It’s time for the Tribute to Serenaluchang. Those of you to don’t know this person, I pledge that this entry will still be interesting to you. Especially if you go read her blog afterwards. Insight into her true nature makes her writing even more exciting. This tribute is in honor of her, and a reciprocation to her entry last week that was entirely about me.

So, Serena Lu. Not her real name, no. We’re both wild actresses, and this is a character name from a play she was in that was written by my ex-boyfriend in college. The ex-boyfriend is extremely important to our friendship, for many reasons:

A) She lived next door to me sophomore year of college, and not only did she ignore the fact that he slept over nearly every night (which at Dark Ages Wittenberg University was against the rules — not to mention that I was the RA, the one responsible for enforcing the rules… not a great job for an anarchist), but she also listened to me moan and bitch and whine when I was upset with him.

B) She reminded me about the moaning and the bitching and the whining two years later when we had broken up and I was a crazed MESS, carrying on about how we had had the perfect relationship, never fought, and now it was over and I was never going to be able to love like that again. She’s that friend for me, the one who listened to me cry for HOURS about this breakup, and then gently and sweetly and factually reminded me that it wasn’t ever the perfect relationship, and that I was deluding myself for believing so. It was way more dramatic my way (“I’ll never love again!”), but way more realistic and SANE her way (“He’s not the god you think he is”).

Another thing about Serena Lu — this woman can DANCE. In fact, I just escaped a wild dance party here at Twin Oaks that really made me think of Serenaluchang. She has this move — a signature piece, really, at least in my mind — where she bends her knees and then arches her back and leans backwards until one hand can touch the floor behind her… then she flings herself up to standing again, then arches her back and touches the floor with her other hand, flings herself up, then repeats until the song ends or she falls over (she usually busted out this move after a few drinks… so the falling over part really wasn’t her fault). I did this move at the dance party tonight, in honor of this wild woman. I fell over before the song ended.

There were 6 religion majors in our senior class. She and I were two of them, and we were the only two without a specific personal dogma. Three of the others wanted to be ministers, and the last was a hard core Buddhist (I was completely crushed out on him… guitar playing, meditating, senior thesis was a self-directed absurdist film…) Serena and I would sit in Senior Seminar and listen to our classmates talk about Christianity and we’d lock into each others’ eyes for sanity (not to blast Christianity — I’ll save that topic for another post). I directed a play for my senior thesis; she wrote brilliant short stories.

Then there was “Sex Lives of Superheroes”. It sounds a lot more exciting than it actually was, but it’s still a fun story. This was a One Act play our sophomore year of college. Every year Wittenberg theater majors direct a series of One Acts, and we both auditioned for many parts. Somehow, the directors just couldn’t find brilliant roles to fit our talent, so we got the smallest roles possible: Superman and Wonder Woman in this play about a comic book collector who obsesses about the libidos of the superheroes he idols. Serena Lu was Superman and I was Wonder Woman and we both sat in the audience until one point where we jumped up, threw off our trench coats, and ran onstage wearing skintight blue and red and flesh-colored fabric. Serena Lu, as Superman, even got to have a suit of fake bulging muscles. I just had shiney tights on my legs. We were the hottest superheroes ever, even though we only had 2 lines each in the entire play.

and now Serena the Superhero lives in Chigago, and writes about her life in brilliant prose on her blog called “N is for Neville, who died of ennui.” Serena Lu and I both have a poster of this page from the Ghastlycrumb Tinnies. On my first trip to visit her in Chi-town, we took the tiny book to Kinkos and copied the page (a picture of a desolate boy peeking out over a windowsill) onto poster-sized paper. Don’t tell the copywright lawyers. Ennui is our enemy. Boredom sucks the energy out of Life. And we have our posters to remind us of that.

So much to write. There’s her senior year bedroom with the balcony on the second floor that faced the sorority house. She bought a water baloon slingshot. Enough said. There’s the song we sang in a musical tribute to Rodgers & Hammerstein, as drunken heartbroken lounge singers. There’s the night of spiritual enlightenment in the back room of Denny’s (RIP — it’s gutted and abandoned now). There’s the gold sparkly dress that she wore on New Year’s Eve. Hot. Serenaluchang’s sense of fashion is top notch. I’d raid her closet before theater parties in college. She had this sexy business suit that she’d wear with knee high black leather boots — her “fuck me boots”. Ohhhh… now we’re getting into dangerous territory. Theater parties and sex. If you believe the rumours… at least you’ll have great dreams tonight. Singing “La Vie Boheme” from RENT at the top of our lungs at EVERY SINGLE PARTY, words memorized, moves choreographed, divas till we die.

and now she’s in Chicago and I’m in Virginia and our friendship has grown deeper since graduation than I ever thought was possible. We were actually together in Chicago on the one year anniversary of our college graduation, and we were better friends then than we had been when we lived within a mile of each other in college. She writes to tell me when she’s pissed at me, and we say “I love you” at the end of our phone conversations. She’s got a cell phone and a job, and I’ve got my cows and my commune. And we’ll still talk nonstop when we see each other Christmas night. We’ve got to find a Denny’s that’s open 24 hours, and has a back room with a waitress named Shannon.

I apologize for all the inside jokes… there’s too much juice to them to pass them up. Allow them to entice you. Admit you’re intrigued. You want to know more about these two wild women. Read our blogs religiously, and you may just well gain a bit of insight into who we really are…