Tuesday, March 8, 2011
The Human Planet
Planet Earth was unexpectedly one of the Discovery Channels most entertaining and thrilling shows to watch on television and no, it wasn’t just because Oprah Winfrey was the narrator. Planet Earth gave us a new in-depth look at everything that we believe to be not as important or not as advance as we humans. People sat down for hours and gazed into to the unknown world of any animal that you could imagine. People quickly learned that animals too have traits that can blow our extremely capable but slightly governed minds. People for a long time believe that we, humans, are the perfect beings. Forgetting that we are animals, and for some people still denying the fact that we ever came from animals. With this insanely beautiful and well-put together trailer from the BBC, I think those thoughts can be thrown out of the conversation. The trailer gives us a scary glance of how animalistic we actually are. We see bird’s eye views of our tallest most prestigious buildings and if juxtaposed next to an ant colony would bare strikingly similar attributes. When we start seeing ourselves and everything we do as mundane is when we need something like this to reiterate the fact that we are still the most interesting and capable species that walk to this earth, but also not to forget that we are too species and are very capable of disappearing one day if we are not careful…
Thursday, March 3, 2011
Since blogging, or attempting to blog, I have received some decent feedback on a majority of my posts. But now the greatest reward ever has been brought to my attention, $2.25 from the monolith that we call Google. I became aware of my riches after checking my adSense account after messing around on here again after many months. This was extremely exciting seeing that something actually may come out of this little experiment that was brought about by a high school teacher. However, I was told that I am not able to collect “my money” until my balance is 10 dollars or more… let it be true there is always a catch. So maybe with some monetary incentives I can get back to writing on here a little more than I have been.
Wednesday, February 23, 2011
Wednesday, April 7, 2010
On a Serious Note;
As I woke up today around 10:55, I felt a little bit guilty for wasting what precious time we have here in bed. But as I thought a little deeper into this I realized that I am going to lay in this bed reflecting for as long as I need. I have reasons for this. If I were to jump out of bed like usual and start my long, tedious day I would of ran to the shower and washed quickly. Today I changed. Today I lay in that bed and really started to think. Thinking about everything, what I was rushing to go accomplish, or pretend to accomplish. Today I woke slow, strolled to the shower with no sense of urgency. In the shower is a different story. Usually there is no time to mess around in and out and on your way. Today is different. Today I soaked with no rush let the hot water bring out the thoughts, and o’ they came. Thinking about still how I am rushing through these days with an apparent urgency. To do what you ask? I am unsure. Today I catch myself making these grand plans for the future, when I don’t know how long the future is. Life happens when we get caught up in these “grand plans,” I caught myself today. I need to catch myself everyday. I was lucky today. I did not let this day slip pass my conscience self unnoticed. NO DAY SHOULD GO UNNOTICED. This I feel is the greatest tragedy, days unnoticed.
So I ask this of you…. Sleep late, and bathe long, and let nothing go unnoticed.
Tuesday, March 23, 2010
Well Obama is stopping by the city on Thursday I plan to attend, I am extremely excited. Its not everyday the President of the United States is in the backyard. But with him coming to town there are plenty of people not too happy about him being here. One of my friends brought up a great point; he’s making a stop in perhaps one of the most, if not the most, part of the state. There is no doubt that we will receive a standing O.
Half of the friends that I am around constantly completely disagree with the new health care bill. Whenever it is brought up at lunch or dinner I get bombarded with “There are going to be no more doctors” or “Well now I don’t want to be a doctor.” I have gotten to the point where I just don’t even try to defend it anymore. I have found the more conservative you are the more stubborn you are ☺.
So I did a little looking into the Pros and Cons of this Bill.
1.) 95% of all Americans will have health coverage… compared to the 83% now.
2.) When you lose your job, or you are sick Insurers cannot drop you…Never understood how that could happen anyway.
3.) People with pre-existing conditions will no longer be denied insurance… which insane that it has happened for so long.
4.) Children will be able to stay under parents insurance until the age of 26.
Now of course a very brief 5 points but I looked at the most influential.
There of course are bad things to come with this as well… such as the first 10 years with require 94 billion dollars on average. And there will be a tax increase on high-income people ($200,000 singly or $250,00 for a family.)
But again I don’t see how you can ever state that doctors will no longer be in demand.
Have a good night.
Tuesday, February 23, 2010
One of the new uprising face in the republican party is Bob McDonnell. After you hear of his recent doings you will be as surprised as i am to hear that the conservatives are actually looking to him as a future leader. Scary to say the least.
First he is siding with his partner in crime in Virginia Bob Marshall in trying to cut complete funding to business such as Planned Parent Hood, which provide contraceptives and many other functions to teens.Bob Marshall also stated in a interview that babies with disabilities are God's punishment for abortion, his only logical evidence of this comes from the bible. But that's not the scary thing.
This so called leader of one of the states in the United States of America just made it legal for anyone who works for the state of Virginia to be fired solely based on their sexual orientation. This is completely sick. It is crazy to me that this party continues to deny the rights of people that are different from themselves. Maybe what makes me more sick is the fact that we can let someone like this stroll into office and change laws like that, without any challenge what so ever. Is it bad that i am losing interest in politics, i see no hope for this country. I soon hope that we will be able to look to the least likely of leaders, maybe taxi cab drivers and students should be able to have a say in things...
Wednesday, February 10, 2010
I need to start carrying my laptop everywhere i go... i had briallant topic to blog about but it seems to have slipped..... must not have been every important....
It came about while watching THE BOOK OF ELI/// if you havent seen it yet YOU MUST>
Wednesday, January 27, 2010
While in one of our dorm rooms here at the University of Iowa, my friends and i got into quite a debate about our intentions here at the University. The question was "what do you want to accomplish by attending this university?" My answer is straight forward i feel as though i need a university degree to compete in the future job market and there fore make more money. Then one of my friends stated that he was here to learn as much as he possibly can. The conversation quickly turned to what is more important, Money or Happiness. And knowing my gut feeling I instantly thought to myself... have i become exactly what i have tried so hard not to become? The person who cares more about money than sheer happiness? Then the more i thought about it all, it all became more clear. The individual who said this is getting all of his college paid for and comes from a very wealthy family, which is completely fine not saying anything against that. of coarse happiness is more important to him that others because when you grow up without one isn't it natural to want the other? But my thinking on this subject is kind of the opposite. I am by no means saying i grew up in a poor household, far from it, but in my life all the unhappiness came from money, arguments were over money and that's all. So in my life money brought nothing but unhappiness. So isn't it natural for me to want the opposite? I feel as though i was brought up in a way where i could find happiness anywhere i look and if i were to make a lot of money happiness will always be there, and even without money happiness will always be there. Money the way i look at it makes everything just a little bit easier.
Saturday, January 2, 2010
One of My Book reports that was due junior year of high school thought it was pretty good....
So it Goes
This project that is due for my 11th grade perspectives class, is supposed to be a book review about a certain “slaughter-house-five,” that was assigned to me by my teacher. This book I happened to choose was written by a certain Kurt Vonnegut. Along with the unit that we have been talking about in class, these two things, Kurt Vonnegut and postmodernism have opened my eyes in a very different way. This project I actually was looking forward to doing, I was ready it seemed, I was ready to write just another high school book report, this changed. With in the first 10 pages of this book I knew it changed. This book was more so a text book than a novel. I learned to pick apart this book from left to right. There are pointless examples of written material in this book that can be read into and associated with this “postmodern” term that we use. My first example that stuck out to me like sore thumb. It is quite early I the book and the talk of war comes about. Then the mention of babies. The men had been upfront which is unlikely telling the woman how they really didn’t act like men, more so babies. Then the women reply to the statement, don’t worry , there will be actors in the movie to make you look heroic and make war wonderful. Truth, no one knows what it is, unless of course it is experienced first hand, and still sometimes its blurred. This is one tiny freckle on the face of postmodernism. The scary part about a statement like that is that I, myself a student at Kennedy high school, makes me question truth from now on. I catch myself being more aware than ever, what if that story is false or somewhat “filled in” with the accounts of the “hero.” it’s a crazy thing to be aware of. Going along almost the same topic, clocks. One of the best lines in the whole book in my opinion is “As an earthling, I had to believe whatever the clocks said-and the calendars. This was a terrible line, this got me thinking so hard I couldn’t read the rest of class. This is the stuff that is so intensely deep that it blows my mind. Who questions the stuff that is “fact.” But then the question of “fact” comes into play. It is a never ending cycle of questioning authority no matter what “authority” might be. And again the part that makes me feel so uncomfortable is that I can relate this immensely deep subject into my somewhat simple high school life. Makes writing this paper hard, just getting into the mindset of it all. You can not forget about the infamous “tralfamadore” aliens that are quite possibly Vonnegut’s idea of the ideal human nature. This is quite possibly the simplest, best quote in the book. So it goes. Said more than 100 times in the time span of the novel. These aliens are supposed to see things in 4-D not the regular 3-D that we see in. These are so comfortable with the things they see, there remarks to deiced is “so it goes.” This is where my research of Vonnegut plays an extremely important part in understanding everything he is writing and why I enjoy reading him so much. Humanists, Vonnegut’s self acclaimed religion. By what I have read obliviously makes a lot of sense. The funny thing is I think me being in my postmodern state, I have put a lot of thought in this subject as well, which I think is why I took so much interests in this author. But now I think I have the answer I need to make my final decision about the stories that people take so seriously. But that’s for a different essay.
There is one more point in the book that I find completely brilliant the fact when “war in reverse is brought up by Billy. This got me thinking as well, what I sight that must be, as he talks about it in the book, the most beautiful, thing ever. I was just imagining bombs rising back into the sky from the ground, people coming back from where ever they were blown away too, by the terrible technological advances that us humans have dreamt up.
There is a passage from the book that is one more extremely important one. “If I hadn’t spent so much time studying Earthlings,” said the Tralfamadore, “I wouldn’t have any idea what was meant by ‘free will.’ I’ve visited thirty-one inhabited planets in the universe, and I have studied reports on one hundred more. Only on Earth is there any talk of free will.” This comes in chapter 4. This is kind of the upside I see in this book, about humans and the planet we live. This I think Kurt is trying to say that even as we have all this terrible stuff going on and we seem not as good as other places, that’s what makes earth beautiful and worth the fight to be on it, the fact that you never know if you will be here tomorrow. This quote reminded me of one of the best movie quotes ever, from the movie Troy…” I'll tell you a secret. Something they don't teach you in your temple. The Gods envy us. They envy us because we're mortal, because any moment might be our last. Everything is more beautiful because we're doomed. You will never be lovelier than you are now. We will never be here again.” I like to think that is exactly what he is saying in the book.
This paper could seriously go on and on about my new favorite author. I think he is a timeless author that so much can be learned from. Some of these things I am reading about what this man has said is just brilliant. “A purpose of human life, no matter who controlling it, is to love whoever is around to be loved.”-Vonnegut “All persons, Living and dead, are purely coincidental.” -Vonnegut it’s a shame such a wise man goes. The reason I think this Slaughterhouse-five is so intensely littered with postmodern ideas is the fact that he witnessed a different point of view from the horrific bombing of Dresden. The weird part is that I wonder if that’s all some people lack, if all they need is a different look a something. I think that, that one moment in his life he things began to click in his head. Or more so question the click. "We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful what we pretend to be." -Vonnegut.
As I am about to close up this paper my itunes play lists happens to land on the song “Imagine” by John Lennon. As I listen to this song I start to see many simulates in the song and many of the things I have recently read about Vonnegut. It is almost gut wrenching to think about some of this stuff that you are supposed to know, or is supposed to be true. The part that really kind of makes me uncomfortable is this the fact that my biggest postmodern question I don’t think will ever be answered. Kind of depressing thinking about leaving here with so many un answered questions.
But as you see this was not your typical book review, and it is a little long, but it was one of those things that just seem to fall right into place. I actually feel as though I managed to “read” this book, not just reading every word as many students would consider reading. But actually apply what was trying to be taught in this book into my own life, and being able to understand exactly what is trying to be said. Its almost scary, I actually found a book that I enjoyed and learned a hell of a lot from. Its insane the amount of wisdom you can pick out from a book. And I think you got your lesson across Mr.Ayers, Not one of those lame book projects that teachers usually do. Was an extremely well put together idea that was taught and I think very well interpreted by most students. All you needed was to point me in the right direction… well done.
"We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful what we pretend to be." -Vonnegut.
Vonnegut (1922-2007)-so it goes
Tuesday, December 22, 2009
Well, back again for awhile
Back in the Crapids (Cedar Rapids, Iowa)for the holidays, glad to be back but already bored out of my mind. Was also looking at stuff today and notice that after one semester of college at a public instate university, i am officially 19,753 dollars in the hole. This is weird to me, i have never ever been in debt. Before i went to college if i didnt have cash i didn't buy anything. Now, i have a debit card, possibly the root of all evil, so easy and you just say "What's one more pancheros burrito gonna do to my 19,000 bill" And with my quite unimpressive grades i am wondering if this college thing is really th best answer. Everyone will tell you constantly that it will pay off i the long run, but i always keep the idea of running out to las vegas or somewhere of that stature and try to work my way up from there, rely on people skills and not try to be something i am not, and do something that i am good at.
Monday, October 19, 2009
Moments after walking out of that building, that profoundly sterile brown building, you realize what you had just left. You stepped through the glass door littered with hundreds of different visible fingerprints, and don’t look back. You stepped out from the tedious, repetitive off-white walls that constantly engulf you. Stepped away from countless humans that wander thought-less through the monstrous hallways, and stepped from the depth less artwork hanging on those awful walls. The November breeze carried an extra sharpness today, sharp enough to wake the unconscious.
As your take your normal path down a very straight and well-paved sidewalk to your vehicle, you notice a bench sitting just to the right of your path. You double take, furrow your brows and squint your eyes because you have neglected to notice this bench for years. This bench seems to be dropped from a painting, perfectly placed between natural landmarks. The colors work astoundingly against the autumn hues. As you walk closer to this mysterious bench, you realize how long this bench has actually been here. No metal at all, completely made of knotty cedar wood. Upon even closer inspection the bench seems rather uncomfortable, and maybe even a little damp. Regardless you decided to indulge in your experience and bask in that unusually sharp November air. You sit. Instantly taking notice that this bench is in fact rather uncomfortable. Rubbing your hands across either side of where you sit, an engraving catches your fingers attention. There is a distinct heart with two sets of initials. You struggle to decipher these, maybe a C and J? They are worn from years and years of Mother Nature’s harsh but imperative elements. A couple of minutes pass and you glance back and rub your fingers over that heart once more. Instant memories. Memories of the first girl you loved, how it felt to be completely worry free. Feeling the anxiety of never telling the real one you loved how you felt, and regretting it everyday. Then feeling sadness for the woman you don’t really love but are with because you feared you would never find anyone else. Thoughts about the young couple that were giggling on this same bench you sit. Craving away with no worries or apprehension. Thinking about where they are today, still together? Apart? Alive? You take note of the blissful silence that surrounds you when sitting on this bench. One noise that catches you off-guard is the sound of your own beating heart, which is an awaking experience in its own. You start too wonder how such an incredible machine can feel such pain. You shake your head to regain self-control from the rather interesting experience that this bench just granted you.
You glance up. Breathe deep and again fall victim to this bench’s power. This time to the picturesque scene that goes unnoticed in the shadow of one of man’s monstrous buildings. Directly in front of you see the single most beautiful tree you have ever seen. Perfectly symmetrical, this tree stands out among its predecessors in the background. The entire scene seems to be drawn from scratch and painted in the most prestigious of art studious. Trees overflowing with the brightest yellows and the most extravagant autumn red you will ever see. Your mind refuses to believe that you have walked by this serene scene everyday for the past seven years. You start to doubt your beliefs that these trees grew here by chance, over time, because something as breath taking as this scene must have been put here. You close your eyes and shake your head once again, trying to escape this nostalgic state that this bench has once again put you in. Out of the corner of your eye you catch a glance of a couple walking slowly on the crooked sidewalk that lay about 20 feet from your bench. You rub your fingers over the heart once more. You think about this young couple holding hands smiling and looking right into each other’s eyes. You debate dispensing your wisdom to the young man, your wisdom that you have learned from experience, not too screw it up, and tell her how you feel; no wisdom was dispensed. You shake your head once more.
Standing up from this bench you decide to go out and see what else this realm of benches has to offer you. You set off to the West towards the bustling city, following the couple that you had just witnessed moments ago. While walking you soon realize the affect that the bench had on you. Your ability to notice your surroundings seem to slowly fade, they fade into your normal egoistic and unaware state of mind. As you arrive into the chaos of the downtown area you notice again a bench. This bench happens to be a little different. Made completely of concrete, the sides and backing look perfectly suited to seat a human. You sit. The bench more conformable than the last, yet not as inviting. This boring stone colored bench placed between a garbage can and a bus stop. Your wandering mind takes a second to become comfortable and then relapses into the same happenings that occurred on the other bench. You look off into the distance and take note of everything possible. This bench seems different, different in the fact that it lack elegance, order, everything that the previous bench thrived in. This bench had something the other lacked. This bench was placed in a particular area where hundreds of human beings could be inspected at once. You come to the conclusion that this area is much like your office that you had just left. Alike in the way that these humans scurry around as fast as they can completely unaware of anything or anyone they pass. Most have heads buried into their blackberry or some other electronic device and completely unaware that you are sitting a couple of feet watching them. You notice people’s faces, most stone cold. There are a few that you make powerful eye contact with, these people are walking with their heads held high and respond to you with a slight smile.
You start to realize the power of these benches. The power invested in these benches, the whole world to slow for occupant, its gives you the ability to sit and actually understand the beauty and grace of everything around you. You soon realize that these people you are watching was once you; this was you not only a couple of hours ago. This was you, nose deep in your phone running through your day scared to death that your deadline wont be reached, unaware of the absolute bliss all around you at all times. You start to again look at the people, you take many mental notes, as the whole world is slower. You conclude at the end of this sitting, that people gather in groups, groups seem to dress and act the same. These groups seem very exclusive, they are not very accepting to others different from them nor other groups. You take note of a few that seem to look all around, seem to be aware of everything. The longer you sit the more you understand that you need to change, you no longer want to be a mindless wander looking straight at the ground, but a fully aware human. There seems to be some irony occurring with this situation, the uncomfortable tight-knotted cedar bench gives you the warm and optimistic feeling. While the comfortable concreted bench makes you doubt human nature as a whole.
Walking away from that bench you have a very uneasy feeling, an uneasy feeling about everything. You can feel yourself slip into the non-thinking numb-minded person that you started with. Then that sharp November air takes on more strike at your face, you shake your head and realize you are right back to where you began your journey, right by that rusted, tight-knotted, old damp bench, looking into the forever garden of yellows, reds and oranges. Your circular journey as brought you back to where you started. You sit. You take one last look at this picturesque scene, and then you close your eyes and sit back for a second. You reflect on the fact that you took a ten-minute journey that seemed to take a lifetime. You realize what it really means to sit down and take a closer look into everything happening around you. It is amazing the life lessons learned from bench, the most unlikely of teachers. You stand up to leave this new teacher of yours, walking away you glance behind you to see one more of the frazzled human beings sitting down into that ugly, damp cedar bench hoping for a break. You respond with a slight smile, realizing that the bench will keep on giving. Realizing that you are one of few to receive this lesson. You turn your head and continue on your unplanned journey with your eyes up and taking notes on everything you have missed before.