Friday, December 23, 2011

principles that i live by

1. do no harm.
this is pretty self-explanatory. i'm not a vengeful person, i would never egg someone's house, or break someone's toys, etc. i try to set my actions by a trajectory that won't hurt people unnecessarily. when someone texts me, i text back; when someone talks to me, i engage with them fully and don't look around the room waiting for them to stop talking, because the fact that someone is talking to me is a gift.

2. be honest in being and in action.
i used to think that lying was the worst, that i should never lie. now i feel that lying is okay, but most of the time unnecessary. i should live my life in a way that doesn't necessitate lying. the important thing is that i'm honest with myself, honest with the people who have a stake in my truth - i wouldn't string along someone if there was no future, and i would never lie about who i am. if there is something that makes me feel like i'm acting untrue, i stop doing that thing.

3. don't let others get in the way of your happiness.
this one is possibly the hardest to follow through with. there is always a balancing act between an individual and the community they are a part of. sometimes one of them calls trump. sometimes you desperately don't want to show that something is upsetting you because you don't want to cause conflict. but if something is really important, i will be 'that person' who complains when something is wrong. i will be that person that calls someone out on their shit, and i'm proud of it.
another facet of this that is less hard to live by is acting in a way that makes me happy even when other people let me down. continuing to be happy in myself is the only way i can really cope with those things.

4. be happy in yourself. (preachy mostly because i don't feel comfortable using I pronouns).
you should be able to spend a day alone and be perfectly content. not all the time, no one is all the time. but you should be okay with being alone, you should feel pleased by what you do in your self-time. you should be able to spend a day recounting your own personal triumphs and feeling happy that you take up a small portion of the world with your own thoughts and mind, and that in itself -- is good.
and in interactions with others, you should be able to hold your own, because you have a unique personhood, and you have thoughts that are worthy of note.

5. treat others with respect.
i treat others as equals. it's basically the golden rule. do unto others as you would have them do unto you. don't treat someone like shit and expect not to get it back in return. be polite and civil, and expect others to uphold those same standards.
i feel that respect is what keeps us from being animals. in a sense i'm also talking about one-to-one respect, which includes hearing someone out, giving someone's thoughts and experience their due importance, and actually giving their point of view some thought. i can disagree with someone completely, i can disrespect all of their viewpoints, but i will still level with them.

6. surround yourself with people who are good.
it matters to me if my friends are assholes. i won't be friends with someone who doesn't treat others with respect, even if they treat me with respect. it is offensive to me if a person disrespects someone else in front of me.

7. on what being a good friend means to me.
i will come to your gigs, recitals, art shows, parties, fundraisers, whatever, as often as my schedule permits, which should be often. i will also get other people to come as much as i can.
i will talk to you about things you are sad about but don't want to act like you're sad about if you want to talk about them.
i will make you mix CDs that hold the songs i think you will like, and think you need to hear.
i will not flake on you, unless there's some kind of emergency, in which case i will always text or call you to inform you that the flaking is happening with as much advance notice as humanly possible.
i will always think you are attractive, but not because i like you, but because you are very attractive and i would be friends with you just because of your looks if i were that kind of person anyway.
i might not always be on time, but i will keep you in the loop about where i am in the getting there process.
i will stick up for you.
i will go with you to something DOA just so we can talk to each other and not feel awkward.
i will tell you what i think about the guys you like, but give you the freedom to make your own judgment calls about what you want to do.
i will post funny things to your wall like once a month at least.
you can always text me when you're bored, and i will text back as soon as possible.
you can tell me any secret and i'll never tell anyone.
i will always wake up and talk to you if you are crying.

8. don't be jealous of other people.
this goes with being happy in yourself, i guess. everyone's different, and jealousy is just counting someone else's blessings instead of your own. i don't remember who said that, but it's very true.

9. approach your problems independently, but seek help as necessary.
i attempt to fix something before i ask for help. i rarely find that anything is impossible, so i try not to be overwhelmed before i even attempt to fix the problem. most problems can be sorted out by:
a. turning it off and then turning it back on
b. a Google search
c. a thorough analysis of the system and what went wrong in the first place
d. reading directions and making sure everything is set up properly
if none of these work, then i ask for help. it's annoying when people ask for my help without attempting something first. it's like, what would you do if i wasn't here? would you hunt me down? or would you try figuring it out by yourself?
this is something i encounter with my students a lot. i feel like it stems from a lack of academic self-confidence. when you don't feel confident, you feel like you have to ask someone before doing anything, but often just turning off the freak-out button is enough to fuel you toward an answer.

10. listen/observe, remember, then judge.
i always feel that it's best to analyze all of the facts before making a judgment. our emotions and thin-slicing tell us a lot in a short amount of time, it's true. but we must be careful to also remember the facts rather than our emotions and quick judgments, because these can be wrong. our facts are what we actually have to go on.
i find that when people don't do this, they actually come away from a situation not understanding what the true outcome of the situation was, because they were too busy thought-commentating instead of listening to what went on.

i don't really know why i did this. i guess i felt like i had to write some of these things down, at this point in my life. hopefully i won't have to amend this too much, and i didn't leave out anything important.
anyhow, happy holidays yo. 

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

breaking up

it's no walk in the park. i am usually the master of distracting myself from shit by using my really resilient memory and my ability to pretend that putting nice things on my wall and play songs with myself on the guitar are roughly equivalent to always having a willing dance and songwriting partner. 

something about now is getting to me. i just listen to the wrong song, and get all lost in my thoughts. suddenly i get flashes of things like seattle streets and kosher bagel places that look eerily like einstein bagels but make better, spicier, tomatoey-er bagels. suddenly i feel like i ruined everything good i ever knew. i can't listen to music anymore. the songs i used to love and connect with now describe the pain of a lost love and a feeling that is now only a memory. i know i'm not saying anything new. 

it's like that awful feeling you get when the only person who can truly make you feel better is the person you can't talk to. it's also awful to feel like you don't have control over when you're going to get some intense emotional reaction to something stupid that's going to stop you from being able to study. it's also sucky that they're replacing that bagel place with just einstein's because then they will get rid of that other, better bagel. it sucks that you will talk to other people about your feelings but they won't be able to wrap their arms around you and make you feel like you're 100% again. they do what they can, and i love them for it. so much. 

i knew it had to happen. we both did. 

one day all this pain will make sense

Sunday, December 11, 2011

but wouldn't you know i ended up having a wonderful day

everything was a mess and i was a wreck. 

i pattered and preened and quibbled and driveled all while wearing a smile and pretending everything was dandy. i don't really deal with things as much as i ring them out and hang them up to dry. i will always have the shape of some people etched into my heart. 

i will never value anyone more than i value the people that make the time to see me face to face, the people that tell me what i need to hear without me asking for it, and the people who know me well enough to tell me the truth but not hurt me with it. i value you those people who see the good in me when i don't see it, and the people who dream for me what i haven't yet dreamed. 

it's easy for me to let people in, it's easy for me to make friends. what's hard for me is knowing if i can be myself completely around people. i just want to know people i can be myself completely around at some moment. i think we all crave that. there are some people who can make you better just by being around you and just by talking to you.  those are the people you want in your life. 

this will all make perfect sense some day. a john mayer lyric, but true nonetheless. a better quote to end on is this: 

“[...] the only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars and in the middle you see the blue centerlight pop and everybody goes 'Awww!' What did they call such young people in Goethe's Germany?” 
― Jack KerouacOn the Road

I guess I just think all of my friends are crazy insane, but I can't like people who aren't crazy anyway.

Thursday, December 08, 2011

you're a peach

best compliment i've ever gotten, hands down.

Monday, December 05, 2011

tell me something i don't know

a certain population of my friends (i have so many friends, don't even bother guessing,) is obsessed with google analytics. they use them to track who is looking at their web-posted information, like blogs or whatever, to figure out WHO is viewing their content.

like with crossword puzzles, i kind of missed the analytics boat. i mean, yeah, it's a good use of time when you've got nothing else to do, and there is something intrinsically valuable about them, but at most points in time, it's just time that could be spent thinking about something else. there is something nice about people checking in on you without talking to you about it. you can't really put a price-tag on that, i suppose, but there is also something to be said for the fact that they haven't said anything to you about it. as a somewhat empirical person, i try to set more by what people say and do with me that proves they were listening to what i was saying.

i'll admit there is something insidiously interesting about analytics, of course. they are interesting when tracking how many plays my band gets on its bandcamp, but become boring when confirming obvious facts like the fact that no one besides perhaps 3 people who are close to me (and my parents and brother when they google me) read my blog. (also some random spam people and indian people who google my name) and yeah, it would be a little more awesome if you could google analytics your facebook page and find out who was looking at you.

i think i would prefer analytics if it measured things i participate in say if there were analytic data about my conversations with people in person. it would measure useful things, like
% of eye contact
average interpersonal distance
frequency of interaction
duration of average interaction
amount of self-related pronouns used in conversation
amount of times they used my name in conversation
amount of times i used theirs
amount of times i used the word "like"
posture, position

you know, useful shit like that. i think that would be the holy grail of analytics, because i'm pretty sure people are kind of obvious if you pay attention to those types of things. there should be a rule that everyone has to tell you if they're reading your blog anyway. 

Saturday, December 03, 2011

There is nothing for me here anymore.

That has been the resounding cry permeating my life as of late. I have this thing where I self-isolate and I don't include myself even in the what I am included in. My passions are far-reaching, but somehow remote. I have somehow compartmentalized every part of my life to the point where I am only somewhat included within them and not immersed in anything fully. I feel like I'm playing hard-to-get in everything I do, whether it be making my room a temple, or making plans with the people I care about, for example.

It confuses me that everything goes on without me. Coming to this realization has catapulted me into even greater withdrawal, and self-isolation. I have a headache, I can't write this anymore

Thursday, November 03, 2011

sometimes failure is just failure

sometimes, you should just stop

Tuesday, November 01, 2011

bring me a dream!

me: hey
 becca: hey what's up
12:54 AM me: not too much gonna go to the old sandman
  and sleep with him
  or something
 becca: yeah i was 'bout to do the same
  we're tight me and that sandman dude
  he came to me earlier today, too
 me: hands off sister
 becca: i think he has a thing for me
  he like, visits me during class and stuff
 me: we have this mad crazy chemistry
  it's like we want each other
  but like, we're both too afraid to say so
12:55 AM becca: well, for all the time you spend avoiding him at night he's probably getting the wrong idea
 me: i have priorities
  i can't just wait around for him
12:56 AM he always comes to me in the end though
 becca: too far
  sleep tight
  hope he brings you good dreams
  i'm exhausted, srrsly i gotta sleep
 me: he practically won't let me get up in the morning
 becca: oh yeah, i guess you guys do have that special time
 me: hehehee
 becca: that morning time when he won't let you go
  he's like
  obsessed with you or something
12:57 AM sandwoman
 me: night!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

i know, i'll never be lonely. i've got songs in my blood!

i'm trying to keep a better record of my feelings of the day as a part of an initiative to not lose control in the hustle and bustle that is my daily life.

things that i liked today:
-i suppose you readers will tire of hearing this, but i like the amazing stillness and tranquility that comes with bouncing from place to place with headphones on. this feeling is amplified (haha) by the fact that around me there is actually much noise, lots of drama and activity and PEOPLE all around me. but i have created a space of peace within myself, within the sound.

-i like thinking funny little thoughts. things like, "oh chemistry applies to love given the fact that bond distance is the point of time where you are not too close that your negative charges repel their negative charges, and not too far that there's no interaction at all, but you're at just the length that you can maximize the positive to negative charge balance in the most effective way to reduce individual energy." yeah, little thoughts like that.

-i like noticing things that other people did well. like today, one of the daily cardinal comics made an arrested development joke out of the blue. i love that!

-i like knowing and loving the people that live with me. i love becca whose birthday it is today, and i love connie, and the fact that we constantly analyze each other.

-i like having a great conversation with someone i barely know, or someone i just met. it makes me feel that people are really good at heart, and all worth meeting.

-i like to make playlists. i make them for days, seasons, concepts, and mostly, people. when i make someone a mix, i keep it forever. i listen to it and think of them. it's like my own narrative (through other people's words and music) of that person and what they were to me at that time.

-i like it when i get a test back and i go through all the things i actually did correctly. in that moment i think, oh my, i've learned so much. i could do this and i bask in that small delight before i look at the final score and how things conspiratorially stacked up against me.

-i like feeling that there's no end to the knowledge that can be gained and discovered but also at the fact that i could live my life just reading all the books i have now over and over again and i'd still probably have loads to think about. and i'm really not even that into books except for harry potter and random other stuff like wayside school and a series of unfortunate events and freakonomics, shrug

-i love my journalism professor, she's so smart and capable, but also she levels with us and is hilarious, and sometimes uses clips from SNL just for the hell of it. :)

-i like those mornings where i just don't talk. instead, i listen to everything i learn with open ears and no mental commentary.

- i like reaching out to people and having them like it.

i don't like:

-feeling overwhelmed by schoolwork, or feeling like i can't control my own progress.

-knowing i feel like listening to a certain song, but not knowing which song it is. or having that looming feeling that the song i want to listen to doesn't exist yet.

-admitting to myself or someone else that i suck at something, or that i'm not entirely sure of myself.

-the feeling that i want to just do what i want and act how i feel, but realizing that doing such things invites consequences and interpretations i can't control. but i try to remember, "be who you are and say how you feel because those who mind don't matter, and those who matter don't mind." that dr. seuss seemed like he was doing lots of drugs from his illustrations, but he knows his shit, let me tell you.

-feeling like everything in my future is set in stone

-staying up late doing something crazy. :/

Wednesday, October 26, 2011


i kept walking down the streets, and the sun was bouncing across everything, and there was a song on my lips and surrounding my ears, and i couldn't help but keep this goofy grin on my face the entire day

Monday, October 24, 2011

the west coast is not the same if i'm not with my best friend

there is some chemical reaction that occurs when one is in the process of making a new friend.
it's like an infrared spectrometer is turned on, and suddenly all of your bonds are rotating and vibrating. anyway that's how it feels.

it's so interesting how you can go from day 1 indifference to day 2 interest to day 3 oh my god, where were you before? did you exist before you entered my life?

many, if not most, of my friends i've discovered over time. it's not always friendship at first sight. most of the time, it's more of a growing process. i always like to say that people grow into my life like benign tumors.

you barely even realize that they're there until you look around after a few months, and they're a part of the fabric of your existence, they've somehow implanted themselves into your life. and it's funny because once someone's in your life, they create a little world, right there in the middle of your already fixed structure.  suddenly their ecosystem is linked into yours. every person you have a relationship with has a little narrative attached to their existence in your narrative.

and you just can't undo it. some people get so wrapped up in your fabric that if you remove them from your life, you'll have to unweave all of it, and re-sew it back up (and it will be smaller when that's over). some people are more like sequins sewn on sloppily whose presence isn't really that missed. but most people are patches. they hold you together, and maybe they can replaced, but they'll never be able to fill exactly the same space as the old patch did.

</mushy post> 

Sunday, October 23, 2011

these are my confessions

1. just when i thought i said all i could say, my chick on the side said she's got one on the way. full disclosure: this was the first song i liked by usher

2. i take video at most concerts, but then i can't do anything with it because i sing along and it's very embarrassing.

3. i have an obsessive personality. i have a tendency to LOVE things that i like. like, i watch tv-shows non--stop or listen to songs over and over again in one day or start a project at 3AM. i'm not very rational when i'm excited about something.

4. one time, gina and i got in trouble for singing this song in bio class.  we were doing a really good job too. whatever.

5. i think i'm the only person who noticed that in the 7th harry potter movie, the lightning-bolted P of Potter in the logo grew an extra ridge.

6.  i believe that sometimes talking about problems just makes them worse. but i also believe that if you think your gripes all the way through about 90 times, you'll bore yourself to death with how repetitive your thoughts are and just move on to something more interesting.

7. words i use that lots of other people i know don't use: "dope" "lolz" (usually not out-loud) "boss" "zomg" (online only as well) and of course "badonk" and "ridonkulous" whateva, i do what i want

8. if i were going to spend a day with any singer/actress women, they would be: regina spektor, amy poehler, tina fey, mila kunis, alia shawkat

9. if i were going to date any fictional men, they'd be: tom from daria, floyd from 30 rock (jason sudeikis), ben from parks and recreation (adam scott), ron from harry potter, jim from the office, michael scott (like the way he is when he leaves the office), michael bluth, marshall from how i met your mother, henry from party down (also, adam scott), sean from boy meets world, ron from kim possible, darryn from as told my ginger, arnold from hey arnold (hey, i was little when i watched that show), cappie from greek, dave (who dated lane for one season) on gilmore girls, gilbert blythe from anne of green gables, that guy from a wrinkle in time with the red hair, michael from the princess diaries (and i met the guy who played him in real life (because he's the lead singer of rooney), and he totally initiated a hug with me! crazy) --> god, i'd date a lot of fictional men.

10. i think that colors matter so much. you might not remember them, but they hit you right in the eye and they make your memories different in weird ways. they affect the way you perceived a mood, and can alter history. when they finally invent time machines, or those "what-if" machines like on futurama, they will change colors of things and see how it changed history.

11. this confessions list devolved into a talk about random things list. ah well.

12. i will always like these songs no matter how overrated they become:
i try- macy gray, somebody to love - queen, diamonds and rust- joan baez, in the middle of the night; piano man - billy joel, faith - george michael, high and dry- radiohead, kissing the lipless- the shins, dream a little dream of me - doris day, or someone else, the best is yet to come - frank sinatra, sound of silence - simon & garfunkel, you're going to make me lonesome when you go - bob dylan, stand by me - ben e. king,  a tisket a tasket - ella fitzgerald, just my imagination - the temptations, strange fruit - billie holiday, ragged wood - fleet foxes, it doesn't matter anymore - buddy holly, lullaby - cat empire

13. singing is the only thing in the whole world that always makes me happy 

Saturday, October 22, 2011

a mehpdate

currently i'm miserable with school stuff. so i was thinking, maybe just maybe, i could drop my biology major and just do international studies and a journalism degree plus my pre-med requirements of which i have more than half fulfilled. that way if it's even possible, i can apply to public health school or madison's MD/MPH program, and i could do some kind of public health related strategic communication.

this is all so new i can't stand it. i'm worried though that if i go through with this idea, all of the science i've done will be invalidated. i just want to make the most of my time in undergrad, i want to hone the skills that i'm really, really good at. i'm okay at science, i'm pretty good at best. but what i'm really good at is taking what i know in science and realizing how it applies to the bigger picture. i'm not going to be one of those people who studies one micro-organism forever. so i think i could actually, despite my bad test-taking experiences, become a good doctor if that's what i want to do, but currently, i'm pretty sure i'm interested in something related more to public health, and i'm best at analysis on an in-depth scale and skills related to journalism. but i don't believe in "creating awareness" as much as changing behaviors. i think with something like strategic communication i could try to essentially market better health behaviors and outcomes to people, but also working to change conditions in an environment that structures risk.

i guess the reason i don't want to do a bio major is because i don't want to kill myself. i exist for reasons other than school. i'm good at things other than science. things that also deserve respect for reasons other than getting good grades. i know, yeah, i could put in minimal effort and ace those classes but they're too important for that. i take classes to better myself, not to achieve the bare minimum.

oh god, that club behind my apartment is SO ANNOYING. i can tell the lead singer is way overconfident just because he's probably had a few or 12. i've never heard such a bad rendition of sweet caroline, and i've heard some REALLY BAD ones. he's not even in key.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

this shit is bananas

don't let the title of this video deter you from watching it.  this SHOULD be seen. it sheds light on a gaping problem that people seem to straight up ignore.

Miss Representation 8 min. Trailer 8/23/11 from Miss Representation on Vimeo.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

don't look down at the chasm, keep your eye on the horizon

i always hope that i can just start typing here and stumble onto something to write about. that's what happens whenever i get the 'feeling' i want to write a blog entry. sometimes i'm legitimately processing something and it feeds its way out of my fingers, but lately there hasn't been one thing on the forefront of my mind. i always knew that if i studied too much, i'd get boring.

things have settled into something of a schedule although everything is different beyond what i could've imagined. at the beginning of this year, i was in a vastly different place than i am now. i feel as if there have been multiple phase shifts this year; maybe this year is about trying on a bunch of different hats- the journalistic hat, the singer hat, the taking-more-of-a-proactive-role-in-my-own-life hat, the i-don't-care-what-you-think-of-my-relationships hat, the yes-i-will-drive-900-miles-to-see-my-favorite-band hat, and on top of that, the i-will-finally-learn-guitar hat.

disclaimer: i don't really like hats that much. itchy head, hat hair, you know the drill.

weird, weird things develop in my life, and little happenchances become reality. the funny thing is that i can pinpoint the decisions leading up to this point in my life, taking an ethnic studies over the summer, for example, or looking for guitarists for our band. my brain always does this thing where it jumps into a let's-do-it mentality. doing things just leads to me doing other things in an exponential fashion... i'm trying to reel it in this hyper-stressful semester.

i don't believe in fate. in fact, i epically don't believe in fate. i believe in controlled randomness. while it may seem like something was supposed to happen, i think it's actually that there are certain things in life that are extremely probable if x situation occurs. i have this creepy ability to call things. but the reason i can do those things is because i'm kind of good at reading people.

isn't it odd that some people notice things that other people don't? what i mean is that each person has a unique set of criteria for looking at the world, and thus they notice different things in their quotidian world. when i walk around, i notice probably 80% the same things as most other people, but that extra 20% could make all the difference. i notice that some people make really hilarious facial expressions when they walk, i monitor the numbers of people listening to iPods and those who are just talking, or count how many people i can pass. those kinds of things. i started thinking about this because i've discussed with people what they like about certain things- e.g. music- and they like different things than i do, and object to different things than i do. for example, i don't like bon iver's voice at all. i find it to be breath-y and i think the whole thing is so low key that there's nothing to latch on to, but someone else who listens to it may enjoy the music for its atmospheric quality, and not find his weird voice to be a deal-breaker. i can't decide other people's deal-breakers for them. (although sometimes i really wish i could...)

going back to the hat thing, i'm striving to be the best me i can be in the student/appreciating-and-gaining-from-my-education/person. i'm confident in myself, i know that i have something great to offer the world. it's a matter of knowing this and matching my actions to this philosophy so that i can be the optimal me- the one that minimizes her weaknesses and amplifies her strengths. that's at least the best example i can set for my brother and the students i teach at the Free Press. that means being proactive, being friendly, reaching out to people, and being creative-- but those are the things i'm already good at. it also means not procrastinating, giving everything my all, putting in the time to teach myself all that i need to know, living and letting live, watching what i say sometimes, and not second-guessing myself too much.

i think there were a lot of things in this post that could've made their own posts.... i'm warming back up, please forgive me my digressions, it's 3AM. i tried to not to stay up this late.

p.s. i'm afraid i might suddenly start liking bon iver like tomorrow. in which case, i'm sorry, and i will post an edit. but as of yet, i don't get what the big deal is. i like music with flourishes and tempo, melodic or dynamic changes that reflect the intensity of life. bon iver's music seems to not have anything jump out of its fabric. 

i miss playing music

something must be done.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

people in my life

the people in my life often upset me, in unspoken ways.

i never talk about it. part of me feels that it's a storm in me that will pass, and part of me feels that it's a storm within the other person that needs to be dealt with before i can pass judgment. i tend to think these that petty fights and unspoken tensions are transient, when in reality many of them are structural problems. 

to clarify, what i'm talking about is those points of contention that people who are close have, those points that they don't talk about. in my life, i feel like the healthiest relationships i have are with my brother and with that person- the person who was my boyfriend, but isn't anymore- or whatever you call it. 

the reason for that is that i feel i can say whatever it is i'm thinking to that person, and still have their respect, and their love, because i know that they will never question my essence, the fact that i'm inherently someone worth caring about. in that way, i feel that some people just lend themselves to being confidants. you feel like you can just open up your heart to and have them listen, and care, and you will know that they care because they don't get angry with you for feeling the way you do, but they will still slowly jolt you back to reality, toward what is right. you know that they care about you because they demonstrate the fact that they have thought of you, not in a superficial, i remembered your birthday type of way, but in a i noticed you sneeze when we go camping, so i brought benadryl just in case. 
but some people you could tell just about everything to you, but there will still not be the feeling of deep caring, of carefulness, and of thought. maybe you're afraid to get too close and realize it wasn't real, or maybe you're just two people living your lives away from each other, but still warmly. 

some relationships have space built into them. some people in your life maybe never got too close, or aren't close enough to talk about what's weighing on your heart with. some people, you might be able to tell about your worries and your joys, but you still can't admit to them that you love them.  some people can go away for days without you missing them or without them missing you, but when you see them, you enjoy each other. and some people you miss, and they miss you too, but for some reason, you've forgotten the words to be able to let them know it.

i wish i always had the courage to tell people how i feel without the fear of them judging me, or telling people when they hurt me without fighting with them, or expressing my love sincerely instead of through teasing and humor. 

i wish i could interpret distance as something other than a reflection of another's regard for me. i wish i knew if it was just stormy season or a stormy climate. 

Monday, August 15, 2011

This is a downtown thing.

So I was looking for this blog, and I made the wonderful mistake of using dot com instead of dot org and stumbled onto this sexy thing (

This is another one of those pieces of culture that makes me want to go to New York and live out my fantasies. Jelly Jells is a multi-tasking New York-based musician, who has his own record company and DJs weekly/nightly in addition to this project, as well as a band called the Harlem James Gang that was on America's Got Talent (  

Obviously the music is fresh, but the ambition is more refreshing. I guess being on holiday has made me long for something fresh in my home life, and I love the idea of someone taking a good idea and running with it-- I love the idea of building an empire up from the ground, fired by the fuel of one's own passion.

*Check out the incarnation of my passion, The Rose Lights.

Tuesday, August 02, 2011

reflections on my ethnic studies

so i'm taking a class.

journalism 662: mass media and minorities not only fulfills my ethnic studies requirement, but also serves as a bridge over which I could amble toward journalistic study. it's really an excellent class, and i've been learning about stuff that i'm actually interested in in a real way. that is to say, i'm learning about stuff that i might have already given a damn about before entering the classroom. it appeals to me because caring about what the media does is often deemed a frivolous activity that should be cast aside in favor of studying subatomic particles or something, but this class gives it importance.

if you think about it, media portrayals are really important because they reveal how the power structure and the artistic elite view the world and its history (usually in a really racist, bigoted way). because of this class, more than ever, i feel like those responsible for the dissemination of information are among the most powerful people in the world. they have the surreptitious and sometimes insidious power to shape opinion by presenting sympathetic portrayals or stereotypes. this is especially true when there is little exposure to the group of people or subject being represented.

take for example, my changing views about sexual orientation, specifically "gayness" as i was growing up.
i remember my first exposure to homosexuality. my mom took me to her co-worker's house for a mary kay party when i was about 10 years old.
as we slipped in, my mom nonchalantly whispered to me, "oh by the way, ____ is ____'s partner."
"like her work partner? i thought you were her work partner?"
"no. they're romantic partners."
"WHAT? that's... gross..." i said, barely understanding what was going on. i had heard about gay men, but not gay women. i had thought they were fictional anyway.
"NO." my mom said, "it's not gross. they are in love, and they have a daughter."

i still thought it was kind of gross (even at that age not understanding what sex was and that people did it routinely,) but i shut up about it and played with her partner's partner's daughter from a previous marriage. i asked her if it was hard, and she said, at first it was hard to explain but now no one really cares, and i said, "that's cool." she had two moms, one of whom made good-tasting cheese-cupcake-looking-things and was really nice.

we spent the rest of the afternoon putting on makeup and my mom's co-worker's partner told my mom her eyes were sexy. my mom bashfully said, "oh, nonsense," but i piped up in whole-hearted agreement and then said something attention-seeking like, "..but we have the same eyes!"

i didn't think much of it later, except to whisper about it to some friend at some later date. i remember it being like a dirty secret i had to hide away. the whole idea seemed so austere, so unlike anything i'd ever encountered. it wasn't until i watched degrassi that the whole matter of gayness came up again.

say what you will about degrassi, it broke down barriers in the agni household. yes, it's over the top. yes, sometimes the dialogue is silly and forced. yes, their canadian accents are funny. but it also shed light on a lot of things that i would've been embarrassed to think about. like getting your period, or thinking about having sex, or whatever. they talked about condoms and bullying and cutting and a whole bunch of other stuff.

it was this show that replaced all the fuzzy cotton contained in my brain about gay people with solid facts and empathy. i watched as the character marco struggled with his sexuality, how he wanted desperately to fit in, to date this girl that he felt nothing but friendship toward, how he couldn't reveal this part of himself to his own family, and how he dealt with bullying when he finally came out. this show did more to educate me about human sexuality than any health class ever did. it humanized gay people, who had previously been reduced to some freak novelty in my childish mind. it wasn't my fault either. other than marco, there were no portrayals in the media i consumed, and no gays that i knew from my community.
after more portrayals and encounters... theatre experience and bend it like beckham in particular had effects on me ("but you're indian!")... questions of orientation just kind of brushed off of me, it no longer had great importance in my life.

it was later that i noticed gay people were all around me and i realized i didn't really care what sexual orientation a person was unless i wanted to get sexy with them. after having several people tell me they were bisexual, i just kind of stopped keeping track. i'm not trying to be insensitive.. it just seemed to me a fact of life that some people like boys and some people like girls and some people like both, and this fact is mutually exclusive of their gender. that is not to take away importance from the LGBT community at all.

i've talked to my brother about this too and he agrees that the sympathetic portrayal of a gay character marco on degrassi also made him understanding and sympathetic of homosexuality as a whole. i think people don't even realize how media depictions affect them. if you don't think that's true, think of what you know about native americans, and who they are. is your image accurate? would you even know if it is?

i know that i for one do not have any knowledge on the subject due to a lack of research and/or personal encounters with native americans, but i cannot say that every person with the same amount of exposure would claim the same thing.

a similar logic can be applied to africans and their media portrayal. i still hear left and right the racist sentiment that african conflict is fueled by some kind of primitive 'tribal hatred;' this is a direct (and absurd) result of rhetoric perpetuated by mainstream media stereotyping and stupid talking heads in the political arena that use such stereotypes to leverage agendas of inaction.

the problem with media is that it makes you feel like you know something about someone, when you don't, especially in this day and age where people feel like experts for having read an article on some subject. the best media can do is to portray any kind of minority in an individual, sympathetic manner, instead of reinforcing some negative stereotype that feeds directly into the minds of the ignorant and impressionable.

note: here i've talked about tv, but stereotypes are reinforced by the news, film, magazines, books, and advertising. (...duh.) even if you don't watch a ton of tv, you are probably still very affected by media portrayals.

Monday, July 18, 2011


things much haven't been going. i grammatical sentences make not. why bother? it hot be and i roast.

the first sentence of this post is ludicrous. things much have been going, episodically. but not much of particular interest and importance to a reader of average attention span. can you believe that i am not approaching this post with a thought process but merely a series of micro-decisions occurring at each word birth?

i think so.

i shall see this again on facebook in approximately half a month. facebook sucks.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

situations that stress me out, make me question humanity/the universe

this is basically a list of situations that give me the heebie-jeebies.
DISCLAIMER: anyone/everyone/I can be guilty of some of the person-related pet peeves, so no offense meant to anyone.
DISCLAIMER 2: this post might be boring/poorly punctuated. that is because i'm sick and my life is that of a bum.

-when your parent thinks that he/she will be nice and give you an ice cream sandwich in the wrong flavor and force you to/watch you eat it, and then decide they want one too and go get the flavor you would have chosen had you the autonomy and commence eating it in front of you, while you watch and wish you'd never eaten the damn ice cream sandwich at all

-when you are talking to a catch of the opposite sex and they ask you about yourself and things are going really well, but then you see your boss/your friend's mom/a teacher you didn't really know in high school and they make eye contact with you and interrupt your conversation and you have to exchange pleasantries until you can politely go back to your old conversation, for which all hope has already been lost thanks to the interruption

-when someone takes a bite of something of yours in your early stages of eating it and braves uncharted territory. this means, they start eating the hot fudge that you have meticulously eaten around to save it for the end, or they break the crust on the bottom of the pie/chocolate mousse parfait, thereby denying you that satisfaction. i mean it's YOUR dessert for god's sake. hasn't anyone heard of boundaries?

-when people plan a future party at a current party/discuss a previous social event that not all those present at the party were invited to in retrospect --> rude. similarly, when someone was at an event but not in any of the event pictures, pretty lame. fire your photographer. sometimes people need to realize that not everything is them-related.

-one-text conversations. similarly, three-text conversations. actually, text conversations.

-when one person is talking in a group and obviously no one is listening and then their voice just gets softer and softer and fades out

-couples that only pay attention to each other, even in public, even at parties, who leave to go talk to each other, be alone together inappropriately often or for inappropriately long periods of time, alienating everyone else who doesn't happen to be inside their relationship

-being the only person in a group with a certain opinion, and feeling like you have to represent everyone of your opinion. "Well Glee is actually a really good show, so what if it's over the top! It lives up to its NAME! You should give it a chance!"

-when people exclaim and declare their hatred of the one and only thing that is being served at a party. "oh chocolate, gross! i just hate chocolate! you should've considered making a caramel souffle!" if you don't like chocolate, or vegetables or something, you should consider that other people don't hate totally awesome things and shut the fuck up.

-when you have a birthday, special event coming up, and X person asks you what you want, putting you in the awkward position of being like oh, nothing! everyone knows the rules are to be a thoughtful friend and demonstrate that you care.

-making a personal comment about someone in front of a group, as if their feelings don't matter, as if you're not like shining an abrupt unwanted spotlight on them.

-when you google something and it becomes clear that all of the results contain the same information plagiarized from the first source, rephrased in different ways

-when everyone you know likes something and it just makes you want to hate it

-when someone rips on something I like and I actually want to punch them in the face because I like that thing so much or even if I don't like something but I completely believe in its right to be liked and respected and not ripped on. especially if it's like some broadway singer singing a really difficult ballad beautifully and effortlessly. then some bro is like "this sucks!" and i'm like are you kidding me? could you do this? should this person be rapping? JUST cuz it's not your thing DOESN'T MEAN IT'S NOT A THING. show some respect.

-every time a class is about to end and large amounts of people noisily pack up before the bell rings, i want to kill those people.

-when you fall in love with someone who is completely wrong for you and you have to lie to yourself to keep it at bay by controlling yourself and everything around you.

-when you do the little work, and get rewarded for it. life's not fair.

Monday, May 23, 2011

i die fast in this city, outside i die slow

so i've written a few posts that haven't really panned out and thus have gone unpublished.
and here you thought, aarushi's blog is so stream-of-conscious! she just writes whatever she thinks ever. not so, my friends. it's actually all very scripted like those reality tv shows where humiliating acts of depravity are theatrically reenacted for the cameras.

whenever a post is filled with inside jokes or is otherwise unintelligible or half-formed i try not to post it. but i don't really have any hard-and-fast rules, or really a filter. feel free to disregard everything i've ever said.


i am up very late again, and i don't know who to blame (myself). i just can't get my thoughts to quiet down and hence, blog entry. the amount of confusion i'm having about what to put into a blog entry is implicative of the fact that i don't have enough stories to tell, or enough mind to think interesting thoughts at rest.

 i don't know what's wrong with me, but i am constantly thinking of how bad i am at thinking of interesting things. others would call this being bored. but it's not boredom as much as it is a lack of interest in the world and a sort of reversion into pre-existing thought ruts. alas.

it is not untrue that there are a million things i find interesting. the problem these days is that i have not been excavating them. after the whole sri lanka trip fell through (public health + immunosuppressed body = no public health for you missy), all of my big ideas have kind of lost momentum.

maybe it's this country.
petty, i know, to blame geography. except that it's not petty, tom.

like it or not, geography is intimately and weirdly connected to how the entire world lives- a fact that i realize is both duh-worthy and profound. it is geography that inspired the europeans to colonize the uncharted world, and geography that kept china from doing the same. (the british didn't have anything in terms of natural resources and not that much in terms of manpower, so they had to search for there supper.)

geography and water decided where the hubs would be, and decided that pretty much no one lives in wyoming. it is geography that makes some white people obsessed with tanning and indian people crave fairness of the skin.

geography decided things like the placement of the rivers that gave rise to the movement of (lots of) people to the water sources that gave rise to cities, where so much happens thanks to the thousands of people that built stores and businesses and started families, and specialized and innovated and created centers of entertainment.

well that was a weird digression. what i meant was that i'm craving a place where the concentration of life is higher. i want to go some place that's the opposite of wyoming, and most certainly the opposite of the american midwest where i live with an IV hooked from my arm into the computer, where i'm addicted to the comfort and amenities of medium-sized town life and the friendships i've had since childhood and the destination of medium success and a relatively small sphere of influence. some place where i engage with people every day, some place where there is bustling and noise, kind of like india.

becca is in kenya right now, and the thought of it induces flashbacks to my summer trip to india circa post-junior year of high school. everyday i'd come home exhausted with so many thoughts in my head. but not the achey can't-sleep-but-want-to-but-haven't-mentally-tired-myself-enough kinds of thoughts, but the discovery, confusion, exciting thoughts, like what is normal here and how is it different from my normal? and isn't it amazing how little you really need to be happy and invigorated? 

those days i couldn't shut my blog thoughts down. and i was doing things and i was helping things out. i never want to become a selfish jackass who just pads my comfortable lifestyle with blue-ray discs and copies of the new yorker. fat talk, i know. i fear not being able to live up to my own high-brow, snot-faced aspirations.

as much as i claim to embrace change, i also fear it intensely. that's normal i guess-- i don't want the good things to go away. it's funny though, because sometimes i do want better things to replace them. i just... can't decide what.

hello opportunity cost, my old friend

here we reach the impasse we always reach. where will i take the leap?

Sunday, May 15, 2011

my brain and tongue just met and they ain't friends so far

i sometimes try to take an inventory on what makes me happy so that i can figure out what i really want to do. to be honest, it's very difficult. the semester always ends leaving me with this feeling of non-closure and an empty space of time ahead of me that i'm supposed to paint with life experiences. every time i'm faced with time, it forces me to ask myself why.

why do i give up my soul for school, why do i take difficult classes, why do i go through the motions and why do i submit myself for judgment in this system? jaded thoughts, i know. school is wonderful. education is wonderful. you just sit there and people just tell you stuff about your world and you are free to just sit there and soak up new knowledge. it is incredible, don't get me wrong. it's just that i thought all this learning would bring me closer to knowing who i want to be and what i want to do with myself.

WHY do i do anything? and WHAT do i want to be? what even makes me happy?

i initially was going to be a journalism major, a track that i might be returning to. i was always drawn to the idea of being a journalist because i can turn a phrase with the best of them and because i can sort out complex ideas and lay them in order. i'm beginning to question whether i can even do that. i turned away from this endgame when i began to feel that being a journalist implies spectatorship and not being involved with the action, and i might just spend my life regurgitating stories while my ass gets cushiony, or giving up and making a last-ditch attempt to write a book when i'm forty-five, jobless and lonely.

in high school i began to see the appeal of science. until this point, i'd never thought about it at all. it was when i took AP biology that i realized that i was good at science and above that, it fascinated me. it was tangible and measurable-- the idea that our body is this system that works, that we can depend on, that has evolved in a way that maximizes efficiency, an efficiency that technology can't hope to emulate as hard as it tries.

...but i wasn't an automaton about it like some of my peers. i've never grabbed onto the idea of systematically learning/memorizing stuff and applying it and being tested on it and moving on.  i'd never been good at studying-- i'm still really not. this changed a lot in college as it became easier to want to study things, but still i feel i'm not winning at my game. i fear most that i'm burning myself out with my plethora of interests, my constant need to have more than one job, my failure to have hobbies other than singing in a band and watching online television and doing a radioshow, my thoughts that are constantly about people, even though eleanor roosevelt thinks that only small-minded people are concerned with other people (this thought ALWAYS occurs to me whenever i think a thought about another human being, and i'm just like, "Shut up dead Eleanor, you don't know me!")

more and more, i start to feel like the only way to really do anything great is to singly focus on that one thing. immerse yourself, learn everything about it. the fact that i know a little bit about everything and spread myself thin thinking about lots of things will not serve me well in the afterlife. the aftercollegelife, that is.

it's funny, but sometimes i think the only thing that consistently pleases me in life is watching television.  i get so involved with the plots and the humor and the characters and the writing. and i wonder if maybe i'm overlooking a fantastic life as a comedian or a script-writer for television. but just because i enjoy television doesn't mean i'm any good at writing it, and i'm already too old to go audition for things and make a name for myself, without doing something that will make my parents disown me like moving to new york or something. plus, all the people who are hilarious on my tv, they all started out doing stand-up. i'm funny and i could probably even make up and memorize a monologue, but nothing could ever prepare me for the torture of playing a silent room. i think if that ever happened to me, i'd just launch into an a cappella of bohemian rhapsody. what else could i do?

the only major i feel sure about is international studies, which is funny, because i might drop it to pick up journalism. i love how focused it is in boiling down current events. learning something in one of these classes just makes you a better citizen. it's true. although it gets unnerving how much you have to learn about global warming and how there is such a large probability that your teacher is biased or a hippie or both.

ah well, i promise i will not waste this time i have been given. i promise i will use it to make myself better in some godforsaken way. maybe i'll find a biocore syllabus for next semester and do all of those readings. or cook. or languish. alas.

Monday, April 04, 2011

let me go

there's something oddly empowering about getting over something or someone. it's like the knot that clenched your heart together was loosened, and you could breathe freely again. there's something about being stuck in a phase that gets grating after a while. thinking the same thoughts, reviewing the same notes over and over again, memorizing everything back and forth, and not even being graded on how freaking well you have learned your subject. but then one day, you think through it all. you expel it all from your mind like you're taking a huge ass final, and after thinking it all through, you're like "meh. whatever." </poor metaphor that purports universality when this phenomenon probably applies only to me>

i am one of those people who perpetually enters and exits phases. no week is the same. every time i hit a phase i'm like "this is it! this is the one thing. this ends it all."

but then inevitably, i change my mind, i decide i'm not feeling it anymore after a couple of ruts, and then something else strikes my fancy.  i'm not trying to say i'm flighty, because i'm not.  it's just that being stuck in the same place for so long is unhealthy for me -- i want nothing less than i want stagnation.

oh by the way, i'm 20. i was a little over being 19, but it seems so strange to no longer be a teenager. now it seems that i'm old enough to read ladies' magazines like cosmo or vanity fair-- but i am probably not, since none of those articles apply to my generation, and they all spew this asinine pseudo-feminist dogma about how women are supposed to act that in fact just re-boxes them in, alongside advertisements for beauty products. 

i think i'm growing less and less afraid of taking matters into my own hands, and of making friends. i've become more honest with myself about the qualities i really enjoy in others - and although sometimes it is disillusioning to think that i haven't encountered yet that which i want to do, or haven't yet realized it, i think it's out there, and it seems that the more i acquaint myself with the system (that is- the world and what's out there), the smaller the gap is between my hypotheses and my knowledge.

but getting back to my original point, about getting over things...
it stresses me out that everyone seems to want to just know what they want to do, or like, who they want to marry right away. of course, yes, those are probably good things to want to know. but i feel that sometimes it's better just to bounce around (responsibly), and try many things on before settling on what's best for you. setting your heart on something that you won't get is stupid, and setting your heart on something you don't actually want is also stupid. i firmly believe that you have to know yourself well to know what you want, and most people at my age have only scratched the surface of themselves. (figuratively. but haha nevertheless).

so i guess the biggest revelation that came from turning 20 is the realization of my own youth... despite all my advances in knowledge, i am still not close to knowing what i really want.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

i walked with you once upon a dream

So Sylvia Plath wrote this poem, and it's one of my favorites and it goes like this:

"A Mad Girl's Love Song"

I shut my eyes and all the world drops dead;
I lift my lids and all is born again.
(I think I made you up inside my head.)
The stars go waltzing out in blue and red,
And arbitrary blackness gallops in:
I shut my eyes and all the world drops dead.
I dreamed that you bewitched me into bed
And sung me moon-struck, kissed me quite insane.
(I think I made you up inside my head.)
God topples from the sky, hell’s fires fade:
Exit seraphim and Satan’s men:
I shut my eyes and all the world drops dead.
I fancied you’d return the way you said,
But I grow old and I forget your name.
(I think I made you up inside my head.)
I should have loved a thunderbird instead;
At least when spring comes they roar back again.
I shut my eyes and all the world drops dead.
(I think I made you up inside my head.)

And yeah, Sylvia Plath is sad, and weird, and has a lot of chutzpah writing books like the Bell Jar that are simultaneously depressing and unprecedented (depressedented?).

Sometimes I think about it, and I wonder, how much of how we feel about other people is a product of just what happens in our heads, rather than the tangible world around? And are our feelings just a product of all of what we've been exposed to? Are our feelings more like dreams-- a mixture of what we've been exposed to getting jumbled up in our heads-- but slightly more refined so as not to seem cognitively unsound? What if our feelings are all we have to go from in face of little empirical evidence?

Just think about how you choose your career. You kind of think about it a bit, weigh the options, think about what you'd most like to study or apply for. And then you stick with it, unless you really hate it. You might love it, and it's right. Or you might love some of it, but not all of it.What says this is right? What if there IS something better out there, that you're best-suited for? How much of our decision-making process can be based on hope for liking things better in the future or finding something better in the future?  You're basing your paths off of a notion that could be wrong. Same with dating. Sometimes I feel like life is a game of guess and check, because people start things and end things on whims and fancy-free, confused notions of what life really is. 

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

these things may or may not be true

it's not the truth just because everyone thinks it.

our physical conventions are solely important to ourselves and no one else, because the details that are unique to ourselves, like our handwriting and eye color and shoe size, will never truly define who we are as people.

it's usually better just to say/act how you feel when you feel strongly than think about it forever until it stops being relevant.

nothing good happens (between two people) after 2AM. wake up in the morning, and think again.

to survive, all you need is one friend in the universe who believes in you.

you have to know yourself and love yourself before you can love someone else.

just do what you say and say what you mean.

everybody lusts.

everybody hurts.

you can be beautiful and not know it.

you get to decide who you will be, but you can't undo who you were.

no truth is solely objective. but no truth is solely subjective, either.

friendship > flirtation

love > hate > indifference? else, love > indifference > hate (because of the potential for differentiation)

music is language of our hearts

nothing truly great can be achieved without passion

there's really no point in dating someone you don't have chemistry with

sometimes we want things more just because we know we can have them, and sometimes we want things less just because we know we can have them.

clingy = / = sexy when it comes to social behavior

matters of the heart, keep them in the heart only, your eyes say it all

sometimes the storm is better than the still

education is the way out of poverty; education is contagious

freedom of information is essential to freedom of thought

Monday, March 21, 2011

money buys happiness

but not love. 

i've kind of been on a rampage.
things that i bought that i love (that will also probably turn me into more of a pretentious music-snob):

-brand new 160 gig iPod classic 

-replacement (FREE because of warranty) BOSE headphones
-blank CDs (this is more like a present to everyone else)

-the 15-item iPod Bundle for SUPER CHEAP on Amazon

-the indie rock poster book: it's probably a little too indie for me, but it's SO cool. it has rip-out BEATIFUL (and you know, hip) posters, each depicting an artist's rendering of a good song. and apparently all the proceeds go to charity. 

DISCLAIMER: money doesn't buy happiness. music is happiness. and yeah, music has to do with money, but it doesn't count as something greedy-making. i think. also, it's not a bad thing to get happiness from money! none of these expenditures, to me, are frivolous luxuries. they were all things i've kind of needed for a while anyway. so don't playa-hate. 

Sunday, March 20, 2011

my dream last night

for some reason, the strokes needed a new singer because julian couldn't sing, and for whatever reason they chose me. they let me record the song "under cover of darkness," but i kept messing up because they started the recording from where i come in instead of at the intro where the guitars do that cool thing, and julian kept on being really condescending and saying, "are you sure you can do this, aarushi? are you sure we shouldn't just get peter griffin to do it?" and i was like, "YEAH I CAN." but then i sang it again, and then i forgot the lyrics, because i don't even know them right now. and then julian printed me the lyrics off the computer, and then it was fine, and then i was the lead singer of the strokes.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

cool things i've been gaining more of an appreciation for

-solid foods. since getting wisdom teeth out, i suddenly realize the joy of foods that are solid like bagels and chips and cookies and pastries and anything that you'd put hummus on, chewy candy and granola bars, oh and meat. i love me some solid meat.

-RNA interference. this is quite possibly the most exciting, totally rad burgeoning scientific field that has been picking up my interest lately. imagine being able to knock down any gene you wanted. the implications are crazy. if you care, you should watch this video:

-CDs in cars. yeah, iPod hookups are sweet and all, but you have to change them if you don't have a good playlist, and i'm sick of all of my playlists. my car is stocked with all these old CDs i've left in there all the summers and breaks previous. it introduces a smaller, less random repertoire into my ears as i cruise in happiness, singing to all of the old favorites i'd forgotten about.

-hanging out with more than three people at a time. something changes in me when there's more than four people in a room. i do like one on one, one on two etc, but something about five people or more makes it into a party. everyone talks together, instead of just to one other person, and it's just chaotic enough to be super fun. it becomes fun as the responsibility is more diffuse, and people are just laughing and having a good time not being too serious.

-accents. they're adorable. :) cheerful southern drawl to matter-of-fact brooklyn to lightly korean to queen's english to canadian french to trinidadian to german to indian (but of course)

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

i sometimes kind of wish everyone had a blog

Because then I could peer into their thoughts, and maybe be able to match some of what they do to what they choose to share with the world- because I always find, at least with myself, that people can be right obvious if they open up a dialogue with the random strangers who read their blog.

I wonder what the world would be like if everyone were made aware of everyone else's inner dialogue. I think it would create a parallel universe, in which all of our choices differ, in a similar manner to as if we went to that funny parallel universe on that episode of Futurama where every coin toss had the opposite outcome but Earth was otherwise the same, and Leela and Fry were married. Given the fact that we had to face everyone's inner drives in day-to-day conversation, we might be much more straight-forward and less wishy-washy about what we want. We might smell the lust of another and take advantage, or bolt before it became too clear. We might not take a chance because we can see what that person sees in every other person. Maybe we'd be too quick to love or to hate, based on one feeling we see of someone. If we catch someone on a day where everything is going wrong, we might misjudge them to be some kind of crabby, angry pug who thinks thoughts in profanities, and fleeting violent fantasies. Maybe it would all be so much easier because then we wouldn't have to fight, and couples could sense the moment when one partner's resolve is breaking and they just want everything to be better, and cuddling to recommence-- maybe then, things wouldn't go too far. Or maybe it'd be easier to see the reasoning behind someone's argument-- maybe it'd be easier to see that nothing, no amount of cuddling or reassuring could make this better, maybe the message would sink in faster.

Maybe there'd be no time to think at all, because we could never get any head-space. Maybe we'd all just be a collection of drives. Or maybe we'd grow to tune it out with time, and then we wouldn't care about it anymore; we'd grow to not care that even teachers and nurses and parents and presidents have slight impure thoughts on the hour (at least), and that teenage boys and girls alike regularly picture genitalia. Maybe we'd end up being the same, but just a little more jaded or more aware of what everyone feels like. Maybe it would make for an all-around better world! Hell if I know.

All I know is that I would be embarrassed if everyone knew what I was thinking all the time.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

there is no objective truth. or something.

My Truth    

This is an essay that I wrote in October 2009, and I think it was for a class assignment. I had forgotten about it until I was looking for meaning in my Google Docs. I think there's some pretty neat stuff in it,  despite the embarrassing. I miss when I was forced to write essays about my feelings for class. I do this thing where I talk about "truth" but then I talk about "my truth," which is really more an area of principle.

What is truth? This seems like a rather heady question. To me, truth is many things. It is something that is profoundly individual, although it is unequivocally universal. My father says, “Truth is the accordance between thoughts and actions.” This definition seems rather absolute. But to me, truth is neither absolute nor definitive.
We spend a lot of time chasing the truth. Scientists are forever in quest of answers to lingering questions, students look for the “right” answer, and journalists look for irrefutable, objective fact. As people, we want to know who and what we are. But is the truth what we think, or is the truth what we see and are able to measure? I know now that there is a difference between the facts and the truth.
I went through a phase during which I was disgusted by liars, posers, phonies and fakers (this was during middle school when people actually used these words), and decided that I, at least, would only tell the truth. And I went a good two years, never telling a "lie," but I wasn't entirely righteous in so doing. I found out that you could leave out parts of stories without "lying."  You could tell the truth without capturing what really happened. This type of lying was factual, but it was dishonest. It led me to see the difference between a fact and the truth.
A lie, I found, is when you don't believe yourself when you say something. I called in sick in high school a couple of times. According to my definition of the truth, I could've called in sick on any day; with my tainted immune system, I was always down with something or another. But if I hadn't done the homework, or if I was emotionally fatigued, that would be the day that I thought calling in sick was justified. Though I actually did feel sick in theory, it was no more unbearable than it was the day before: I used this "truth" to my advantage in a way that here can be deemed dishonest. Here my father's definition applies; my actions and thoughts were misaligned. But doing this too many times eats at your insides and makes you feel stupid when you have to explain what's wrong with you. The guilt of getting away with it always punished me more than any kind of reprimand.
This episode and others like it have convinced me that truth cannot be decided by another for you. Your truth is very much linked to the way you feel. As long as you are not lying to yourself about why you are committing an action, being truthful is not always contingent upon the facts. Sometimes you may have to pretend a little to save yourself from social disaster or to keep yourself going.  You may act like you're happy when really you're terribly distressed. Sometimes you'll have to leave out the facts to better someone else's day. But in these cases, you are still acting according to your own ideals and being some type of truthful.
After I had this little epiphany, I decided that I could still be an honest person, without being a self-righteous fact-monger. I just knew that I would not act in a way that would force me to say something that I did not really agree with. It is always more embarrassing to have to explain the fact that you've lied than to own up to the truth. And it is much better to have someone's trust than to have someone's misplaced sympathy.
To keep myself honest, I make sure that I am the same person everywhere. Though I may fill different roles, I would be untrue to myself if I said one thing and did another. I try to avoid letting myself become resentful towards others without seeing what their point of view is. If I am really not okay with what someone does, I let them know, rather than letting the pressure build up inside like a soda that's been shaken up.
When I am in the midst of a dichotomy, and I don't know what I believe, I take some time. I listen to music, I talk to friends, and most importantly, I write down the way I feel and how I would feel if it were happening to a friend. In this way, I can make a decision as to how I feel, and what I should do. In doing this, I discover and seek my own truth. I look at my problems in more diverse ways and learn from the mistakes of others. The more I grown and learn, the less I think that the truth is a "one size fits all" formula.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

becoming real

so my little brother is marching in protest of scott walker's budget cuts that directly affect state employees.
his school-day was canceled because so many teachers are protesting. this whole thing is just making me think of revolutions and rebellions... i'm so proud of the people who are not taking this sitting down. regardless of politics, i think there's something to be said about a unified effort.
but that's all i want to say about that.

i have changed so much in the previous year, ideologically, philosophically, physically and morally, and it's probably good. i've become way more critical and cognizant of complexity, and the lack of simple solutions in the world. i've left this purposefully vague, because it's happened in all areas of life, not just in one sphere.

i know it's really lame to be like blahblahblah i've changed, i've grown. it's cliché. but for some reason, when it happens to you, it feels so specific, like an enzyme binding to an active state, where you are the substrate and the active site is college and the enzyme is your situation.

i don't know about anyone else, but when i got to college, i kind of liked myself: i liked good music, i had good friends, i knew what general causes i wanted to work toward, i could sing, i had skills that i built up in high school like writing. i felt like this being that i am wouldn't really change, like i was just done. a finished product. but of course i wasn't. sometimes i worry that if i continue to change so much, i might just come out on the other side of life as a completely different me than the one that came in.

a huge difference is that i've become so much more aware of my biases, my underlying assumptions about others and myself. i used to think that everyone was more or less the same as me. i thought they had the same internal dialogue, because i'd always kind of held this simplistic notion growing up that any two people could be friends if they met under the right circumstances, that people were pretty much the same underneath everything. i still kind of feel that way, you can't really help it if you've thought that way for so long.

do you ever finding yourself mentally dividing your personal history into eras? some parts of my life i actually refer to (in my head) with made-up divisions like "the musical renaissance circa 8th grade." 
maybe no one cares but me, but i've grown to laugh at my own jokes.

in the post-postmodern existential overhaul era, i've finally realized that people are different from me. and not just in superficial, external ways, but in fundamental ones too. in fact, they could be the same as me in so many ways, they could listen to the same music as me and read the same books and frequent the same web sites and places, but they can still be different. it all depends on your level of analysis.

and i'm not trying to say that this is bad. it's really, really good, actually. it allows me to see the world through different eyes by learning from the experiences of others, by listening to their reactions and take-away lessons. but sometimes... it can be a little disconcerting that everyone is different from you in big ways. it means that there probably isn't someone who just understands about everything. we all have to communicate really effectively to get our points of view heard. 

in light of the fact that everyone i know's differences have been emerging forthrightly before mine eyes, i think i've finally come to realize the joy of my own company. no one in this world will care more about what i have to say than i do. no one will enjoy the songs i write more than me or feel them the way i intended them more than i can. and no one has more control of my destiny than i do. i can sit around and wait for someone who will appreciate how cool i am, and how i think, or i can be that person. i can rely on me, and make my own happiness.

and i think, for the first time in my life, in spite of everything that tends to go wrong—that has been going wrong—i'm really happy.

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

don't leave me dry

i might be receding into my shell. i'm not really an introvert, but i feel like i've definitely withdrawn from a lot of people i know. i don't know if it is a tangible change or just a mental one. maybe some part of me just has nothing to look forward to anymore. 

i'm not depressed or anything. i just feel alone and i've kind of lost the will to do anything to reduce alone-ness. i like being alone, and i think i got this way because i really like being alone.

but i also feel like the world has changed around me. while i've been alone, other people in my life have grown together, resulting in my further isolation. i do it to myself.

in some cases, i feel like it's better to withdraw than to face the fact that other people have the ability to hurt me, whether they know it or not. this is the other face to the "you get to choose who you see in college" coin. it's really easy to shut people out if you don't want to see them.

Sunday, February 06, 2011

some things i wish

i wish that you could tell someone something by incepting a thought in their mind. perchance i wanted my parents to bring me some mexican candy, and instead of having to come out and say that i want them to get it the next time they go shopping, the thought just occurs to them. and then they do it. or don't do it. but i know that it's been incepted.
i also wish that you could meet the people whose libraries you are listening to when you find a good music library on a shared network in a public place. i wish there was some way you could end up meeting and it would be awesome because then they'd show you music, and you could show them music in a mutualistic way.
i wish you could meet your heroes outside of the context that they are your heroes. you could learn about them, but not from afar. when you know what you admire about someone before you really know them, it's always kind of weird. the way the world usually works is that you meet someone and then you realize why they're important. but with heroes, it's the other way around, and things are really awkward. everytime i meet a hero, i always sound silly and young and naive, because there's no way they could know how they've impacted me, and they know nothing of me.
one of my heroes

#16.3-My Brightest Diamond-Hymne...
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i wish my room would change colors with the state of my mind, i wish i could create art of my own imaginings. i wish i could read poetry in every language.