Prompt 7

Which animal would you compare yourself to and why?

When I look at my two cats, Toro and Nero, I am reminded that pets reflect the personality of their owners. My cats and I have lots of things in common, and I was also born in the year of the tiger, which makes me a little more than kin to the feline family.

My cats and I are creatures of habit, not readily adept at familiarizing ourselves with changes in the environment. We like the comfort of tranquility, the solace of romantic solitude, and the occasional entertainment of visual and auditory excitement, such as watching movies and listening to music. We are so used to routine activities at home that an iota of deviation feels like the earth moving under our feet. But that doesn’t mean we are peevish curmudgeons sulking and skulking in the background of joy and laughter. We do things on our own, keeping things to ourselves, yet we need each other when we are alone. For example, when I feel down and out, my cats come next to me, especially in bed, and console me with their soft furry, puffy cheeks against mine with purring, which
also puts me into a sound slumber soon. It’s incredible to realize that my cats know how I feel.

They say when you love someone, you become one. Or am I already onne?

Prompt 6

Write a letter to your 100-year-old self.

Hello Stephanie,

You used to wonder what and where you would arrive in each age of life: at 13 you would count the years when you became 20s, 30s, 40s, and so on. Then all of sudden, you are pitchfolked forward, leaping two bridges of 20th and 21st centuries. Still, it all seems like yesterday, and you never changed at heart.

Who would have known that you will adopt cats and love them to the bargain? Who would have guessed your letters to the editor of your favorite British history magazine have been printed several times? And who would have doubted that your age could not wither you away, nor custom would stale your resistant spirit and hunger for knowledge? 100 years of time in evolutionary scale does sound antiquated or anachronistic, but in truth it amounts to a millionsecond on our 24 biological clock, an amount so infinitesimal that such difference of time is ludicriously insignificant. So don’t sigh but sing that you just hit the centanarian chart. Awesome.

FRancis Bacon assured us that we don’t have to be anxious about how we should prepare for the end of life because nature will do the job for us. It will let us know at that time when a psychopomp will appear to bring your soul to the beyond. Or in your case, it will be Mothe Mary to whom you used to pray a rosary when you were little. Wouldn’t it be nice for you to meet Mother Mary rather than some scary-looking death angel? I know you have come a long way alone, but this is not the end. Nobody but your fate knows where you go or will go. Yet it would be best if you lived like you are living the second time to keep your youthful spirit.

All the best,

Stepheni from the Past

Prompt 5

What is your middle name? Does it carry any special meaning/significance?

Sometimes I wonder what if I had a different middle name. Would I have been living a different life – for brighter and better? Nominative determinism is not entirely superstitious because your name gives you an identity, an existence. My middle name is Joori, the first name used in Korea, while my first name Stephanie is my baptized Christian name, used in the church community.

Korean is a unique phonetic language of the Ural-Altaic linguistic family, which includes Japanese, Finnish, Hungarian, and Turkish. “Joo” means red, and “ri” means beneficial. My paternal grandmother named me after the family tradition of using the same first letter of the name according to the gender of the progeny. For instance, my cousin’s name, the daughter of my father’s elder brother, was “Joohyun,” meaning red wisdom. Then the grandmother was then in a cult of an angel called “Chulrikyo,” from which the word “ri” originated. Hence my name is a work of a family tradition and angelic cult.

My mother has recently revealed that I had no name for a year after the birth for reasons unknown. During the unnamed time, I was called “the baby.” A fortuneteller once told me that I should change my Korean name because it would bring no happiness to my life. Whether or not it is true, I don’t want to dwell on it because, anyway, I am not in Korea, where the spirits of the land may not/will not exert their supernatural concoction to frustrate my life to the extent possible.