moments later, I look in shock as hamster starts to move around again. She hands him back to me smiling. My mom brought him back to life. She’s like that.

(30 secs)

Playing football. Ten years old now. Green uniforms with yellow grizzly bears on the side of our green helments. I look over at my dad and uncle who are watching me from the stands. My dad has a huge camera and is filming. He’s always filming but I never see the tapes. We line up on fourth down. I slip past my blocker and rush the punter. He doesn’t have enough time. The ball bounces directly off my helmet. Ryan Fortuna runs it back for a touchdown. It’s our only score of the game.

(1 min)

Playing kickball, by the backstop. Some kids surround a smaller kid named Phillip Klefner. He has blonde Tony Hawk hair and a sideways front tooth. They’re making fun of him because of his shoes. They are falling apart. They are the only shoes he has. I stick up for him. I fight the other kids. I break my hand. I get a red cast. All my friends sign it. It’s the only bone I ever break.

(1 min)

My hand healed, I am on a beach with my younger brother. I have one of those trick kites with the two handles. My brother stands a few feet behind me. I am doing loops in the blue sky. Whenever I crash in the sand, he always helps me set it up again. When he comes back, he pulls my sleeve and makes a motion that I should do a big loop and then two little loops. I focus on catching the wind right and dipping at the perfect times. One loop is so close to the beach the edge of the kite kicks up a little sand. I don’t see his face, but I know he’s smiling.

(1 min)

A teenager now. At Golden Gardens during the springtime. An over head view of me and my friends walking along the train tracks. Laughing and joking with each other. Each one of us tries to see who can balance the longest while walking along the raised metal track. I make it pretty far. One friend pushes me and I stumble swearing my revenge. We stop by a pile of large boulders leading up to the water. Climbing on the slabs of stone we balance and look out towards the sunset. Some of us smoke, some of us watch the water. The girl next to me leans her head on my shoulder.

(90 secs)