Response to the Article “Study: Behavior in Kindergarten Linked to Adult Success”

I have to admit, this article has a point. Kids who learn emotional and social skills early on have an easier time in life; it’s almost common knowledge. However, what struck me most as interesting in this article was this thought: if the correlation is common knowledge, why don’t we focus more on it?

Why are we so centered on academics, when emotions hold just as much, if not more, over our lives? I, for one, believe it’s because we’re rooted in tradition. This method has worked for so many years, why wouldn’t it work now? Why fix what isn’t broken?

The answer is simply that it has broken, unbelievably so. Academic success is pushed so hard that high-school students nowadays have classes their parents didn’t have to deal with until college. It’s no longer about sharing and getting along, it’s seeing how far you can push yourself to beat that other candidate to the scholarship. Not so much what we, as teenagers, want, but what we might want.

But there’s a problem with focusing only on schoolwork. It doesn’t get you many friends. Without a healthy balance of both intellectual and emotional intelligence, we can’t build relationships. We might have trouble communicating basic messages, doomed to live our lives as emotionally stunted Frankensteins.

Maybe if we focused more on how others react and process emotions, we could help ourselves become better people. Learning through others and vice versa is how we grow, how we learn. By both knowing both the situation and how best to communicate said problem with others, it’s unbelievably easier to solve it.

Link to the article: http://www.cnn.com/2015/07/16/living/kindergarten-social-skills-adult-success-study-feat/

A Poem For Y’all

I think I might start a little something here, on this blog. Maybe it’ll happen once a day, a week, a month, but it’ll happen. I like writing, I like creating, so I’ll put my creations here. So, for your viewing pleasure:

The Roses

I realize that my wants                                                                                                             are just that                                                                                                                                 I understand that wants                                                                                                         aren’t needs                                                                                                                               But just activities                                                                                                                     Accessories                                                                                                                             Filling the void that we tell ourselves                                                                                   Doesn’t exist.

But what if those wants                                                                                                           Those baubles and trinkets                                                                                                     Saving us from being strung up                                                                                             like puppets                                                                                                                                 are needs of themselves?                                                                                                         What if, instead of what we needed                                                                                     We had something we wanted? 

What if our transcripts didn’t matter?                                                                                 Would you really join BPA?                                                                                                   Or MUN?                                                                                                                                     Or any of those clubs you swear                                                                                           have just been created                                                                                                             to make you seem attractive.

What if, instead of looking pretty,                                                                                       We showed our true selves                                                                                                   We took off the suits and jewelry                                                                                         And paraded ourselves as we really were.                                                                       Sweatpants,                                                                                                                             Pink hair,                                                                                                                               Pierced noses and tongues,                                                                                                     Tattooed and scarred.                                                                                                           What if?

However, if we were to show                                                                                               Our true selves                                                                                                                         to our condemners                                                                                                                 There’s no way they’d take us in. 

So, put on your suits                                                                                                                 Straighten your ties                                                                                                                 Throw away those studs                                                                                                       Cover up that rose with paint                                                                                               Blend in.

And after you’ve become one                                                                                               Just another bee in the hive                                                                                                   You won’t remember                                                                                                             Your wants                                                                                                                               Your void                                                                                                                                   Yourself.

The website was acting up and messed up the spaces, but I think it looks better this way. I hope you enjoyed it, and look forward to more pieces in the future!

Sacred Writing #3

Another one bites the dust. Can’t remember what the prompt was, because I ignored it and decided to write about my two favorite characters (that I’ve created, at least), Raven and Kit. I love them to death, but sometimes have trouble writing about the duo, so I practiced during this Sacred Writing.

Begin!

As Raven danced, she could feel everyone’s eyes on her. Watching, transfixed as she glided across the ballroom floor. She slowed, beginning to feel embarrassed, until she felt a firm hand on her waist. She looked up into the green eyes of her best friend, who grinned and swung her around to face their audience.

Kit began to twirl her around, and suddenly the eyes were no longer noticeable. Her friend seemed more like a protector as she kept her mind off the stares they were receiving. What did she care, anyway? She was here with Kit. In her mind, at least, there was no one else in the room.

The hands found their way back to her waist and open palm, beginning a smooth waltz. Raven’s smile, small at first, grew into a wide grin when she noticed Kit glancing down at her shoes, attempting to keep in time. She took the lead, feeling her partner look up and smile back as Raven began to twirl in the other direction.

She had no idea how long they stood like that, just dancing the waltz, or the tango, or just stepping and shifting their weight, staring into the other’s eyes, but never missing a beat. Kit’s hands never left her, except when it was necessary to keep time, or to unceremoniously throw her into a whirl. When she missed a step, Raven could feel the protective grip tighten, the fingers warm up slightly and draw her closer.

After the dance had ceased, they stood there, in the now-empty ballroom floor, and Raven gave her protector a small kiss, a reward for her silent knight.

Scene ends.

“If you can’t annoy somebody, there’s little point in writing.” -Kingsley Amis

I like this piece, it’s short and cute (maybe because I think the two of them make an adorable couple). You know what? I’ll upload some pictures I drew of them. I know that counts towards the creativity portion of CAS, and I like designing them.

See you soon!

Sacred Writing #2

Told ya’ there’d be more. This time I’ve decided to use the “Poem Day”, where we wrote as many poems/raps as we could before the timer went off. Of course, this was after the entire class watched Daniel Radcliffe perform “Alphabet Aerobics”, so you must bear with me on this one.

Boy, I’m in trouble / everything’s a little muffled. / There might be a scuffle / If I pop this bubble. / Everyone’s so pumped / I could get dumped / off a thirty story building owned by Donald Trump / but I’m stumped. / So don’t get mad if I ask this question / beat me up and give a concussion. / This answer might be tainted with aggression / but I think I need to end this session… There’s a game tomorrow?

I really wanna’ rap, / tap this chap’s lip flaps / but I can’t flap my trap / faster than others that can close this / gap. They wouldn’t clap, maybe snap / maybe slap / but I don’t give a crap.

He was gay / and so was he. / Secretly / they were meant to be. / One had pink hair, / the other blue. / They thought maybe they’d see the other / across a crowded room.

The second one physically hurt to type, but it’s fun to say. My favorite has to be the last one, it’s cute and reminiscent of OHSHC (subtext is always the key to a good ship).

“The road to Hell is paved with adverbs.” – Stephen King

Sacred Writing #1

The following is seventeen minutes of unrevised writing that I completed during class. The next two posts I put up will be the same idea, but different pieces.

Prompt: How Do I Make My Life More Memorable?

I think there’s a very easy way to answer this question. It’s by doing things that I want to do. If I’m lonely, I’ll talk to friends, if I have an awesome idea for a story, I’ll draw it.

I can make my life more memorable by trying out and accepting new opportunities that come my way. As a wise Youtuber once said, “You don’t get good memories by saying ‘no’ all the time.” I’ll try out for drama, I’ll sign up for my church choir, I’ll even dance like a mad fool during Homecoming.

The problem with the above answers is that they’re easier said than done. I have homework, I have extracurriculars, I have family to keep track of, I have school to worry about. I have to think about what my peers will say.

Perhaps it’s more about waiting for the right moment. Seizing opportunities as they appear, not as I seek them out. It’s worked out well so far. That’s how I got my dream job, but it’s also how I got what I think of as my worst job.

Maybe it’s a balance? “All work and no play” and all of that. I need to be restrained, but able to fly free when need be. But how can I fly free when chains are attached to my ankles, reminding me that I may be having fun now, but I have a report due soon? How can I dance when no one’s watching if no one else is joining in?

“If the English language made any sense, lackadaisical would have something to do with a shortage of flowers.” – Doug Larson

I feel the need to stress the fact that this is unedited, but I also know that it’s quite obvious. Just so you know, I rocked Homecoming, I was the best dancer that cafeteria had ever seen.

What was that part about the chains? I don’t know, it came out of nowhere and the muse rose back into the heavens while I tried to figure out how to finish this piece.

Response to the Clip “Suicide Bombers Target Peace Rally in Turkish Capital: 95 Dead”

Of the many hot-button topics I’ve had the pleasure of discussing on this blog, feminism, gun control, the Pope, this perhaps is the most touchy. Terrorism is a very fragile subject to discuss, but I guess that’s what we’ll have to try today.

I would like to say that suicide bombing is very immoral. You may say it’s the ultimate sacrifice for your cause, but perhaps your cause is a bit unjust if they can’t find an easier way to get their point across. I firmly that peace and understanding can be achieved through words, not violence. Why must lives be lost in a way that ultimately makes the figures in charge less willing to listen?

Perhaps the worst part is that there may not have been that much of a reason for those ninety-five deaths. No groups have stepped up to claim the bombers as part of their cause. So, not only have the victims of the attack died for no reason, but so have the bombers themselves.

Sometimes the world makes very little sense.

Link to the clip:

Response to the Articles “7 Reasons Liberals are Wrong on Gun Control” and “Conservatives are Delusional About Facts on Guns”

I’ll be honest, while I’m very much neutral on the gun control debate, I tend to lean more towards the Liberal side when pressed, so I just had to choose these two articles to write about.

While this author of the “7 Reasons” article (Conservatives United) does bring up some obvious points, such as the effect stricter gun laws would have on hunters and sportsmen, they fail to do what the author of “Conservatives” (Huffington Post) does so well, and that’s what makes it less trustworthy in my mind. The Conservatives United article does not contain sources for any of its information, while the Huffington Post is chock-full of them. This calls into question all of its information and ideas presented, and it makes for a poor article.

A problem I have, not with these articles, but with the two sides in general, is their animosity towards each other. Just look at the titles of these two articles, like two second graders trying to argue about whether or not they should get pizza. I’d really like to formulate an opinion on the topic of gun control, but I’ll have to get my information from someone who isn’t just going to trash-talk the other side, so I might be looking for a while.

Links to the articles

Conservative – http://conservativesunited.com/7-reasons-liberals-wrong-gun-control/

Liberal – http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dale-hansen/conservatives-are-delusional-about-facts-on-guns_b_7560888.html